[Epub] A Fine Balance By Rohinton Mistry – Albawater.co

I read this book during our travel in India this year The book is as appalling as it is brilliant Brilliant because it is one of the best and most entertaining books I have ever read and appalling in the way so many people have to live and I could see it all around me while I was reading I was particularly interested in the fascinating moral dilemmas like for example a ruthless agent who represents and takes most of the earnings of beggars and yet whether or not their lives would be better with or without him.Great storytelling, characterisation and writing I can t recommend it highly enough With A Compassionate Realism And Narrative Sweep That Recall The Work Of Charles Dickens, This Magnificent Novel Captures All The Cruelty And Corruption, Dignity And Heroism, Of India The Time Is The Place Is An Unnamed City By The Sea The Government Has Just Declared A State Of Emergency, In Whose Upheavals Four Strangers A Spirited Widow, A Young Student Uprooted From His Idyllic Hill Station, And Two Tailors Who Have Fled The Caste Violence Of Their Native Village Will Be Thrust Together, Forced To Share One Cramped Apartment And An Uncertain Future As The Characters Move From Distrust To Friendship And From Friendship To Love, A Fine Balance Creates An Enduring Panorama Of The Human Spirit In An Inhuman State This is like slumdog millionaire except without the feelgood factor Set in 1970s Bombay Mumbai , although the city name is never explicitly mentioned Depressing yet engrossing, the story follows the criss crossing lives of four characters in post partition India Mistry describes the hardships of poverty in India and the prejudice and inequities of the caste system with brutal grit A character in the book describes the fine balance between hope and despair Cruel and harrowing but compelling to the end. I purchased this book for a friend as I ve already got a copy.Many say that the mark of a good book is that it stays with you well, I read this several years ago and I still find myself thinking of the characters from time to time I recommend this book to everyone.The writing is beautiful, Mistry is a tailor of words.As others have said, the story is sad I ve spoken to people who felt the author wrote misery for the sake of it, to be dark, to standout I disagree Yes, it is sad, it is difficult to comprehend sometimes but all is true I found this book a book of fact within fiction. Rohinton Mistry is a new find for me and I found myself completely engrossed What a story teller, what a wide canvas he covers of India leading up to and subsequent to Partition Books, they say, open up the world to you, and this certainly did it is about the struggles of the poor in India seen through the plight of an uncle and nephew after they leave their village where they are of the leather working caste Chamoors and try to make a new life for themsleves as cobblers in Mumbai I can t do justice here to such a dense and weighty book the descriptions were wonderful, the characters, from the limbless begger, Shankar, to the impoverished widow, Dina, are very real, the tragedy and injustice described are truly shocking There are some very fine novels coming out of India and this is certainy one of them Just as a post script it was interesting to note that not a single white face appeared on these pages except a reference to hippies being a good business proposition for one of the characters which showed just how little impact Britain had on the real, teeming India of the streets and villages. A Fine BalanceBy Rohinton MistryA Fine Balance is well written and achingly evocative of the period, the second half of the twentieth century in India.Tailors, Ishvar Darji and his nephew Omprakash leave their village to escape poverty and seek their fortune in the city, hoping to return rich and successful and rescue their family from crushing poverty and prejudice.On their train journey they meet Maneck Kohlah, also on his way to the city but to study Fate has brought them together and they find they are heading for the same place, Maneck to lodge with his mother s old friend, Dina Dalal and the tailors to work for her.The story is told very definitely through the characters and the book is packed with well drawn, fascinating characters, convincing, often heartbreaking, always evocative but never over sentimental.A Fine Balance is not a quick read The pace is steady, perhaps a bit pedantic at times but definitely worth the time it takes to read.It is a book to savour rather than to gallop through.I would certainly read by this author.Sue Almond May 2018 This thick book with very small font has been sitting on my bookshelf for ages and I ve avoided picking it up but decided that the time had come.From the first few pages I felt that I was in the world in which the characters inhabited I know little about 1970s Indian politics but that didn t matter Social changes played as an important background but the narrative focused on the effects felt by the individuals rather than the high level shifts in the world This worked really well and made the book about the characters.India itself is a huge character in the story and its portrayal is well rounded we see good, bad and much in between The colours and smells range from beautiful to horrific and there is a deep understanding of Indian culture with specific reference to the caste system.Time moves back and forward as we move between the main characters, exploring their connections to each other and their progression through life.From a promising start, I found that the story started to drag from about half way through The book was too long and I found it tedious to finish, taking me far longer than it should have done I know that life is hard but it would have been good to show the occasional glint of sunshine through all the black clouds.Worth book to read and I can see why it is highly rated I m glad I read it but I won t be reading any other books by this author.