Novel by Salman Rushdie, an ode to rock and roll, centres around the indian guitarist Ormus Cama and his lover, the singer Vina Apsara, who together found the band VTO. Their story is told by their friend and Vina's occasional lover, the photographer Rai. Rushdie creates a sort of parallel universe, in which John Lennon sings "Satisfaction" and the UK fight in Vietnam, and also makes many allusions to Greek mythology. Apparently, U2 plan to record lyrics from the book.

In this book, Yossarian is a novelist and Candide is a historical person, Nixon is a fictonal person and the world just crumbles to your feet. The world is present tense and not worth living, but beautiful, beautiful.

The Ground Beneath Her Feet by Salman Rushdie

This is a novel about special people. People around whom all reality seems to orbit. People whose gravitational pull is so great that time, space, and human perception all bend around them. I met someone like this once, I called it love, and we all seem love these people. They are the ones who enter a room and suddenly nothing matters. Whatever was going on before was only a precursor and now stands irrelevant. These are people who, in this case, become rock stars. Hah!

The Ground Beneath Her Feet is a scarred and battered, ultimately human, tale about Vina Apsara, she of golden voice and beauty's beat. It is the sad yet defiant story of her tattered life and the trail of alloyed hope and destruction she leaves in the lives of each man and woman in her wake.

Much has been said about the mythological underpinnings of the story, and much has been said about Rushdie's playful and aggressive style. Both noteworthy indeed, but my lasting memory is Rushdie's bare insights into human nature. Humans- ugly, beautiful, sexy, broken and almost but never quite redeemed. His characters are alive, with bombast and with subtlety. There are no convenient happy endings (as there would be if this were instead an American movie). In fact, nothing ever really ends at all. After every tradgedy and after every long sought victory, there is always a tomorrow, and then another, and things always change. The stark, imperfect, humanity of this book is what I take with me.

I found the novel's effect to be quite depressing, yet I could not put it down. I found myself full of drive, pressing onward and through in search of the beauty which I had glimpsed. In that sense, I was precisely like the characters in the pages that Salman Rushdie expertly had me turning. Now, if you'll forgive me:

All my life, I worshipped her
Her golden voice, her beauty's beat
How she made us feel
How she made me real
The Ground Beneath Her Feet
The Ground Beneath Her Feet
Let me love you!
Let me rescue you
Let me bring you where two roads meet
Oh, come back above!
Where there is only love
Only love

Note that Salman Rushdie and U2 are grand friends. U2 recorded a marvelous song based on lyrics from the book, and while the book is loaded with rock and roll references, often humorously disguised, it seems particularly loaded with very subtle U2 references. Hard core fans will squeal with delight, others wont have missed anything important.

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