The Lowland

The Lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri is a fantastic book. It was on the short list for the Booker Prize… so was A Tale for the Time Being – another one of my recent reads that I really loved. (I can’t believe there were 2 books on the list that I like, usually there are none.) Anyway… Subhash and Udayan are brothers, born 15 months apart, in a Calcutta neighbourhood where one is often mistaken for the other. But when they are older that all changes. Udayan, the younger, is drawn into the Naxalite movement, a rebellion that intends to eradicate inequality and poverty in India. Subhash, the more conservative, wants nothing to do with this organization, and leaves his home to study scientific research on the east coast of the US in Rhode Island. When Subhash gets shocking news about his brother he returns home, hoping to help pick up the pieces of his shattered family. This also includes helping Udayan’s wife Gauri, whom Subhash has never met. The story unfolds with heartbreak and joy throughout the years, in India and the United States, as their lives are forever changed. This is a family saga steeped in history, geography, politics, and science, with intense emotion that is beautifuly written. It really does deserve to be on the Booker short list. I loved it.

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