I can no longer recall how this book came into my possession. Based on the title, my guess is it was purchased in person from a used bookstore. It is my binges at used bookstores or library book sales that result in my random and large assortment of books. My online book purchases are very deliberate and I usually remember purchasing them. I think I would have been drawn to this book because Indian culture has a pull on me. Side note: It is this same pull that results in me watching movies like Barfi! on Netflix. Whatever the serendipitous span of events that brought me this book, I am thankful. This is the book after I finished it, sitting on my nightstand with it pages unfurled.
I photographed the book in the middle of writing this post because I was stalling. I have never reviewed a book before. Except perhaps on Caterpillar shaped construction paper cutouts in third grade. I know two things. One, I don’t want to ruin any important details for someone planning to read the book. Two, I don’t want to use a scoring system. I always score everything one less than perfect – 4 out of 5 stars.
This book is a series of short stories that sometimes intertwine with one another and sometimes do not. I usually am not a fan of short stories, but Jhumpa Lahiri made it work. Even in their brevity, her stories feel complete. This worked out well for me because I read half this book, paused while I read two other books, and then came back and finished this book. I later discovered this worked in my favor because the last half of the book contains the short stories that are related.
For me, Jhumpa Lahiri perfectly captures the feeling of things left unsaid or actions left undone. In life we have those moments that we let slip by and she captures them in all their bittersweet glory. Even better, she does this without it feeling over done or over dramatic. I found myself connecting with many of her characters in unexpected ways.
The stories are from the point of view American raised children (and adults) of Bengali immigrant parents.
I know I liked her book because I want to read others by her. Her style of writing has a perfectly captured realism that is addicting.
If you want to read this book, I recommend using PaperbackBookSwap because last I looked there were copies already available. Good luck!
This marks off book 1 of 30 for my goal this year. 29 more adventures await. And honestly, why stop there?