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The Black Album

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2000

    Going nowhere

    Kureishi began as playwright and you can see that in this book with its never ending presence of dialogue.This is a major problem I found with this book.The oft mentioned importance of the story with its ability to enchant and transfix is not something that in my opinion features at all. Add to that the stagnant nature of the book going nowhere . Our friend Shahid is surrounded on all sides by various forces that seek to shape him and he in turn seeks some enlightenment .We have the Muslims on one hand who try to show him their way of living and then we have the Deedee Osgoood , his love interest who is everything the muslims are not.Shahid is caught up in the middle of these forces .He is not strong and he just wants to enjoy himself , especially with Deedee Osgood . But he is not averse to the Muslim life.However in his attempt to appease, he fails and he has to choose but he doesn't want to and he doesn't.What he does do is not care and have intoxicating fun-with Deedee Osgood. It is a common feature of books nowadays to give the human experience and forget about some kind of plot in which the human experience may be reflected.It's a sad state of affairs because such books are depressing and only serve to say there is no purpose to human existence(Thank you ,Jean-Paul Sartre). Such books go nowhere. But I will not deny the human experience as expressed in this book , though it has no sauce to give it extra flavour. And to be fair ,it is a fair book that shows both sides.

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