The figurative language of Tarquin Hall…

Reading time: Less than 1 minute

I like to share interesting pieces of figurative language I encounter in my reading. I write today about a series of metaphors and similes from Tarquin Hall….

I’ll be honest. I never thought I’d read a novel with the words “love commandos” in the title. But such people exist and they are real-life good samaritans in India who volunteer to make it possible for Hindus of different castes to marry each other.

A novel telling the story of one such person, The Case of the Love Commandos, by Tarquin Hall, (pictured above), is a fairly light murder mystery, despite its semi serious subject matter.

A former South Asia bureau chief for the Associated Press, Hall is the author of seven books, four of which are murder mysteries based on a detective he calls Vish Puri.

In addition to finding the book enjoyable, I also appreciated some of Hall’s figurative language. Here are my favourite examples:

  • Clouds the shade of smudged charcoal rolled over Delhi like some biblical portent.
  • The light took on an ethereal quality, the greens of the city’s flora rendered psychedelic in their intensity.
  • They walked on in silence. A sickle moon hung in the sky like a fishhook waiting to entice the mother of all carp.
  • The downward thrust of [the helicopter’s] blades forced the ladies to turn away and put their backs to the wind, their chunnis [long scarves] beating against their shoulders like flags caught in a gale.
  • Every now and again, he would raise his head from his food like an ancient hunchback, motion to his guests to eat ore, and then continue demolishing his food, his lips smacking together with the sound of the sea lapping against a dock.
  • A dark cloud was moving over the city like a menacing alien mother ship, casting Delhi in a gloomy half-light.
  • They stood by the window watching as the deluge grew in intensity and the surfaces of the road and pavement below began to effervesce as if the water gathering upon them was boiling.
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