Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-eight Nights

Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-eight Nights

A Novel

eBook - 2015
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"From Salman Rushdie, one of the great writers of our time, comes a spellbinding novel that blends history, mythology, and a timeless love story. A lush modern fairytale in which our world has been plunged into an age of unreason, Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-Eight Nights is a breathtaking achievement and an enduring testament to the power of storytelling"-- Provided by publisher.
"Once upon a time, in a world just like ours, there came "the time of the strangenesses." Reason receded and the loudest, most illiberal voices reigned. A simple gardener began to levitate, and a powerful djinn -- also known as the Princess of Fairyland -- raised an army composed entirely of her semi-magical great-great-great-grandchildren. A baby was born with the ability to see corruption in the faces of others. The ghosts of two philosophers, long dead, began arguing once more. And a battle for the kingdom of Fairyland was waged throughout our world for 1,001 nights -- or, to be more precise, for two years, eight months, and twenty-eight nights. Two Years, Eight Months and Twenty-Eight Nights is a masterful, playfully enchanting meditation on the power of love and the importance of rationality, replete with flying carpets and dynastic intrigue"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Random House, [2015]
ISBN: 9780812998924
Characteristics: 1 online resource
text file
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc. - Distributor

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Nov 29, 2017

In this novel Salman Rushdie brings together the mythologies of works such as "Arabian Nights" with contemporary American creations such as Graphic novels. He is a writer who lived and wrote with the oppression of a death threat because of a specific novel, described in detail in "Joseph Anton". Here he continues to celebrate the freedoms of literature, no matter the political situation. The conflict in the novel is, in case you missed when it happened, the Great Djinn War (or perhaps Wars - human vs Djinn as well as Djinn vs Djinn). However, contemporary religous struggles are not ignored. With a pointed examination of the construction of divinity, Rushdie has one of the Djinn there's only one word that justifies that as far as these savages are concerned: the word of this or that god. In the name of a divine entity we can do whatever the hell we like and most of those fools down there will swallow it." During this apocalyptic struggle, Rushdie sustains his post-modern slant: "It seemed that digression was the true principle of the universe, that the only real subject was the way the subject kept changing." And he sustains his wry sense of humor. Given the heavy testing Salman Rushdie has had to endure to write freely, this novel felt like a weight had been lifted from the author's shoulders. He has always utilized elements of cultures from the world. In "The Ground Beneath her Feet", he explored what if popular musicians from India became as large world-wide as Michael Jackson. In this work, elements of the graphic novel become entangled in a world-wide power struggle, and it is somehow fun. Toni Morrison praised Rushdie as a true international writer for the world. His position is unique, yet he continues to create that unique position with works such as this one.

Apr 18, 2017

This is a bit of a difficult book to review, as the phrasing and language are unquestionably beautiful, however, it was very challenging to get through. The plot was original, but the source of the originality was also the greatest issue I had with this book, which was that, rather than focusing on fleshing out any given character into which the reader could emotionally invest, this book focused heavily on world building. It was refreshing, in a way, as this is an uncommon approach, but it is hard to get motivated about reading something you can't empathize with.

AL_LESLEY Nov 10, 2016

This is my first foray into Rushdie and I have been pleasantly surprised! This modern mythological tale compiled by a future utopian civilization is very clever, humourous, thoughtful and philosphical. I flitted between 3-4 stars but I gave it a 4 because I felt it had been a long time since I actually had to think while reading! I will definitely read another Rushdie... I like his style.

May 26, 2016

I really wanted to like this Rushdie novel more but had a hard time getting invested. There are definitely some interesting sections and plot points and general philosophy but it never completely clicked for me. Still a great author and worth checking out!

Apr 02, 2016

Rich, interesting and challenging. Pokes fun at things we are familiar with and tells an unusual story as well.

Mar 16, 2016

I enjoyed the witty and always amazingly intellectual imaginings of the first part of this novel, however I found the end the same predictable woes that seem to emanate from Salman's writing. He can't seem to recover from his own many failed relationships and I think the children are a challenge, as they are to all.. Undoubtedly a brilliant mind occupied with presenting the reader with clever coincidences; and historical and philosophical snippets; but I have to confess that I am tiring of Salman. Oh dear. I feel the fabric tearing and I am being pulled into Fairyland.

Feb 03, 2016

Loved it. He has such an imagination! Best read slowly, to keep track of all the characters and let all the details sink in.

Nov 13, 2015

Is it just me or is he unreadable?
Try The Satanic Verses. The fatwa was really for the writing. He has clever phrasing, references and observations, but he tries too hard at that. Again it's probably just me.

Nov 04, 2015

Although there are better fantasy books out there, this one is entertaining enough, if slightly overstuffed with characters. Its strongest points are the ties to current events and the comic details of Rushdie's writing (who knew jinn don't have earlobes?).

Oct 26, 2015

Salman Rushdie's atheist epic fantasy is a fast fun read that makes great use of history.

Jinn are a popular (and often-badly handled) trend in fantasy fiction right now, so it's a treat to see Rushdie use them in a way that isn't divorced from their Muslim cultural context, and uses of traditional legends about their powers. Following the Qu'ran, there are both devout and non-believing jinn, but here of course it's the unbelievers who are the heroes in his epic battle between "faith" and "reason."

As usual Rushdie sees no middle ground between fundamentalist faith and secular atheism (and shows noticeable male biases), but he tells his story well and weaves in a thread of ambiguity (how far are the heroic atheists justified in going?) that leads to a satisfying conclusion.

Along the way there is an epidemic of floating (an apt metaphor for the dislocations of immigration), a large cast of diverse characters, a box that poisons supernatural creatures with bad stories, and a magical duel with a great twist.

The story is told with more scope and distance than your average American fantasy reader (raised on the literary equivalent of the close-up) is used to, but that perspective (a great use of the involved author/omniscient narrator) is part of the fun. It gives the story an epic sense of scale larger than any individual character.

Is it in the same league as his masterpiece, The Satanic Verses? No, but it's leagues ahead of his other recent work—turkeys like Luke and the Fire of Life or The Enchantress of Florence. Unlike the latter (which imploded spectacularly halfway through after a strong start), this novel builds to a satisfying climax, and the constant cultural references--ranging from classical writers to Shakespeare to US & Indian pop culture--are hilarious and more accessible to a Western audience than your average Rushdie novel.

Recommended for those who enjoy different takes on fantasy, or who loved Haroun and the Sea of Stories and want to see Rushdie work in the same metaphorical realm.

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