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Tales From Firozsha Baag
 
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Rohinton Mistry
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Tales From Firozsha Baag

3.93  ·  Rating Details ·  2,703 Ratings  ·  173 Reviews
In these eleven intersecting stories, Rohinton Mistry opens our eyes and our hearts to the rich, complex patterns of life inside this Bombay apartment building. The occupants - from Jaakaylee, the ghost-seer, through Najamai, the only owner of a refrigerator in Firozsha Baag, to Rustomji the Curmudgeon and Kersi, the young boy whose life threads through the book - all expr ...more
Paperback, 250 pages
Published May 1st 1993 by South Asia Books (first published 1987)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Praj
May 18, 2011 Praj rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It is said that when the British left India, they gifted their mannerism to the Parsis. I do not know the authenticity of such whimsical statements, although I have never seen any community with such great degree of clear-cut decorum. Parsi is a Persian Zoroastrian ethnic community; a minority in the Indian sub-continent. In a religion conscious environment Parsis are the most –mild-mannered and according to my adolescent psyche aromatic individuals. As a child my pleasant memories of experienci ...more
Garima
Apr 09, 2013 Garima rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
 "Patterns of life are selfish and unforgiving." 

Reading this book was akin to watching Basu Chatterjee’s movie Khatta Meetha (sour and sweet) and just like the movie’s title, the Tales from Firozsha Baag are laced with a bittersweet taste, hence presenting us with a delectable feast to be savored and cherished for a long time. Rohinton Mistry is a reader’s writer and gives us a fiction that makes its course through ‘reality’ as its central theme, which further substantiate the fact about Mistry
...more
Cheryl
May 12, 2016 Cheryl rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Cheryl by: Himanshu
"Old bai took English words and made them Parsi words. Easy chair was igeechur, French beans was ferach beech, and Jacqueline became Jakaylee. Later I found out that all old Parsis did this, it was like they made their own private language.

I'll follow this language any day.

In these stories Firozsha Baag's language is pronounced in sharp, italicized, abbreviated tunes of the kind of laughter and pain that follows everyday life, of the fabric of life within a community, of the nuances of a people
...more
Himanshu
"World can be a bewildering place,and dreams and ambitions are often paths to the most pernicious of traps"

In the early decades of the post-independent India, Mistry here tells us about the lives and idiosyncrasies of certain residents in an apartment complex in Bombay. But, before I say any further, let me bore you with something I have to say:

My childhood was spent and cherished in a mohalla(colony, not an apartment complex) in a small city. There was no Parsi family in our neighborhood. The t
...more
Paul
Aug 19, 2011 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
This is a collection of short stories based around an apartment complex in Bombay occupied mostly by members of the Parsi community. The stories stand alone but are closely intertwined and set over a period of years, so children in the earlier stories are seen as adults later. Mistry picks out the idiosyncrasies and indelicacies of daily life; foibles and habits are laid bare. Neighbours fall out and get along. Birth and death take their place, faith, superstition and scepticism also. Ordinary l ...more
Algernon
Aug 16, 2014 Algernon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014

It is better to live in want among your family and your friends, who love you and care for you, than to be unhappy surrounded my vacuum cleaners and dish-washers and big shiny motor cars.

Poverty and the lack of of opportunity sends the narrator to a distant promised land (Canada) but his heart remains with his Parsi family and their colourful neighbors living in a rundown Mumbai tenement named Firozsa Baag. Despite being episodic in presentation and jumping from one point of view to another, t
...more
Jigar Brahmbhatt
Aug 03, 2016 Jigar Brahmbhatt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I want to give a warm hug to this book. Such observant and patiently crafted stories! There is hardly anything in the name of plot here. What works are the everyday colors, the going-ons of a middle class Indian life, and mild, unhurried events that help Mistry keep the reader thoroughly invested, while he dives into the lives of the Parsi folks, his narratives ranging from inner monologue to richly detailed free indirect style to colloquial first persons. I am awed by the simplicity here and ho ...more
notgettingenough
A paired look at Werewolves in Their Youth and Tales from Firozsha Baag by Mistry.


I chanced upon these back to back, both short story collections both by writers in their working youth – Mistry’s first book and an early one for Chabon.

Both as much as anything nostalgic, bittersweet recollections of childhood, the middle class childhoods of their own existences.

Chabon: laugh out loud funny – you know…so that it gets almost irritating for those who are suffering through your pleasure. They start s
...more
Doctor
Aug 18, 2014 Doctor rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one book, of which I told to myself as I turned the last page; I should have read it much much earlier. At the end the stories give you the taste and smell of a novel. The stories tell you that one need not go about searching for a niche material to tell a story. The small things of life in the very surrounding around you have a lot of content for a good story. You have to capture the essence - the essential humor element,sufferings,joys man experiences in the mid of community life. Spea ...more
Sookie
May 29, 2015 Sookie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Minus the obvious references to a specific community, the stories can belong to anyone who has lived a life in a (cramped) apartment complex. The dynamics between people is what makes this collection stand out. They all have couple of things in common - self actualization and a bittersweet ending.

