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Story-Wallah: Short Fiction from South Asian Writers

3.83  ·  Rating Details  ·  216 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Writers of South Asian descent have been garnering more and more success, acclaim, and attention. Story-Wallah gathers the finest South Asian voices in fiction for the first time in a single volume. As Shyam Selvadurai writes in his introduction, "The stories jostle up against each other . . . The effect is a marvelous cacophony that reminds me of . . . one of those South ...more
Paperback, 448 pages
Published April 7th 2005 by Mariner Books (first published 2004)
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May 07, 2007 Maya rated it liked it
Shelves: 2007, desireads
a good jumping off point if you want to start reading south asian writing, as it contains most of the "biggest" authors from the diaspora. some of the works have been published before which annoyed me because i had read them already. especially Jhumpa Lahiri's contribution, which is a repeat from her own short story collection, Interpreter of Maladies, and not even one of the best stories from that it. Overall, I wasn't impressed with the "big names" in the book (except for Salman Rushdie and ...more
I was only able to read 2 stories from this collection, but I would gladly read everything if only I can find a copy of it.
Jan 19, 2009 Boom rated it really liked it
1. Jaspal (By Kirpal Singh)
This story starts with Jaspal beginning to think about his youth in a toilet. Jaspal’s family are devout Sikhs, and his parents wanted him to grow up as a proud Sikh in Singapore. Since Sikh people have to wear turbans, Jaspal also wore a turban everywhere. Especially, in school, as he met other religious friends, his turban was obvious, and because of that, many students teased him. In particular, Kong, a Chinese, who is now his brother-in-law, always makes fun of hi
Mar 06, 2016 Jennifer rated it really liked it
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Claire S
This collection of short stories is massive and fascinating; succeeding in its goal (in my opinion) of presenting life at the edge of multiple cultures as lived by folks of South Asian ethnicity.
First, about the name. The word 'wallah' in South Asia means some or all of the following: vendor of, craftsman of, expert in. It is a very common term there, and carries connotations of abundant supply of all that is good.
In the introduction the editor, Shyam Selvadurai, describes his journey and strugg
Zinnia Gupte
From Amazon:
"One minute you're in Trinidad on a sugar plantation, the next in a wealthy home in South Africa. Some are side-splittingly funny, others sad, others very poignant."

"...the best fiction writers hawk their wares from different parts of the South Asian diaspora -- Sri Lanka, India, the United States, Great Britain, Guyana, Malaysia, Trinidad, Fiji -- creating a virtual map of the world with their tales. These stories explore universal themes of identity, culture, and home, and Story-Wa
Mar 28, 2007 Mehrnaz rated it really liked it
Nicely written. It is fiction about the experiences of South asian people immigrating to USA or Canada and their different problems with assimilation,racism, sexuality and so on.

Some of the writers are well-known and therefore their writing is appealing and literary; but some has used the words that are not common in current English literature and I think it is because English has been the second language for them.

Several stories are about dilemmas that they have had with being homosexuality and
Mar 27, 2015 Mallika rated it it was amazing
Perhaps the most thought-provoking and subversive anthology/ combination of short stories that I have ever read! I'm about to read it again...
Marie G
Nov 18, 2015 Marie G rated it it was amazing
Best short stories....all different matters. Heart strings pullers. Very diverse, great way to discover new authors. I loved it!
Aug 24, 2013 Rollin rated it liked it
Liked it a lot. Great collection of short stories by "South Asian" authors, which seems to mostly from India, and common denominator all written about life and culture transplanted away from the home country, the "diaspora". I love short stories, and am unfamiliar with south asian culture, so this was great fun. Even better, the book was left here on the bookshelf in the apartment we are subletting. I need to thank our hosts.
May 22, 2012 Anne rated it it was amazing
Really liked this collection of stories. All are evocative and poignant. Gritty characterisation in all of them. Did have problems coping with the creation of accent in the story set in Trinidad. Salman Rushdie's story was excellent. Good to read if you arent familiar with any of these authors. Worth pursuing books by people such as Jhumpa Lahiri.
In this book, some of the world's best fiction writers hawk their wares from different parts of the South Asian diaspora -- Sri Lanka, India, the United States, Great Britain, Guyana, Malaysia, Trinidad, Fiji -- creating a virtual map of the world with their tales. A must for my around-the-world reading challenge.
Sep 06, 2007 Deepika rated it liked it
There are a handful of good stories and some okay ones, but overall it was the most diverse collection of south asian writing, with stories about south asians in trinidad and the carribean. The exposure to other voices was a value in of itself.
Jul 03, 2011 Tasneem rated it liked it
An interesting collection of short stories that made me think of what it means to be a post-colonial individual. I am English but I was born in Sri Lanka and the dichotomy of that kind of existence comes through in this.
Kathleen McRae
Apr 01, 2012 Kathleen McRae rated it really liked it
Excellent collection of short stories by South Asian writers. I really enjoyed reading this collection of stories.Some were funny and most were very well written
Jun 29, 2011 Ming rated it really liked it
A great anthology with a terrific variety of South Asian writers, many of whom I wouldn't have experienced. Now I've got more reading pleasure ahead of me.
Oct 24, 2011 Uzma rated it liked it
a compilation of many stories from southeast asian writers. was a bit disappointed because all the stories are not originals. but still worth reading.
Dec 21, 2008 Shane rated it it was amazing
Great intro to the genesis and state-of-the-nation of South Asian literature
Nov 06, 2008 Nirmal rated it it was ok
Very few of the short stories were able to grab my attention
Dec 01, 2013 Sandi rated it really liked it
Great Selection of South Asian Short Stories... Highly recommended
May 08, 2007 Ash rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
a necessary addition for anyone who likes short fiction.
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Shyam Selvadurai is a Sri Lankan-Canadian novelist who wrote Funny Boy (1994), which won the Books in Canada First Novel Award, and Cinnamon Gardens (1998). He currently lives in Toronto with his partner Andrew Champion.

Selvadurai was born in Colombo, Sri Lanka to a Sinhalese mother and a Tamil father--members of conflicting ethnic groups whose troubles form a major theme in his work. Ethnic riots
More about Shyam Selvadurai...

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