I’ve finished “Get in Trouble.” Quite a nice collection of short stories, very eclectic and diverse. My favorite’s out of the book were “Two Houses” and “Light”, the last two stories in the book. “Two Houses” has us out on a spaceship manned by a very small crew that happens to all be awake at the same time telling ghost stories that suddenly seem to come true. “Light” is the story of a lonely alcoholic who has to deal with the consequences of her dual shadow, her twin, pocket universes, iguanas and an impending hurricane.
A little bit of fantasy, a little bit of sci-fi, and a whole lot of “other”. I really enjoyed this
My next read is:
“The Namesake” by Jhumpa Lahri.
The Namesake takes the Ganguli family from their tradition-bound life in Calcutta through their fraught transformation into Americans. On the heels of their arranged wedding, Ashoke and Ashima Ganguli settle together in Cambridge, Massachusetts. An engineer by training, Ashoke adapts far less warily than his wife, who resists all things American and pines for her family. When their son is born, the task of naming him betrays the vexed results of bringing old ways to the new world. Named for a Russian writer by his Indian parents in memory of a catastrophe years before, Gogol Ganguli knows only that he suffers the burden of his heritage as well as his odd, antic name. Lahiri brings great empathy to Gogol as he stumbles along the first-generation path, strewn with conflicting loyalties, comic detours, and wrenching love affairs. With penetrating insight, she reveals not only the defining power of the names and expectations bestowed upon us by our parents, but also the means by which we slowly, sometimes painfully, come to define ourselves.
I’m about halfway through this book and am conflicted. The prose is lovely – open and descriptive telling a colorful story of the struggles of an immigrant family. So descriptive that I feel like I am in the room with them at times.
I’m conflicted because the book, which centers around the son of the family, Gogol, seems a bit predictive. He rebels against his heritage and tradition. Going back to his homeland, he feels estranged. I feel like I have read this plot line before. I also feel like I have a fairly good idea of where the story is taking me and that’s a bit of a disappointment.
I should finish it either tonight or tomorrow and don’t think I’ll regret reading it because, as I said the writing itself is so descriptive.