book review :: the namesake

The Namesake: A Novel
Jhumpa Lahiri

I finished this book yesterday. Good way to start off the New Year, although I must say this was far from my favorite book.

I remember when this book came out and there was all this hype. And then I heard the author, Jhumpa Lahiri, on NPR, on Fresh Air and was appauled. She spent much of the interview saying how she wasn't a very good writer, and just generally putting herself down. All of this despite that she had been awared the Pulitzer and the Guggenheim.

Needless to say, I was turned off. And perhaps that still has influenced how I feel about the book. Don't get me wrong, I am all for modesty, but I cannot stand when people put themselves down. Especially when it is clear that they don't believe it, and are just fishing for more compliments.

I think it received such acclaim because there weren't many books out there about Indians. There still really aren't. So in that way it stood out.

But overall I found the book predictable. It was hard to really feel for or like any of the characters. The book centers around how the naming of their first born son, sets in motion a series of events that impacts the family forever. It looks at what it means to leave your home country and what it can take to feel at home in your native country.

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3 Responses to book review :: the namesake

  1. I'm reading it now and I really, really love it.

  2. HapaLove says:

    I'm glad I read your review because I was considering reading that one. I read her first book, which I liked… but then again, I often read a great novel by an author and hope the next one will be just as good… and it isn't.

  3. Jenny Marie says:

    I read The Namesake in September, and I really didn't think it was as horrible as you make it out to be! It certainly wasn't the best book I've ever read, but I liked the culture clash element and thought the author's style was very light and interesting to read. I would definitely recommend it to other people.

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