Anamika Mukherjee – author of Adopted Miracles is back with a new book – Survivors, which also happens to be her first foray into fiction.
I first heard about this book from the author herself who happens to be a friend. She had told me about the book in bits and pieces, and what little I heard intrigued me enough to accept this book for review.
Today, the bloggers at The Broke and the Bookish have asked us to list top ten books I liked more/less than I thought I would.
Expectations are always so damning, aren’t they. So many times I go into a good book with great expectations, and end up disappointed. At other times, I read a book that seems just about ok, and then end up surprised and amazed by the book. It may not be a particularly good book, but because my expectations were low, I end up loving it.
Oh! How much I wanted to love this book! The premise is wonderful, and it’s a Man Booker nominee so it was anyway on my TBR list for the longest time. The only reason I hesitated to read this book was that I felt the subject of the book would be too disturbing for me. My son is the same age as Jack – the little boy in the book, and I was afraid I would get all emotional about poor little Jack’s plight.
Eventually, it turned out I didn’t get all emotional or all that excited about the book. I”ll tell you why a little later in my review.
Jonathan Franzen is one of those writers who I’ve always avoided. Initially, I didn’t mean to. But when a writer is labelled as the Great American novelist or some such grandiose term, I tend to back away from their books. And then I read about all his weird interviews, and the bird-watching (not that I have anything against it), and most important – the number of reviews that talk about his white male worldview, and his problematic approach to writing female characters. Let’s say nothing I read compelled me to go read his books.
This year however, something made me change my mind. #FranzeninFebruary happened and I saw a number of tweets chattering on about all the Franzen books. Finally, reading Laura Frey’s tweets convinced me that there wouldn’t be any harm in reading one of his books, and trying him out for myself.
Love in Chakiwara and Other Misadventures is a collection of short stories set in a place called Chakiwara in Karachi (in post-independence Pakistan).
The narrator of these short stories is Iqbal Hussain Changezi, owner of Allah Tawakkul Bakery, and collector of writers and geniuses.
Through his eyes, we learn about that extraordinary invention – the Love Meter. Through his eyes, we view suspiciously at out-of-work comedian Chakori, apprentice to a Chinese dentist, meet quack cum genius Muhammad Gharib, and the lovestruck and out-of-luck author Qattar.