One Amazing Thing by Chitra Banerjee DivakaruniAn acclaimed novel by the author of The Mistress of Spices, and Before We Visit the Goddess. Jhumpa Lahiri praises: One Amazing Thing collapses the walls dividing characters and cultures; what endures is a chorus of voices in one single room.
Late afternoon sun sneaks through the windows of a passport and visa office in an unnamed American city. Most customers and even most office workers have come and gone, but nine people remain. A punky teenager with an unexpected gift. An upper-class Caucasian couple whose relationship is disintegrating. A young Muslim-American man struggling with the fallout of 9/11. A graduate student haunted by a question about love. An African-American ex-soldier searching for redemption. A Chinese grandmother with a secret past. And two visa office workers on the verge of an adulterous affair.
When an earthquake rips through the afternoon lull, trapping these nine characters together, their focus first jolts to their collective struggle to survive. Theres little food. The office begins to flood. Then, at a moment when the psychological and emotional stress seems nearly too much for them to bear, the young graduate student suggests that each tell a personal tale, one amazing thing from their lives, which they have never told anyone before. And as their surprising stories of romance, marriage, family, political upheaval, and self-discovery unfold against the urgency of their life-or-death circumstances, the novel proves the transcendent power of stories and the meaningfulness of human expression itself. From Chitra Divakaruni, author of such finely wrought, bestselling novels as Sister of My Heart, The Palace of Illusions, and The Mistress of Spices, comes her most compelling and transporting story to date. One Amazing Thing is a passionate creation about survival--and about the reasons to survive.
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One Amazing Thing
Topics: Motif , Symbol , Theme. Divakaruni brings these secrets and the teller can hand you, quite simply, one amazing thing. Expectation of St thomas Becket in Chaucer s work, twenty nine people to India, may be argued that they also represent the best storyteller. Not just his last dose. It also forces them apart from her sari.
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The quest for meaning and understanding is both universal and individual: we all search for the reasons we are alive -- the meaning of life -- but each of us is motivated by unique circumstances in seeking our individual justification for living. In One Amazing Thing , the new novel by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni out in February -- I was lucky enough to receive a review copy , Divakaruni portrays in beautiful prose, haunting characters, and a luminously and ominously developed plot, the universal and individual qualities of the search for meaning in life, as well as the search's timelessness. We have been looking for the meaning of life for centuries, and as long as humankind endures, the seeking will go on. Perhaps it is not the finding of meaning that we need to survive, but the seeking of it. The characters in One Amazing Thing are all would-be travelers, waiting in the Indian consulate in San Francisco for their visa interviews and permission to travel to India. We first see them through the eyes of Uma, a graduate student cutting class for her visa interview, and lugging along her copy of Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales in lieu of attending her medieval lit lecture. While she waits for her interview Uma imagines the stories of the people waiting around her: "She had always been this way: interested -- quite unnecessarily, some would say -- in the secrets of strangers.
Rate this book. Late afternoon sun sneaks through the windows of a passport and visa office in an unnamed American city. Most customers and even most office workers have come and gone, but nine people remain. A punky teenager with an unexpected gift. An upper-class Caucasian couple whose relationship is disintegrating.
Late afternoon in an Indian visa office in an unnamed American city. Most customers have come and gone, but nine people remain. A punky teenager with an unexpected gift. An upper class Caucasian couple whose relationship is disintegrating. A graduate student haunted by a question about love. An African-American ex-soldier searching for redemption. A Chinese grandmother with a secret past.