Study Guide

Shantaram

Shantaram Summary

Where do we begin? There is so much going on in Shantaram that "brief and sparse" seem incompatible, but we'll give it a shot. The basic set-up is that a guy carrying a fake passport, calling himself Lindsay Ford, lands in Bombay after escaping from an Australian prison.

He hires a guide named Prabaker who becomes his super-best friend, like BFF for lifesies. He also meets a really pretty, but also kinda grim and mysterious, Swiss woman named Karla with whom he promptly falls madly in love, Romeo-and-Juliet-style.

Prabaker takes Linbaba, which is what he calls Lindsay, to his village, Sunder. There he deals with some of the demons that are haunting him for having left his family behind and the crimes he committed.

He takes a healing shower in the monsoon rain, and Prabaker's mom decides that his Indian name will be Shantaram, which means Man of God's Peace—a little ironic, given his penchant for armed robbery, but what can you do?

On their way back to Bombay, Prabaker and Shantaram-Linbaba-Lindsay are robbed. Lin (yup, another nickname for Lindsay) has nothing left so he goes to live with Prabaker in the slums—a super-sad, impoverished community where, it turns out, people are pretty loving and content, even if they don't have much. Lin does lots of save-the-day stuff, like help put out fires and set up a clinic out of his hut to take care of sick and injured slum-dwellers.

Karla comes out to visit and there is talk of rumors of a killer named Sapna, who is dismembering the city's richest citizens—yikes. Also, out of the blue a guy named Abdel Khader Khan, an Afghan Richie Rich, takes a liking to Lin and sends his nephew to live with him in the slums so he'll appreciate what he has and learn some English while he's at it. This might make you think twice before complaining about last year's Nikes.

Whoa—we're running out of space and we've barely begun, so let's pick up the rhythm. Lin helps Karla break her friend Lisa out of a house of prostitution owned by the evil Madame Zhou. In retaliation, Zhou gets him thrown into a horrific prison where he is tortured constantly. Finally Khader gets him out through bribery and Lin goes to work for him, specializing in making counterfeit passports. Prabaker dies in a horrible car crash, which is pretty sad.

Things with Karla are on-again-off-again, and when she finally leaves him Khader talks Lin into joining him on a trip to Afghanistan, where they'll bring guns to rebels who are fighting the Soviet invaders. Lin agrees because he feels loyal to Khader for breaking him out of jail, but when they get there he finds out that Khader had paid Karla to bring Lin to him, and that it was all a big ruse because he needed a white person to pose as an American on the Afghanistan trip.

Lin is furious, Khader dies, and the few survivors from the gun-running party head back to Bombay. When they get there they murder one of Lin's henchmen, who, it turns out, had been behind the Sapna killer and had betrayed them to the Afghan government.

Lin falls back in with his friends in Bombay and decides to head to Sri Lanka, leaving the city and its crazy memories behind. See? We told you this book had a lot going on.

  • Part 1, Chapter 1

    • The narrator arrives in Bombay's airport after busting out of a maximum-security prison and takes a bus into the city.
    • They pass slums, and he sees one white foreigner come out of a hut, the only non-Indian he sees.
    • A couple of Canadian tourists give him advice on how to get around in Bombay, and they agree to share a room to save money.
    • They see that one of the slums has caught fire through the windows of the bus, and watch the people and houses burn from the road.
    • An Indian man offers to lead them to a cheap hotel and the narrator agrees, although his Canuck friends aren't too happy about having to tip him.
    • The guide's name is Prabaker, and he has a huge smile. The narrator introduces himself as Lindsay, which is the name on his fake passport.
    • Prabaker takes the travelers to the India Guest House, where they rent a room.
    • Lindsay pays Prabaker to get some hashish for him, and the three men smoke and drink some of the whiskey that Lindsay brought along with him.
    • Prabaker leads Lindsay on a tour of Bombay and they share a bite to eat. As he's about to step into the street in front of a bus, a beautiful woman saves his life. He falls in love with her immediately. She says that she hangs out at Leopold's if he ever wants to see her again.
    • Luckily, Prabaker knows the woman, whose name is Karla. Prabaker offers to hook Lindsay up.
    • Lindsay gives Prabaker a bottle of whiskey as a gift, and Prabaker takes it to the market to sell it.
    • They go back to the hotel, instant besties, and the Canadians complain that Lin should haggle more to get better prices.
    • Lin goes to sleep.
  • Chapter 2

    • At Leopold's, Lin sees Karla. He's crazy about her.
    • Lin spends his time touring with Prabaker; Karla is very secretive about her life and work.
    • The two hang out with Didier Levy—a French expat who knows how to get any illegal item you might possibly want in Bombay—and his group of international friends.
    • Lin tells everybody he's a writer to keep his true job of evading capture under wraps. Didier fills in Lin on all the dirt on the Leopold's regulars.
    • Karla and Lin leave together, talk about Didier, and find a stray cat.
    • He tells her she's the most beautiful woman he's ever seen and she laughs.
    • A little boy walks up and Karla talks to him in Hindi for a while.
    • Lin leaves Karla at her house and walks back to his hotel.
  • Chapter 3

    • Prabaker takes Linbaba on a tour of the "real" Bombay.
    • Their taxi driver crashes into a car and an angry mob forms around the cab. Prabaker helps Lin get out of the car and they watch as the people carry out the victims of the four-car accident.
    • The mob attacks the taxi driver and beat him to a pulp.
    • Prabaker is determined to continue the tour anyway and takes Lin down some mazelike back alleys.
    • They stumble over and around people in the darkness until they arrive at a gap between two buildings. Lin follows Prabaker into the dark passage, through the rats (yikes) to a wooden door.
    • Prabaker uses a secret knock to get into a courtyard where a guard is not too happy to see them.
    • The guard is impressed that Lin can speak a little Marathi, a language used in another part of India, and that few foreigners can speak.
    • The cop lets them through in exchange for 100 rupees and they enter what Prabaker calls the "people-market"—a.k.a. slave market. They observe the men there purchasing children and the children performing for their potential masters.
  • Chapter 4

    • Didier and Lin discuss how to test Borsalino rabbit-fur hats for authenticity. Didier claims that Prabaker's tour was a way of testing Lin's authenticity.
    • Lin reveals that Prabaker has invited him to visit his family in his village in the north of the state for a couple of months.
    • Letitia joins them, followed by Ulla and Modena, and they discuss the loss of their friend Federico to a newfound religion.
    • Karla, Maurizio, and an Indian man named Vikram Patel show up next. He talks about how he's back from Denmark and how cool everyone is in Europe with nudity and sexuality. Then Kavita Singh, a modern Indian woman, gives her two cents about how Indian men control Indian women.
    • Karla asks Lin if he'd prefer to have happiness, knowing it would end in pain, or just avoid the happiness and the pain altogether. He chooses the happiness. (Um, foreshadowing, anyone?)
    • Maurizio and Modena start to leave Leopold's, and those left behind discuss whether Maurizio is evil or good.
    • Lettie and Vikram leave, followed by Ulla and Kavita, and Didier advises Lin to go with Prabaker to his village. Then he leaves, so Karla and Lin are all by themselves.
    • They talk about Prabaker's invitation and Bombay then head home. She tells him that she's angry with Maurizio for using her friend, Lettie, and dumping her once she hooked him up with a visa renewal.
    • Karla advises Lin to just go with the flow on his trip to Prabaker's village, and he walks back to his hotel.
  • Chapter 5

