26 April, 2013
Quotable Friday (8)
This week I'm going to quote from a book I'm still reading - Luka and the Fire of Life by Salman Rushdie. I'd read a couple of Rushdie's books in the past and, although the language is amazingly beautiful, I never really got on with them. I found them very hard work to read. My husband describes reading his books as "you get to the end of a sentence having no idea what it means, but you get to the end of a chapter knowing what's happened". I think that's a good description.
Luka and the Fire of Life is the sequel to Haroun and the Sea of Stories and they are something completely different because they're children's books. You get all the genius of Salman Rushdie's way with words, with none of the obscurity. They contain a simply marvellous world of stories and magic, the Mists of Time, glumfish, mechanical telepathic hoopoe birds and P2C2Es (processes too complicated to explain). Only taking two or three hours to read, they are funny and an absolute joy. Here's a sample for you...
" In general, however, the two brothers, Haroun and Luka, rarely quarrelled and, in fact, got on unusually well. An eighteen-year age gap had turned out to be a good place to dump most of the problems that can sometimes crop up between brothers, all those little irritation that make the older brother accidentally knock the kid's head against a stone wall or put a pillow over his sleeping face by mistake, or persuade the younger brother that it's a good idea to fill the big fellow's shoes with sweet, sticky mango pickle, or to call the big guy's new girlfriend by a different girlfriend's name and then pretend it was just a slip of the tongue. So none of that happened. [...] Luka uncomplicatedly adored his older brother, and thought he looked like a big bear - a bit like Dog the bear, in fact - or perhaps, like a comfortable stubbly mountain with a wide grin near the top."