Saturday, June 4, 2016

Adultery - Paulo Coelho

There are books where every word makes sense. Even if we miss one word, we miss a huge part of the story. And then, there are books where you can sweep through the page in a second, register a word or two, move on, and you still haven't missed a thing. Like those movies where you can go out for a long break, come back and you haven't missed anything - mainly because nothing is happening. 'Adultery' falls in the second category. Nothing in you makes you want to read this book at all - it's just so loosely written. And it's so sad to see Paulo Coelho write something like this. 'Adultery' catches your eye with the title and the author's name (and you get an inkling of how its going to turn out too because of the cheap seduction) and then its downhill all the way.
Random House, 286 p, Rs. 299

A rich, married woman who has everything anyone can dream of - great marriage, career, money, children, nanny - is bored with her life. She has nothing to look forward to. So she starts a most awkward affair with a politician with whom she went to school. His wife suspects, her husband does not. The affair progresses most painfully, literally and figuratively, and you wonder why Paulo Coelho put himself through this (and us). The affair itself is so out of character, so uninvolved, that we care nothing for the flat, self possessed characters. In the end she realises that love is the answer to it all and forgives herself, the politician, his wife and gladly goes back with greater love to her boring husband. Hopefully, with an eye out for a more satsfying affair later and more lessons in love.

This story does not even deserve this much effort. Bad writing. Bad sex. Bad everything. Avoid the book - even if the title draws you in. You're better off catching some sleep.

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