    • Prabaker and Lin meet at the train for Prabaker's hometown. They hear an announcement and Prabu yells for Lin to hurry up and board.
    • A gigantic porter lifts up Lin and sets him to one side to get at his luggage. Prabaker tells Lin to hang onto the porter's shirt and never let it go, then disappears into the crowd.
    • The porter takes Lin to a carriage where they find Prabaker stretched across a seat, saving it. Some men were punching and kicking at Prabaker to get him up but he remained steadfast. Lin fights them and sits down.
    • Once the train gets moving, all the angry brawlers become civilized passengers.
    • Lin gives up his seat to an older man, standing for four hours, which really ticks off Prabaker after his fight for the seats.
    • They arrive at Jalgaon and switch to a bus. They ride for three hours and get off in the middle of nowhere where they wait for an hour for another bus.
    • The bus driver questions Prabaker about his foreign friend, then drives slowly so everyone on the road can see the exotic passenger, Lin.
    • When they get off the bus, they see Prabaker's father, who is happy to see them.
    • They ride Mr. Kharre's ox-cart into the village, and the villagers watch them through the cornstalks like munchkins.
    • Mr. Kharre beats the ox to keep it moving, and Lin asks Prabaker to ask him to stop. Prabaker and his father laugh, because Lin eats cows. They say it's hard to eat cows without hurting them.
    • When they get into the village they are surrounded by all 600 inhabitants, and Lin takes a jester's cap out of his backpack (very handy) and makes the people laugh by wearing it.
    • Prabaker lets Lin have an outdoor shower, but explains that he shouldn't take off all of his clothes, because it is too scandalous. He has to bathe with gym shorts on.
    • Lin goes to sleep on his outdoor bed, and the villagers gather around him so he won't be lonely. He suddenly realizes the consequences of all his actions and how he has hurt people in his life.
  • Chapter 6

    • Lin wakes up to a water buffalo licking his head, and Prabaker's mother laughs at him.
    • She milks the water buffalo and gives it to Lin for breakfast. This becomes the routine for the rest of his visit.
    • The monsoon rains begin, and everyone dances in the rain at first.
    • The rain lasts nonstop for a week.
    • Lin is at the river washing his clothes when he notices that the water is rising. He runs into the village to warn everyone, and everyone laughs at him.
    • It turns out that the villagers bet on how high the water will rise every year, and they know how far the river will flood.
    • Prabaker's mother decides that Lin should have a Maharashtrian name (from the state of Maharashtra), so she calls him Shantaram—which means "man of peace"—Kharre, her own last name.
  • Chapter 7

    • Prabaker and Lin head back to Bombay. On their way, Prabaker has arranged for a prostitute for Lin. Lin isn't interested, but Prabaker has already paid a deposit, so they go take a look.
    • She shows off her fat, which is the epitome of sexiness for Prabaker.
    • Lin lets Prabaker take advantage of the cash deposit, if you catch our drift, and goes back to their room.
    • Lin is super-happy with his experience, and they decide to go celebrate at a dive bar.
    • The drinkers take turns singing songs, and Lin sings "You Really Got Me" by the Kinks.
    • On their way back into town they get jumped and robbed. Lin loses every single cent, and they decide to sell Lin's watch to pay for the hotel room and their train back to Bombay.
    • Because his tourist visa was stolen, Lin can no longer stay in his hotel.
    • Prabaker to the rescue; Lin's buddy and two friends, Johnny Cigar and Raju, announce that he's welcome in the zhopadpatti, the slum where they live.
    • Lin and Prabaker confirm their date to go to the Standing Babas' hashish den a few days later.
  • Chapter 8

    • Karla, Prabaker, and Lin go to the Standing Babas' hash den. Karla is thrilled to finally get to go into the weird religious cult-drug ring.
    • They smoke.
    • A strange man with a sword comes in and screams, charging at Lin.
    • A man trips the attacker, saving Lin's life.
    • The man introduces himself as Adullah Taheri.
    • They leave the hash den and go to Leopold's.
    • Lin won't go in, and tells Karla he won't be coming around much anymore because he's beginning his slum adventure.
    • Prabaker leads Lin past the super-stinky latrines and to his new home.
    • Everyone comes out of their huts to look at the new arrival.
    • Lin's new home is a black plastic sheet for a roof held up by bamboo poles. The walls are made of woven reeds and the floor is bare earth. He does have a door: a piece of plywood.
    • He settles in and meets his neighbors: Anand, Rafiq, Jeetendra, and Radha.
    • Anand casually remarks that there is a fire and, sure enough, smoke and flames engulf the slum.
    • Lin runs away, then realizes that he looks like a coward. He changes course and runs toward the fire.
    • Qasim Ali Hussein, the head man of the slum, directs the fire-fighting efforts.
    • When the fire finally burns itself out, the people look for survivors and count up the bodies.
    • Prabaker says that they are lucky because only twelve people died, including Raju.
    • A woman brings a badly burned baby girl to the gathering and Lin decides to help with his first-aid kit.
    • He continues working as the doctor, treating the victims of the fire until he collapses from exhaustion.
    • When he wakes up, all of the neighbors are gathered around listening to him snore and watching him sleep.
    • He has a line of patients waiting for him, and he gets to work at his new role in the slum: doctor.
  • Part 2, Chapter 9

    • Flashback time: Lin tells the tale of his daring escape from an Australian prison.
    • He and a friend made the plan and, accepting their duties as maintenance gardeners, used the chance to get up into a construction area on the prison wall and break on through to the other side.
    • Because he's on the lam, Lin is nervous around cops and other authority types in Bombay.
    • Even so, he goes walking (after midnight) around the city.
    • One night, as he thinks about committing suicide from a sea wall, someone interrupts his morbid contemplation. That someone is Abdullah, the guy who saved him in the Standing Babas attack.
    • Abdullah asks Lin to come to a parked car to meet someone.
    • It's a famous Mafioso named Abdel Khader Khan who wants to meet the fugitive.
    • Khaderbhai, as he's known, has heard of Lin's doctoring exploits in the slum. He invites Lin to get into the car and have a chillum, or smoke a pipe.
    • They drive off to Haji Ali Restaurant, the only restaurant in town that's open past curfew, thanks to a healthy bribing relationship with the cops.
    • The waiter tells Khaderbhai that he's having troubles with his landlord, and Khaderbhai promises to see what he can do.
    • Abdullah pays a cop a bribe and then asks Lin to join him for a walk. They talk about the day that Abdullah saved Lin's life in the Standing Babas' den.
    • Lin asks Abdullah if he is Khaderbhai's bodyguard, and he says that he isn't, but that he would die for him if necessary.
    • When they get back to the car, Khaderbhai says that Abdullah and Lin look like brothers, which is kind of funny because they are very different, racially speaking, but they do have some similarities.
    • The chauffeur, Nazeer, drives for an hour, and Khaderbhai tells Lin and Abdullah to get out.
    • They enter a private club full of people and music.
    • Khaderbhai invites Lin to drink some Persian tea with him and Abdullah, and they listen to the music, which is religious music.
    • Lin says he doesn't believe in God. Khaderbhai says that there is no such thing as not believing in God, just not knowing God.
    • They enter into a philosophical discussion on the existence and impossibility of God.
    • An old man brings a chillum for them to smoke, and they eat fruit.
    • Abdullah tells Lin that his two brothers were killed in Iran in the war against Iraq. He is happy that Khaderbhai thinks that he and Lin are brothers.
    • The singers are back and Abdullah tells Lin that they are the famous Blind Singers of Nagpur. They had all lived in a village that had helped some rebels that were hiding in the mountains nearby. When the police found out, they decided to blind 20 villagers to teach them a lesson.
    • This is a very important night for Lin, because it marks the beginning of his relationships with Khaderbhai and Abdullah.
  • Chapter 10

