Quichotte, by Salman Rushdie: Review

Matt Rowland Hill in Literary Review:

Opening a new Salman Rushdie novel after reading almost any other contemporary writer is like stepping off a plane in Mumbai, or New York in a heatwave: it immediately hits you how much milder and quieter things are back home. Quichotte overwhelms you from the first page with a lightning storm of ideas and a monsoon of exuberant prose. Dissonance, multiplicity, excess: these are Rushdie’s themes and his method. If you happen to experience, along with one of his characters, ‘a certain dizziness brought on by the merging of the real and the fictional, the paranoiac and the actual outlook’ – well, that’s all part of the fun.

The main part of the novel concerns two Indian-born Americans: Quichotte and Miss Salma R (the names indicate that we are far, far away from the land of conventional realism). Quichotte, a travelling pharmaceuticals salesman, has consumed so much motel-room cable TV that he has fallen ‘victim to that increasingly prevalent psychological disorder in which the boundary between truth and lies’ becomes ‘smudged and indistinct’.

More here.