Thursday, 13 October 2011

Book review: Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh

Sea of PoppiesSea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh

This book took me forever to read and I'm not entirely sure why as it was my favourite 'book club' book yet!
In some ways Sea of Poppies reminded me of Pillars of the Earth, the way that all the characters are introduced separately and at some point in the novel are brought together. It's what I call an epic book and I really can't wait for the next one in the trilogy to come out. This one ends rather suddenly and leaves you wanting more.
The reason why this book only has three stars is for two main reasons, one which could have been avoided. The first was the chapter structure. I hate long chapters. Ideally I should be able to read a chapter in half an hour, that way I can read two or three if I've got the time, or only one if I'm tired. This book had a lot of long chapters, and when I got home from work I really couldn't be bothered to read a whole one, so I would just read chunks. It took me a lot longer because when I started reading the books, I might forgo a night of reading Sea of Poppies because I wasn't looking forward to it.
The other thing that put me off initially was the language. The way things are phrased and anything spoken by Serang Ali was particularly hard to read. To put it bluntly I couldn't be bothered to translate the text! But as I carried on reading I found it easier and eventually learnt to love it as something that makes the book unique.
Overall, three out of five! Bring on the sequel!

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