    • Abdullah shows up at the slum with medical supplies for Lin.
    • He asks Lin how he makes money, and Lin hesitates to answer because his job is not entirely legal; he helps foreigners find illegal drugs or black market items to buy.
    • Johnny Cigar, Lin's slum friend, seems upset by Abdullah's visit. He tells Lin not to go with Abdullah because he isn't trustworthy.
    • Abdullah and Lin hop on Abdullah's motorcycle and ride through the city to the Bhatia Hospital. They visit Doctor Hamid, who says that he will treat the patients that are too serious for Lin to deal with in the slum, as a favor to Khaderbhai.
    • Then Abdullah takes Lin to the place where Khaderbhai has arranged for him to get medicine every week: a black market run by the leper colony.
    • The head leper, Ranjitbhai, meets them and promises to provide Lin with stolen, first-class medicine every week.
    • Abdullah and Lin ride away on the motorcycle and, when they park, Abdullah gives Lin a big hug. He says that he wasn't expecting a bear hug. Abdullah is taken with the English idiom, which he hasn't heard before.
    • Promising to come back with the meds, Abdullah rides off and Lin goes into the slum.
    • Prabaker greets Lin, warning him that Abdullah is a "danger man" and that he should stay away from him. Lin knows he's right, and tries to figure out what he should do.
    • He tells Prabaker not to worry, that nothing will happen to him.
  • Chapter 11

    • The slum dwellers prepare their huts for the monsoon rainy season.
    • One day, a disturbance occurs: two boys, Faroukh and Raghuram, get into a fistfight. Faroukh is angry because Raghuram insulted the Prophet Mohammed; Raghuram is ticked off because Faroukh insulted the Lord Ram.
    • Qasim Ali decides to punish both of the boys.
    • He and the boys' parents choose a really nasty punishment: the boys will work in the latrine, but there's a catch. They will be tied together the whole time they are cleaning the slum "restrooms."
    • Everyone agrees that this is a marvelous punishment.
    • Another time, a drunk man named Joseph brutally beats his wife, Maria, and Qasim Ali doses out some slum justice.
    • He orders Johnny Cigar, Prabaker, and Jeetendra to force Joseph to drink alcohol and smoke charras (hashish) until he's sick. He's not allowed to have water or sleep, and when he's good and messed up, the beating commences.
    • The men use the same bamboo stick that Joseph was using on his wife to give him a walloping. They tell him that he killed his wife.
    • Finally, when Joseph breaks down crying and calling his wife's name, Qasim Ali decides he's had enough. He tells him that Maria is not dead, but is badly hurt, and that the women of both of their families have decided that he cannot see Maria for two months.
    • Joseph's punishment involves not drinking anything but water during this time, as well as lots of hard work.
    • Maria will have the choice whether or not to take Joseph back, but if she does, he must take her on a vacation to the cool mountains.
    • Faroukh and Raghuram finish their work at the latrine, and their punishment is to each learn a prayer from the other's religion, Islam and Hindu.
    • Qasim Ali believes that justice is not only to punish wrongdoers, but also to save them. This idea leaves a big impression on Lin.
  • Chapter 12

    • Life in the slum continues for five months for Lin.
    • Abdullah stops coming around in the fifth month, but sends messengers to keep in touch.
    • One morning Lin wakes up to the sound of a wild pack of dogs, and he grabs a stick to defend himself as he opens his plywood door.
    • Rather than wild dogs, he finds a huge, brown bear standing outside his hut.
    • The bear's presence had made the dogs go nuts, waking up Lin.
    • A couple of men, painted blue from head to toe and wearing blue clothes to match, ask for "Mr. Lin." They claim to be friends, and to have an important message.
    • There's a catch, though: Lin must hug the bear before they deliver the message.
    • The blue men promise that it's safe, but Lin is adamant that he will not hug the bear, whose name is Kano.
    • Prabaker and the crowd that has gathered beg Lin to do it, so he does, even though he's terrified.
    • Lin passes out in the bear's embrace. When he comes to, Kano and his trainers are already leaving the slum. Prabaker gives him the message.
    • It is a note from Abdullah, who makes a crack about the bear hug that Lin had mentioned on their trip to the leper colony.
    • Because of the monsoon rains, which will be coming any day, trained animals and entertainers have parked in the slums, which makes life even more exciting than usual—what with the escaped monkeys and cobras and all. (Sounds like a real blast to us.)
    • There are also problems with gangs attacking homeless people and slum dwellers to keep them from undercutting shops and other businesses.
    • A construction worker, who is helping to build the World Trade Center right next to the slum, comes to Lin's clinic with a nasty gash on his arm after a gang attack. Lin cleans and bandages him up.
    • Later, an elderly woman comes in and, because she doesn't want a strange man touching her, has her niece follow his instructions, palpating her breast to see where she hurts.
    • She has lumps in her breast, the niece tells Lin, and he sends her to Doctor Hamid.
    • Just then Karla shows up and sits down to have a cigarette in Lin's hut.
    • The neighbor boy, Satish, serves them tea, and Prabaker eavesdrops on their visit.
    • Lin invites Karla to join him at a lunch party in the slum, in the Village in the Sky.
    • Karla, Lin, and Prabaker climb through the fence from the illegal slum, where Lin and Prabaker live, to the legal workers' slum on the World Trade Center building site.
    • The lunch is to celebrate the establishment of a slum school. It is being held on the 23rd floor of the unfinished WTC tower.
    • They step aboard a freight elevator and head up to the Village in the Sky, which is where the workers live most of the time to keep from having to go all the way to the ground while they're building the top floors.
    • Karla joins the men in the men's banquet area for the feast. Near the women's area, some men are cleaning the painted word "SAPNA" from the wall.
    • Johnny Cigar, Lin, Karla, Jeetendra, and Prabaker discuss the serial killer Sapna, who has been terrorizing Bombay and using Robin-Hood propaganda to convince people that it is a war on the rich to help the poor.
    • Some women pick apart Karla's appearance in Hindi, and are scandalized when they realize she understands them perfectly.
    • Karla and Lin chat for a while, until she comes out with her request for a favor. She explains that her friend Lisa is working at a house of prostitution and owes the overseer, Madame Zhou, too much money to get out. She wants Lin to pose as an American embassy worker and accompany her to Madame Zhou's to free Lisa.
    • He agrees.
    • They are interrupted by Prabaker screaming that the Bombay Municipal Corporation has arrived to tear down some slum houses, as they do every month to keep the settlement from spreading.
    • The partygoers watch the demolition from above.
    • Karla and Lin kiss, finally, and he tells her he's in love with her. She says she hates love, but that she likes him. Ouch.
  • Chapter 13

    • Karla and Lin take a cab to Madame Zhou's, and she tries to get through to him how dangerous the madam is.
    • Lin's wearing a borrowed suit to pose as the embassy worker, and he finds out that it used to belong to Karla's dead boyfriend (ew).
    • Lin finally gets Karla to say what she does for a living: she's a facilitator. This means she makes sure people are having a good enough time so that her boss can seal deals. Enter Madame Zhou's, one of the "playgrounds" Karla uses to show folks a good time.
    • However, even though she knows Madame Zhou through work, Karla says she hates the woman and wishes she were dead.
    • Karla and Lin smoke some hash and share it with the taxi driver, too. Yeah, that seems safe.
    • They arrive at Madame Zhou's Palace and go inside.
    • Karla greets a strange-looking man named Rajan, who tells them to go straight up to see Madame, who is waiting for them.
    • They go upstairs and enter a small room where they kneel on cushions in front of a metal grille in the wall.
    • Madame Zhou speaks to Karla from behind the grille, saying that she is unhappy with her.
    • They discuss Lisa, and Madame Zhou agrees to give her up to "Mr. Parker," the embassy worker whom Lin is pretending to be.
    • Then she begins speaking to Karla in a language that Lin doesn't know, and Karla cries as she listens.
    • Rajan leads Karla and Lin to Lisa's room. They gather her things and head out.
    • On the way to the street, Rajan hands Lin an envelope.
    • Lin asks Karla what happened with Madame Zhou, and why she cried. But she refuses to talk about it. They argue in the street, causing a scene. She and Lisa leave Lin behind.
    • Suddenly Nazeer, Khaderbhai's driver, appears, saying that Abdel Khader wants to see him. Nazeer gives him a ride.
    • Lin opens the envelope that Rajan had given him and sees a photograph of a woman, presumably Madame Zhou, with the message "MADAME ZHOU IS HAPPY NOW" written across the bottom.
  • Chapter 14

