March 02, 2008
Rushdie in "New Yorker"
"At dawn the haunting sandstone palaces of the new “victory city” of Akbar the Great looked as if they were made of red smoke. Most cities start giving the impression of being eternal almost as soon as they are born, but Sikri would always look like a mirage."
There's an excellent short story "The Shelter of the World" in The New Yorker. It's a fictional account of the Emperor Akbar and his relationship with his wife Jodhabai. While Bollywood has its own take of the relationship, Rushdie's interpretation is outstanding. It's lyrical as only Rushdie can do, the characters are complex, sexy, and elusive. He touches on great concepts and emotions that belong to kings, and shows how "uneasy lies the head that wears the crown." Rushdie's brought Jodhabai into a mysterious woman who we all understand.
Rushdie can't stop here. This tale has to continue, so I'm sure this will be part of a larger work!