The Inheritance of Loss

By Kiran Desai
(Atlantic Monthly Press, Hardcover, 9780871139290, 324pp.)

Publication Date: November 2005

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Description

Kiran Desai's first novel, Hullabaloo in the Guava Orchard, was published to unanimous acclaim in over twenty-two countries. Now Desai takes us to the northeastern Himalayas where a rising insurgency challenges the old way of life. In a crumbling, isolated house at the foot of Mount Kanchenjunga lives an embittered old judge who wants to retire in peace when his orphaned granddaughter Sai arrives on his doorstep. The judge's chatty cook watches over her, but his thoughts are mostly with his son, Biju, hopscotching from one New York restaurant job to another, trying to stay a step ahead of the INS, forced to consider his country's place in the world. When a Nepalese insurgency in the mountains threatens Sai's new-sprung romance with her handsome Nepali tutor and causes their lives to descend into chaos, they, too, are forced to confront their colliding interests. The nation fights itself. The cook witnesses the hierarchy being overturned and discarded. The judge must revisit his past, his own role in this grasping world of conflicting desires-every moment holding out the possibility for hope or betrayal. A novel of depth and emotion, Desai's second, long-awaited novel fulfills the grand promise established by her first.




About the Author
Kiran Desai was born in India in 1971 and educated in India, England, and the United States. She studied creative writing at Columbia University, where she was the recipient of a Woolrich fellowship. Her work has appeared in "The New Yorker" and Salman Rushdie's anthology Mirrorwork: Fifty Years of Indian Writing. In 2006 Desai won the Man Booker Prize for her novel The Inheritance of Loss.
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