    • Khaderbhai welcomes Lin into his home and introduces him to his discussion group: Sobhan Mahmoud, Abdul Ghani, Khaled Ansari, Rajubhai, Keki Dorabjee, Farid, and Madjid (yes, there will be a quiz). These folks are mostly exiles from the Middle East.
    • Three more men show up: Andrew Ferreira, Salman Mustaan, and Sanjay Kumar, but they are junior members and aren't there to discuss, just to listen.
    • Abdul Ghani hands Lin a manifesto written by Sapna and asks him what he thinks of it.
    • He thinks it's ridiculous, so he says so. Madjid corrects him, saying that cutting a man up into pieces is fairly serious. (We agree.)
    • Abdul Ghani confirms that Sapna's followers have committed at least seven hideous murders in the last month.
    • Khaderbhai says that they are very interested in Sapna. He asks Lin to interpret the poster-manifesto, because it is written in his native language of English. He thinks it uses Christian imagery, but used in a way opposite to the original message.
    • Farid brings a hookah pipe and the men smoke a hallucinatory mix of marijuana and hashish, which knocks Lin for a loop.
    • Khaderbhai asks Lin to propose a subject for discussion, so he settles on suffering (good times).
    • The group gets into a philosophical discussion about the purpose of suffering.
    • After a few hours, Lin walks home and runs into Prabaker, Joseph, and a little girl, all waiting at his hut.
    • It turns out that Joseph has been cleaning up his act after the punishment he got for beating his wife. He has paid the little girl, who has only four fingers on one hand, to paint handprints on the door of all the huts for good luck. This is as confusing to Lin as it probably is to you.
    • Lin asks Prabu what he thinks that suffering means and Prabu says that suffering is hunger.
    • They say good night.
  • Chapter 15

    • Prabaker and Johnny Cigar wake up Lin at 2:00 AM and tell him that a man is bleeding and needs his help.
    • The guy was involved in a gang fight and doesn't want to go to the hospital.
    • Although he's never done so before, Lin magically figures out how to stitch up the poor guy's wound. (The next thing you know dude'll be opening an Etsy shop.)
    • As soon as he finishes up, amidst the neighbors' commentary on his bowel movements for the past few weeks (gross), Prabaker comes back with a fresh emergency.
    • Prabu tells Lin that his friend is in jail and needs his help. He leads him to the police station and they pay off a cop to let them in.
    • The "friend" turns out to be Kano, the bear that Lin hugged in the slum, who is now behind bars like a common criminal.
    • Accompanying Kano are his blue trainers. They had fought some other bear trainers for beating their bear, and the brawl got the police's attention.
    • Lin tries to bribe the guard to let the guys out, but he won't.
    • The blue men aren't worried about themselves. They ask Lin to take care of Kano for them. The bear is confined with no bail, too, though.
    • So Lin bribes the guards to let the bear handlers into the same cell as Kano. Aw, sweet.
    • Prabu and Lin take a cab back to the slum.
    • Lin eats breakfast with Qasim Ali and then goes to visit Karla.
    • She isn't home, though, so he goes to Khaderbhai's.
    • Khaderbhai asks Lin to take in and teach English to his nephew, a little boy named Tariq, for the next few months. Tariq will shadow Lin to learn his language.
    • Lin is nervous about the responsibility, but they agree on a 48-hour test run.
    • Tariq comes in and they go out into the street.
    • When they hear the Muslim call to prayer from a mosque nearby, Tariq breaks free and runs into the building.
    • Since he is not Muslim, Lin is worried about following Tariq in and making a scene, so he waits.
    • Tariq emerges after a few minutes, and Lin gives him a talking-to. They make friends.
  • Chapter 16

    • Lin takes Tariq to Karla's house to get the clothes he left when he changed into his disguise for the Madame Zhou mission, but Lin only finds Lisa there.
    • Tariq falls asleep while Lisa and Lin talk. They start drinking whiskey out of the bottle. Lisa seems to be high on heroin or something like it.
    • Lisa opens her robe to show Lin her naked body, saying she's better looking than Karla. She starts seducing Lin, but suddenly needs to throw up. (Sexy, eh?)
    • She does (gross), and then passes out.
    • Lin starts snooping around Karla's place and finds her journal. He finds some entries about Sapna, and about the time that Lin told her that he loves her, and a poem that she had written on the last page.
    • Lin copies down the poem and puts it in his wallet.
    • On this snooping expedition, he also finds a bag with his clean clothes in it. Then he goes to get Tariq.
    • As they walk back to the slum, past the stinky latrines, they are attacked by a pack of wild dogs.
    • They run to a pile of wood and get on top of it, trying to fight off the angry beasts.
    • Suddenly, when they are losing hope, Abdullah shows up and helps to fight off the dogs.
    • They go to Lin's hut, and Abdullah says he had been waiting for him there when he heard the dogs and went to investigate.
    • They all three go to bed.
  • Part 3, Chapter 17

    • In Khaderbhai's courtyard, Abdul Ghani philosophizes to Lin about power and evil. They are waiting for Khaderbhai to come back from praying with Tariq.
    • Abdul Ghani says that Khaderbhai knows the meaning of life and will tell Lin if he sticks around (score).
    • Khaderbhai comes back and thanks Lin for taking care of Tariq for three months. Lin is sad to leave the kid behind.
    • Lin walks home and witnesses a bad accident. A car hits a pushcart. He cuts the pushcart operator free from the wreckage.
    • Meanwhile, a mob forms to attack the driver and passenger of the offending car.
    • The crowd can't pull the huge, Nigerian driver from the car, though.
    • Lin breaks into the mob and pulls the angry men away.
    • He stands in front of the men, trying to protect them, and is rewarded with even more rage.
    • The driver manages to start the car, and Lin jumps in with the passenger for a getaway.
    • The passenger introduces himself as Hassaan Obikwa, and the driver as Raheem.
    • Lin pressures Hassaan Obikwa to pay for the damages he's caused in the wreck, and the man says that he will tomorrow.
    • Lin gets out at the slum. Hassaan Obikwa promises to help Lin with whatever he needs, to repay him for saving his life.
    • Prabaker meets Lin, telling him that a foreigner is waiting for him in his hut.
    • It turns out to be Didier. Lin cleans himself up from the fight and the three go to get a cup of chai.
    • Didier tells them that Letitia is starting to come around to Vikram's advances. Prabaker laughs like a maniac, trying to get the attention of a cook in the kitchen, a cute girl named Parvati.
    • The guys keep gossiping, and Didier tells of how Modena and Maurizio are doing really well in their black-market business. Lin's jealous, because Maurizio was with Karla last time he saw him.
    • Lin asks Didier about Hassaan Obikwa. Didier says that his nickname is the Body Snatcher because he can make cadavers disappear without a trace.
    • A parade breaks out in the lane outside the chai shop, and Prabaker tells them that it's Joseph and Maria coming. The people are celebrating Joseph's rehabilitation, and bidding the couple bon voyage on their holiday.
  • Chapter 18

    • Lin chain-smokes on the beach and thinks about love.
    • Johnny Cigar comes up and talks about his theory that humans come from the sea, and so we are made of it—our tears, our amniotic fluid, our blood, our sweat.
    • Jeetendra is the next to interrupt the reverie, asking for help with his wife, Radha, who is very sick.
    • Prabaker, too, finds out that his girlfriend, Parvati, is very sick.
    • It is a cholera outbreak that affects a hundred slum dwellers.
    • Lin argues with the health official who comes to assess the situation, but they make nice and the official promises to get the slum a delivery of salts to rehydrate the cholera victims. Jeetendra's wife, Radha, dies.
    • Every healthy person gets to work getting rid of the water and sterilizing food and kitchenware.
    • Karla shows up, too, to help Lin.
    • They work through the night, administering to the sick, and finally head back to the hut to sleep. On their way, though, the nightly migration of thousands of rats overtake them, and they have to stay very still to keep from being gnawed on by the horrible creatures (ew, ew, ew).
    • When they finally get back to the hut, Karla tells Lin her life story and the backstories on their exiled friends.
    • They fall asleep.
  • Chapter 19

