Unaccustomed Earth: Stories (Unabridged)
by Jhumpa Lahiri
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From the internationally best-selling, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, a superbly crafted new work of fiction: eight stories that take us from Cambridge and Seattle to India and Thailand. In the stunning title story, Ruma, a young mother in a new city, is visited by her father, who carefully tends the earth of her garden, where he and his grandson form a special bond. But he's harboring a secret from his daughter, a love affair he's keeping all to himself. In "A Choice of Accommodations", a husband's attempt to turn an old friend's wedding into a romantic getaway weekend with his wife takes a dark, revealing turn as the party lasts deep into the night. In "Only Goodness", a sister eager to give her younger brother the perfect childhood she never had is overwhelmed by guilt, anguish, and anger when his alcoholism threatens her family. And in "Hema and Kaushik" - a trio of linked stories and a luminous, intensely compelling elegy of life, death, love, and fate - we follow the lives of a girl and boy who, one winter, share a house in Massachusetts. They travel from innocence to experience on separate, sometimes painful paths, until destiny brings them together again years later in Rome.
I hoped for more.
This collection of stories reminded me of listening to friends at lunch telling about their mundane lives. Each story leaves you more diappointed than the previous one. There seems to be a thread that all relationships are doomed to fail on some level. I had so much hope for part two and yet I was equally disappointed.