Funny and entertaining One of those books that are either loved or hated Serbian rights sold, translation expected next year Light but so funny Good antedote after a big read like luminairies or gold finch So if you wanted a bed of nails for your fakir act and you lived in Jaipur, Rajasathan where would you go Clue Same place you go if you want a normal bed Of course And so starts the unbelievable trip of the Indian with the unpronouceable name translated through multiple hysterical illiterations to Paris and then elsewhere some of the time in an Ikea armoir A good laugh and a nice fairy tale for grown u Light but so funny Good antedote after a big read like luminairies or gold finch So if you wanted a bed of nails for your fakir act and you lived in Jaipur, Rajasathan where would you go Clue Same place you go if you want a normal bed Of course And so starts the unbelievable trip of the Indian with the unpronouceable name translated through multiple hysterical illiterations to Paris and then elsewhere some of the time in an Ikea armoir A good laugh and a nice fairy tale for grown ups on the same vein as the 100 year old man who clmbed out the window and disapppeared On the face of it this is a light hearted and slightly silly book in the same style as the Hundred Year Old Man We have a semi Swedish setting OK so it s a French Ikea, but I did say semi Swedish , we have an insanely long title and we have an unlikely tale that spans continents and draws in a wide range of characters The Fakir of the title cons his village into getting him a ticket to Paris so he can visit an Ikea and buy a new bed of nails, having conned a Parisian taxi driver and holed awa On the face of it this is a light hearted and slightly silly book in the same style as the Hundred Year Old Man We have a semi Swedish setting OK so it s a French Ikea, but I did say semi Swedish , we have an insanely long title and we have an unlikely tale that spans continents and draws in a wide range of characters The Fakir of the title cons his village into getting him a ticket to Paris so he can visit an Ikea and buy a new bed of nails, having conned a Parisian taxi driver and holed away overnight in the store he becomes trapped in a wardrobe that is being shipped out and his adventure begins All rather silly, and rather funny If that is what you want to take from this story then it is all there It is amusing, and just ridiculous enough to keep you entertained the whole way through However there are some serious undertones to this story, the Fakir is not in Europe illegally, yet circumstances end up forcing him into the position of illegal immigrant in this role he is able to meet others who are looking for a new life in one of the good countries.These meetings allow these secondary characters to explain why they have decided to endure such hardship in order to reach a new life in the West, as well as allowing the author room to discuss some of the cruel treatment inflicted upon these individuals by traffickers and by the authorities The examination of British immigration seems to be particularly scathing, although Lampedusa in Italy also comes in for some stick.I m sure that most people will pick this up, as I did, looking for some light comic relief I just hope that they will all appreciate the serious moments that add depth to a fun lighthearted story What a huge disappointment this was Jonas Jonasson should be insulted by the comparisons to his work It is poorly written, or poorly translated I suspect a bit of both , and it is certainly poorly edited On top of all of that it is profoundly unfunny The French are famous for their, how do you say, different sense of humour Jerry Lewis , so a French person might find this novel hilarious I did not It was full of obvious, winking, elbow in the ribs attempts at humour that never quite w What a huge disappointment this was Jonas Jonasson should be insulted by the comparisons to his work It is poorly written, or poorly translated I suspect a bit of both , and it is certainly poorly edited On top of all of that it is profoundly unfunny The French are famous for their, how do you say, different sense of humour Jerry Lewis , so a French person might find this novel hilarious I did not It was full of obvious, winking, elbow in the ribs attempts at humour that never quite worked And, if all of that wasn t enough, it was also vaguely racist A cutesy, charming sort of racism that perhaps the French appreciate, but racism nonetheless I have no idea how this is a bestselling novel This book came highly recommended, described as an hilarious fantasy I did not smile once while reading it and only managed not to grind down my teeth, thanks to the other passengers sharing the train wagon with me that day.A few days after reading that awful book, whose only merit lies in its shortness, I finally understood what the humour reminded me of and why I hated it so much There s a very strong taste in this book of Borat, the supposedly hilariously funny movie about that Uzbek mousta This book came highly recommended, described as an hilarious fantasy I did not smile once while reading it and only managed not to grind down my teeth, thanks to the other passengers sharing the train wagon with me that day.A few days after reading that awful book, whose only merit lies in its shortness, I finally understood what the humour reminded me of and why I hated it so much There s a very strong taste in this book of Borat, the supposedly hilariously funny movie about that Uzbek moustache wearing and clich ridden character from the eponymous film I recognized the same type of racism against anyone different, the same kind of disrespect and contempt for any and all characters, main or secondary, poor writing skills, etc Needless to say that I hated that movie too and only barely managed to see it through, like I barely managed to finish that book.People who enjoyed it might try giving a chance to that book People who did not should definitely steer clear of it.Side note I read the book in the original French, I can t see how it could have been improved by being translated in any other languages, though the number of puns everywhere probably made that work evenpainful A heart is a little bit like a large wardrobe Ajatashatru Oghash RathodThe Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe or L extraordinaire voyage du fakir qui tait rest coinc dans une armoire Ikea is the debut novel by Romain Pu rtolas that has been marketed to fans of The Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared or Hundra ringen som klev ut genom f nstret och f rsvann by Jonas Jonasson For the purpose of making things easier and A heart is a little bit like a large wardrobe Ajatashatru Oghash RathodThe Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe or L extraordinaire voyage du fakir qui tait rest coinc dans une armoire Ikea is the debut novel by Romain Pu rtolas that has been marketed to fans of The Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared