Wednesday, December 3, 2008

A Look Back 2008, The Best Fiction: Unaccustomed Earth

Once again, I'm reviewing the previous year and picking out the most memorable books I read.

I fell in love with Jhumpa Lahiri after reading Interpreter of Maladies. The Namesake was also good, but Interpreter felt like magic to me. So, I was incredibly excited when Unaccustomed Earth came out this past year. And it didn’t disappoint. It was even more magical than I expected. Lahiri writes of her culture (second- and third-generation Indian Americans) with such honesty and grace. She’s not afraid to tackle the big issues – health-failing parents, racial issues, language barriers and so much more – and she does so with great story telling. While a majority of the stories were on the sadder side, they also felt very true. I loved how her last three stories related to each other, a technique you don't find too often. Lahiri has made me appreciate the reading of short stories, but she’s also put herself so far out of everyone else’s league, that other authors’ compilations tend to disappoint.

Interpreter of Maladies & The Namesake
Unaccustomed Earth
Top Books in 2007

2 comments:

Charley said...

I loved Interpret of Maladies, as well. Especially the first story - A Temporary Matter. I'm hoping to read Unaccustomed Earth soon.

willikat said...

I'm so looking forward to Interpreter, it's been sitting on my shelf for a while. I thought the Namesake was pure magic so I can't wait to read the others.