What do you want in a book? Believable characters? An engrossing plot? Beautiful narration? This audiobook has them all. Read it, then see the movie. I enjoyed both.
Enjoyed this book very much. Appeals to me as I enjoy reading about relationships, watching characters change and learning about other cultures. It isn't The Great Novel, but enjoyable and entertaining.
Perhaps I was expecting too much, but people told me that Jhumpa Lahiri was a really good writer. i had wanted to listen to her first book, Interpreter of Maladies, but that was not available on Audible at the time I downloaded this. I thought it would be a fine substitute, but I was disappointed.
The writing is nice and pleasant and easy to get through, but I did not find it captivating or beautiful. The plot was predictable and every event in the book was overly foreshadowed by abrupt changes in tone. The themes focusing on the interaction of name and identity and the unique dilemmas faced by 2nd generation Indian Americans were interesting, but dealt with in such a heavy handed fashion. You never found yourself discovering any ideas in this book. They are essentially just told to you.
I did enjoy it. It was nice and a good way to pass the time, but it is nothing terribly substantial.
I loved the reader and thoroughly enjoyed learning more about Indian culture and families. The story follows the life of the main character, Goggle (?) from childhood to adulthood, and his day to day struggles, which, although not terribly exciting, were terribly real. I can't wait for the movie.
I think this is a great read. This book has something of a very even keel throughout. Never too dramatic. And being a first generation Indian, I can feel the conflicts that the protagonist's parents go through. And Sarita Choudhury's narration is pretty good.
I feel I have a greater understanding of my parents from reading this book and also myself. I found parts of my own life described in such great detail that it was almost scary. The details of my parents get-togethers at the Nights of Columbus, to our drives to Logan for our flights back to India, to sneaking into MIT parties as a high-school student...
It took me a while to listen to the second half after relating to the main character so closely throughout the first half . The turning point in the book occurred at a point in the character's life that I am at right now and prospect of dealing with what he had to is ... I really don't know how to express it.
After finishing this book I almost felt angry at Lahiri for leaving it at that. But I don't think this book was as much about closure as it was about understanding. This book is all to real to be considered fiction.
The cultural perspective of this book is by far its most interesting attribute. The author's portrayal of the "generation gap" combines with her equally astute portrayal of the "cultural gap" (the parents grew up in Calcutta and the children grew up in America), resulting in some very thought-provoking conflict. The prose itself is also at times quite stellar. Unfortunately, the reader is just okay, apparently chosen because of her ability to interchange American and Indian accents. There are also frequent and very distracting overdubs, probably to fix reading mistakes, which sound so mismatched that they can't possibly go unnoticed. Still, I listened to this book all the way through, and it was worth it.
I'm a fan of Lahiri's short fiction, so I looked forward to her first novel with great hope. The nonevent material that worked wonderful in short stories does not work in this novel. The lack of a structural direction is disappointing. I'd much prefer this book be broken up into series of short stories.