Mistry has a wonderful way in transcending human nature into words. This wasn't a fun read. The stories are about people we have known in our lives. An uncle here, an aunty there, a friend's relative on
...more
Ananthu
Stellar. Mistry never disappoints. A book to be cherished, savored, and ravened forever.

A few thoughts hover around me, and once they alight and I make peace them, put some kind of end to their piffling, I'll write something down.

This book deserves it.
Patty
Nov 06, 2012 Patty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A collection of interconnected stories about the tenants of an apartment block. The first story features a couple who have some maintenance issues in their apartment that result in physical discomfort and logistical inconvenience, and then the story winds out into a public humiliation, a frustrated attempt to celebrate a religious occasion, and a murder. Most of the events are never returned to in the remainder of the book, and although I thought this was the weakest story in the collection, it ...more
Sandhya
This was my first introduction to an author who made it to the elite club of NRI writers in the 80s--- all of whom made a definite impression in the world of literature and gave Indian Writing In English the prestige it enjoys today.
Rohinton Mistry is primarily known for two of his works, Such a Long Journey and Family Matters. Yet, I'm glad I was introduced to his writing with Tales From Firozsha Baag - a book of short stories where Mistry recounts life in a Parsi colony in Bombay in the 80s. R
...more
Madelyn
Apr 07, 2013 Madelyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
Rohinton Mistry's novels have writing which is lush in its description. This collection of short stories (Mistry's first published work, I believe) does not disappoint. His command of language is great; and while there were not too many English words unknown to me, the context around words like MEGRIMS and PLANGENCY gave the reader enough clues to grasp the meanings. While reading the first story of the interconnected lives of Parsi neighbours in a Bombay apartment complex, I wished for a glossa ...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Rohinton Mistry is the author of two books I've raved about, Family Matters and A Fine Balance. Consequently, I was eager to read this bookring book, his first published work, a collection of short stories.



My assessment: Exactly what you might expect from a great author's first published work, especially from a great author's first published collection of short stories: hints of greatness. Not every story was magnificent, mind you, but there were enough hints of greatness to lead one to expect
...more
Anthoney
Mar 03, 2015 Anthoney rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While the stereotyping and the bigoted slurs are jarring, the writing and the stories are moving. A Man Booker nominee and this being his book I was attempting, I was dreading it to be a heavy literature but was relieved to read the language to be simple and stories funny. But with all those sharp perspectives, the high literary quotient is evident and a relish without being overpowering. Class act, indeed
Erin
Feb 08, 2010 Erin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The concept is great. This isn’t just a collection of random, unrelated stories. Firozsha Baag is an apartment complex in Mumbai, and its inhabitants form a fairly tight-knit community - the kind of place where everyone knows each others’ names (as well as their business). Each story features a different member of the complex as its main character and, therefore, is told from a completely unique perspective. What’s entertaining is that all the characters pop up each others’ stories, either direc ...more
Abhishek Pathak
Oct 26, 2012 Abhishek Pathak rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people interested in parsi culture
First let me introduce the author to you guys who recently made an entry to MY elite list of prominent authors.Mr. Rohinton Mistry was born in Bombay in 1952 and then moved to Canada in 1975.Tales from Firozsha Baag is his first novel which was published in 1987 & was nominated for Booker prize in 1996.

What should i tell you about him to eulogize him,because i really fall short of words when i think about his work,his characters, the plot he creates,the narration he gives and the way he exp
...more
Shabbeer Hassan
May 12, 2011 Shabbeer Hassan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am a fan of Short Stories. The whole idea of starting the book from any page is quite exciting and less intimidating. Have you seen the size of some of those books? Tales from Firosha Baag is one of the best collections of short stories I have come across.

The short stories have been penned down by the author of Indian origin based in Canada, Rohinton Mistry. Does the author’s name ring any bells? Rohinton Mistry was in the news for all the wrong reasons in the recent past. One of the fanatic p
...more
Book'd
Jul 04, 2012 Book'd rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was the first book that I read at home, in so many years of my reading extravaganza I never read at home, travelling and reading was a part of life once but the scenarios are changed a lot and now I no more read while travelling.

Okay,
About the book, Frankly, I picked up this book just by taking a look at the cover at crossword stores. Later read the reviews on GR. As it rarely happens, I didn't waste my money on this, a brilliant effort by Rohinton Mistry to throw a light on the lives of co
...more
Sneh Asnani
Oct 05, 2013 Sneh Asnani rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book contains 11 interconnected stories about residents of the Firozshah baag, a Parsi Community residential society. The book grips till the end, with brilliant story telling skills, the stories feel complete and partial at the same time. The charecters feel rich and poor at the same time and happiness intersects the lonely, sad hearts. It provides amazing insight into the Bombay style of living and the parsi community.

