The author of The Far Pavilions returns us once again to the vast, intoxicating romance of India under the British Raj. Shadow of the Moon is the story of Winter de Ballesteros, a beautiful English heiress come home to her beloved India. It is also the tale of Captain Alex Randall, her protector, who aches to possess her. Forged in the fires of a war that threatens to topple an empire, their tale is the saga of a desperate and unforgettable love that consumes all in its thrall. Filled with the mystery of moonlit palace gardens and the whisperings of passion and intrigue, M. M. Kaye evokes an era at once of its time, yet timeless.
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This is my favourite book....but oh dear!!!!
This is a fabulous Indian epic weaving between fact and fiction, dealing with the year prior to and the 1857 Indian Mutiny. The major characters are fictional but there is a good spattering of factual people and events in the narrative which add a modicum of true history to the story.M M Kaye spent most of her childhood and early adulthood in this wonderful sub continent, she had an innate understanding of the peoples and customs. Coupled with this, her family had a long involvement with India and one of her ancestors, Sir John Kaye, wrote a definitive account of the Indian Mutiny of 1857.
This is a work of fiction which includes a great deal of fact presented in a very undry form.
Quintessentially an Anglo-Indian story read by an American, whose regard to pronunciation and punctuation leaves a great deal to be desired. It seems to be a straight reading with a cursory attempt to use accent and tone to differentiate between the characters. The pronunciation is frankly appalling; the place (probably fictional) where all the main action takes place is Lunjore NOT Lunyo. Obviously the narrator is familiar with American- Latino pronunciation and uses that form rather than the Spanish which is intended. Ms Kaye also in the book wrote footnotes to assist in the correct way to interpret the names and places, i.e Kishan Prasad said Kishan Pra-shad not Kishane Prashade and sahib would be prounounced "sarb" by an Indian, I could carry on but you can get the gist!She also does not seem to take account of the punctuation which makes the narrative sound like it has been read only without being understood and "felt".I have read this book every couple of years for the last 30, it never fails to move me, so I feel, that even I could make a better fist of the performance. Please let me have a go?
No, it is a book that has to be listened to slowly in order not to miss the nuances. I listen mainly in the car or walking the dogs, so have to take my time.
Please, please get an English person to read this book, American English just will not do. The English also have the history with India, the Raj and the East India Company (John Company) anything else will not do!
Wonderful story with both action and romance
Great romantic action
It's hard to say which character is my favourite. Apart from the two main protagonists who we all love, Conway Barton and Lord Carlyon are great characters to hate as they are such monuments of selfishness and self-interest.
I love Tara's weird and wonderful English accents. It's always a mystery to me why anyone would get an American to read a story based in colonial India, but Tara valiantly struggles with a variety of English accents. Though they don't always work (some of the English officers sound a bit on the cockney side!), I got used to them and started to enjoy their effect. They are slightly annoying at first, but stick with it and they become old friends!
The horror and savage nature of the Indian mutiny is so well told from an English point of view. M M Kaye doesn't flinch from some pretty unpleasant details, and really gives a powerful feeling of what it might have been like to be there. I particularly liked (well, not liked, but you know what I mean) the individual deaths on the first day of the mutiny of characters who were either very minor or did not appear in the book apart from to die - their deaths were moving, horrific and helped to understand all that happens afterwards.
Everything you want from historical fiction - personal stories against a grand backdrop of real life-changing events, an exotic location, heroes and idiots, courage and cowardice, love and hate, life and death on a grand scale. What's not to like?