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Interpreter of Maladies
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Buddy Reads + Reading Challenegs > Buddy Reads: June 2016 - Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri

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message 1: by Nitesh (last edited Jun 10, 2016 01:40AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments A forum to read and discuss Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri.This book Bas won Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in year 2000 and is also chosen as The New Yorker's best debut of the year.
The book has nine stories about Indians and Indo Americans.

Reading Plan:
One story per day followed by a discussion the next day. We start reading on 9th June. The story for the day is A temporary Matter.

10th June - When Mr. Pirzada came to dine

Participants:
Sharadha
Nitesh

Looking for more people to participate. Will update the participant list and current story list on a daily basis.


Smriti (santreads) | 9 comments I just finished the book! :(

Don't mind participating the in the discussion though. As it's sort of fresh in my mind.


message 3: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Reserved space for participant list.

Participants:
1. Sharadha
2. Nitesh


message 4: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Let's do this :D The blurb looked interesting and guess what, Khaled Hosseini rated it 5 stars :O This should be a wonderful book. Thanks for the suggestion, Nitesh :)


message 5: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Smriti wrote: "I just finished the book! :(

Don't mind participating the in the discussion though. As it's sort of fresh in my mind."


Smriti, sure :) Please do share your thoughts about the stories with us.


Doc. (doctorwithoutboundaries) Happy reading, guys!

(view spoiler) I read the book over a decade ago, so I barely remember two or three stories... Will be refreshing my memory by following your discussion. ;)

Smriti, have you heard of Olive Kitteridge? It's another Pulitzer-winning short story collection, though the stories are connected in this one. I liked it a lot, and HBO made a great mini-series adaptation starring Frances McDormand!


message 7: by Sharadha (last edited Jun 09, 2016 09:37AM) (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Done with the first story - it was bittersweet. The attention to detail such as the couple's daily routine, their indifferent relationship and what led to it souring down over time, description of the neighbourhood, and people was laudable.

The story as such seemed a little shallow to me. The ending made even little sense - for example, why couldn't they play this confession game sooner in the relationship and resolve their differences? Was this Shobha's way of saying her goodbyes to Shukumar? If yes, then she was pretty selfish in doing so (Shukumar equally so in releaving his misdemeanours on the last night as revenge). (view spoiler) - what does this signify? (view spoiler)

I sincerely hope that the other stories are better. The protagonist, Mr. Kapasi, hasn't made an appearance yet (although Shobha did mention a dentist appointment for Shukumar) so I am awaiting that.

What are you thoughts, guys?


message 8: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
S. wrote: "(view spoiler)"

Yes it is, S :-).


message 9: by Doc. (last edited Jun 09, 2016 09:13AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Doc. (doctorwithoutboundaries) Hi, Sharadha. Mr. Kapasi only appears in the title story. All the stories here are unrelated, so you won't be meeting Shobha and Shukumar again.

From what I remember, (view spoiler). But Smriti might have a fresher interpretation.


message 10: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
S. wrote: "(view spoiler)"

Right, that does seem logical. I just couldn't connect with them both. They seemed shallow and disinterested to me on some level.

Maybe Smriti has something else to offer :).


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments Sharadha wrote: "S. wrote: "[spoilers removed]"

Right, that does seem logical. I just couldn't connect with them both. They seemed shallow and disinterested to me on some level.

Maybe Smriti has something else to..."



To me it was about their relationship. They became quite distant from each other and hence, they could not muster the courage to face each other. If you would note, they tried avoiding each other as much as possible. There is also a mention of Shoba's mother, when she commented that Shukumar did not even turn up during Shoba's labor.

My takeaway is that it is all about communication. Shoba had made a decision to take some time off from their relationship. However, she could not communicate it to Shukumar. Power cut was the perfect time when they did nit have to look each other in eye and mention anything and everything openly. The story to me is open ended. Who knows when the aura of misunderstanding was cleared by their tears, they would then have decided to stay together and give their relationship another shot. Much was revealed during those 4 nights then their whole span of marriage ;)


message 12: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Yes, that's true - it is all about communication in any relationship.