    • In the end, nine people die in the cholera epidemic.
    • Karla stays to help for six days. When it's over, Lin is out of money, so he heads out to the street to make some commissions on black-market deals.
    • While he's out, he runs into Vikram and they grab a cane juice together.
    • They dance to a song on the radio and, when they're through, see Lettie watching them. She tells them that Karla is stranded at the Taj Hotel because of floods from the heavy rains.
    • Lin jumps into Prabaker's cousin Shantu's taxi and heads to the fishermen's settlement next to the slum. He gets a friend to lend him a boat, and they pole up the road to the Taj.
    • Karla comes out and gets in, and Vinod, the fisherman, takes them to dry land.
    • She gets into a taxi, and Lin finds Shantu and gets into his taxi. As he sits, he notices Rajan, Madame Zhou's creepy servant, staring at him.
    • Lin goes back into town that night to get some rest in a hotel and to take a real shower.
    • The manager, Anand, asks Lin for help. An Italian tourist has overdosed in a room, which is very bad for business.
    • Lin does CPR and the guy finally comes back to life.
    • He showers, shaves, and goes back down into the street. Ulla pulls up in a taxi, begging Lin for help.
    • He gets in. She asks Lin to meet her at one in the morning at Leopold's, because she's in trouble.
    • Lin promises to meet her.
    • He gets out of the taxi and takes a walk that turns into a run. He ends up outside Karla's. He sees her in the doorway in a nightgown, and she walks out into the rain to him. They kiss in the street and go in to her bed.
    • After they get it on, Lin realizes he's late to meet Ulla and jumps to run. This is irritating for Karla, understandably.
    • As he runs through the streets, he is suddenly surrounded by cops and thrown into a jeep.
    • He is taken to the police station, where he is beaten and put into a cell.
  • Chapter 20

    • Lin suffers in the inhumane prison conditions.
    • Another prisoner tries to steal Lin's aluminum plate from him, and he beats him up, head-butting him over and over and finally biting his face.
    • This earns him the admiration of Mahesh, another prisoner.
    • They wait for three weeks, when a truck comes to transport everyone to the Arthur Road Prison.
    • Lin is marched down a gauntlet of guards who beat him with bamboo sticks. Finally he's led to the dormitories.
    • His bed is infested with a parasite bug that sucks his blood all night, every night.
    • Mahesh, who is in the bed next to him, warns him never to do anything back to the guards or overseers, no matter what they do to him.
  • Chapter 21

    • Mahesh teaches Lin the ways of the prison, like not to worry about the water worms that come out of the hose they use to shower and wash their dishes. (That sounds lovely.)
    • The overseers beat Lin for no reason during the roll call and he threatens them. His fellow prisoners get him to back off.
    • Later he sees Raheem, Hassaan Obikwa's driver, being tied down and having his arms broken. It's punishment for hitting one of the overseers.
    • Lin figures out that he's covered in lice to go with the other parasites.
    • Mahesh shows Lin how to clean his T-shirt of lice.
    • After a couple of weeks, Lin meets some guys who are about to be released and asks them to take a message to Khaderbhai, letting him know Lin is in the prison. They agree, and then they get the beating of their lives for trying to take a message out for Lin. From then on, he's like poison to the other prisoners.
    • Rahul, one of the overseers, hits Lin as usual, and Lin can't take it. He takes his stick and starts kicking him.
    • The others run to help Rahul, and they corner Lin. He starts punching himself on the face, which scares the overseers, understandably.
    • To try to get Lin to come out of the corner, the overseers line up ten of his fellow prisoners and beat them. When that doesn't work, they bring ten more.
    • Lin sees Mahesh in the third group, and he gives up.
    • The overseers beat Lin for about twenty minutes, smoke, and beat him some more.
    • His torture lasts for nine and a half hours.
    • A guard brings him some medicine to help him sleep.
    • The next morning he's washed up and sent to meet a senior prison official. The official asks Lin who has beaten him, but Lin refuses to tattle.
    • Lin's punishment for hitting an overseer is to wear chains on his legs.
    • One day, lying in his bed, Lin is attacked by a man who says that he's the older brother of the guy whose face he bit in the first prison.
    • Lin head butts him until he stops.
    • The overseers had set up the attack and waited to punish Lin with another beating.
    • He gets sick with fever after the injuries and is losing too much weight. The overseers tempt him with delicious food, but he will not accept it.
    • One day, as he's thinking about Karla, he is taken to see the prison official. Vikram, his old cowboy friend, is there waiting for him.
    • The official asks for $10,000 for letting Lin out. When Vikram balks at the price, they announce that they know that Lin's a fugitive from Australian prison. Lin asks for them to let out the guys who tried to help him in his dorm and who were punished for doing so. He also asks freedom for Mahesh and Raheem, the African driver whose arms were broken.
    • Once they have a price for all four of the releases, Vikram goes off to get the dough and some taxis.
    • It works—they're free.
    • Lin showers at Vikram's place, then checks out his broken body in the mirror. Vikram explains that Khader is the one who sent him. He also says that a very powerful person is the one who got Lin thrown into jail in the first place.
  • Chapter 22

    • Lin goes to work for Khaderbhai. He goes through a sort of black-market orientation, passing through all the different branches of the mob's business.
    • He works with Khaled in the money-trading business and learns the gangster's philosophy on life and crime.
    • Since he's in such bad shape, Lin decides not to move back into the slum, but he does visit his old pals there regularly.
    • To get back into shape, Lin works out with Abdullah. He's obsessed by whoever it was that got him put in jail. He wants to be in fighting form when he meets them.
    • Vikram tries to tell Lin that the reason he got out of jail is that the Indian people have heart, and that the cops liked him.
    • Didier joins them for a drink and tells them that Indira Gandhi has been killed. He also allows that Lin's betrayer was a woman.
    • After the heavy stuff, Didier gives Vikram an idea for how to win Lettie's heart.
    • Lin takes off, walking until Prabaker catches up to him in his taxi. He tells Lin that he's going on a triple date, with his girlfriend Parvati, Johnny Cigar, and his girlfriend Sita, as well as the girls' mother.
    • They come upon a demonstration in the street because of Gandhi's death, and Prabaker sheds a tear for the dead leader.
    • Later he drops off Lin at Khaled Ansari's car, and they talk about another tragedy. Khaled's entire family was killed in Lebanon and it eats away at him.
    • They, too, talk about Indira's death and what effect it will have on the money markets.
  • Chapter 23

    • Khaderbhai gives Lin a lesson on justice in a restaurant. Lin tells him about his escape from the Australian prison.
    • They walk to the sea and Khader tries to explain his understanding of morality to Lin. They have a bonding moment, then head back to the car.
    • Khader assigns Lin to a new division: the passport counterfeiting operation.
    • One day, after a workout, Abdullah gives Lin a ride on his motorcycle. He has to stop to whoop a bunch of guys' behinds out of the blue. Lin doesn't ask him any questions about it but joins in.
    • Afterward they see Lisa on the road and Lin says hello to her. She looks healthier than when they rescued her from the brothel.
    • Lisa jumps on Abdullah's motorcycle, and they take off.
    • After talking with some friends, Lin is interrupted by Ulla, who once again desperately needs his help. She promises to tell him where Karla is if he'll help, so he agrees.
  • Chapter 24

