The Namesake (Digital Audiobook)
Publication Date: September 15, 2003
Other Editions of This Title:
Paperback, Marathi (7/1/2017)
Paperback, Chinese (5/1/2019)
Compact Disc (8/1/2006)
Compact Disc (8/27/2013)
Soon after they arrive in Cambridge, their first child is born, a boy. According to Indian custom, the child will be given two names: an official name, to be bestowed by the great-grandmother, and a pet name to be used only by family. But the letter from India with the child's official name never arrives, and so the baby's parents decide on a pet name to use for the time being. Ashoke chooses a name that has particular significance for him: on a train trip back in India several years earlier, he had been reading a short story collection by one of his most beloved Russian writers, Nikolai Gogol, when the train derailed in the middle of the night, killing almost all the sleeping passengers onboard. Ashoke had stayed awake to read his Gogol, and he believes the book saved his life. His child will be known, then, as Gogol.
Lahiri brings her enormous powers of description to her first novel, infusing scene after scene with profound emotional depth. Condensed and controlled, The Namesake covers three decades and crosses continents, all the while zooming in at very precise moments on telling detail, sensory richness, and fine nuances of character.
About the Author
Jhumpa Lahiri was born in 1967 in London, England and raised in Rhode Island. Her stories have been selected for both The Best American Short Stories and the O. Henry Award. Her collection of short stories, The Interpreter of Maladies, won both the Pen/Hemingway Award and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2000. She lives in New York City.