There Is Room for You: A Novel

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9780374281854: There Is Room for You: A Novel
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In a braided narrative that unites the stories of two striking women, Charlotte Bacon explores the emotional and psychological turbulence of suppressed family histories, the bravery needed to renew broken lives, and the difficulties we all have in responding to the pain of others.

Anna Singer, a charmingly independent young New Yorker, feels derailed after losing her father to a car accident and her husband to a younger woman. She books a trip to India, hoping that there she will be able to put her grief into perspective. Though this is her first visit, India has always tantalized her: her English mother, Rose, was raised in Calcutta during the twilight of the British Raj, but seldom spoke of her childhood. Then, as Anna departs, Rose gives her a manuscript in which she has recorded her Indian memories--growing up with a Hindu ayah and a widower father, torn between two cultures and belonging completely to neither. Anna's sense of how she fits into the world is unexpectedly challenged by the daunting complexity of modern India, but even greater surprises are in store when she turns the pages of her mother's memoir.

There is Room for You brilliantly traces the experience of India from the dual perspectives of Anna, who flees to the country, and Rose, who fled from it. The unexpected parallels in the lives of mother and daughter become a nuanced contemplation of the nature of family in a world of profound suffering.

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From the Back Cover:

"A richly endowed memory piece...Bacon is a seductive and gifted storyteller."--Maureen Howard, author of A Lover's Almanac

Anna Singer, a charmingly independent young New Yorker, feels derailed after losing her father to a car accident and her husband to a younger woman. She books a trip to India, hoping that there she will be able to put her grief into perspective. Though this is her first visit, India has always tantalized her: her English mother, Rose, was raised in Calcutta during the twilight of the British Raj, but seldom spoke of her childhood. Then, as Anna departs, Rose gives her a manuscript in which she has recorded her Indian memories, torn between two cultures and belonging completely to neither.

"Readable and sophisticated...it makes us want to stay, indeed, unable to turn away from the ultimate fate of this vulnerable family unsure of just how and where they fit together, but about to discover the way." --Christine Thomas, San Francisco Chronicle Book Review

"Intelligent, richly atmospheric...unconventional glimpses of India past and present sit vividly side by side with reflections on politics, perception and racial identity."--Publisher Weekly

"Engaging...a subtle bildungsroman."--The Washington Post Book World

"Bacon has woven an insightful mother-daughter saga into her depiction of the complexity that is India, creating a satisfying amalgam of past and present."--Booklist

Charlotte Bacon is the author of Lost Geography, and the PEN/Hemingway Award-winning story collection A Private State. She teaches at the University of New Hampshire in Durham.

About the Author:

Charlotte Bacon is the award-winning author of Lost Geography (FSG, 2000) and A
Private State, a collection of stories. She teaches English at the University of
New Hampshire in Durham.

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