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The Unknown Errors of Our Lives: Storiesby Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
Synopses & Reviews
From acclaimed and beloved author Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni comes a new collection of moving stories about family, culture, and the seduction of memory. With the rich prose and keen insight that made Mistress of Spices and Sister of My Heart national bestsellers, these tales of journeys and returns, of error, of loss and recovery, all resound with her unique understanding of the human spirit.
"Don't we all have to pay, no matter what we choose?" a young woman asks in "The Love of a Good Man," one of the unforgettable stories in Chitra Divakaruni's beautifully crafted exploration of the tensions between new lives and old. In tales set in India and the United States, she illuminates the transformations of personal landscapes, real and imagined, brought about by the choices men and women make at every stage of their lives.
"The Love of a Good Man" tells of an Indian woman happily settled in the United States who must confront the past when her long-estranged father begs to meet his only grandson. In the acclaimed "Mrs. Dutta Writes a Letter," a widow, inadvertently eavesdropping, discovers that her cherished, old-fashioned ways are an embarrassment to her daughter-in-law. A young American woman joins a pilgrimage of women in Kashmir and, in the land of her ancestors, comes to view herself and her family in a new light in "The Lives of Strangers." Two women, uprooted from their native land by violence and deception, find unexpected comfort and hope in each other in "The Blooming Season for Cacti." And in the title story, a young woman turns to her painting and the wisdom of her grandmother for the strength to accept her fiance's past when it arrives on her doorstep.
Whether writing about the adjustments of immigrants to a foreign land or the accommodations families make to the disruptive differences between generations, Divakaruni poignantly portrays the eternal struggle to find a balance between the pull of home and the allure of change.
From the Hardcover edition.
Set in India, a collection of short stories by the author of The Mistress of Spices explores the adjustments of immigrants to a foreign land, the accomodations families make to the disruptive differences between generations, and the eternal struggle to find a balance between the pull of home and the promise of change. Reprint. 50,000 first printing.
In her poignant new story collection, the bestselling author of Sister of My Heart and The Mistress of Spices captures lives at crossroad moments–caught between past and present, home and abroad, tradition and fresh experience.
A widow struggles to adapt to a world in which neighbors are strangers and her domestic skills are deemed superfluous in the award-winning “Mrs. Dutta Writes a Letter” (included in The Best American Short Stories 1999). In “The Intelligence of Wild Things,” a woman from Sacramento visits her brother in Vermont to inform him that back in Calcutta their mother is dying. And in the title story, a painter looks to ancient myth and the example of her grandmother for help in navigating her first real crisis of faith. Knowing, compassionate, and brilliantly rendered, each of these nine tales speaks to the longing that haunts the displaced everywhere.
About the Author
Chitra Divakaruni is the author of the bestselling novels Mistress of Spices and Sister of My Heart; the story collection Arranged Marriage, which received several awards, including the American Book Award; and four collections of prize-winning poetry. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, Ms., Best American Short Stories 1999, and other publications. Born in India, she lives in the San Francisco area.
From the Hardcover edition.
Table of Contents
Mrs. Dutta writes a letter — The intelligence of wild things — The lives of strangers — The love of a good man — What the body knows — The forgotten children — The blooming season for cacti — The unknown errors of our lives — The names of stars in Bengali.
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