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Publisher's Summary

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning, best-selling author of The Namesake comes an extraordinary new novel, set in both India and America, that expands the scope and range of one of our most dazzling storytellers: a tale of two brothers bound by tragedy, a fiercely brilliant woman haunted by her past, a country torn by revolution, and a love that lasts long past death.

Born just 15 months apart, Subhash and Udayan Mitra are inseparable brothers, one often mistaken for the other in the Calcutta neighborhood where they grow up. But they are also opposites, with gravely different futures ahead. It is the 1960s, and Udayan - charismatic and impulsive - finds himself drawn to the Naxalite movement, a rebellion waged to eradicate inequity and poverty; he will give everything, risk all, for what he believes. Subhash, the dutiful son, does not share his brother’s political passion; he leaves home to pursue a life of scientific research in a quiet, coastal corner of America.

But when Subhash learns what happened to his brother in the lowland outside their family’s home, he goes back to India, hoping to pick up the pieces of a shattered family, and to heal the wounds Udayan left behind - including those seared in the heart of his brother’s wife.

Masterly suspenseful, sweeping, piercingly intimate, The Lowland is a work of great beauty and complex emotion; an engrossing family saga and a story steeped in history that spans generations and geographies with seamless authenticity. It is Jhumpa Lahiri at the height of her considerable powers.

Long-listed for the 2013 Man Booker Prize

©2013 Jhumpa Lahiri (P)2013 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"Haunting... A novel that crosses generations, oceans, and the chasms within families... Lahiri’s skill is reflected not only in her restrained and lyric prose, but also in her moving forward chronological time while simultaneously unfolding memory, which does not fade in spite of the years. A formidable and beautiful book." (Publishers Weekly)
"An absolute triumph. Lahiri uses a gorgeously rendered Calcutta landscape to profound effect.... As shocking complexities tragedies, and revelations multiply, Lahiri astutely examines the psychological nuances of conviction, guilt, grief, marriage, and parenthood, and delicately but firmly dissects the moral conundrums inherent in violent revolution. Renowned for her exquisite prose and penetrating insights, Lahiri attains new heights of artistry - flawless transparency, immersive intimacy with characters and place - in her spellbinding fourth book and second novel. A magnificent, universal, and indelible work of literature... Lahiri’s standing increases with each book, and this is her most compelling yet." (Donna Seaman, Booklist)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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Story

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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Captivating!

From the first sentence, I was drawn in, captivated by the culture and world of Calcutta, whisked to New England, and back again. A wonderful tale of tradition, family, love and profound loss.

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Tearfully good.

This story I found compellingly interesting. It brought me to my knees on several occasions. Speaking to the complex aspects of human relationships and there dysfunctional threads that bind them together. This story is very good, in my opinion.

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Beautiful, sad, beguiling

Beautifully written and masterfully crafted. A slow start, but she brings you in. Great narrator, who effortlessly shifts between characters and the story's pov changes.

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OMG

Devastating.

They want fourteen more words. Devastating devastating devastating devastating devastating devastating devastating devastating devastating. Got it?

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Extremely depressing with little to celebrate.

I listened to this book rather than read it because of the difficult to pronounce words. The reader was excellent. It was the story that I disliked strongly. The characters were flat with no personality. The story line was weak and dull. It was a depressing book with no point. I would not recommend it to anyone.

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Definitely not Lahiri's best work

Any additional comments?

I believe this book was actually Lahiri's first attempt at a novel. If this is true, then I'm glad her collection of short stories was how she entered the literary world. I just never felt that she got inside any of the characters in this book, and the result was a stilted and often boring story.

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Meh

Somewhat disappointing. The writing is fluid sand beautiful, but the story just ends. No real climax...it just didn't do it for me.

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  • JRG
  • Williamsburg, VA, United States
  • 12-03-15

Amazing story and presentation!

I started reading this on Kindle but decided to switch to listening to it on audible.com when I was running short of time. I'm so glad I did! Sunil Malhotra's performance is outstanding, bringing to life both the superbly-developed characters and the lyrical prose. This is the first of Ms. Lahiri's novels that I have read, but I will definitely look for others!

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Highly recommended!

Really love this audible!
Everything is excellent about this audible! Cannot put it down!
I highly recommend this book to anybody who loves beautiful writing.

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Worst most depressing book I've ever listened to

I like books with good character development, and love books set in India.
But this book had not one character that I could even get interested in. It was relentlessly depressing and I almost stopped listening to it numerous times ( something I never do) .