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Whereabouts

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  19,365 ratings  ·  3,004 reviews
A marvelous new novel from the Pulitzer Prize winning author of The Lowland and Interpreter of Maladies--her first in nearly a decade.

Exuberance and dread, attachment and estrangement: in this novel, Jhumpa Lahiri stretches her themes to the limit. The woman at the center wavers between stasis and movement, between the need to belong and the refusal to form lasting ties. T
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Hardcover, 160 pages
Published April 27th 2021 by Knopf (first published August 30th 2018)
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Average rating 3.77  · 
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 ·  19,365 ratings  ·  3,004 reviews


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Jenny Lawson
Apr 04, 2021 rated it really liked it
A tiny novel about everything and nothing.
Ilse
Oct 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
La solitudine

Whereabouts - Dove mi trovo - my first foray into Jhumpa Lahiri’s work turned out to be her first novel she has written in Italian since she moved from the US to Rome, chose to leave English behind and to write exclusively in Italian instead. When I was reading the book (in Dutch), it had been published already in Italian, Spanish and Dutch, but not yet in English. Other than for her bilingual book In Other Words, Jhumpa Lahiri announced that this time she would self-translate her f
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Reading_ Tamishly
Apr 26, 2021 rated it really liked it
"I feel sad as I laugh; I didn't know love at her age.
What did I do?
I read books and studied.
I listened to my parents and did what they asked me to. Even though, in the end, I never made them happy.
I didn't like myself, and something told me I'd end up alone."

I like the writing.

First of all, before you pick up this book I would like you to not expect a typical storytelling.

The story is made up of fragments of other characters and taking life each day kind of scenarios which fill up the chapters
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Violeta
Jun 16, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I can’t begin to tell you how much I enjoyed this little ‘story’ of urban loneliness. 150 pages of nuanced prose that reads like a poem. Constructed of the fewest words possible in order to cut to the core of what their writer meant to convey: the outer dialogue of a single woman with her surroundings as she goes through the motions of her every day life; and the deeply rich inner monologue that accompanies this same existence.

The place is an unnamed city, somewhere in Italy; it could be Rome bu
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Ron Charles
Apr 20, 2021 rated it it was ok
Shelves: guys-wandering
Blame Hemingway.

Since Papa published “The Sun Also Rises” in 1926, a subgenre of literary fiction has swelled around Depressed Guys Wandering. For a certain kind of dead serious writer, it is an irresistible pose. Stripped of anything so lowbrow as a plot, these slim, grim novels offer a flatlined vision of life reduced to its terrifying aimlessness. You can spot such books because they are praised as “exquisitely nuanced,” and they are exceedingly tedious.

One thing that can be said about Jhumpa
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Elyse  Walters
Library overdrive...Audiobook....read by Susan Vinciotti Bonito
3 hours and 23 minutes

“When there was nothing left to say, we went out for a meal”
Nice plan!
I have little to say about this book — kinda neutral ....
......It gave me the moody blues. ....I’d like a nap now!

The writing was filled with pretty words .....and sentences.....but I keep having thoughts that Lahiri is practicing her Italian writing on us while hoping her past reputation will hold long enough until she gets her groove ba
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Ines
Nov 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was very impressed by this reading, I didn’t really think to find pages and pages of complete loneliness and melancholy....
Jhumpa lists many places where we w will find her female character ( unknown name) by giving an accurate description of the actions and feelings felt in that particular place.
What unites all the pages is this sense of total abandonment to the impossibility of enjoying life, everything is crushed by this dark and sad vision of oblivion and sadness.
A total solitude that sinc
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Diane S ☔
May 30, 2021 rated it liked it
A middle aged woman, never named, in an unknown city, this book contains over 40 vignettes. The woman is a people watcher, a depressive and wants to connect with others, but also loves her solitude. An internal rendering of daily events in a life, she explains what she does and what she thinks, about events, and people. Does she want more, less? She's not certain and so neither are we the readers. A plotless book, there is no clear path to the denouement. What does it all mean?

Her first book in
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Maxwell
May 02, 2021 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
[2.5 stars]

Feeling more like an exercise than a fully formed novel, Whereabouts marks Lahiri's return to fiction for the first time in nearly 8 years. We follow an unnamed female narrator in her mid-40s who lives, presumably, in Italy. Everything is anonymized. She has no strong ties to anyone or anything, though she mentions her family (in passing or in reflective moments on old memories) and her co-workers, nothing is concrete.

The story unfolds in vignettes, sometimes only a single page long,
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BookOfCinz
Whereabouts takes the ordinary and makes it extraordinary. Reading this book is like reading art.