    • Lin sails to an island called Goa to find Karla. He rents a motorcycle and rides around on the beaches looking for her.
    • An innkeeper points him to an empty hut. He leaves his bike there and goes to the beach to smoke.
    • He buys some melon from a vendor and Karla suddenly sits down next to him.
    • They talk about whether or not they believe in love and about the last night they saw each other, the night that Lin was put in jail.
    • A man approaches them and asks for some charras (pot resin), and then gives them a blessing.
    • Lin tells Karla that he loves her, and they make love on the beach.
    • They spend a week in Goa touring, and Lin lets Karla know about his criminal history in Australia.
    • On the last night of his trip, Karla asks Lin to stay with her. He asks her to go with him. They can't agree, and he leaves angrily.
  • Chapter 25

    • Lin goes to visit Abdul Ghani at his home. Abdul tells him that their friend Madjid was murdered the night before by Sapna.
    • Abdul gives Lin a cassette tape of the Blind Singers, and introduces him to a couple of men, Krishna and Villu, who will teach him how to do passport forgeries.
    • He goes daily to learn his new trade, and in the meantime helps Ulla find an apartment to share with Lisa Carter, who is now hanging out a lot with Abdullah.
    • Lin visits Prabaker at the slum and finds out his buddy will be getting married to Parvati soon, and that Johnny will marry Sita.
    • Lin goes to talk to Johnny Cigar, to congratulate him. Johnny tells him that his mother died the week before.
    • On his way back, a slum resident named Anand Rao tells Lin that he's worried about a neighbor, Rasheed, who is making "bad business." Lin offers him money, which seems to offend Anand.
    • After that, Lin goes to Leopold's, where Didier intercepts him and tells him that they must go help Vikram with his plan to capture Letitia's heart.
    • Didier also mentions that the woman who put Lin in jail is not Indian, but a foreigner living in Bombay.
    • Vikram shows up and the guys go to get Lettie. Lin's job is to get her to stand in an exact spot at the train station and wear a blindfold.
    • A train pulls in, and Lin gets her to wear the blindfold.
    • Some men on the roof of the train grab Lettie and pull her up. The guys, except for Didier, climb up to join her.
    • Vikram unties Lettie's blindfold, and she likes the view. Then she sees banners stretched across the track saying "LETITIA I LOVE YOU" and "WILL YOU MARRY ME?"
    • Lettie and Vikram cry and kiss.
    • Lin finally gets his lunch, which was delayed by the proposal, and as he's eating a street man tells him that he's in big trouble. Some Africans want to kill him, apparently. Gemini George also confirms the threat. Prabaker, too, has heard the bad news and tries to warn Lin.
    • Didier, Abdullah, Vikram, and Lin try to figure out what to do. They find the Nigerians who have come to kill Lin, with the help of Hassaan Obikwa and his driver, Raheem, the guy who Lin got out of prison.
    • Lin, Vikram, and Abdullah find the Africans in their hotel room, and listen to them plot Lin's murder. They go in and attack the guys, making them talk about who they're working for. It turns out that Maurizio sent them, saying that Lin had stolen some heroin money.
    • Knowing that Ulla will have an idea of where to find Maurizio, Lin pays her a visit. When he gets to her apartment, he finds Maurizio hiding in a closet. He wants his money, but the girls say that Modena has it.
    • He takes Maurizio out with him, beats him up a little, and dumps him at a hospital.
    • The next day, Lin runs into Johnny Cigar, who tells him that Anand has killed Rasheed, the slum's first murder.
  • Part 4, Chapter 26

    • Lin and Didier chat about Didier's early life and about Karla. Afterward, Lin rides off on his new motorcycle to meet Lisa.
    • He sees her at a fancy hotel. She introduces him to Kalpana, who is making a movie there. The three sit in Kalpana's car getting high, and Kalpana asks Lin to help her get European tourists as extras for her movies.
    • Lin and Lisa form a partnership: he'll talk the tourists into it and she manages the logistics of getting them to the set. Lisa lives with Abdullah now, but says she doesn't trust him.
    • On the set, Lin watches a Hindi movie dance number being made.
    • Afterward, he sees his old friend Kavita and gives her a lift on his bike back into town.
    • She's a journalist, and Lin wants her to write up the murder in the slum for the front page of the newspaper.
  • Chapter 27

    • Lin works in Ghani's counterfeit passport network, creating new identities for himself on the side.
    • On a break from his "business trips," he visits the slum and sees how Johnny and Prabaker's wedding preparations are coming along.
    • He rides out to the movie studios and meets with Lisa there. They talk about Maurizio, who hasn't given the girls any more trouble, but Lisa says she's worried about Ulla.
    • They are interrupted by Chandra Mehta, the movie producer, who asks Lin to hook up a friend with some black-market dollars.
    • Afterward, Lin is dragged into the movie scene to fill in as an extra.
    • At the end of the day, Lin and Lisa ride back into town on the motorcycle. He drops her off, but a couple of hours later she calls and asks him to come right away because she has killed Maurizio.
    • Lin rushes over to the girls' apartment.
  • Chapter 28

    • At the girls' apartment, Lin finds Maurizio on the floor with a knife in his back and Ulla with a cut on her face.
    • Abdullah comes, too, and says that Hassaan will be there in an hour.
    • Ulla freaks out and Abdullah calms her down. It turns out that Modena had given her the stolen money, and that Maurizio had come to the hotel where they were to get it. Maurizio tortured Modena, but after not finding Ulla or the money, left the scene. When it was all over, Ulla fled and left Modena tied to the bed.
    • Abdullah calls a friend to have them look for Modena, and Lin demands the money.
    • Hassaan shows up and begins cleaning up the scene of the crime. Lisa and Ulla retreat to the bathroom.
    • Lin tries to pay Hassaan with the money, but he won't take it. Now they're even.
    • Maurizio's body disappears with Hassaan.
    • Ulla leaves the city, Lisa moves out of the apartment, and the issue is pretty much resolved—except for the question of Modena. Lin becomes obsessed with the poor, abandoned guy.
    • Weeks later, Prabaker comes to Lin with a serious problem. He wants to know if he will be a sexy enough husband for his future wife. Lin reassures him.
    • He goes for a walk in the night and ends up at the Arthur Road Prison. He asks to visit his old buddy Anand and tells him all about the newspaper article that will drum up support for him.
    • Anand says that he doesn't want the help; he wants to take his punishment.
    • Lin agrees to back off and goes home.
  • Chapter 29

    • Lin gets some movie dancers to come perform at Prabaker's wedding and gives Johnny Cigar $5000 as a present. He also buys Prabaker the deed to his taxi.
    • After the wedding season, Lin throws himself into his work and travels to Kinshasa, in the Congo, to run passports.
    • From there he goes to Mauritius, where his contacts screw things up, driving him out into the country and trying to pay him in the wrong currency. To fix matters, Lin has to go to Singapore. Finally he makes it back to Bombay.
    • He goes to a movie set at a hotel to meet with Lisa. At a lunch, Kavita asks to speak to Lin about Abdullah.
    • She tells him that the cops are looking to kill Abdullah, because they think he's Sapna.
    • Lisa leaves with Lin and he tells her what he knows. They go to Leopold's. Didier tells them the cops have already been there. He explains that Abdullah was taken in a crowd, shot to pieces.
    • On his bike, Lin heads to the place where Abdullah was killed. There is a riot going on, and one man attacks Lin. He fights numerous attackers until he finds Khaled Ansari, who helps him out.
    • Lin goes back to Leopold's, where Johnny Cigar is there talking about the tragedy. Unfortunately, Lin finds out that he's talking about a different one—Prabaker's. He was in an awful taxi accident.
    • Lin heads to the hospital to see his friend, who is in terrible shape. He and the family watch over him for four days, until it's over.
  • Chapter 30

