Reading Journal

What I'm reading

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Sacred Games, by Vikram Chandra

Whew! What a long book! It's been awhile since I've read a 900 pager, and now that I have kids it took a long time to get through.

I bought Sacred Games in India. It's set in Mumbai/Bombay, and it's about a policeman, a crime lord, a guru, and a plot to destroy Bombay with an atomic bomb. It definitely gave me a feeling for what Bombay is like. I also learned a lot of Indian swear words like "gaand", "maderchod", etc. After a while I think I figured out what each meant, but I'll spare you the translation.

It's a melancholy book that conveys a bleak, hopeless outlook on life. Most characters end up dying in tragic ways, many destroyed by the natural consequences of their own ambition, idealism, or plans.

Reading the Mahabharatta gave me quite a bit of background that I needed to understand allusions he made to Arjun and Krishna. The book had a very eastern feel to it. I'm definitely ready to read a Christian book now!

"He allowed himself to think of [his mother's] death, and he shivered suddenly, but he was not sad. Every connection came freighted with loss, every attachment with the possibility of betrayal. There was no avoiding this conundrum, no escape from it, and no profit from complaining about it. Love was duty, and duty was love."


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