Monday, August 6, 2012

The Hindu Review

I've always been a big fan of The Hindu. I consider it the best paper in India - erudite, restrained, encyclopaedic in scope.

However, I can't say I was overjoyed when I read its review of The Angel's Share. 'Mildly entertaining' stings. It may be the hyper-sensitive ears of the author but even the praise sounds a little backhanded - 'there are bits that are really funny' sounds desperately like the reviewer is casting about for something pleasant to say.

The one real bone that the reviewer had to pick with the book seems to be that Zorawar Chauhan is a cad. Of course he's a cad. That's a bit like slating Moby Dick because Captain Ahab 'has a bit of a one track mind'. Must all first-person narrators be likeable? 

Ah well. The silver lining is that the reviewer opens with 'the cover is simply gorgeous'. I've been hearing this from quite a few sources. All credit goes to Nikolai Linares, a brilliant young Danish photojournalist, and Shuka Jain at Harper.

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