Archive for the ‘India-Pakistan’ Category
At its heart, ATLAS OF UNKNOWNS is a story about family, especially the relationship between two sisters. Linno and her younger sister, Anju, grew up with their father and grandmother in Kerala, India. Their motherâ€™s apparent suicide is alluded to but not discussed although her death haunts both girls in different ways. At age 13, Linno, a budding artist, loses her hand in an accident with a firecracker.
The main character of this novel, Jeff Attman, is a globe trotting art critic and journalist. But he hates his job, even hates writing, which can pose a problem for a print journalist. He keeps at it because it affords him the opportunity to use an expense account to do what he really loves: drink, take recreational drugs, chase women, drink more, occasionally exercise his rapier wit, use more drugs. You get the idea. He is fun loving and intelligent. He is a kick, the type of guy whose company you would probably enjoy, albeit in limited measures.
THE BLUE NOTEBOOK is a beautify written novel about the grimmest of subjects – child prostitution. Were it not for author James A. Levine’s exquisite prose and his remarkable protagonist, nine year-old Batuk Ramasdeen, a poem of a girl, this story might be too sad to read. However, Batuk, a precocious, ever optimistic little girl, wins the reader’s heart from page one and makes The Blue Notebook very hard to put down. At 210 pages, I read it in two sittings.
July 7, 2009
Â· Judi Clark Â· No Comments
Tags: Arabic World, Job-centered, Prostitution, Spiegel & Grau Â· Posted in: 2009 Favorites, Class - Race - Gender, Debut Novel, India-Pakistan, Literary, Reading Guide, Unique Narrative, World Lit
Autumn 1928. Three young women are on their way to India, each with a new life in mind. Rose, a beautiful but naÃ¯ve bride-to-be, is anxious about leaving her family and marrying a man she hardly knows. Victoria, her bridesmaid couldn t be happier to get away from her overbearing mother, and is determined to find herself a husband. And Viva, their inexperienced chaperone, is in search of the India of her childhood, ghosts from the past and freedom.
THE WRITING ON MY FOREHEAD is a multi-generational tale involving a complex Indo-Pakistani clan which is scattered all over the world. They periodically gather in Pakistan, England and America for family visits. The elders who live in the West are determined to familiarize their children with the rich culture and traditional mores of their heritage. Nafisa Haji has written, with lyrical prose, a multi-layered, coming of age story which is sure to appeal to many readers. Saira Qader, a first generation American, is the narrator.
April 29, 2009
Â· Judi Clark Â· No Comments
Tags: Arabic World, Immigration-Diaspora, Life Choices, William Morrow Â· Posted in: Coming-of-Age, Debut Novel, Family Matters, India-Pakistan, Pakistan, World Lit