Midnight's Children Midnight's Children discussion


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How many times were you tempted to give up on this book?

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Tanvi I must admit at times I felt completely lost and thought of giving up reading Midnight's Children. Of course I stuck on and well... it was rewarding.


Sandie I was never tempted to quit. Salman Rushdie is one of my favorite authors and I devour his books.


message 3: by Lily (last edited Apr 26, 2012 12:53PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lily I may have, more than once. But am very glad I finally stuck with it. Hope sometime to return for a reread.

It links so well to the history of a part of the world very much in play today. Also, I realize the symbols and myths incorporated are even more powerful than I recognized when reading it -- as I encounter them hither, thither, and yon from time to time. Those are key to the desire to one day reread -- hopefully, how much more I would recognize the second time through.


Tanvi Lily wrote: "I may have, more than once. But am very glad I finally stuck with it. Hope sometime to return for a reread.

It links so well to the history of a part of the world very much in play today. Also,..."


Yes, the symbols and myths indeed are very powerful.


Tanvi I feel a little lost in the book in the sense of being lost in a maze. I am not referring to the plot, mind you, but the imagery and word-play. Yes, he takes your hand and directs you a few steps but vanishes again.


message 6: by Carolyn (new) - added it

Carolyn I am so relieved to see that others struggled with this book. It is requiring quite a bit of effort for me to keep up with the many ongoing threads. I feel as though at certain points I am catching up and then he loses me again. But this encourages me to stick with it!


Kathy With later Rushdie novels I've struggled a bit, but this one captured me and I read it straight through, no problem, much enjoyment.


Richard it didn't work for me i have to admit. other booker winners i have loved but this one left me cold, it felt arrogant, smug and - and yes i know i'll get derided for this - silly. i read it all hoping something would work for me, but nothing did

haven't tried another rushdie since reading this - well aside from Satanic Verses which i read years back and was similarly underwhelmed by


message 9: by Marie (new) - added it

Marie Theron Sandy's review suits me well, that was exactly how I felt! The question is also an intelligent one. It shows that more than one person had their suspicions about "the kaiser's clothes"! Naming a book the best in 25 years, and then the best in 40 years, does not make it everyone's favourite Booker winner!


Andrea I did give this book up! I read the first 1/3 & still hadn't got into it. It seemed too much like hard work & not enjoyable or interesting. But having read these comments maybe I'll give it another go.


Tanvi Carolyn wrote: "I am so relieved to see that others struggled with this book. It is requiring quite a bit of effort for me to keep up with the many ongoing threads. I feel as though at certain points I am catching..."

:) exactly.


Tanvi Andrea wrote: "I did give this book up! I read the first 1/3 & still hadn't got into it. It seemed too much like hard work & not enjoyable or interesting. But having read these comments maybe I'll give it another..."

Do try to. There are different things different people find appealing in Rushdie's books. Liking or not liking it is a later issue.


message 13: by [deleted user] (new)

I did find the narrator's self-justificatory (and at times one-eyed) tone draining. But I was always engrossed and couldn't put it down.

I want to read more Rushdie but I have to steel myself for the partisan narrators.


Tamara I was required to read this as part of a course on post-modern novel. At first, I devoured the book, but somewhere along the way I became frustrated with the lack of forward motion. I must admit that this was the only book I didn't finish reading during my collegiate career.


message 15: by Dweb (new) - rated it 3 stars

Dweb Kathy wrote: "With later Rushdie novels I've struggled a bit, but this one captured me and I read it straight through, no problem, much enjoyment."

Have you read "Fury"? I thought that novel was amazing.


Dyzelle I really struggled with this book and put it down more than once. However, considering all the hype about the book, I figured that there must be something to it and finally finished it. I have to say that at many points, it felt like a bit of a chore to read and I wasn't bowled over by it... maybe I'll go back one day and re-read it and see what I missed the first time.


Tanvi Dee wrote: "I really struggled with this book and put it down more than once. However, considering all the hype about the book, I figured that there must be something to it and finally finished it. I have to..."

:) I don't know if I can say the same.


Andrea Tanvi wrote: "Dee wrote: "I really struggled with this book and put it down more than once. However, considering all the hype about the book, I figured that there must be something to it and finally finished it..."

do you mean you found it light & easy?


