I’ve been meaning to try something by Rushdie for a while, and the idea of trying something I hadn’t heard of by him sounded appealing. Especially since it’s a fable-like story set mostly in a fantasy world; that’s the sort of setting that most appeals to me. I actually don’t know much about the plots of Rushdie’s other books — just that there were a lot of objections to The Satanic Verses.
Luka and the Fire of Life is a fairly traditional fable in one way: a boy, seeing his father dying, must quest for the magical item that will restore him to life and allow him to live. But then there’s also gaming — Luka finishes levels, gathers extra lives, saves his game — and modern puns like the whole section with the Respectorate of I and the Otters (and the land of OTT, where everything is, well, over the top). It’s an odd juxtaposition at times, but I quite liked it — and Rushdie can certainly turn a phrase. I’m going to read more by him, but I think I’m glad I tried this first — it’s relatively short and unthreatening, so it might well make a good gateway drug.