Early Reviews

July 2, 2008 at 10:58 pm (Book Review) (, , )

On Librarything, they have a group you can join where you have access to books, often before publishing, that you can review if chosen.  After months of trying, I finally was chosen in a March bonus batch and had the great fortune to get to review Salmon Rushdie’s Enchantress of Florence.  Here is what I posted in Librarything about it.

“The first thing that struck me about this novel was the lyrical way that Rushdie uses words to create far more than an engaging plot.  His use of colorful phrases and playful, grandiose dialog illustrates the characters in the novel far better than a narrator’s mere description of them.  Sometimes I lost track of the plot somewhat – not because it was unclear – but due to my rapture over Rushdie’s phrasings.  I found myself stopping frequently to share passages with my loved ones.

I am normally the type of person who tears through a novel the first time.  I want to know the who, what, when, where and why’s of it all before reading it through a second time to enjoy the subtleties.  With Enchantress of Florence I found myself reading it at a more leisurely pace, savoring it like a full bodied wine or rich dark chocolate.  This is definitely a book that I will read again.

I have spoken much about the writing, and have neglected the plot.  Many novels have extremely predictable endings, but the ending of this work of art will likely catch you by surprise.  The Enchantress of Florence is about a young man making his way in the world to claim his birthright.  He has a tale so wrought with twists and turns of history, whimsy, magic, deception, and love that he dares only tell one man, Akbar – emperor of Hindustan.  Through the many turns of deception, it is no surprise that every character ends up the victim of this web of lies.”

The wording was definitely what struck me the most on this work.  This was the first book of his that I have had the pleasure to read, and I will definitely be looking to read more of his work in the future.  I had heard of him – who hasn’t really?  But I had never thought to pick up one of his books until I saw the description for this one.  It is currently on my reread list so that I can see what more I can glean from a second reading.


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