Sunday, April 29, 2012

The Enchantress of Florence, Salman Rushdie

In the day's last light the glowing lake below the palace-city looked like a sea of molten gold. A traveler coming this way at sunset- this traveler, coming this way, now, along the lakeshore road- might believe himself to be approaching the throne of a monarch so fabulously wealthy that he could allow a portion of his treasure to be poured ino a giant hollow in the earth to dazzle and awe his guests. 

From the flap: "A tall, yellow-haired young European traveler calling himself "Mogor dell'Amore," the Mughal of Love, arrives at the court of the Emperor Akbar, lord of the great Mughal empire, with a tale to tell that begins to obsess the imperial capital, a tale about a mysterious woman, a great beauty believed to possess powers of enchantment and sorcery, and her impossible journey to the far-off city of Florence. The Enchantress of Florence is the story of a woman attempting to command her own destiny in a man's world. It is the story of two cities, unknown to each other, at the height of their powers- the hedonistic Mughal capital, in which the brilliant Akbar the Great wrestles daily with questions of belief, desire, and the treachery of his sons, and the equally sensual city of Florence during the High Renaissance, where Niccolo Machiavelli takes a starring role as he learns, the hard way, about the true brutality of power. Vivid, gripping, irreverent, bawdy, profoundly moving, and completely absorbing, The Enchantress of Florence is a dazzling book full of wonders by one of the world's most important living writers."

Another great book by Rushdie, which I enjoyed slightly more than The Satanic Verses, most likely because the subject matter was more interesting to me. And the writing was better. Rushdie still has plenty of long sentences of course, but there are less of them and they are more effective. His writing still has a dreamlike quality to it, seeming to float and drift from place to place. The Enchantress of Florence reads a little like an old Eastern fairytale, with an exotic setting and characters. The book also has some humorous moments as well.

Read The Enchantress of Florence:
  • if you like Salman Rushdie
  • if you like magic
  • if you like stories about enchantresses/sorceresses etc.
349 pages.

Very Good! I would recommend this book!

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