Saturday, March 20, 2010
A Book Revisited: The Far Pavilions
I really need to catch up on my reading. There's been a lot of stuff going on that I've hardly had time to read. The other day at My Random Acts of Reading I read a post about the author M.M. Kaye. I'd forgotten about her and before this, I haven't seen any mention of her or her books on any book blogs. Since I'm having a book reviewing slump, I thought I'd take the time to revisit a book I read in the past that's very good and has had little or no mention in the blogosphere. I might even make this a weekly weekend meme. What do you think? It's a perfect way to bring attention to certain books. I know we were reading way before we had book blogs but we usually only write about the books we've recently read. This is a good way to think of some of the books we read in the past that have left an impression on us but for some reason have yet to be mentioned in book blogs.
I hope I can entice some of you to pick this book up, The Far Pavilions by M.M. Kaye, one of the best historical novels I've ever read.
One of my favourite settings for a novel is the British Raj. I just love it and I'll pick up just about any book if it's set in that era. M.M. Kaye really knows her stuff as she was born and raised in India. Her grandfather, father, brother and husband all served in the British Raj. The Far Pavilions was a worldwide best-seller when it was released in 1978 when M.M. Kaye was seventy years old. It was even made into a mini-series starring Ben Cross and Amy Irving.
The Far Pavilions is the story of Ashton, an English boy brought up by an Indian woman. He speaks the language fluently and has enough of their colouring to pass for a northern Indian. As a young boy, he meets Anjuli, a Russian/Indian princess who becomes his closest friend. Ashton later learns that he is English and he's sent back to England to be brought up properly. He returns years later as a military man but he soon finds that he's actually more Indian than English. He is soon reunited with Anjuli but their love is a forbidden one. This is an enormous book at almost 1,000 pages but it's well worth it. Filled with adventure, romance and war, The Far Pavilions is a long, rich and hugely satisfying read. I highly recommend it if you're up for an epic novel.
If you'd like to join the meme, grab the image above and post about a book you've read in the past that (as far as you know) has had zero or little mention in the book blogosphere. It must be a book you enjoyed and highly recommend. Write a brief summary or review and leave a link in the comment section below. I look forward to reading all your suggestions!