- Paperback: 944 pages
- Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; Reprint edition (October 1, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0312330537
- ISBN-13: 978-0312330538
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.6 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (2,863 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,795 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
Shantaram: A Novel Paperback – September 29, 2005
|New from||Used from|
Books with Buzz
"Killers of the Flower Moon" is a twisting, haunting true-life murder mystery about one of the most monstrous crimes in American history. See more
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Crime and punishment, passion and loyalty, betrayal and redemption are only a few of the ingredients in Shantaram, a massive, over-the-top, mostly autobiographical novel. Shantaram is the name given Mr. Lindsay, or Linbaba, the larger-than-life hero. It means "man of God's peace," which is what the Indian people know of Lin. What they do not know is that prior to his arrival in Bombay he escaped from an Australian prison where he had begun serving a 19-year sentence. He served two years and leaped over the wall. He was imprisoned for a string of armed robberies peformed to support his heroin addiction, which started when his marriage fell apart and he lost custody of his daughter. All of that is enough for several lifetimes, but for Greg Roberts, that's only the beginning.
He arrives in Bombay with little money, an assumed name, false papers, an untellable past, and no plans for the future. Fortunately, he meets Prabaker right away, a sweet, smiling man who is a street guide. He takes to Lin immediately, eventually introducing him to his home village, where they end up living for six months. When they return to Bombay, they take up residence in a sprawling illegal slum of 25,000 people and Linbaba becomes the resident "doctor." With a prison knowledge of first aid and whatever medicines he can cadge from doing trades with the local Mafia, he sets up a practice and is regarded as heaven-sent by these poor people who have nothing but illness, rat bites, dysentery, and anemia. He also meets Karla, an enigmatic Swiss-American woman, with whom he falls in love. Theirs is a complicated relationship, and Karlas connections are murky from the outset.
Roberts is not reluctant to wax poetic; in fact, some of his prose is downright embarrassing. Throughought the novel, however, all 944 pages of it, every single sentence rings true. He is a tough guy with a tender heart, one capable of what is judged criminal behavior, but a basically decent, intelligent man who would never intentionally hurt anyone, especially anyone he knew. He is a magnet for trouble, a soldier of fortune, a picaresque hero: the rascal who lives by his wits in a corrupt society. His story is irresistible. Stay tuned for the prequel and the sequel. --Valerie Ryan --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
At the start of this massive, thrillingly undomesticated potboiler, a young Australian man bearing a false New Zealand passport that gives his name as "Lindsay" flies to Bombay some time in the early '80s. On his first day there, Lindsay meets the two people who will largely influence his fate in the city. One is a young tour guide, Prabaker, whose gifts include a large smile and an unstoppably joyful heart. Through Prabaker, Lindsay learns Marathi (a language not often spoken by gora, or foreigners), gets to know village India and settles, for a time, in a vast shantytown, operating an illicit free clinic. The second person he meets is Karla, a beautiful Swiss-American woman with sea-green eyes and a circle of expatriate friends. Lin's love for Karla—and her mysterious inability to love in return—gives the book its central tension. "Linbaba's" life in the slum abruptly ends when he is arrested without charge and thrown into the hell of Arthur Road Prison. Upon his release, he moves from the slum and begins laundering money and forging passports for one of the heads of the Bombay mafia, guru/sage Abdel Khader Khan. Eventually, he follows Khader as an improbable guerrilla in the war against the Russians in Afghanistan. There he learns about Karla's connection to Khader and discovers who set him up for arrest. Roberts, who wrote the first drafts of the novel in prison, has poured everything he knows into this book and it shows. It has a heartfelt, cinemascope feel. If there are occasional passages that would make the very angels of purple prose weep, there are also images, plots, characters, philosophical dialogues and mysteries that more than compensate for the novel's flaws. A sensational read, it might well reproduce its bestselling success in Australia here.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Browse award-winning titles. See more
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top Customer Reviews
It not only did its job of entertaining, but got me to thinking philosophically about people when I was not reading it. Anybody that knows me would not consider me a philosophical thinker. That is why I rated the mood as thoughtful though it works up to to being every bit as much suspenseful. It is an incredible book that starts out interesting and moved on to the point where if I could manage to put it down by midnight I couldn't wait to get myself back to reading it. I read the book twice. After the first time I went to Southeast Asia, not including India which is the setting of the book, but once to Thailand and twice to Nepal. I really enjoyed the people and some of them could make me laugh harder than I ever have in my life. But they were always trying to pull petty scams. Then when I got back from my third trip I read Shantaram the second time and it put things into perspective. They assume we are all rich while the poorest of them live in plywood and cardboard houses with plastic scraps held down by rocks for a roof. So what is it for the Americans who likely paid over 2K Just to get there and back to get suckered in a petty scam. I thought about my loss of $60.00 to a scam and it seemed more ignorance on my part than a crime on their part and just learned to be more prepared and knowledgeable the next time I bought something. I really liked them other than having to be wary of the scam at any time. But that was all part of the some of the best experiences i had in my life. In addition when I saw how many people were poor and how they lived, I just considered it a donation to charity that can't be written off. Big Deal. Those were the best experiences I ever had.
This book will rip your heart out, stomp on it, and put it back in your chest all repaired by the ending. It took me a week to read and it was the best week of my life. I cried when it was over and haven't been able to read another book since. Truly an epic masterpiece.
The first nineteen chapters are a book about India. We read this for my book club, and we were fortunate to have a guest who had grown up in India, to answer our questions about all the strange and fantastic things this white, Australian, ex-con author was telling us. It turns out that what he wrote about Indian ways and culture is true, and our guest even demonstrated the Indian head waggle!
This story offers more than an intimate glimpse at India; it is also a provocative lesson on redemption for all sins, not just the ones that can land you in a jail. It also offers a few lessons on love.
But after chapter nineteen the story is no longer really about India, and the main character, Lin, is no longer a "normal" man in extraordinary circumstances. Lin becomes a kind of superman involved in one cliff-hanging circumstance after another. The story and the characters are no longer endearing; they become larger-than-life cardboard "heroes" in an action movie. The reader no longer learns anything of value about India or the characters. And that's too bad, because it didn't have to go that way; there was enough going in the first 400 pages to carry it every bit as well to 900.
I will mention, too, that Gregory Roberts could write a compelling story about being in prison, if Australian prisons really are as bad as he claims. Perhaps he will.