02 August 2013
Carnival by Rawi Hage
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Vague, rambling, beautiful, shocking, disturbing, intelligent, fantastical...
Pick a word, any word. It will probably go towards describing this book in some way.
This is a very grown-up book. It's one of those books that you have no chance of understanding while still growing-up and probably won't understand even when you're grown. I'm still not sure what I read. This book is confusing and disturbing, but I finished it pretty quickly. I carried on reading. Even when I felt like I was going to be sick I still turned the page. And I don't know why. Something about Fly hooked me.
Fly is the main character, the narrator. And he's pretty crazy and messed up. A taxi-driving circus orphan raised by and living-with a series of misfits and freaks for the majority of his life, I was never sure if Fly honestly saw the world as described or if he was just as high as a kite. His high-or-bat-shit narrative was quite difficult to follow and I found myself reading most pages more than once.
I'd say read this book once so you know just how sane you are. And be wary of taxi drivers. And circus-folk.
I won a copy of this from Goodreads First Reads and also had access to a digital copy via NetGalley. Thank, Penguin, but this wasn't quite my cup of tea.
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