Warning: This review contains fragments of the story. If you have not read the book yet, please refrain from reading this review.
Salman Rushdie is the Shah of Blah, with the ocean of notions and a gift of gab. He creates magic with the story of Haroun, son of Rashid Khalifa, who lives in a city so sad, saddest of all, a city so pathetically sad that sadness could be seen with naked eyes in the form of mist, spread all over the city. This sadness is produced in industrial factories and it sells easy all over the city.
Haroun and the Sea of Stories is one children’s book that every adult must read. This book is a magic tale depicting a world of reality, woven so beautifully by Salman Rushdie, the Shah of Blah, that the story becomes real in front of eyes as you read it. This book tests your imagination and the magic you can put in while reading this wonderful tale of Haroun Khalifa. It is a page-turner. It takes you out of your miserable lives into a world even more miserable and sad than the reality, or it could be happier than heaven. Salman Rushdie has very well portrayed the reality of Indian cities and cities all over the world with his magic realism. How cleverly he says the world is beaming towards sadness, and how shrewdly he puts absolute happiness in a sad story. This is magic woven in words by the Shah of Blah.
I am sure Salman Rushdie had pure fun, a sense of pleasure, and absolute enjoyment while writing this book. It looks like he wrote it for himself but then decided to publish the work. He played with words, like no other. He excellently inundates many Hindi and Urdu words into the text to describe P2C2E, the Process too complicated to explain. Oh, I am withdrawn to the fever of this book. I am using his words and it is an absolute pleasure, sire.
As I entered into the beautiful city of Kahani, where the sun never goes into hiding, as a reader of course, with Haroun Khalifa, Iff the Water Genie, Butt the Hoopoe, Mali, Goopy, and Bagha, it appears to me like a city of my dreams, a magical city I could never visit my whole life. I never doubted the existence of Kahani or the Chup city, or the Moon on which both cities exist, I only enjoyed the part my imagination had to play while reading the book.
Rushdie’s lucid narrative and simple choice of rhythmic words make this story a postmodern fairy tale and a joy to reading. It is his first book after the controversial Satanic Verses.
The portrayal of negative characters was not so negative in the end. The truth and the good triumphs over the bad or the ugly. But he very well keeps a space for empathy in his book. The bad is finally not so bad. Shadow warriors not so ugly and Khattam-shud not so big and muscularly strong.
The willpower and determination of Haroun Khalifa is most exciting. When he finally destroys the P2C2E, the process too complicated to explain, by a single wish and when the sun again rises in the city of chup, it is simply because of his willpower and determination to destroy the Khattam-shud and restore balance in both cities of the moon.
Finally, this phantasmagorical story is a must read for adults, not just for children.