It’s about the Journey

With the sponsorship of his village, Ajatashatru Oghash Rathod travels to Paris to purchase a new bed of nails from Ikea, and so begins The Extraordinary Journey of a the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe by Romain Puertolas. A fakir (a kind of street magician) by profession and with only   a counterfeit $100 bill in his pocket, Aja manages to deceive a cab driver and woo a woman into buying him lunch by tricking her into thinking that she’s broken his glasses. As for where he will spend the night, Aja decides he will remain at the Ikea in one of their many bedrooms, hiding himself under a bed at closing time. During the night, he is startled by voices and stows himself in a wardrobe–the very one that that is about to be transported to Great Britain. The journey that follows includes an unlikely meeting with Sudanese refugees and stops in Spain and Libya. Like all good stories of journeys, Aja undergoes a fundamental change during his trip. I won’t reveal any more of this thoroughly enjoyable, feel-good story because you will want to read it yourself.

Other favorites about transformational journeys:

Us by David Nicholls

The Rise and Fall of Great Powers by Tom Rachman

The Universe vs. Alex Woods by Gavin Extence

The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving by  Jonathan Evison

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Frye by Rachel Joyce

The Cat’s Table by Michael Ondaatje

and a few nonfiction:

An Age of License by Lucy Knisley

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

Undress Me in the Temple of Heaven by Susan Jane Gilman

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