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As I was needing to take long drive, I tried to quickly pull a book from Audible to keep me awake. It turned out at the last second the drive was cancelled, but I'd already chosen a book. I chose it almost at random. A familiar author had a book out and the reviews (by listeners) were terrible. In one, a comment was made about the terrible narration but the admission that he could be biased since he'd just finished listening to this other book.
It was the frankness of that last statement -- as if anyone should know that if you've just listened to this one other book you must surely be forgiven for finding anything else to be crap -- that caused me to follow the link and look into that book. I've never seen such an array of positive feedback for a book so I decided to give it a try.
The book is "Shantaram" by Gregory David Roberts. I'm about 2 hours into the listen, and the prose along with the reading by Humphrey Bower which is phenomenal has me riveted. The author's descriptive skill reminds me of Hemingway and I am learning one vision of Bombay through the eyes of the author and the perfect accents of the reader.
The story is told in first person, and it seems to draw a great deal from what Roberts describes of his life. I've seen his website, and he's really pushing a whole eastern philosophy thing pretty hard. I really hope the next hours of the book doesn't turn into a Dianetics kind of thing. There are something like 40 hours of this thing left to go -- and I really would like it to continue as it is.
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