Here are a few finds I discovered this week. Have you read any of these?
(I love books that take place in India, and this author is one of my favorites. I read and loved (3) of her novels, and I hope to get to read this one soon as well).
(amazon)....The middle-class denizens of a Bombay apartment complex come to life in Umrigar's engaging debut, which tells the story of a half-dozen protagonists through the prism of a wedding hosted by respected lawyer Jimmy Kanga. Kanga's rise to glory is just one of several intriguing subplots. The novel begins with the story of Rusi and Coomi Bilimoria, a couple whose marriage becomes frayed when Rusi's business plans don't match his expectations and Coomi's mother-in-law turns out to be a live-in nightmare. Other interesting yarns include that of Dosamai, a bright young woman who, after her parents force her to marry down to ensure the future of her sisters, eventually turns into the local gossip. The neighborhood drunk, Adi Patel, also has a tale to tell involving a tragic interlude with the daughter of a laborer that effectively ruins his life, and the widow Tehmi Engineer takes an analogous road to ruin when her handsome husband, Cyrus, is killed in an explosion at a chemical plant. Umrigar is an accomplished, natural storyteller who remains an optimistic narrator despite all her grim plot twists, though she never softens the impact of the various tragedies on her characters. She also manages to work in a portrait of the decline of Bombay, delivering an impressive debut offering a glimpse into a cultural world especially that of the Parsis, an ethnic minority that most Westerners know only in its barest outlines.
(amazon)......Are you passionate about books? Do you have the desire to share your thoughts about a book with readers, yet are unsure about what makes a good review? Are you curious about the influence reviews have on readers, booksellers, and librarians? If you're an experienced reviewer, The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing
will serve as an excellent reference tool and amalgam of resources. If you're a beginner, this book will show you how to write a well-written, honest, objective and professional book review. It will also teach you:
How to read critically.
How to differentiate the various types of reviews.
How to rate books.
How to prevent amateurish mistakes.
How to deal with the ethics and legalities of reviewing.
How to tell the difference between a review, a book report, and a critique.
How to start your own review site.
How to publish your reviews on dozens of sites and even make money while you're at it, and much more.
If you're an author, publisher, publicist, bookseller, librarian, or reader, this book will also bring to light the importance and influence of book reviews within a wider spectrum.
(amazon)..... In suburban Chicago, young, unsure Miraflores finds herself caught between finishing college and caring for her mother, who has developed premature Alzheimer's disease. While tending to her mother, Mira uncovers a startling secret regarding her Panamanian father, long a forbidden topic; Mira had been told that he abandoned them prior to her birth, but there seems to be more to the story. To find him, and hopefully some perspective, Mira takes an extended vacation to Panama where he remains a citizen. There, Mira makes friends with elderly doorman Hernán and his young relative Danilo and,with their help, pursues every possible lead to her father. While Mira's quest for identity and family stability unfolds, the friendship between her and Danilo deepens, and soon she finds herself with feelings for the energetic, handsome, occasionally abrasive young man. A closely observed tale of relationships with some astute parallels between human interaction and subterranean geology, Henríquez's novel also benefits from a strong sense of place and plotting.