I have flu and so I am in bed. This makes me a little sad as it means I have to miss the funeral of John Fairfax. But in bed I am. I was going to go with my ex, Ian Marchant and the poet Neil Rollinson – all three of us owe a huge debt to Arvon.

Instead, I will read all day. Shantaram, is a novel by Gregory David Roberts. Two great friends reccomended it in the space of a week, the fabulous tantrika Jan Day and my lovely friend , the Young British Artist Katy Lynton. Both raved. It’s been out a while, so I missed its first launch.

Really, it’s my kind of book. A thriller. Crime, sex, lurv, a fabulous place to write about – Bombay – seedy low-life characters. The best mix. Also – it’s a bone fide true story. The author was an escaped convict who got mixed up in the Bombay drug trade – and got his arse tortured in the process. He’s a very likeable man, and narrator; very astute in his observations of what’s going on around him – from the aesthetcis to the inner working of the bazarre of humanity around him. He describes himself as an ugly man, but already, though only three chapters in – the reader is hoping he gets the girl. Ugly men – note to self. Why have they always been my type?

I’ve decided this book (amongst many)  will have some influence on the writing of my new memoir – With the Kisses of his Mouth. I think character is everything – character and adventure – and I have enough of both to write about.

This year I plan to travel to Tibet, Greece, Cuba, Australia and France. 

I will be thinking of Shantaram on my journeys. Go read.


~ by moniqueroffey on January 26, 2009.

One Response to “Shantaram”

  1. Hi M., Hope you’re feeling better – love the cover of the new book.

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