Top positive review
39 of 43 people found this helpful
Beautiful, touching, tragic, magical, breathtaking
on 2 February 2006
Salman Rushdie’s novel “Shalimar The Clown” begins with the dedication for the author’s Kashimiri grandparents and is, basically, about Kashmir, about Hindu-Muslim relationship in the area, about the artists and cooks village of Pachigam, about two youngsters Muslim Shalimar the clown and Hindu beauty dancer Boonyi, about their love, inter-religious marriage, Boonyi’s betrayal, Shalimar’s revenge, and then, also, Indo-Pak war because of Kashmir. It’s a book about reality, about destroyed values, the book that goes deep into ones soul, involving everything life can involve and, as if, smiling through tears at life’s total absurdity. The author masterfully pictures the way life is, opens characters’ souls, showing their ambitions, dreams, expectations, jealousy, love, lust and hatred. The story of the novel, the message sent through the novel, the way the novel is written and author’s knowledge – all was pretty shocking to me. Technically, the novel is very harmonious which was very satisfying to read and every phrase and sentence seemed to be worth learning by heart, taken as the words of wisdom or just written on the walls of one’s room. Although the story is about Kashmiri people, about what was happening in Kashmir and India (and about Europe in WW2 and today’s LA), for me it seemed like a story about humans and humanity, no matter which religion or continent they belong to, solving the great questions of being. The novel has a magic to deeply involve it’s reader into the story and make one feel as the part of Pachigam, with the help of natural descriptions of the geographical places of Kashimir, make one feel as if walking by the river of Muskadoon, or see the giant Himalayas, smell the smell of the pine trees, closely observe the domestic live of the Pachigami people and take part in traditional festivals. Also, the novel contains a lot of symbolism and characters are covered in mystery…It was impossible to guess what comes next and what is the end of the story…The end was really smashing…The story itself was tragic and breathtaking. Salman Rushdie’s “Shalimar The Clown” was one of the best novels I have ever read. A master piece and the great work of art. Should be enjoyed by everyone who likes history, philosophy, literature, is interested in world's cultures, or simply by those who want to read a really good book.