So, do we read the second story today? I'm planning to do 2 stories tonight because it's Friday hehe Back here at night :)


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments Haha.. OK.. let's do Two.. :)


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments BTW I was going through Hosseini's reviee.. All his ratings except for two books are 4 and 5 :)


message 15: by Doc. (last edited May 01, 2017 12:44AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Doc. (doctorwithoutboundaries) Nitesh wrote: "BTW I was going through Hosseini's reviee.. All his ratings except for two books are 4 and 5 :)"

Haha. Authors rarely ever diss other authors in public, unless they're also critics like James Wood or Carmen Callil. I've noticed that most of the authors who use GR have an average rating of 4+. :D
By the way, great point about the power cut! :)


message 16: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Nitesh wrote: "BTW I was going through Hosseini's reviee.. All his ratings except for two books are 4 and 5 :)"

Really? I thought he genuinely liked these books :P He does seem to like the sad ones though (one other novel that he rated 5, can't remember which one but the blurb was depressing again), maybe he draws inspiration from them for his own books..


message 17: by Piyush (new)

Piyush Chourasia | 45 comments S. wrote: "Nitesh wrote: "BTW I was going through Hosseini's reviee.. All his ratings except for two books are 4 and 5 :)"

Haha. Authors rarely ever diss other authors in public, unless they're also critics ..."


Possible exception to the rule may be Salman Rushdie, who, without knowing that his reviews are individually visible to others, happily went about giving low ratings to lots of classics and modern classics.


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments @sharadha What's the progress? Could not read a work. Came to Mahabalipuram and my family hid my Kindle.


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments @Piyush Haven't seen Rushdie's updates and comments but yes he is a maverick.. He can do anything which is even remotely possible.


Smriti (santreads) | 9 comments Aaah! Sorry for not replying sooner enough. I've been quite sick. Haven't been able to read as well with the fever that I have. So I basically just stare at the fan going round and round.

What I loved about all of her short stories, including the first, were how they started off with something so mundane, so mind-numbingly boring and then took it and made something out of it.

I think all of you have covered what I had to say. I agree with Nitesh - they took advantage of the fact that they did not have to look at each other in the eye and bear their heart and soul. It was a burden I think that was being lifted off their shoulders, a weight that they had been carrying. And now that the burden had been lifted, they were free to go their own ways and mend themselves because they both didn't feel like they could mend their relationship.


message 21: by Piyush (new)

Piyush Chourasia | 45 comments Smriti wrote: "Aaah! Sorry for not replying sooner enough. I've been quite sick. Haven't been able to read as well with the fever that I have. So I basically just stare at the fan going round and round.

What I ..."


Get well soon Smriti. Illnesses, ones which do not make you count the rotation of the blades of a fan, are generally ideal for catching up with some reading :D


message 22: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Smriti wrote: "Aaah! Sorry for not replying sooner enough. I've been quite sick. Haven't been able to read as well with the fever that I have. So I basically just stare at the fan going round and round.

What I ..."


Get well soon, Smriti! It definitely sucks to be ill - the weather has been so funny lately (perfect reason to not step out hehe) so you might as well catch up on some reading :D


message 23: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Nitesh wrote: "@sharadha What's the progress? Could not read a work. Came to Mahabalipuram and my family hid my Kindle."

Progress is a little slow, Nitesh, because I am also reading a Christie on the side - I finished Mr. Pirzada's story, that was definitely a better one in comparison to the first (a bit of Indo-Pak partition, some history here and there). Also peeked into Mr. Kapasi's prosaic life. Will start with the third story A Real Durwan today.

Enjoy Mahabalipuram :D :D Family holidays are always so much fun :D Do you return today? Let's discuss once you get back :)


Smriti (santreads) | 9 comments Thanks for all the wishes guys.

I think I actually liked 'Mr. Pirzada Comes To Dine' the most amongst all the short stories.


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments @Smriti Get well soon..
@Sharadha Will catch up tomorrow :)


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments Read Pirzada.. found it OK..nothing great.. reading the next one and it is funny :P


message 27: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Yep, Real Durwan was funny hahaha especially the 'Believe me, don't believe me' bit - looks like a strip off from a hindi serial, so dramatic :P

Going on to, umm, Sexy, today ;-)


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments Interpreter of Maladies was also hilarious.. I am also reading sexy


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments How did you find Sexy?? I loved the way the conversation goes between the Miranda and the kid.. The cuteness and childishness is very well described. Going to read Mrs Sen's today and maybe this blessed house


message 30: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Okay okayyy, now I know which kid you meant ;)

Umm, I am not a fan of EMAs so I didn't like the story much. What I did observe as a common ingredient in all these stories was the cliffhanger endings - leaving the end open to reader's interpretation is all right sometimes but it needn't work other times - sometimes readers want closure, you know? This story belonged to the latter category. I didn't like the abrupt ending - it deserved to have the break up scene written so that I could move on :( The talk between Rohin and Mir was fun to read though, probably the only 'right' thing in the entire text.

