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Unaccustomed Earth: Stories | [Jhumpa Lahiri]

Unaccustomed Earth: Stories

From the internationally best-selling, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, a superbly crafted new work of fiction: eight stories that take us from Cambridge and Seattle to India and Thailand. In the stunning title story, Ruma, a young mother in a new city, is visited by her father, who carefully tends the earth of her garden, where he and his grandson form a special bond. But he's harboring a secret from his daughter, a love affair he's keeping all to himself.
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Publisher's Summary

From the internationally best-selling, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, a superbly crafted new work of fiction: eight stories that take us from Cambridge and Seattle to India and Thailand.

In the stunning title story, Ruma, a young mother in a new city, is visited by her father, who carefully tends the earth of her garden, where he and his grandson form a special bond. But he's harboring a secret from his daughter, a love affair he's keeping all to himself.

In "A Choice of Accommodations", a husband's attempt to turn an old friend's wedding into a romantic getaway weekend with his wife takes a dark, revealing turn as the party lasts deep into the night.

In "Only Goodness", a sister eager to give her younger brother the perfect childhood she never had is overwhelmed by guilt, anguish, and anger when his alcoholism threatens her family.

And in "Hema and Kaushik" - a trio of linked stories and a luminous, intensely compelling elegy of life, death, love, and fate - we follow the lives of a girl and boy who, one winter, share a house in Massachusetts. They travel from innocence to experience on separate, sometimes painful paths, until destiny brings them together again years later in Rome.

©2008 Jhumpa Lahiri; (P)2008 Random House, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Lahiri's enormous gifts as a storyteller are on full display in this collection: the gorgeous, effortless prose; the characters haunted by regret, isolation, loss, and tragedies big and small; and most of all, a quiet, emerging sense of humanity." (Khaled Hosseini)
"The author's ability to flesh out completely even minor characters in every story...is what will keep readers invested in the work until its heartbreaking conclusion." (Library Journal)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (519 )
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  •  
    John Younts Washington, DC 02-07-09
    John Younts Washington, DC 02-07-09 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wasn't for me"

    I think if I were of this culture it may have more meaning. To me it was boring and lacked anything to make me keep listening. I am only half way through and I will not finish this book.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Isabelle Houston, TX, USA 02-26-09
    Isabelle Houston, TX, USA 02-26-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ratings
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    "Unaccustomed Earth (Unabridged)"

    It was so uninteresting to me that I hardly could go to the second story...In fact, I didn't and will not try listen to the rest of it.

    1 of 9 people found this review helpful
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