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Paths of Glory by Jefferey Archer is the Life story of George Herbert Leigh Mallory, an English mountaineer who lost his life in an attempt climb the Everest. The words of Archer take us on the cold and hard journey with Mallory.
The published story created a controversy in few places around the World, New Zealand in particular for major factual errors, which made the book less popular than Archer’s other works, but it didn’t stop to deliver the clichés of Archer. It had the overwhelming emotions spurting out of his words.
With Mallory in this book, we take many journeys through several summit including his historical journey to the top of Everest, the one that claimed his life and the one from which he never came back alive. Along with Mallory, we endured the cruel nights at the first base of the summit, breathless stumbles along the second base, gruelling days that were disappointing in more than one way and his final ascend and suffocated along with him in the thick layer of snow. The ending leaves us with the kind of emptiness that one will find when they fail at something that they have pushed their limits for. It didn’t make it any better to know that a living, breathing human being went through all those ordeals only to give it all up with his life. The fact also made the controversy much more understandable as the factual errors on Mallory’s life would tarnish the memory of him.
Keeping the factual errors aside, Archer didn’t disappoint in delivering an amazing story of an even amazing human being who died doing what he loved and creating history while doing so.
The Forty Rules of Love is a breathtaking piece by Elif Shafak, who took the reader on a memorable journey through love, religion, mysticism and many more through her beautiful words.
This book is a perfect example of “don’t judge a book by it’s cover”. Some may think this book is about a kind of a guide book to be a success in love, well it is in a way, but in the most poetic and unexpected way possible.
The story starts with Ella having an existential crisis over a book she is reviewing. With Ella, we take up on a journey in search of love that is beyond the understanding of an average mind.
Does this book talk about love? Friendship? Companionship? Love of God? Self-Love? Religion? Meaning of life as a whole? Yes, yes and yes to all of the above. Shafak took us on a journey with Shams a Sufi in search of a companion who can mirror him and give a meaning to his solitude. When he finds Rumi, anyone who understands solitude will ache to have a companionship like Shams and Rumi.
“I have never been to a tavern before and have never consumed wine. I don’t think drinking is the right thing to do. But I trust you fully, because I trust the Love between us”
– Rumi to Shams
These beautiful words, as simple as it might be, revealed a prospect of the heights of trust and love a person could have for another. This level of trust as purely a concept of fiction as it can be in this modern times, it makes one think how much human beings are capable when it comes to love and ache for a time where it could be possible.
The forty rules that is spread across the entire story is not just a rule for just common kind of love between a man and a woman, but for forty kinds of love and more. None of the two rules address the same kind of love. As you explore the rules one by one, you fall in love with god, with life, with yourself, with your ability to love, with another person, with humans in general and the list goes on till it come to a point where you fall in love with love itself.
After reading this book, you will never see life and the rest of the world the same way again. It will take you apart and put you back piece by piece in the most poetic way possible.