Friday, May 29, 2015

Review: The Lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri

Title: The Lowland
Author: Jhumpa Lahiri
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Knopf
Publish Date: September 24, 2013
Source: Library

What's the Story?:

From "Two brothers bound by tragedy; a fiercely brilliant woman haunted by her past; a country torn by revolution. A powerful new novel--set in both India and America--that explores the price of idealism and a love that can last long past death.

Growing up in Calcutta, born just fifteen months apart, Subhash and Udayan Mitra are inseparable brothers, one often mistaken for the other. But they are also opposites, with gravely different futures ahead of them. It is the 1960s, and Udayan--charismatic and impulsive--finds himself drawn to the Naxalite movement, a rebellion waged to eradicate inequity and poverty: he will give everything, risk all, for what he believes. Subhash, the dutiful son, does not share his brother's political passion; he leaves home to pursue a life of scientific research in a quiet, coastal corner of America.

But when Subhash learns what happened to his brother in the lowland outside their family's home, he comes back to India, hoping to pick up the pieces of a shattered family, and to heal the wounds Udayan left behind--including those seared in the heart of his brother's wife."

My Two Cents:

"The Lowland" is yet another great release by Jhumpa Lahiri, who is quickly becoming one of my must-read authors. This book looks at two very different brothers. Subhash leaves India to make a new life for himself in the United States. Udayan stays behind in India where he is drawn to the Naxalite movement. His idealism will put him in danger. This is a story of family ties and human nature written in Lahiri's fantastic writing style.

I knew nothing about the Naxalite movement before reading this book and I love when I can learn something new from a book. We see how Udayan gets wrapped up in the movement even when it puts his life in danger. Subhash is left to pick up the pieces of a shattered life and a shattered family. This is a really powerful book. The way that Lahiri writes her characters makes them seem incredibly real and like people that you could really come across in real life. We get to know the characters very well. This book covers a broad swath of time in the brothers' lives but it never feels as if Lahiri is rushing things in the telling of their story.

I really enjoyed this story. Stories about families are always interesting to me. I thought that Lahiri did a really good job of capturing the way that siblings interact with each other and how they care about each other even when they don't necessarily agree with what the other is doing. I will be anxiously awaiting the next release by Lahiri!


1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed this one as well. Such an engaging author.


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