Picture of author.

Padma Viswanathan

Teoksen The Toss of a Lemon tekijä

3+ teosta 642 jäsentä 32 arvostelua 1 Favorited

About the Author

Image credit: Padma Viswanathan - photo: Joy von Tiedemann

Tekijän teokset

Associated Works

The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2012 (2012) — Avustaja — 198 kappaletta

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Kirja-arvosteluja

I loved this novel! It's a lengthy one - and it kept me company for two weeks. During that time I felt part of the extended Brahman family, experiencing the joys and sadness that were theirs spanning Indian life from the late 19th to the latter part of the 20th century.
a Passage Through India
The image of Sivakami walking along the railway track will stay with me forever I think. It is one of the many evocative images penned so well by the author's hand.
½
 
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kjuliff | 26 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Feb 9, 2023 |
A beautiful, complex "nerd novel" about a psychologist researching the effects of mass trauma in the aftermath of Sikh & Muslim pogroms in Delhi, and of the 1985 Air India bombing. An emotional AND intellectual dissection of grief with a focus on the intersection between personal and mass grief. (I wasn't thrilled with the way the ending was handled, but it's a big, ambitious book so I'll forgive it that flaw and give it five stars anyway)
 
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smgaines | 4 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Nov 22, 2020 |
I am not sure where I should place this book. I was just fed up towards the end, and wanted to reach the end of its 600 pages. I can understand why it's illuminating as an intimate look into India's caste system, but I really wished that the story told more - revealed more.
 
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Soulmuser | 26 muuta kirja-arvostelua | May 30, 2017 |
Reviewers on this site and LibraryThing call this novel "informative," and say it's a look into the "psyche" of a Brahman family in India. It is said to be an "epic," which opens a "window" onto a world many readers won't know, "enriching" our experience and making us more sympathetic to "exotic" customs and ideas. The book, in other words, functions in two ways: it's a romantic epic of a family, and it tells us about rural Brahman life in India. It's both documentary and entertainment, both socially responsible and escapist.

Every once in a while there is a good reason to read a novel to learn about some unfamiliar part of the world. If I am intolerant, I can read something on the people I mistrust or dislike. If I need information that isn't available in nonfiction or documentaries, I might turn to a novel.

But that is not what makes novels worth reading, writing, or thinking about, despite the fact that a high percentage of the current production of novels, up to and including writers like Zadie Smith, are meant to be "informative" about some part of the world. A novel is a way of recording thought, and of wrestling with the relation between thought and language. It really does not matter what the novel is about. If the novel as a form is taken seriously enough, it does not matter if it has any "information" about the world: Viswanathan could have made up not only her characters but everything about Brahman life.

"The Toss of a Lemon" implies a certain history of the novel, which includes 19th century English novels, Forster, Mann, Maugham, and late Romantics. If this novel was the sum total of what the 20th and 21st centuries have achieved with novels, there would have been no modernism or postmodernism, only a continuing belated romanticism, hoping continuously for a return to an impossible past. What Viswanathan really wants is mid-20th century popular romanticism, combined with an ideal precolonial authenticity.

This is another book I read for the 2016 AWP meeting in Los Angeles.
… (lisätietoja)
 
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JimElkins | 26 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Mar 21, 2016 |

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