An Atlas of Impossible Longing

An Atlas of Impossible Longing

Book - 2011
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"This is why we read fiction at all" raves the Washington Post : Family life meets historical romance in this critically acclaimed, "gorgeous, sweeping novel" ( Ms Magazine ) about two people who find each other when abandoned by everyone else, marking the signal American debut of an award-winning writer who richly deserves her international acclaim.

On the outskirts of a small town in Bengal, a family lives in solitude in their vast new house. Here, lives intertwine and unravel. A widower struggles with his love for an unmarried cousin. Bakul, a motherless daughter, runs wild with Mukunda, an orphan of unknown caste adopted by the family. Confined in a room at the top of the house, a matriarch goes slowly mad; her husband searches for its cause as he shapes and reshapes his garden. As Mukunda and Bakul grow, their intense closeness matures into something else, and Mukunda is banished to Calcutta. He prospers in the turbulent years after Partition, but his thoughts stay with his home, with Bakul, with all that he has lost--and he knows that he must return.
Publisher: New York : Free Press, 2011, c2008.
ISBN: 9781451608625
Characteristics: 319 p. ;,22 cm.


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Jun 30, 2018

Excellent book, particularly if one is open to be placed in a completely different cultural context. Beautifully written. Roy examines the effect of patriarchy and the caste system on the lives of a family in Bengal, India, (now split into West Bengal, an Indian state and Bangladesh, a separate country) in the mid-1940s.

Mar 05, 2013

Beautifully written exploration of love, longing, and desire over three generations. Ultimately unsatisfying, as desire often is.

May 24, 2012

Roy's prose is simply incredible and her characters unflinchingly human. Reminiscent of Hemingway's East of Eden (but thankfully, not as dark).

May 01, 2012

Bengali story of a family. VERY happy ending. Quite well written, but does anyone really live in this world?

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