Karen Not once, I loved this book from start to finish.


Tanvi Andrea wrote: "Tanvi wrote: "Dee wrote: "I really struggled with this book and put it down more than once. However, considering all the hype about the book, I figured that there must be something to it and final..."

oh no... Not at all. I mean I am not sure if I will re-read it.


message 21: by Carolyn (last edited May 17, 2012 03:52PM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Carolyn Heinz I read this book soon after it came out. That is, I read half of it. Couldn't make myself keep going. I get that it was an important work, with its links to Indian independence, etc. Since then I've tried to read other Rushdie books. . . I find them pretentious and boring.


Leigh Sophia I like reading about history in asian countries. and especially learning about the beginnings of bangladesh and pakistan. i didn't have any troubles reading the book at all. you mich say i'm not the fastest reader but this wasn't any trouble for me at all.


Danielle I was never tempted to give up, I loved the book from start to finish. It was the first Rushdie I had read and I can't wait to read more. It wasn't the first Indian novel I had read and I have noticed there are others that have a fair amount of political mention,eg Vikram Seth's A Suitable Boy, maybe this reflects a general Indian love of politics.


Tanvi Danielle wrote: "I was never tempted to give up, I loved the book from start to finish. It was the first Rushdie I had read and I can't wait to read more. It wasn't the first Indian novel I had read and I have noti..."

:) Well, I don't know if Indians love politics but it sure is a vital part of their being.


Jennifer I read this book while I was living in India (I lived there 5 years) so I guess I could understand some of it better than if I had no expierance of life there. Its in my to read again list. I guess real life in India is just as chaotic as it is in the book!!


Tanvi Jennifer wrote: "I read this book while I was living in India (I lived there 5 years) so I guess I could understand some of it better than if I had no expierance of life there. Its in my to read again list. I guess..."

:) Yes it is.


Jennifer Tanvi wrote: "Jennifer wrote: "I read this book while I was living in India (I lived there 5 years) so I guess I could understand some of it better than if I had no expierance of life there. Its in my to read ag..."

I will be ging back to that chaos in the fall!!I alwats look for books novels written in English by Indian Authors. Difficult Daughters is one of my favorites.


message 28: by Scott (last edited Jun 11, 2012 07:44PM) (new) - added it

Scott Smithson I made it halfway. Then I realized I just didn't care about the characters. No matter how correct it is to like Rushdie; I just don't.


Tanvi Jennifer wrote: "Tanvi wrote: "Jennifer wrote: "I read this book while I was living in India (I lived there 5 years) so I guess I could understand some of it better than if I had no expierance of life there. Its in..."

Difficult Daughters... I haven't heard of that one. Yes, Indian English authors have done some massive work in the past, although I have been disappointed with the recent ones. 'The God of Small Things' is one of my favourites.


message 30: by Nina (new) - rated it 5 stars

Nina I absolutely love this book. I read it three times, and going to read it again some day.


message 31: by Jen (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jen I was gripped the moment I started it. My family & I were born and raised in India before, during and after partition. I have been to the places he describes, the schools, the apartment blocks, the swimming pool, etc; I know the rhymes he sings, we sang them too; the little shops, the places he eats - so well described that I felt I was back there again and so well written I saw my childhood world from a different perspective. Brilliant.
Like most books though, it's either your cuppa tea or not, but if you are interested in what India was all about during that period, for me he tells it like it was - well, that's how I remember it anyway.


Dilip narayan initially about on first 100 it found very confusing ...story which doesn't connects.But as u headed further i think it successively captivate.


Veena never thought of giving up this book... never....


Tweinberg I have thought about giving up about 1/2 dozen times so far. The prose is so thick sometimes you need to just force your way through it. The reward however seems worth the price : I am still reading....


Tanvi Tweinberg wrote: "I have thought about giving up about 1/2 dozen times so far. The prose is so thick sometimes you need to just force your way through it. The reward however seems worth the price : I am still readin..."

