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Luka and the Fire of Life
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Luka and the Fire of Life (Khalifa Brothers #2)

3.59 of 5 stars 3.59  ·  rating details  ·  4,194 ratings  ·  643 reviews
“You’ve reached the age at which people in this family cross the border into the magical world. It’s your turn for an adventure—yes, it’s finally here!” So says Haroun to his younger brother, twelve-year-old Luka. The adventure begins one beautiful starry night in the land of Alifbay, when Luka’s father, Rashid, falls suddenly into a sleep so deep that nothing and no one c ...more
Paperback, 223 pages
Published September 20th 2011 by Random House (first published 2010)
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Elsie Not really. The main character (luka) is the younger brother of the main character in the 1st book and this book is about Luka's adventure.
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Luka and the Fire of Life was disappointing. Clearly Rushdie loves words. It is full of puns. Clearly he knows his myths and theology. There are all kinds of god and minor deities across many societies and races.

So Luka is off on a quest to save his father. As I read I ws reminded of The Wizard of Oz, The Hobbit, and even the Percy Jackson series. The quest is loosely structured around a gaming paradigm.

Doesn't all of that sound like it should be great fun? It is for a while. But after a bit, i
when i embarked on this, i expected to like it just as much as i did "Haroun and the Sea of Stories", which was a solid 3 stars rating, due to it being a children's book and its kind of messy absurdness. i do like things to be absurd in a book, but not chaotical. there's a difference.

so, i had an already formed opinion about this. it was going to treat on about the same subject, continuing Haroun's story with that of his brother, Luka, in a magical world of their father's creation. Rashid is a s
Rajat Ubhaykar
I couldn't put this one away for long. Soon, my mind would begin to wander, curiosity would get the better of me and I simply had to know how far and in what direction Rushdie would choose to take this hyper-imaginative exercise in children's fantasy.

The book is set in a video-gamesque alternate reality (Luka can see the number of lives he has left in the form of a running counter in his field of vision and has to save his progress after clearing every level, for God's sake) interspersed with wi
Deanna Drai Turner
Take your grandmother's Oster blender out of the attic. Mix in:

a dash of Shel Silverstein's imagination +
a pinch of Vyasa's circumspection +
a tablespoon of Roald Dahl originality +
a dollop of Joseph Campbell's mythological mastery +
a sliver of the Dalai Lama's life wisdom...

stir it gently in a rue of John Steinbeck's fantasmagorically-simple storytelling prowess...

bake it onto a paper plate...and you get Salman Rushdie! HOLY TOLEDO what a brilliant mind.

I hardly know anything about this man.
Le Matt
A feel-good Disneyesque romp that is replete with witticisms and wordplay, this book is as different from Midnight's Children as night and day in terms of content and delivery. More importantly, it lacks the depth of an adult novel and the levity of a children book. Where is the character development? While it's meant to be an adventure into a magical world, you never quite feel the peril or excitement that accompanies it - everything flashes and dances like a video game on fast forward. One alm ...more
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Neeraja S
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Birgitte Bach
Tænk at en far kan skrive og forære sin søn, så fantastisk et eventyr som gave. Det er en historie, der kombinere den klassiske eventyrfortælling med moderne computerspil. Forfatteren er glad for at bruge sproget og historien er fyldt med kåd leg med sprog og ord. Nu kunne jeg bare rigtig godt tænke mig, at læse den anden roman "Harun og eventyrhavet", som han har skrevet til sin ældste søn.
Elvi Thesame
This is indeed a novel of wisdom and pleasure for all ages ! At first I thought this is just a story for children , but I'm glad I kept reading it because I found that this is a book full of wise words and exciting adventures. These are a few paragraphs that I liked :) : " The ages go by heartlessly whether people wish them to do so or not. All things must pass. Only Time itself endures. If this World ends, another will continue. Happiness, friendship, love, suffering, pain are fleeting illusion ...more
Mi ha fatto ricordare di quando ero un bambino sorridente, ora che sono un "adulto" sorridente.
Archit Nanda
This is the kind of book I have always longed to read, a story about stories, and who could have written it better than Mr Salman Rushdie. Set in the fictional town of Kahani (Stories) in which the master storyteller, the Shah of Blah, falls asleep with a smile on his face, a banana in his hand and a twinkle on his brow and didn't wake up the next morning. A few days later his child, Luka, accidentally lands up in the magical world. A magical world which follows the rules of contemporary gaming ...more
No one is, at turns, as consistently funny and sweet, or as silly and profound as Salman Rushdie. And nothing could be more entertaining than this tale of a young boy who must travel into the Heart of Magic, with his dog named Bear and his bear named Dog, in order to steal the Fire of Life and save his father from a retaliatory curse inflicted by a vengeful circus master who just may be a Titan. While this is supposedly a children’s book, Rushdie’s ruminations on the nature of time, discarded an ...more
This novel is kind of the sequel to "Haroun and the Sea of Stories". Once again Rashid (the father) finds himself in trouble and his son must journey to a magical land in order to save him. However, the son this time is Haroun's younger brother Luka. First off, those driven nuts by the rhyming in "Haroun" (you know who you are) will be pleased to find it is absent from this book. However, it is replaced with something I found even more annoying. The quest is set in the context of a video game. L ...more
Haroun and the Sea of Stories was one of my top reads from three years ago: I found it a charming fantasy fairy tale with Lewis Carroll-like wordplay. So I was looking forward to Luka and the Fire of Life, which is a sequel. The book takes place years after the events of the first, and its protagonist is Haroun’s younger brother, Luka. Luka is looking for his own special adventure after growing up and hearing about his older brother’s adventure. Luka gets his chance when his father Rashid sudden ...more
Feb 02, 2011 Shauna rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: adults and well-read children who like fantasy
I have a bad habit of buying books based on their covers. This book had such a beautiful cover that I didn't wait for it to come out in paperback—I glanced at the flap copy, saw that the book had a fantasy plot, and bought it.