or Hundra ringen som klev ut genom f nstret och f rsvann by Jonas Jonasson For the purpose of making things easier and to avoid the insanely long titles I ll refer to these two books as The Fakir and The Hundred Year Old Man I hope you can work out which is which I picked up The Fakir simply because I need to readtranslated fiction, with that logic I probably should read The Hundred Year Old Man While the writing styles might not be similar, if you enjoyed The Hundred Year Old Man because it was a quirky, fun novel then The Fakir is a book you ll need to go out and buy.The novel reminds me of something David Niven The Pink Panther or The Marx Brothers would adapt to screen You know the type of movies I m talking about the comedies full of misfortunes and stupidity but everything somehow works out in the end The novel tells the story of a fakir named Ajatashatru Oghash Rathod flown to Paris for the purpose of visiting Ikea and buying a new bed of nails Dressed in a fine silk suit to pass himself off as a wealthy Indian business man, the con man had nothing but a counterfeit 100 Euro note printed on one side only in his pocket This trip to Paris sends him off on an adventure that finds him in places like London, Barcelona and Rome and not one sight was seen No Eiffel Tower, Big Ben, Sagrada Fam lia unfortunately or Colosseum.I m not sure if it is a problem with the translation but I expected a littlefrom The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe and I can t tell if it didn t translate or a deep seeded desire for somethingcomplex I enjoy that light read but found nothing funny about the novel and thought it was too inconsequential I wantedmeat to the story There were opportunities to explore themes of immigration, friendships, celebrities, travel and Europe but all these were just background and the focus remained on trying to write a quirky comedy I m not saying this is a bad thing, sometimes a light palate cleanser is all you need, and I was just ready for something with substance It doesn t take much effort to read The Fakir and the book did explore the concept of a culture clash but this was to the extent of something like The Gods Must Be Crazy.Sam Taylor was the translator for this novel and he has worked on a number of great French novels that are all still sitting on my TBR pile He has translations include A Meal in Winter by Hubert Mingarelli, The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair by Jo l Dicker and HHhH by Laurent Binet This leads me to believe that my issues with The Fakir are not with the translation but with the book itself One other concern I have is not with this book per say but with this need to add real people into the story I m not entirely comfortable with basing a novel around a person who is deceased, so it feels a little weird when you have a character named Sophie Marceau in this novel The Fakir actually refers to Sophie Marceau as the French actress from the James Bond film The World Is Not Enough so we know the author is referring to the celebrity I often wonder how these people feel about being put into a novel and if they are being portrayed accurately It doesn t sit right with me and I m not sure if I m the only one that wonders about something as small as using celebrities in a novel I am sure some novels call for it but it this one didn t.I know it sounds like I didn t enjoy this novel but I tend to pick out the parts of a book that didn t work for me I think it is freeing to express all my problems with a book and it may come across as a little negative, but in all honesty, this was a fun, short read I normally gravitate to books withsubstance but something light is a nice change In all honesty I would have liked the novel to explore at least one of the issues that it presented rather than use them as plot points Even going deeper into the concept of culture clash could have improved my enjoyment of the novel but I have come to expect that not everyone likes to read complex novels I suspect The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe to be a runaway success and to be adapted into a film I wonder who they would get to play Sophie Marceau.This review originally appeared on my blog R vit n satiiri ja kutkuttava seikkailu kasvaa humaaniksi kommentiksi l nsimaisesta yhteiskunnasta, joka kohtelee paremmin tavaroita kuin laittomia siirtolaisiaPariisiin saapuvan intialaisen fakiiri Ajatuatrun tavoitteena on hankkia Ikean mainostama edullinen piikkivuode H n l htee matkaan mukanaan vain v rennetty satasen seteliKoska vuode saapuu kauppaan vasta seuraavana p iv n , fakiiri joutuu y pym n Ikeassa N in h n p tyy vaatekaappiin piiloutuneena uskomattomaan seikkailuun, jonka aikana h n muun muassa matkaa halki Euroopan, l yt yst vyytt ja el m ns rakkauden, tekee parannuksen ja kirjoittaa kirjan el m st n Not bad..The author got a lot of imagination and a good sense of humor that makes reading the novel enjoyable Easy and quick read for a little funny and crazy novel of an Indian fakir travelling to the Ikea store in Paris.. The ideas of this story is interesting and highly unusual, but I lost interest in the middle of the book, I don t mean to say it is a badly written book, it just doesn t hold my interest much. NOTE This is a review of the English language edition, due out in print in January 2015 The first word spoken by the Indian man Ajatashatru Oghash Rathod upon his arrival in France was, oddly enough, a Swedish word Ikea That was what he said in a quiet voice Thus spoken to a taxi driver at the airport, and thus begins an astonishing debut novel, and the start of a madcap journey across several countries Oghash has come to Paris with only a counterfeit 100 euro note printed on only one si NOTE This is a review of the English language edition, due out in print in January 2015 The first word spoken by the Indian man Ajatashatru Oghash Rathod upon his arrival in France was, oddly enough, a Swedish word Ikea That was what he said in a quiet voice Thus spoken to a taxi driver at the airport, and thus begins an astonishing debut novel, and the start of a madcap journey across several countries Oghash has come to Paris with only a counterfeit 100 euro note printed on only one side as cash He wants to buy a bed of nails from Ikea Hertsyorbak fakir special in real Swedish pine, with 15,000 stainless steel nails of adjustable length, in Puma Red to take back to his home village in Rajasthan Then he ends up locked in an Ikea wardrobe, crated and in a truck bound for England and no spoiler it gets weirder after that beginning Much weirder.This little book has bizarre plot turns, vivid characters, witty observations on society, and hilarious word plays as Oghash continues his journey The prose, a translation from the original French, is concise, amusing and a fast read, and the story well, the reader will just have to go along for a wild ride, a highly entertaining one.Unique and unforgettable Highest recommendation