Jane's Reviews > The Shadow Lines

The Shadow Lines by Amitav Ghosh
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's review
Feb 26, 2010

it was amazing
Read in January, 2010

Another book recommended by an Indian friend. He thinks Ghosh is one of the best Indian writers ever. This was my first Ghosh.

It's about a Bengali extended family in Calcutta (a good dozen characters with many more on the fringes), centering on the life story of one man who loses a cousin to sudden and mysterious ethnic violence. The whole thing is tied together by the fact that this cousin is himself a mysterious, fascinating, erudite, and compassionate person, who always has a story or an insight, and you never know where he'll show up.

A more esoteric theme of the book is the nature of memory (he's as good as Nabokov on this), but I won't go into that at the moment.
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message 1: by Katy (new) - added it

Katy Anderson Love your review of The Shadow Lines. Would you be interested in putting a question about the book to the author Amitav Ghosh at a recording of the BBC World Book Club on the World Service. If you emailed it to me katy.anderson@bbc.co.uk we will read it out next week at our recording or even ask you to record it for us on the telephone. Many thanks and look forward to hearing from you.

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