English, August

An Indian Story

By Upamanyu Chatterjee; Akhil Sharma (Introduction by)
(New York Review of Books, Paperback, 9781590171790, 336pp.)

Publication Date: April 2006

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Description
Agastya Sen, known to friends by the English name August, is a child of the Indian elite. His friends go to Yale and Harvard. August himself has just landed a prize government job. The job takes him to Madna, "the hottest town in India," deep in the sticks. There he finds himself surrounded by incompetents and cranks, time wasters, bureaucrats, and crazies. What to do? Get stoned, shirk work, collapse in the heat, stare at the ceiling. Dealing with the locals turns out to be a lot easier for August than living with himself." English, August "is a comic masterpiece from contemporary India. Like "A Confederacy of Dunces" and "The Catcher in the Rye," it is both an inspired and hilarious satire and a timeless story of self-discovery.



About the Author
Upamanyu Chatterjee was born in 1959. He joined the Indian Administrative Service in 1983. His published works include short stories and the novels English, August: An Indian Story (1988), The Last Burden (1993), The Mammaries of the Welfare State (2000), which won the Sahitya Akademi Award for writing in English, Weight Loss (2006) and Way to Go (2011), which was shortlisted for the Hindu Best Fiction Award. In 2008, he was awarded the Order of Officier des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government for his contribution to literature.

Akhil Sharma is the author of An Obedient Father, winner of the PEN/Hemingway Award and was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. His writing has appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic, Best American Short Stories, and O. Henry Award Stories. A native of Delhi, he lives in New York City.
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