The charecters seem real, next door kind and so are the stories, though
...more
Ankit Dubey
"Don't you see, said Father, that you are confusing fiction with facts, fiction does not create facts, fiction can come from facts, it can grow out of facts by compounding, transposing, augmenting, diminishing, or altering them in any way; but you must not confuse cause and effect, you must not confuse with what really happened with what the story stays happened, you must not loose your grasp on reality, that way madness lies."

"Father said, according to the theory, he is writing of these things
...more
David
Jan 25, 2016 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've had this book sitting on my shelves since 1996 but for some reason I've never got around to it, despite having greatly enjoyed all of Mistry's novels. Well, it might have taken me twenty years to get to it, but I'm so glad I finally did. Whilst perhaps not as good as 'A Fine Balance' (few books are) this was still an absolute joy from first page to last.
Anamika
May 29, 2007 Anamika rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Parsi author Rohinton Mistry can be seen as twice-removed from his origins. The Parsis as a community have mingled with India and yet remained largely unchanged. When a Parsi moves to Canada and writes of displacement, this is someone worth listening to! He knows what he's saying, as a representative of a community and as an individual.

The stories, of the inhabitants of a decaying, tenacious, mildewed Parsi building in the heart of Bombay, absorbed and moved me. My all-time favourite is 'Condol
...more
Marte Patel
I really enjoyed this collection of short stories, which are set amongst the Parsi community in Bombay and were published in 1987. I liked learning about the Parsis and about Zoroastrianism, about daily life in their community, about Bombay and about Parsi immigrants' experience of being expats in the US and Canada. I also really liked the twist at the end! We went to an Indian restaurant tonight to discuss the book in my book club, and I had the Parsi dish dhansak, which was lovely. I highly re ...more
Robert
Aug 31, 2016 Robert rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Mistry's first published work shows sign of a super talent and I'm not exaggerating. A collection of stories based on the tenants of an apartment complex called Firozsha Baag. Some stories involve children, adults and senior citizens, all interacting with each other each other. The star of the collection is the last story, which focuses on a tenant emigrating to Canada and trying to cope with the culture.

To believe that after this he wrote two masterpieces.

El
May 03, 2013 El rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Don't you see, said Father, that you are confusing fiction with facts, fiction does not create facts, fiction can come from facts, it can grow out of facts by compounding, transposing, augmenting, diminishing, or altering them in any way; but you must not confuse cause and effect, you must not confuse what really happened with what the story says happened, you must not lose your grasp on reality, that way madness lies.

p 250
Bernard
Sep 09, 2013 Bernard rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Rohinton mistry is one of my top 3 favorite authors and I admire all his books. Since he is not writing all that much, I was really excited to find this book that i had not read yet. Must say I was abit disappointed as the different short stories, though somewhat linked, lack the dramatic element in my view. I gave up half way through. Very descriptive and slow read but as usual from M. Mistry outstanding writing.
Ben Ballin
May 24, 2016 Ben Ballin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My version of this is entitled 'Tales from Firozsha Baag.' It's a well-crafted, often poignant collection of linked short stories, set in and around a Parsi community living in a Mumbai apartment block. We are introduced to the key events of its inhabitants over a few short years, in a series of carefully entwined narratives, before fast-forwarding to Toronto in the 2000s and the reclusive, bookish protagonist of three chapters emerging as the (fictional) author of precisely such a set of tales: ...more
Evie
Apr 10, 2010 Evie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
This is my first Rohinton Mistry book, and it was his as well. I loved the way each short story intertwined and included characters from the others, making each short story come together like a puzzle to reveal a whole picture of a community in India.

I really enjoyed Mistry's writing style and reading along knowing that this being his first book, it can only get better. I look forward to "A Fine Balance".
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Rohinton Mistry is considered to be one of the foremost authors of Indian heritage writing in English. Residing in Brampton, Ontario, Canada, Mistry belongs to the Parsi Zoroastrian religious minority.

Mistry’s first novel, Such a Long Journey (1991), brought him national and international recognition. Mistry’s subsequent novels have achieved the same level of recognition as his first. His second n
...more
More about Rohinton Mistry...

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“World can be a bewildering place,and dreams and ambitions are often paths to the most pernicious of traps” 17 likes
“Don't you see, said Father, that you are confusing fiction with facts, fiction does not create facts, fiction can come from facts, it can grow out of facts by compounding, transposing, augmenting, diminishing, or altering them in any way; but you must not confuse cause and effect, you must not confuse what really happened with what the story says happened, you must not lose your grasp on reality, that way madness lies.” 4 likes
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