When I started to read the book, I discovered it was a kids' book. I don't generally care for YA or children's literature, but this book turned out to be an exception. This book is like the Harry Potter series in that it has many silly creatures and a strong kid hero that k
This is a lovely, quick read, a sequel of sorts to Haroun and the Sea of Stories. It follows Haroun's younger brother, Luka, on a quest through their father's magical world of stories to find the Fire of Life and bring it back to save his father's life. He is accompanied by Bear, the Dog, and Dog, the Bear, as well as the beautiful, powerful, and thoroughly irreverent Insultana of Ott, a pair of elephant birds, and a doppelganger of his own father — the specter of his father's death. Along the w ...more
“You’ve reached the age at which people in this family cross the border into the magical world. It’s your turn for an adventure—yes, it’s finally here!”

The topic discussed is life and death through a fable, Luka(who is our hero) explores in an antic fashion, things most of us have thought about; the relationships between the world of imagination and the "real" world, between authoritarianism and liberty, between what is true and what is phony, and between ourselves and the gods that we create.

Nicki Markus
Let me say first off that I am not usually a fan of Rushdie's writing. I found Midnight's Children dull and for a while I put off reading anything else of his. Finally I picked up Satanic Verses. I enjoyed this one more, but was still not completely convinced. When I saw this book come up on NetGalley, I figured I'd give him one last chance.

I think it must be a case of third-time-lucky, as I really enjoyed this book. The story is deceptively simple on the surface, like a fairytale adventure, but
Though I just purchased Midnight's Children, I decided to read Luka and the Fire of Life for my first Salman Rushdie experience, since I had no expectations or even idea what it was about. Though this apparently is a sequel to Haroun and the Sea of Stories, I did not feel lost starting with Luka, especially since this is a children's book with a relatively simple plot. Luka's father is ill, and Luka must save him by entering the world created by his father's stories as if it were a video game - ...more
Bhargavi Balachandran

A nice cosy read and a welcome change from the books I've been reading lately.YA is normally not the genre I pick up,but for some strange reason the cover of the book screamed out to me(who can resist an illustration of a boy, a dog and a bear on a magical carpet?).Plus, I really wanted to see what YA from Rushdie would read like.

Written for the 12th birthday of his second son, the book is an adorable story of Luka going off on an adventure to save his father; a fable really. What did surprise
Euisry Noor
Setelah membaca Luka and the Fire of Life dan Haroun and the Sea of Stories (dua-duanya versi terjemahan Serambi) saya jadi tahu bahwa Salman Rushdie adalah Raja Omong Kosong itu sendiri. Di antara keunggulan tulisannya adalah dia pintar sekali bermain-main dengan kata-kata (ya iya laahh), dan karena itu sepertinya bakal lebih mantap kalau baca sendiri versi Inggrisnya (banyak plesetan kata2 bahasa Inggris). Dia juga bagus dalam menjejalkan arti-arti tersembunyi yang bisa jadi multi-tafsir dalam ...more
Jaan Eerik Sõmermaa
Jul 01, 2013 Jaan Eerik Sõmermaa rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jaan Eerik by: My mother
I had real trouble rating this book. In a way it was perfect for what it was but on the other hand it still lacked a certain something indescribable something.
This is not to say it was not a great book. Overall it was well written never boring me, especially the last three chapters which in particular were very awesome. Rushide references so many pop culture phenomena from videogames to ancient mythology and ties it all together with a well built Magical world (By the way if you are a fan of al
Devoured this short novel in a day - we follow Luka, the younger son of Rashid Kalifa (and younger brother of Haroun) as he attempts to save his storytelling father from a mysterious sleeping sickness by entering the Magic World.