    • Khader's mafia disperses throughout the world after Abdullah's death, and Lin feels lonely.
    • After a talk with Lisa, he pays three months of rent in advance and gets the watchmen to take extra care of his place. Then he drives to an opium den.
    • He orders some heroin and shoots up.
    • When he wakes up three months later, Nazeer is growling in his face telling him to come with him.
    • He puts up a fight and Nazeer knocks him out. He comes to in a taxi. Nazeer carries him up to a house where Karla awaits.
    • She takes care of him, and then says she's leaving for six weeks.
    • Lin sleeps and wakes up to Khader. Lin asks if Abdullah really was Sapna. Khader tells him no, that the real Sapna is dead.
    • Khader proposes that Lin accompany him to Afghanistan; he needs someone to pose as an American for a smuggling mission.
    • When Lin is about to break down from the withdrawal, Nazeer ties him up and won't let him leave the bed.
    • After twelve days, he's through the worst of it. Nazeer starts training him to ride horses so that he'll be ready for the Afghan mission.
    • Lin is not a natural horseman; in fact, he's awful. But he stays after it.
    • One day, Vikram runs into him at the stables, gets him to dance for the horses, and gives him his lucky cowboy hat.
    • Karla appears again. They make out and then get it on. He tells her he loves her but she doesn't reciprocate.
    • She leaves that night in a taxi. Bummer.
  • Chapter 31

    • Nazeer wakes up Lin and they head to the airport on their way to Pakistan for the first part of their Afghan mission.
    • At the hotel in Karachi, Nazeer freaks out, thinking that there are Russian spies everywhere. He sends Lin out to a meeting at a market. When he gets there, he sees Khaled Ansari waiting for him. They do some soul-searching about the morality of what they're doing.
    • After they drink some faloodha, a sweet drink, they take off, walking away in opposite directions. Khaled zooms back up in a cab with another guy, Ahmed Zadeh, to pick up Lin.
    • Khaled gives Lin a letter from Didier, and the three go to a mosque to pick up another member of their mission, Mahmoud Melbaaf, before meeting up with Khader.
    • At the mosque, they find out that the police have visited Lin's hotel, but that Nazeer got out with Lin's bag just in time.
    • The Blind Singers perform. Lin finds out that everyone on the mission was there the first night he ever heard them, with Khader, who has been planning the mission at least since then.
    • Lin feels betrayed, like Khaderbhai's been playing him, and almost cries when he confronts the older man. Khaderbhai tells him he can't go back to his hotel because the police have his description.
    • Finally, remembering the letter from Didier, Lin reads it and finds out that the woman who had him thrown into prison was Madame Zhou. He tears up the letter.
  • Chapter 32

    • The group spends a month in Quetta preparing to cross into Afghanistan. Lin passes the time practicing new languages and reading books that a Pakistani fighter named Ayub Khan brings him.
    • Khader visits Lin and tells him the story of his early life in Afghanistan and how he came to be the crime king of Bombay. Then he gives Lin a pistol and teaches him how to clean it.
    • The next day the group takes a train to Chaman on the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan. Everyone in Khaderbhai's group gets off before the station. They get into a truck that takes them to meet another group of men, the rest of their band, that makes them number about 30.
    • One of them, with a crazy look in his eyes, comes for Lin like he wants to kill him, but Nazeer steps in and saves the day. It turns out that the guy is nuts and thinks that Lin is Russian. (BTW, the Russians have taken over Afghanistan, which is the reason behind this whole mission. Grab a quick history refresher here.).
    • The guys tell Lin that Habib (crazy-eyes) is on a revenge spree because the Russians killed everyone in his village. Now he goes around murdering anyone who might be Russian or working for them.
    • Khaled Ansari volunteers to watch over Habib, and Lin thinks that with this decision they have lost Khaled.
  • Chapter 33

    • The group sets out on their long trek into Afghanistan, camping out and riding horses.
    • They decide to cross the mountains at night, though, which is quite a challenge given the sheer rock wall and single-file trail. They are buzzed by jet fighters, which scare the horses and cause lots of chaos. Lin almost falls off a cliff, but his sheer strength saves him.
    • Khaled is worried about Habib, who is setting traps and carrying grenades, but doesn't tell Khader because he thinks he's got it under control.
    • They are stopped by pirates and Khader pays them off, and then uses them as opportunities to get new supplies.
    • On the third pirate attack, they are trapped in a gorge by men with guns. Khaderbhai makes Lin talk to their leader, acting as an American.
    • The man wants to know when the Americans will give them Stinger missiles, so Lin lies and tells him soon.
    • The pirate leader, Hajji Mohammed, likes that answer and invites everyone to his son's wedding. They agree, and a good time is had by all.
    • Khader quizzes Lin on his own philosophy of the universe, to see if he's understood it yet. He's satisfied that his student has learned the song and dance, and so he lets Lin ask some questions of his own about philosophy.
    • When Lin asks him how he knows so much about physics and philosophy, Khader explains that he's been meeting with a teacher weekly for seven years. He tells Lin that sometimes it's okay to do the wrong thing for the right reasons, as long as it's done consciously.
    • The wedding ends and the men set off again, through another mountain pass.
    • They are attacked again, this time by guns, and they fight back.
    • Lin, Khaled, and Khader survive, but Lin's horse is badly wounded and has to be put out of her misery. Habib does the honors. One man, a local, is also killed.
    • Ever the hero, Lin goes to check on the wounded. He has to set a broken arm, which causes lots of pain, and patch up some bullet wounds.
    • After the first-aid stop, the party continues up into the mountains. Lin, not such a great rider, falls off of his saddle and is hanging underneath his horse, providing comic relief for his fellow men and the new group of fighters they're meeting.
    • Their laughter is cut short, though, by Habib, who has put a badly wounded man out of his misery. He looks like he'll attack Lin next, so Lin draws his gun.
    • Habib escapes into the night. Khader prays over the body and sets up guards for the night.
  • Chapter 34

    • The group of fighters stays put in the mountains for a couple of months, and cold winter sets in.
    • In the camp, they set up workshops to restore AK-47s. Once they're finished and ready to make delivery, Khaderbhai announces that it's time to walk home.
    • Khader tells Lin a story of the Second Anglo-Afghan War (Here you go. You're welcome.) They talk about Lin's father-figure issues with Khader, and also about dreams.
    • Suddenly, Khader quotes a line from the poem that Lin copied from Karla's diary so long ago. Khader says that it's by her favorite poet, Sadiq Khan. He also tells Lin that he knows Karla very well, and has known her for years.
    • It's all coming together for Lin; Karla works for Khaderbhai and Abdul Ghani, and recruited Lin for them so that they would have their American for this trip to Afghanistan—conspiracy alert.
    • Khader explains that even the clinic was part of his master plan; he used the slum as a test run on the drugs he got from the lepers to see if they were safe to take to Afghanistan.
    • Lin is furious and cusses Khader out. He wants to know if Khader has anything to do with Sapna or Madame Zhou, and his father-figure denies it. Lin also asks about his jail time, and Khader goes suddenly quiet. He blames that on bad luck too, but says that everything he did was for the right reasons, even if it was wrong.
    • Our buddy Lin threatens to stay behind when everyone leaves, because he's so angry with Khader. He also throws in a nice, adolescent I hate you, for good measure.
  • Chapter 35

