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Interpreter of Maladies

Lahiri, Jhumpa

132,305 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 039592720X / ISBN 13: 9780395927205
Published by Mariner Books, New York, 1999
Condition: Near Fine Soft cover
From A Boy Named Crow (Van Nuys, CA, U.S.A.)

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A NF soft cover book in wraps as originally issued. First Edition/ First Printing (10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1). This is the TRUE FIRST (proceeded the hard cover version) of acclaimed author's break out, multi-award winning first book. Winner of the New Yorker Book of the Year Award and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction as well as the Penn/Hemingway award. Book has lower rear corner ever so gently bent and previous owner's gift inscription written on the first page else clean, unmarked, bright, tight and square. A solid, likely unread copy over all of author's debut. Becoming very rare and scarce. Bookseller Inventory # 001074

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Interpreter of Maladies

Publisher: Mariner Books, New York

Publication Date: 1999

Binding: Soft cover

Book Condition: Near Fine

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

 With a new Introduction from the author for the twentieth anniversary

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, this stunning debut collection unerring charts the emotional journeys of characters seeking love beyond the barriers of nations and generations. In stories that travel from India to America and back again, Lahiri speaks with universal eloquence to everyone who has ever felt like a foreigner.
 

Review:

Mr. Kapasi, the protagonist of Jhumpa Lahiri's title story, would certainly have his work cut out for him if he were forced to interpret the maladies of all the characters in this eloquent debut collection. Take, for example, Shoba and Shukumar, the young couple in "A Temporary Matter" whose marriage is crumbling in the wake of a stillborn child. Or Miranda in "Sexy," who is involved in a hopeless affair with a married man. But Mr. Kapasi has problems enough of his own; in addition to his regular job working as an interpreter for a doctor who does not speak his patients' language, he also drives tourists to local sites of interest. His fare on this particular day is Mr. and Mrs. Das--first-generation Americans of Indian descent--and their children. During the course of the afternoon, Mr. Kapasi becomes enamored of Mrs. Das and then becomes her unwilling confidant when she reads too much into his profession. "I told you because of your talents," she informs him after divulging a startling secret.

I'm tired of feeling so terrible all the time. Eight years, Mr. Kapasi, I've been in pain eight years. I was hoping you could help me feel better; say the right thing. Suggest some kind of remedy.
Of course, Mr. Kapasi has no cure for what ails Mrs. Das--or himself. Lahiri's subtle, bittersweet ending is characteristic of the collection as a whole. Some of these nine tales are set in India, others in the United States, and most concern characters of Indian heritage. Yet the situations Lahiri's people face, from unhappy marriages to civil war, transcend ethnicity. As the narrator of the last story, "The Third and Final Continent," comments: "There are times I am bewildered by each mile I have traveled, each meal I have eaten, each person I have known, each room in which I have slept." In that single line Jhumpa Lahiri sums up a universal experience, one that applies to all who have grown up, left home, fallen in or out of love, and, above all, experienced what it means to be a foreigner, even within one's own family. --Alix Wilber

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