When I started reading this book, I loved everything about it so much I was on the verge of going out and buying a copy for everyone I knew.
Later on I realized what I really loved was the dual presence of storyteller Rashid Khalifa, the Shah of Blah, inventor of the Magic World, and his deviously sarcastic twin and nemesis, Nobodaddy. Both of them, I'm sure, strongly reflect the personality of Rushdie himself and they're witty, sarcastic and fun to be with. It's those two characters who make the book rock.
After they disappear, probably to let the nominal hero (Luka, age 12, pleasant enough lad) of the story (OK, but nothing special) have a go at being the center of attention, it just isn't the same.
I still think maybe I should have given it five stars after all.