    • Khaderbhai leaves the camp and, three days later, comes back dead. No, really—Nazeer drags him back through the snow along with a wounded Ahmed Zadeh.
    • Ahmed, dying, complains about Khader's insistence on using horses when donkeys would have been better for the terrain. They had gone to deliver the horses to Khader's village, a point of pride for him, and that had been their doom.
    • With both Ahmed and Khader now dead, the camp is attacked by mortars, causing even more wounds and death. Lin plays doctor to the injured, and even donates his own blood to save them. What a guy.
    • Nazeer buries Khader in the Muslim tradition, and then goes on with a new mission: to kill the man that had betrayed Khaderbhai.
    • The surviving men hold a meeting and discuss what to do. They're worried about Habib, who's still out terrorizing the countryside. In fact, he's the one whom the people who killed Abdel Khader had been after when they attacked Khaderbhai and Nazeer.
    • They decide to launch their own mortar attacks, but suddenly Habib shows up, scaring everybody but Khaled half to death. He claims to have information on the enemy positions.
    • In the end the men decide to fight against their enemies, even though it will be dangerous. Soon after they are attacked by bombs, helicopters, rockets, and machine guns, and they suffer lots of casualties.
    • Lin works hard to try to help the wounded, but several of them die, leaving only nine survivors of the twenty they started the day with. The survivors start off on a four-week march.
  • Chapter 36

    • The men have run out of meat and call a meeting to decide what to do.
    • They send out a scout, who doesn't come back, but Habib does. He advises them to fight their way through the surrounding enemies.
    • Some rotting goat meat is the only food left. Everyone decides to eat it, even though it would be against Muslim law under normal circumstances.
    • Lin tells the guys Prabaker's life story around the campfire, then goes off to share a cigarette with Khaled.
    • It turns out that Khaled, also, had been with Karla, and that she'd dumped him when Lin came around.
    • Habib appears from the darkness and tells Lin that strong men make their own luck, then goes off to deliver a fortune to Khaled.
    • There's a sudden, loud scream. The men rush to find that Khaled has killed Habib because he discovered that Habib killed the disappeared scouts, Hanif and Juma.
    • Khaled walks off into the snow, and Lin tries to stop him, but the others won't let him.
    • The men eat the rotten goat meat in a stew, and then spend some time dealing with the digestive aftermath. Then they gather for the attack.
    • They run out into the open and are attacked by mortars, but they keep running. Lin is hit, and everything goes dark.
  • Part 5, Chapter 37

    • Nazeer has saved Lin's life in the attack. He wakes up in a hospital in Pakistan. Lin learns that they were attacked by friendly fire. When the mix-up was cleared up, their attackers turned into their rescuers.
    • Nazeer, Mahmoud, and Lin, the survivors, go back to Bombay by train.
    • Back home, Lin realizes that most people don't know about Khaderbhai's death, and he doesn't want to be the one to tell them.
    • He buys some rupees from one of Khader's currency guys and goes on a shopping spree for new clothes. Then he heads to Leopold's and sees Didier and Kavita.
    • Lin tells Didier that Khader is dead. Didier is shocked by the news. Then, also shocking, Lin
    • announces that he is going to see Madame Zhou. Didier tells him that she was attacked last week
    • by an angry mob but that she's still alive. When he can't convince Lin to stay away, Didier decides to accompany him.
  • Chapter 38

    • Didier and Lin go to Abdul Ghani's mansion on a motorcycle. Lin goes in to see him. He delivers the news of Khader's death, and Abdul cries.
    • He asks about who survived, and when he finds out that Khaled is dead, he makes a strange comment: "Then it will be Nazeer" (5.38.18).
    • Lin asks where the passport workshop has been moved to. Abdul tells him that it's there, in the house. He goes down into the basement workshop and updates his expired passport.
    • He then goes out to where Didier is waiting and they ride to Madame Zhou's. Didier stays back keeping watch. Lin goes inside.
    • As he walks through the burned-out building he falls through a wall, into one of Madame Zhou's secret passages. He follows it into an attic room and sees the old woman, crazy and unaware of what is going on around her.
    • Lin starts to feel ashamed for wanting to kill the old lady, when he is attacked by Rajan, Madame Zhou's servant. Lin pulls his knife and stabs the eunuch, when he is suddenly attacked by a carbon copy of the man, his twin.
    • Didier comes to find him, and Rajan's twin attacks him with a knife, but Didier shoots the man with a pistol.
    • He is willing to kill the men, but Lin stops him.
    • They go back down the passage, fall through the floor, and climb out of the passage.
    • Back at Leopold's, Vikram is happy to see Lin. Didier says that Karla is back in Bombay, with a new boyfriend called Ranjit.
    • Lin makes a toast to Karla, but he's interrupted by Mahmoud, who comes to tell him that Ghani is dead, punishment for betraying Khader.
  • Chapter 39

    • Lin learns that Ghani had been behind the Sapna killings, and that he had tipped off the Pakistanis to Khader's mission in Afghanistan.
    • Nazeer is now in charge of Khader's business. He asks Lin to take over the counterfeiting section. Lin agrees, if he can move the workshop and hire Johnny Cigar and his friend Kishore as his runners.
    • Lin meets his associates at a nice restaurant, and he sees Lisa there. He gets up to talk to her and she invites him up to her hotel room.
    • Lisa invites Lin to come live with her, and they kiss, but it's clear he's still hung up on Karla. She tells him the story of why Karla left the US, after killing her rapist.
    • Lin goes outside and considers buying some drugs. Just then, Abdullah's ghost appears and talks to Lin. He says that he's not actually dead—surprise. He's just been hiding out.
    • Abdullah says that one of the Sapna guys and a couple of spies from Iran are still on the loose, and that they must go after them. He also announces that he's going to be married, which seems a little out of place what with all the dangerous talk.
  • Chapter 40

    • Abdullah and Lin take Abdullah's motorcycle to a mysterious surprise for Lin. Abdullah shares his plan for killing Chuha, one of his enemies. Vikram and the Zodiac Georges are waiting for them at a breakfast café, and they point out a guy hanging out in the shadows; it's Lin's surprise.
    • The man is Modena, and Lin takes off after him through the alleys. He finally catches up to him and sees that he has been badly scarred by his traitorous friend, Maurizio.
    • Modena explains that he has been watching Lin in order to find Ulla, who he believes will come back for him. He also thanks Lin for killing Maurizio, even though Lin protests that he didn't do it.
  • Chapter 41

    • Lin goes to Leopold's and sees all his old buddies, including Lisa and the movie producers. He also has the pleasure of meeting Ranjit Choudry, Karla's new lover. Jeet, as he's called, announces that he's read some of Lin's short stories and he likes them.
    • Johnny Cigar arrives and Lin leaves with him. They head to the World Trade Center because of a problem at the slum. On the way, Johnny begs Lin to be careful with his criminal pals.
    • The problem turns out to be that Kano, the dancing bear, has escaped from prison and is wanted by the authorities. Johnny Cigar wants Lin to help hide the bear. Lin suggests disguising the bear as a shrine and carrying it on a platform, as though it were part of a religious procession.
    • It seems to work, but just as they are nearing the getaway truck Lin is called away by Abdullah and his gangster friends.
    • They find out that Chuha, their target, is in his house and ready to be attacked. Making a plan, the gang heads over to do the deed.
    • Though Abdullah and Lin are to wait at the back door, Abdullah blows off the plan and goes into the house to face his enemy. Lin, not knowing what to do, follows him.
    • Lin is captured and questioned, but he refuses to answer. He passes out as they beat him to a pulp.
    • He awakens to Abdullah and a brawl, so he jumps right in. Lin is finally dragged out by his teammates, leaving Abdullah to "work." One member of the group, Salman Mustaan, is left behind, dead.
  • Chapter 42

    • The group of fighters meets to pay their last respects to Salman. After the ceremony, Abdullah asks Lin to come with him on a final fight in Sri Lanka, a last job for Khaderbhai.
    • He agrees, against his better judgement.
    • Lin rides his motorcycle to a point and finds Karla on the beach. She tells him that Khaled has finally made it back to India. She also says that Ulla's back in town, and has reunited with Modena. He agrees to make a fake passport for Modena so that they can leave together.
    • She asks him if he'll join her to find Khaled, but also says that she's going to marry Jeet.
    • They part, and he walks back to the slum to get his bike. He makes a detour into the slum and holds Prabaker's baby, Prabu.