Onto Mrs. Sen's next! :)


message 31: by Sharadha (last edited Jun 16, 2016 09:31AM) (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Done with Mrs. Sen's too - again okayish. I don't get if it's me who can't appreciate the underlying meanings in each of the stories or if they really are unflattering. The book's been a strict 2.5-3 stars for me until now and I am almost past the 50% mark.

Did you like the stories a lot, Nitesh?


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments I totally second you. Not sure why the rave was around JL.. Most of the stories are like that..


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments You got cats at home? No cats. Only a husband. ROFL


message 34: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Nitesh wrote: "You got cats at home? No cats. Only a husband. ROFL"

Hahahahahahaha that was really funny xD


message 35: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
I'm going to put this book on hold for a bit - am just not motivated enough to go through with the stories at the moment. I'll come back to it in a few days or weeks. I honestly thought that reading a 198 page book would be an easier deal but clearly it isn't. Even This Blessed House isn't presenting anything different from the other stories (an unhappy couple in a marriage going about their routine life, story 1 saga continues). So yeah, that's my status for a while.

I'm going to be hopping onto Fahrenheit 451 now so let me know if you want to join in :) It's been ages since I read dystopian and would be a welcoming change.


message 36: by Doc. (new) - rated it 3 stars

Doc. (doctorwithoutboundaries) Sharadha wrote: "I'm going to be hopping onto Fahrenheit 451"

Love that book! It's among my top 5 favourite dystopian/post-apocalyptic books. Hope you enjoy it! Do share your thoughts with us once you are done. :)


message 37: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
S, for sure, I've read a few pages and it's been a bit chilling so far - will deffo share reviews here :)


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments I am done with JL. read the stories. moving from one to another thinking something interesting will turn up for sure. But alas, I was wrong.


message 39: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
No? You're demotivating me all the more now :P Oh well, I'll get around to it one day or the other.. What are you picking next??


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments Not yet decided.. Hobbit is on my list.. Some non fiction thereafter. Wanna give non fiction a try?


message 41: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Non-fiction? Oooh, umm, why not? What do you have in mind?

Elon Musk's biography Elon Musk: Inventing the Future is on my TBR as a suggestion. With NF, I'm usually snail slow so maybe you'll lead the discussion :P


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments check how not to be Wrong..we can even do inventing the future... Before doing it I suggest you read the last stort of Interpreter of Maladies... I am sure you will like it and you will increase the rating of the book by 0.5 * based on your +0.5 for A thousand splendid Suns* ;)


message 43: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Oi, I reduced my rating from the initial 5 ok :P. Besides, it did deserve 4.5 max ya ;-)

Anyway, I will finish Interpreter of Maladies in a bit then, maybe after Fahrenheit 451 or something.


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments Would be starting How Not to Be Wrong tomorrow. Joining? or you want to take up Fahrenheit 451 first and then start something?


message 45: by Sharadha (last edited Jun 23, 2016 08:42AM) (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
Umm, I read the blurb of the book - a) it's non fiction, and b) it's about Math. I dread Math, I was beyond horrible at it in school so I doubt I'd understand a book written on it :O

I'd probably sit this one out, Nitesh.. Finish up Interpreter of Maladies and Fahrenheit 451 by the time you get done with this one. Then there's the upcoming group read :D

I'll be waiting for reviews of this book from you though :)


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments Done. I have been reading some of Oscar Wilde. You might wanna try it.. Specially The devoted friend and The Nightingale and the Rose.. these are available for free (Kindle edition).. short stories of around 5-10 page each..


message 47: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
I have read Nightingale and the Rose in school as part of my English syllabus actually. It's been a long time now and I don't remember much of it but I remember loving the story back then :) I want to read his Picture of Dorian Grey - want to BR it after Girl on the Train?


Nitesh Kanthaliya | 59 comments Yes we can BR it.. 2 weeks from now.. Works?


message 49: by Sharadha (new) - added it

Sharadha Jayaraman (jayaras) | 338 comments Mod
We can BR it any time after we finish the group read, does that sound good?


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