Shantaram is a novel based on the life of the author, Gregory David Roberts.
In 1978 Roberts was sentenced to nineteen years imprisonment as punishment for a series of robberies of building-society branches, credit unions, and shops he had committed while addicted to heroin.
In July 1980 he escaped from Victoria's maximum-security prison in broad daylight, thereby becoming one of Australia's most wanted men for what turned out to be the next ten years. For most of this period he lived in Bombay. He set up a free health clinic in the slums, acted in Bollywood movies, worked for the Bombay mafia as a forger, counterfeiter, and smuggler and, as a gun-runner, resupplied a unit of mujaheddin guerrilla fighters in Afghanistan.
This is the setting of Shantaram.
It is almost impossible to write a review for Shantaram that would give it the credit it deserves.
This book is definitely a must read, an epic journey of self-discovery to be savoured.
Do not be put off by its size. Once you start, it will not be long before the beauty of this book will be revealed. With colourful and diverse characters, a myriad of wonderfully written and thought provoking quotes and passages throughout, this book will stay with you long after you're done.
- Donna, QBD Head Office