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The Mountain Shadow Question #18--Lin and Karla-Your Kind Of Lovers?

Posted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 9:30 pm
by fireflydances
Your reaction to the love between Lin and Karla. In the first book, Lin loses Karla. The Mountain Shadow ends with the couple re-united and prepared to ride off in the sunset together. In general, readers seem to enjoy star-crossed love more than love stories that end sweetly, all resolved.

But what do you think? Did their love inspire you? Or did it feel like a stretch?

Re: The Mountain Shadow Question #18--Lin and Karla-Your Kind Of Lovers?

Posted: Fri Mar 17, 2017 12:30 pm
by nebraska
After my earlier comments about my distrust of Karla, how shallow she seemed, how cold and aloof, no one should be surprised that I didn't care for the love story, either. Perhaps some of this is because we saw the whole thing through Lin's eyes. He was a man pursuing a woman with his rose-colored glasses firmly in place, obsessed with what he felt was her perfection, blinded by his emotions. If a more objective third party had told the story it might have been more believable and perhaps we would have seen both of them with all their halos and all their warts.

Opposites attracting might make a good story, but only if there is some sort of similar moral ground for the two people to stand on. I didn't feel like Lin and Karla, for all their chatter, were on the same page at all.

Re: The Mountain Shadow Question #18--Lin and Karla-Your Kind Of Lovers?

Posted: Sun Mar 19, 2017 4:01 pm
by fireflydances
nebraska wrote:After my earlier comments about my distrust of Karla, how shallow she seemed, how cold and aloof, no one should be surprised that I didn't care for the love story, either. Perhaps some of this is because we saw the whole thing through Lin's eyes. He was a man pursuing a woman with his rose-colored glasses firmly in place, obsessed with what he felt was her perfection, blinded by his emotions. If a more objective third party had told the story it might have been more believable and perhaps we would have seen both of them with all their halos and all their warts.


That is an interesting thought, nebraska. The character Lin always struck me as highly emotional, a good hearted man, in spite of his tendency towards violence. So, is he the best reporter in terms of the character of Karla?

My feeling is that Roberts had this need to bring everything full circle, to make all things better in the end. And I find that an odd decision given the personalities of the characters we shared time with. No indication that all of this needed to be resolved, or that such resolution actually fit what these folks would do. The question for me is why? Why should these two lose their angles and points and become polished down versions of their old selves.

The Mountain Shadow Question #18--Lin and Karla-Your Kind Of Lovers?

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:53 pm
by Liz
This is an interesting discussion.

Keep in mind that Shantaram (and I'm assuming Mountain Shadow also) is based on a true story. Think about that.

If I was to write a book about my life, even though I'm making it seem like it is not all true, I would be biased by my feelings for/history with the characters.

As Nebraska said, if the storyteller was more objective, it would look a whole lot different.

The Mountain Shadow Question #18--Lin and Karla-Your Kind Of Lovers?

Posted: Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:39 pm
by fireflydances
Liz wrote:This is an interesting discussion.

Keep in mind that Shantaram (and I'm assuming Mountain Shadow also) is based on a true story. Think about that.

If I was to write a book about my life, even though I'm making it seem like it is not all true, I would be biased by my feelings for/history with the characters.

As Nebraska said, if the storyteller was more objective, it would look a whole lot different.


Yes, I do think about that. And I wonder if all the philosophizing was and is Roberts trying to give us all he has learned.

The Mountain Shadow Question #18--Lin and Karla-Your Kind Of Lovers?

Posted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 3:49 pm
by SnoopyDances
I think Karla was as complex a character as Lin. She went through a lot in her life and I think this was just as much her journey as Lin's.

Both had to escape their past, live in the present, while trying to build some sort of future. They are the only two (and maybe Abdullah) that could comprehend everything that happened in their lives. It took longer for us to learn about Karla (as this is Lin's point of view) than it did to learn about Lin's past.

I think Karla was just as sucked into Kaderbhai's spell as Lin was. And was just as beholden to him as Lin found himself. I think they worked well together in the end. Each had a clear understanding of what the other was in it for and why they did what they did. But they also realized they needed to get out of that lifestyle, while staying in the only place they found comfort. Neither could go back to their original homes or families. Neither would be able to find another soulmate that would understand the unpleasant duties they performed with the Company. And they both longed for spiritual and inner peace.

Karla was purposely kept mysterious and unavailable in the first book, but by Mountain Shadow, Lin had learned most of her secrets and her past. He was still able to see the good in her, like he saw the good in others. He understood her dealings with Kaderbhai, her hate of Madame Zhou, her purpose in the Company, her sham of a marriage, and I think he could relate. They both did things of which they weren't proud, but they were also trying to survive in extreme circumstances.

Now they are trying to find a way to survive together. It worked for me.