Rawi Hage's writing style is so engaging and unique that you can't help but be fully immersed in this story. I didn't give it 5 stars because of the rushed ending that changed the entire tone of the story, in a bad way.
A good example of the dark novel genre with content for mature readers that is differentiated from the explicit content of the horror genre. Cynical sense of humor delivered deadpan through the main character - Fly, who goes through life without as much as raising an eyebrow at any of the tragic and the absurd events occurring around him. No attempt to impose any moral or ethical judgments on the characters who deal with life in the only way they know how. A very rich writing style that weaves a tapestry of the events prodding the mind to visually construct the scenes as you read. The ending is a bit hurried as if the Publisher gave an ultimatum to finish it or else..
Well written, fairly dark novel on working class society and immigration. Most of the characters are unsympathetic which is typical of the author. A fairly quick read and worthwhile for most.
Finalist, Rogers Writers Trust Fiction Prize 2012. Jury citation: "Rawi Hage’s freewheeling Carnival delights and surprises the reader at every turn. This vivid and wildly original tale is told with all the colour, clamour, and showmanship that the novel’s title evokes. Hage’s narrator, Fly, buzzes through the city in his cab relaying his impressions – by turns hyper-caffeinated and sleep-deprived – in electrifying, often hallucinatory fragments, shot through with violence, madness, beauty, and desire. It all adds up to a veritable magic carpet ride of a story."
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