:)


message 36: by [deleted user] (new)

I almost finished it in one month, picking, reading, feeling boredom, getting impatient, stopping, again picking, then leaving for a while, then turning page again and again feeling to give it up. But I truly admit that if it'd not be the attraction of Rushdie sentence forming I wouldn't be sticking with this book. But it is honest writing of Rushdie whether he has tried everything to make it lengthy is another matter.


Scott Ford The frustration readers expressed in preceding posts helped me consider yet another layer to Midnight's Children: a parallel to the frustrations, stops and stalls, that make up the post-WWII history of the Indian sub-continent.


Marcia Forecki This was my first book by Rushdie, and I could not put it down. I've been a devoted fan ever since.


Tweinberg As I said in a prior post, I was tempted to give up 1/2 dozen times while reading this book. I read for entertainment and enjoyment not to slog through mental mud.

I did finish the book however and I did find it to be a masterful piece of writing. I chose this book based on the challenge : I knew ahead of time it would be no easy afternoon read.

I found Rushdie's work to be unique, interesting, and worth the effort. I can heartily recommend it to those who want a challenge. If you want an easy afternoon read or Louis L'Amour dime novel, you should look somewhere else.


message 40: by Val (new) - rated it 5 stars

Val Tanvi wrote: "I feel a little lost in the book in the sense of being lost in a maze. I am not referring to the plot, mind you, but the imagery and word-play. Yes, he takes your hand and directs you a few steps b..."

That sums up my feelings about the book very well, Tanvi.

I did put the book aside when I first attempted it and then read it at a more suitable time. It was too enjoyable to ever think I would not return to reading it.


Tanvi Scott wrote: "The frustration readers expressed in preceding posts helped me consider yet another layer to Midnight's Children: a parallel to the frustrations, stops and stalls, that make up the post-WWII histo..."

hmm.... interesting. I would attribute that to post-independence or post-partition frustrations rather than post-WWII


Tanvi Val wrote: "Tanvi wrote: "I feel a little lost in the book in the sense of being lost in a maze. I am not referring to the plot, mind you, but the imagery and word-play. Yes, he takes your hand and directs you..."

:)


message 43: by Val (new) - rated it 5 stars

Val Tanvi wrote: "Scott wrote: "The frustration readers expressed in preceding posts helped me consider yet another layer to Midnight's Children: a parallel to the frustrations, stops and stalls, that make up the p..."
Yes I agree, people wanted Mahatma Ghandi's vision of India, not Indira Ghandi's reality.


Hayley Linfield Sandyboy, try Haroun and the Sea of Stories. It's written as a children's book but it's an allegory about censorship and writing and stories in general. It's wonderful. I couldn't get into Midnight's Children either. There were so many literary or other references that I was lost. Honestly I have two degrees and I think I'm at least in the top half of educated, well-read people out there, but I just did not get this one... and there are so many awesome books out there waiting to be read, that I didn't push on.


message 45: by Sam (new) - rated it 4 stars

Sam Dweb wrote: "Kathy wrote: "With later Rushdie novels I've struggled a bit, but this one captured me and I read it straight through, no problem, much enjoyment."

Have you read "Fury"? I thought that novel was a..."


I didn't really enjoy Fury so much, i never felt i quite got what Rushdie was going for. Shalimar The Clown however, out of his later novels, was absolutely encapsulating. I would recommend Shalimar The Clown highly.


Srishti Singh 15-20 times till now.!


Rahul Nath The first chapter with Aadam Aziz and how he met his wife to be in Kashmir was tough for the first few pages. With the narrative shifting back and forth every alternate paragraph. But it was so beautiful- the love story told through the perforated hole :D

After that, I didn't put it down. Amazing amazing book and probably my all time favorite.


Tanvi :) I can just understand everyone who just couldn't 'take it anymore'. :)


Rahul Nath Similar thing happened to me with "The God of Small Things". Mom bought it when I was in school and I just couldn't sit through it then. Tried again when I was in the 12th standard and the same thing happened. Finally finished it during my third year in college and loved it.

Some books take time to get into I guess. It will be hard to go through this massive book again, but I suggest you read it again and you'll surely pick up things easy to miss the first time and appreciate it more. Just saying :)


Fatma Guezguez hey , i intend to work my master's thesis on Rushdie's midnight's children , could you help me plz!


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