Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie
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|Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie|
|Category: Literary Fiction|
|Reviewer: Keith Dudhnath|
|Summary: Rushdie's magnum opus deserves all its plaudits. It's at once an elaborate and mystical fairy tale, family saga, history lesson and brutal political indictment, all blended perfectly. Highly recommended.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 672||Date: August 2009|
At midnight on August 15th 1947, Saleem Sinai is born. At midnight on August 15th 1947, so is an independent India. As Saleem grows up, so does India. The life of a nation, of one of its inhabitants, and all of midnight's children are inextricably linked.
Not only did Midnight's Children win the 1981 Booker Prize, but it also won Booker's 25th anniversary Booker of Bookers award and the 40th anniversary Best of the Booker. It richly deserves all its plaudits. It's powerful, mesmerising, and nearly thirty years after it was first published, it's still wonderfully fresh. It's at once an elaborate and mystical fairy tale, family saga, history lesson and brutal political indictment. Every element is perfectly blended to create a beautiful whole. Not a word is out of place.
Rushdie is, of course, best known for his magical realism, but it's the history of India that struck the biggest chord with me. It would be my first recommendation for anyone with the slightest interest in India. Not that one book from one man could ever create an understanding of a whole subcontinent of half a billion people, but Midnight's Children is as close as you can come to being the great Indian novel. Fact and fiction are woven together to create a perfect understanding and enjoyment of each.
Midnight's Children is simply a book that you will love. It's a reminder of just how great literature can be. There are many great books that you're supposed to read, but Midnight's Children is one to treasure. If you've not read it, then this reissue of Booker winners is a great opportunity to pick up a modern classic. If you've already read it, remind yourself of what moved you so much the first time round - it certainly bears re-reading. Highly recommended.
My thanks to the publishers for sending it to Bookbag. For something a little less usual from Rushdie, have a look at Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-Eight Nights.
And here's the one Rushdie wrote for children.
Disgrace by J M Coetzee is another Booker Prize-winner that you'll treasure as much as Midnight's Children. The Elephanta Suite by Paul Theroux is set in India and well worth reading. You might also enjoy Afterworld by Lois Walden.
Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie is in the Booker Prize Winners.
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