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Haroun and the Sea of Stories (1990)

by Salman Rushdie

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Khalifa Brothers (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,776822,241 (3.99)261
The author of The Satanic Verses returns with his most humorous and accessible novel yet. This is the story of Haroun, a 12-year-old boy whose father Rashid is the greatest storyteller in a city so sad that it has forgotten its name. When the gift of gab suddenly deserts Rashid, Haroun sets out on an adventure to rescue his print.… (more)
  1. 91
    Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll (weeksj10)
    weeksj10: Rushdie's books focused around the Khalifa family are like a modern day Alice in Wonderland with a spicy bite from its Indian setting. The wordplay, characters, and plot all mirror those of Alice and like Carroll's book Rushdie's can and will be enjoyed by magic lovers of all ages.… (more)
  2. 40
    The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster (calmclam)
  3. 30
    The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum (amanda4242)
  4. 31
    The Neverending Story by Michael Ende (thiagop)
    thiagop: Both books talk about literature in a fantastic way.
  5. 10
    Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn (bookwoman247)
    bookwoman247: Word play and language are an intregal part of both books. Ella Minnow Pea is a bit more sophisticated, but for adults or teens who enjoyed Haroun and the Sea of Stories, I think they will also find Ella Minnow Pea very enjoyable.
  6. 44
    The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente (lorax)
    lorax: Both are beautifully written fairy tales about young people traveling to another world, readable by kids but with much for adults to enjoy.
  7. 00
    Abarat by Clive Barker (aethercowboy)

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» See also 261 mentions

English (79)  Spanish (1)  German (1)  French (1)  All languages (82)
Showing 1-5 of 79 (next | show all)
Charming, magical, hilarious. Haroun and the Sea of Stories feels like a fairy tale, moves like a fantasy adventure, and reads like literary fiction. It's absolutely appropriate and delightful for all ages. The prose is gorgeous. ( )
  Zoes_Human | Nov 3, 2023 |
4.5 🌟s. My first read by Salman Rushdie won't be my last. I went in soft for the #AuthoraMonth challenge on Litsy and did not come away disappointed. Children's story be damned; I loved it for reminding me of how important stories are in our lives. It made me feel triumphant for teaching my students about the archetypal story pattern of all our lives: The Hero's Quest and that every story is the same story told in infinite variations. Thank you, Mr. Rushdie. ( )
  crabbyabbe | Aug 12, 2023 |
Journeying through this novel was a weird and wonderfully humorous escape. In many ways, it took me back to when I fell in love with The Phantom Tollbooth, much as this may be more geared towards adults and that one wasn't. The humor here was so bubbling and natural to the story, the comparison was automatic, and many of Rushdie's images from this one will stay with me for years to come. I can't say it lived up to the longer works I've loved from him, but that's a high high bar, and I'm still very much looking forward to delving into the next work in this series.

Recommended. ( )
  whitewavedarling | Jun 25, 2023 |
I am surprised by how much I disliked it. So bloated with whimsy and forced fanciful wonder that all charm and meaning are choked to death. ( )
  3Oranges | Jun 24, 2023 |
A fast, fun read in the form of adventures, heroes, romance and humanity.

All about the need for freedom to create and tell our storie without censure.
  Bookish59 | Aug 4, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 79 (next | show all)
". . . [a] remarkable new children's book . . . [T]he experiences that lie behind 'Haroun and the Sea of Stories' are nearly as fantastic as anything in the tale. . . . full of comic energy and lively verbal invention."

» Add other authors (14 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Rushdie, Salmanprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Birkbeck, PaulIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Emeis, MarijkeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Marsh, JamesCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Saaltink, StephanCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stege, GiselaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Zembla, Zenda, Xanadu:
A ll our dream-worlds may come true.
F airy lands are fearsome too.
A s I wander far from view
R ead, and bring me home to you.
First words
There was once, in the country of Alifbay, a sad city, the saddest of cities, a city so ruinously sad that it had forgotten its name.
Still Haroun wanted to know why his parents hadn't had more children, but the only answer he ever got from Rashid was no answer at all:

'There's more to you, young Haroun Khalifa, than meets the blinking eye.'

Well, what was THAT supposed to mean? 'We used up our full quota of child-stuff just in making you,' Rashid explained. 'It's all packed in there, enough for maybe four-five kiddies. Yes, sir, more to you than the blinking eye can see.'

Straight answers were beyond the powers of Rashid Khalifa, who would never take a short cut if there was a longer, twistier road available.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

The author of The Satanic Verses returns with his most humorous and accessible novel yet. This is the story of Haroun, a 12-year-old boy whose father Rashid is the greatest storyteller in a city so sad that it has forgotten its name. When the gift of gab suddenly deserts Rashid, Haroun sets out on an adventure to rescue his print.

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Average: (3.99)
1 10
1.5 6
2 50
2.5 13
3 154
3.5 52
4 335
4.5 43
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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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