Reader recommendation: Shantaram

Monitor readers share their favorite book picks.

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Gregory David Roberts’s novel Shantaram (based on his real-life experiences as an escaped convict transformed by the Mumbai slums to which he fled) captures the chaos, violence, beauty, and deeply loving heart of India. It reads like a thriller, but with witty and complex characters worthy of Dickens and with the emotional resonance of Faulkner. One of my all-time favorites!

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