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"Life isn't divided into genres. It's a horrifying, romantic, tragic, comical, science-fiction cowboy detective novel."

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Shantaram is the partially autobiographical story of a man who escapes from prison in Australia and finds himself in India. At first he is bewildered and taken aback by the sheer scope of the country and the numbers of people. However, he quickly falls in love with India and the various characters he meets while he travels to a tiny Marathi village, when he works as a doctor in a Mumbai slum, while he moonlights as a goonda for an infamous Muslim gangster. This is truly an epic tale of one man's transformation and his infinite love for a beautiful nation.

This is my second time through this novel and I found it just as inspiring and heartbreaking as my first time through it. Lin Ford is a good man just trying to find a way to atone for his past life and to scour his heart clean in a nation that so willingly embraces him. The way the author describes India is breathtaking, as cliche as this sounds, I honestly felt like I've traveled there and was immersed in its rich and vibrant culture.

My one complaint with the book is that Roberts tends to get a little too flowery with his passages and descriptions. I never thought I'd say that, but there's a limit to the number of obscure and grandiose statements he can make. I mean come on, the book is already over 1,000 pages long

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