This book is beyond beautiful, the writing is precise, moving, and gives you this calming effect that you are exactly where you need to be. In Whereabouts we follow a woman who is a professor at a university, Lahiri takes us through her daily wonderings to the supermarket, vacation, pool and friend’s dinner. We get the inner workings of her mind, how she views herself, the people and the world ar
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luce ❀ wishfully reading ❀ semi hiatus
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re-read: I was curious to read Lahiri's self-translation, just to see whether I would like it us much as the original, and I can confirm that I did. I'm glad Lahiri translated the novel herself and I can't actually decide if I preferred this English translation or its original Italian version. Anyway, I loved re-experiencing the story through a different lens.

Dove mi trovo, which will be published in English as Whereabouts next spring, is the first novel Jhumpa L
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Gumble's Yard - Golden Reviewer
Disoriented, lost, at sea, at odds, astray, adrift, bewildered, confused, severed, turned around.
I spring from these terms. These words are my abode, my only foothold.


This novella was written by the Booker shortlisted (and Pulitzer Prize winning) author Jhumpa Lahiri in Italian, a language with which she has said that she fell in love since first visiting the country in 1994 prior to moving to Rome), one in which she has written and from which she has translated (most noticably a novel by
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Lorna
May 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: italy
Whereabouts is the latest novel by Jhumpa Lahiri that is captivating not only because of the beautiful prose but the dreamlike quality to the book as we follow an unknown narrator through an unknown city in Italy for an entire year. And the fifth shining star was given because Lahiri moved to Italy quite a few years ago embracing the country, the culture and the language. She wrote this book in Italian and then translated it herself into English. Brava Signorina!!!

Lahiri's book explores and cele
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Barbara
Aug 04, 2021 rated it really liked it
The unnamed protagonist of Whereabouts is a 40-something-year-old Italian woman. The short entries are very much like pages of a diary. Each tells about a person she knows or a place she has gone, often with recollections of her unhappy childhood. There is no plot, rather inconsequential observations by this mysterious woman of solitude.

Although Lahiri's writing is sparse and the book is short, I felt her observations were very poignant. Lahiri is one of those writers who can convey much with fe
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Olivia (Stories For Coffee)
sonder (n.) the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own

A meditative, slow-moving read compiling mundane moments in life that may seem unimportant but actually hold value.

The ending felt a bit abrupt, but I love novels like this, just rich with descriptions and very introspective
PorshaJo
Oh this one pains me. I love reading Lahiri's books. One of her books is in my top all time favorites. She is an author that I beg my library for her books without even reading what they are about. I did the same her, but in the end, I was disappointed with this one.

Whereabouts seemed like someone was reading diary entries to me. A middle aged woman, unnamed, living in some city (probably somewhere in Italy) tells her 'stories' of her daily encounters. No real story there, just pieces of thought
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Lisa
Sep 13, 2021 rated it liked it
[3.3] The short, diary-like vignettes that comprise this novel are nicely formed and effortless to read. The narrator broods about her life, observes and judges those around her and remembers bits of her past. She is prickly and adrift. I think it is admirable that Lahiri wrote in Italian and translated her work into English. An interesting experiment, but I found the novel more pointless than poignant.
Barbara
I am honestly quite perplexed to find this book's page brimming with fairly positive reviews. While I understand what Lahiri was trying to do here (an exploration of solitude and alienation told in a series of vignettes from the perspective of a middle-aged single woman who lives alone in an unnamed city), it did not work for me. Although the book was short and the chapters even shorter, I struggled to finish it. The writing was flat, the descriptions fairly dull and the narrator's observations ...more
Julie
Novel doesn't feel like the correct descriptor for this slim and delicate self-portrait of a woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Fictional Memoir or Dramatized Journal, perhaps. But whereas the plot is slender, the story is as fat and ripe and juicy as a late summer Italian plum.

An unnamed narrator in an unnamed Italian city recounts a year in her life through a series of short, simple, quiet vignettes, each stamped by a "whereabout" in her life: In the Hotel; By the Sea; In My Head, At
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Jenny (Reading Envy)
Jhumpa Lahiri moved to Italy in 2011 and it shifted her writing life as well. This book was published in Italy in 2018 as "Dove mi trovo," which translates as "Where I find myself." It was translated into English by the author and published in 2021.

I read it because it was selected for the summer Camp ToB for the Tournament of Books. The audio is only 3.5 hours so the print must be very short.

It feels like Cusk or Levy or anyone who writes short autofiction. It's composed of short slice of life
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Connie G
"Whereabouts" is a slender novel composed of a series of vignettes about an unnamed, introverted, female narrator. Jhumpa Lahiri wrote the book when she was living in Rome, and the chapter titles such as "At the Trattoria" and "In the Piazza" indicate an Italian setting.

Each chapter is a moment in time with a middle-aged college professor who lives alone. The book is written in first person so we only read the narrator's point of view concerning her life. She is very introspective, and examines
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Paul Fulcher
Whereabouts is translated by Jhumpra Lahiri from her own Italian language Dove mi trovo which predates the English, and which will make this eligible for the 2022 International Booker Prize.