Rushdie explains this story was written for his younger son, much as Haroun and the Sea of Stories was written for his older son; I've read the latter and I think I actually enjoyed this one a bit more, as Rushdie has expanded the Magic World and made the quest more per
Okay. So. I was all ready to trash this book after, well, most of it. It is too cute by half. A dog named bear! A bear named dog! Like, shut up! I don't know. I really was finding it more silly and self-regarding than profound. And really, I think that is probably the right conclusion, ultimately. Especially as it enrages me when Rushdie reheats his old books to write a worse version of them. Like, why does he do this? I suppose this is why I am not a fiction writer. It seems like a tough gig. B ...more
Jamie Wallace
I have been a long-time Rushdie fan, but have been particularly enamoured with his two young adult fantasies - this one, and the companion book Haroun and the Sea of Dreams. I am charmed to learn that he wrote these two for his own sons and love that Luka was written around the concept of video games because Rushdie's younger son is a big-time gamer. Rushdie combines the language of gamers and folklore so seamlessly that it doesn't seem odd at all. There is adventure, history, and life lessons - ...more
Sheather Nelson
Not nearly as good as Haroun and the Sea of Stories, which I love and highly recommend. This one seems less personal, because we spend less time getting to know the father who again needs saving, and it seems over-packed with deities from various world folklores, as though Rushdie is showing off his knowledge. That sort of thing always gets boring, and none of them are DEVELOPED as characters even though they ARE characters. I found the video-game format of the adventure both trite and sort of i ...more
The book has been given a unique framework based on video games. It is a story of a little boy 'Luka' who travels through the 'World of Magic' in a quest to retrieve the 'Fire of Life' to save his storyteller father Rashid Khalifa who is the creator 'World of Magic'. In his quest 'Luka' has to finish 9 Levels with the limited lives available and at the end of every level there is a golden button to save the progress. Apart from this interesting framework, the author brings in questions of realit ...more
Since I started my account with Good Reads, I've apparently become much more picky. (I sadly looked at how much I thoroughly enjoyed past books that were written no where near as well as Luka and the Fire of Life.) Alas, I was incredibly disappointed in this book. Perhaps because Salmnan Rushdie is such a celebrated writer, or because so many referred to this book as one of the best of the year, or even because I am interested in writing stories for children myself. I had such high hopes for thi ...more
Just finished it, so I'm still thinking about the whole.

It's reminiscent of _The Phantom Tollbooth_ and shares with _Haroun and the Sea of Stories_ a broad theme about the importance of stories, this time focusing on the importance of story_tellers_, as Luka is questing to save his father's life from an amiably sinister double called Nobodaddy. I'll have to go and check how much William Blake is being used other than the name.

As a nod to the digital times, the adventure is modeled on a video g
Reminds me of a children's book version of The American Gods by Neil Gaiman, for some reason. I loved the wordplay though, the intricate construction of Rashid Khalifa's world, and the way Salman Rushdie overcame the seemingly insurmountable adversaries he created for his characters. Anything is possible with magic and imagination, after all.
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South Asian Liter...: September 2011 1 22 Oct 04, 2011 07:30AM  
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Sir Ahmed Salman Rushdie is a novelist and essayist. Much of his early fiction is set at least partly on the Indian subcontinent. His style is often classified as magical realism, while a dominant theme of his work is the story of the many connections, disruptions and migrations between the Eastern and Western world.

His fourth novel, The Satanic Verses, led to protests from Muslims in several coun
More about Salman Rushdie...

Other Books in the Series

Khalifa Brothers (2 books)
  • Haroun and the Sea of Stories
Midnight's Children The Satanic Verses Haroun and the Sea of Stories The Enchantress Of Florence Shalimar the Clown

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“Man is the Storytelling Animal, and that in stories are his identity, his meaning, and his lifeblood.” 11 likes
“People think they are all sort of things they aren't' he had sad. 'They think they are talented when they're not; they think they're powerful when they're actually just bullies; they think they're good when they're bad. People fools themselves all the time, and they don't know that they're fools” 8 likes
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