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by Nounstogo on September 27, 2007I read this book as a selection with my literature group. Many found it was "an important book," but it was difficult for me to read around the utter despair that permeates everything. Perhaps I identify too much with a book's characters, and while this book was beautifully written, it also seemed a bit overwrought and over-thought. After I found out the author had whittled it down from 1800 pages, these feelings were easier to understand. Is India really such a joyless place? I doubt it, although I imagine living there is complex and difficult. These characters are so sad and dispirited, often without direction or inclination. I wonder why Desai found it important to write about them? I can't say I would recommend this book, although I wouldn't discourage anyone from reading it, either. Have something light-hearted on the table, though, for balance...
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