Her previous three novels which I've read - The Namesake (2003), Unaccustomed Earth (2008) and The Lowland (2013) were all written in English although I have also read her translation of Domenico Starnone's Lacci as Ties (my review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...), a book it's difficult not to see a
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Roman Clodia
Is there any place we're not moving through? Disoriented, lost, at sea, at odds, astray, adrift, bewildered, confused, severed, turned around. I spring from these terms. These words are my abode, my only foothold


So, this is my second try at Lahiri (after I DNF'd her Interpreter of Maladies) and I have to conclude that she's not a writer for me. Her prose has the kind of exacting tone that I often like but this pared back set of vignettes almost feels like a parody of the voice of Rachel Cusk
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Richard
Dec 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a beautiful piece of literature. From the first page to the last, the writing is exquisite and melodious, giving you a sense of comfort and wellbeing.

Jhumpa Lahiri turns the everyday into the vibrancy of life. The routine and familiar into aspects of intimacy and passion we would otherwise miss. I could spend time in the company of the narrator without thought of where else I needed to be. Now removed from her conversation I feel a sense of regret and loss.

Originally written in Italian it i
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Julie
May 04, 2022 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I feel a bit ambivalent about this book. I chose to listen to the audiobook, which is short at 3 hours, 23 minutes. At first, I thought I was listening to a book of very short stories and felt a bit disorientated until I realized it was one story with very short chapters and the narrator was reading the chapter headings. There are 46 chapters and shortest chapter is one-minute long, and the longest is 10-minutes long, most are somewhere in between.

There is an overall feeling of gloom or melanch
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Trudie
Jun 19, 2021 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: odt, translated
3.5

Solitude demands a precise assessment of time, I've always understood this. It's like the money in your wallet: you have to know how much time you need to kill, how much to spend before dinner, what's left over before going to bed

A pleasant evening can be had spent in the company of this short novel, perhaps less a novel more a collection of observations. Delicate vignettes, entitled things like: "In the Sun", "Upon waking," "On the couch" and "At the cash register" give the reader a sense
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Darlene
Mar 02, 2022 rated it did not like it
DNF at 61%.

How can a 160-page book seem soooooo long? I put this down at 30% but felt guilty since I'm reading it for my favorite book club and picked it back up. I should have gone with my initial instinct because it didn't get any better.

The writing is style can only be described as pretentious. It follows the heroine through her everyday, mundane activities where she complains about how weighty the most minuscule tasks are. She picks fights at parties, hooks up with married men, and wonders w
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Claire
Jul 11, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A beautifully constructed, slight novella about the tension between solitude and loneliness that exists in all of our lives to varying degrees. This was my first foray into Lahiri and I was struck by the thoughtfulness and care with which each sentence was constructed. This collection of vignettes are expertly observed insights into human nature and connection. It reminded me a lot of reading Rachel Cusk.
Anita Pomerantz
May 20, 2021 rated it really liked it
I was interviewed about this one.

https://themorningnews.org/article/ca...
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Sarah
Somewhere between 3-3.5

A slight but enjoyable novel in the vein of Outline and What Are You Going Through, with a female protagonist navigating life through her interactions and conversations with those around her.

Written in short vignettes, we follow our solitary protagonist in her daily life around an Italian city during a period of personal change. She reflects on her relationship with her parents and her own loneliness and solitude.

I found this to be a subtle, gentle read, and one which I ex
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Center for Litera...: This topic has been closed to new comments. Whereabouts by Jhumpa Lahiri Book Club 5 10 Nov 07, 2021 04:11PM  
Indian Readers: Sept BOTM - Whereabouts by Jhumpa Lahiri 18 309 Sep 21, 2021 07:37AM  
The Coddiwomplers: Whereabouts by Jhumpa Lahiri 1 2 Aug 30, 2021 02:11AM  
AFAReads: Letter from the Editor 3 34 Aug 05, 2021 10:19AM  
The Wild Detectiv...: Jhumpa Lahiri's Whereabouts 1 21 Jun 08, 2021 05:58PM  
Goodreads Librari...: Missing Page Number 2 6 Jun 06, 2021 11:04AM  

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Nilanjana Sudeshna "Jhumpa" Lahiri was born in London and brought up in South Kingstown, Rhode Island. Brought up in America by a mother who wanted to raise her children to be Indian, she learned about her Bengali heritage from an early age.

Lahiri graduated from South Kingstown High School and later received her B.A. in English literature from Barnard College in 1989. She then received multiple d
...more

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“Solitude: it's become my trade. As it requires a certain discipline, it's a condition I try to perfect. And yet it plagues me, it weighs on me in spite of my knowing it so well.” 16 likes
“What did I do? I read books and studied. I listened to my parents and did what they asked me to. Even though, in the end, I never made them happy. I didn’t like myself, and something told me I’d end up alone.” 7 likes
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