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The World We Found Lp: A Novel Paperback – Large Print, Dec 19 2011


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Harper; Lrg edition (Dec 19 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062107135
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062107138
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 431 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Product Description

Review

The World We Found is stunning in its credibility and nuance. . . . This is a novel that rewards reading, and even re-reading. The World We Found is a powerful meditation.” (Boston Globe)

“Luminous. . . . Wise and absorbing, Umrigar’s novel has the rich, chaotic vibrancy of a Mumbai marketplace.” (People)

“Asparkling and sharp slice of life.” (Nina Sankovitch, Huffington Post)

The World We Found is absorbing and resonant.” (Cleveland Plain Dealer)

“Umrigar renders a vivid portrait of modern-day India as she meditates upon the power of friendship, loyalty, and love. Like her previous works, The World We Found is eloquent and evocative, bitter and sweet.” (Booklist (starred review))

“There’s ample discussion to be had here on the topics of family, friendship, religion and marriage. Umrigar is a lively storyteller. The women are sympathetic characters, their relationships fully realized and deeply felt. . . . Umrigar’s evocative world is one worth finding, indeed.” (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

“Absorbing. . . . A rewarding novel.” (Publishers Weekly)

“A storyteller through and through, Umrigar ensures that her characters face up to the costs and consequences created by their choices, right or wrong, principled or unprincipled.” (Washington Post)

From the Back Cover

As students in 1970s Bombay, Armaiti, Laleh, Kavita, and Nishta were inseparable, but the quartet has since drifted apart.

When Armaiti, now living in America, learns that she is gravely ill, she hopes to see the friends she left behind thirty years ago.

For Laleh, reunion is bittersweet, but she promises to fulfill her friend’s wish. She convinces Kavita to put aside the past, and the two search for Nishta, who has long been hiding in a bitter, oppressive marriage. In the course of their journey to reconnect, the four women must confront the truths of their lives and acknowledge long-held regrets, secrets, and desires. And they will have to decide what matters most, a choice that just may help them reclaim the extraordinary world they once found.

Exploring the enduring bonds of friendship and offering an unforgettable portrait of modern India, The World We Found is a dazzling masterwork from the remarkable Thrity Umrigar.

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By Jj on June 6 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Although I enjoyed parts of the book and offline the details of the Indian city and culture mixes to be interesting; I kept waiting for the real story to begin. I was surprised the book ended where it did. I did t mind it. But I wouldn't read it again.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Louise Jolly TOP 50 REVIEWER on Feb. 21 2012
Format: Hardcover
Story Description:

As students in 1970's Bombay, Armaiti, Laleh, Kavita, and Nishta were inseparable, but the quartet has since drifted apart. When Armaiti, now living in America, learns that she is gravely ill, she hopes to see the friends she left behind thirty years ago.

For Laleh, reunion is bittersweet, but she promises to fulfill her friend's wish. She convinces Kavita to put aside the past, and the two search for Nishta, who has long been hiding in a bitter, oppressive marriage. In the course of their journey to reconnect, the four women must confront the truths of their lives and acknowledge long-held regrets, secrets, and desires. And they will have to decide what matters most, a choice that may just help them reclaim the extraordinary world they once found.

Exploring the enduring bonds of friendship and offering an unforgettable portrait of modern India, The World We Found is a dazzling masterwork from the remarkable Thrity Umrigar.

My Review:

Laleh, Kavita, Armaiti and Nishta were once inseparable during college but over the years they had drifted apart. Armaiti is terminally ill and lives in America. Nishta is missing and the only one still in Laleh's life is, Kavita.

Laleh and Kavita still live in India and go to visit Mrs. Lokhanwala, Nishta's mother. She wasn't exactly sure where her daughter lived as the family is estranged. However, she gave them an envelope addressed to her with a return address circled in red.

Armaiti is divorced from her husband, Richard, as he had been unfaithful to her. After 5 years apart, he, along with their daughter, Diane, are taking care of her.
Read more ›
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By David Young on March 23 2012
Format: Paperback
I have read all of Thrity Umrigar's novels and always she writes clearly, simply and with emotional power. The Weight of Heaven nearly broke my heart. The World We Found is so hopeful and so sad at the same time. Her novel The Space Between Us is gut wrenching. What a wonderful writer! The World We Found: A Novel
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 168 reviews
49 of 50 people found the following review helpful
Old Friends, New Challenges in Modern India Nov. 10 2011
By Someone Else - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product
Traditional attitudes still linger in India, but they're not held equally in all quarters of Indian society. Some Indians are more liberal than many Americans, while others cling desperately to the old ways and steep themselves in fundamentalist practices. Thrity Umrigar highlights that clash between the old and the new in this story of renewed friendships in modern Bombay.

Laleh, Kavita, Armaiti and Nishta were fast friends and fellow revolutionaries in their Bombay college days 30 years ago. Now they've mostly lost touch, and their lives have diverged greatly, leaving them with little in common but a shared history. When Armaiti reaches out from America with news of cancer and a dying wish to have them all together one last time, they reconnect and prove that the sisterhood stands stronger than ever.

The contrasting experiences of these four women reflect the complex challenges facing a nation caught between the past and the present.

Laleh enjoys a marriage of equals with Adish, her college sweetheart.
Kavita is a successful architect. She is a lesbian, happy in her current relationship and aching to reveal her authentic self to her old friends.
Armaiti is the deserter. She's the one who ran off to America, and worse yet, married an American.
Nishta also married her college sweetheart, but Iqbal is no longer the liberal socialist she married. He has returned to his fundamentalist Muslim roots. He keeps Nishta on a short leash, essentially a prisoner in their home.

Nishta's plight becomes pivotal as the friends race against time and Armaiti's imminent death. This is where Laleh's husband Adish really shines, faced with divided loyalties and possessed of a chivalrous heart. Can he live up to his old reputation as "Mr. Fix-It" and come through for them one more time?

The World We Found has a lot to recommend it. Character development is superb. The presentation of modern Bombay's paradoxes is nuanced and fascinating. The book even has some expertly-paced suspense that will keep you turning pages right up to the end. Some readers may find the regularly shifting points of view distracting. It does at times interrupt the fluidity of the story, but Umrigar handles the transitions more deftly than many contemporary authors.

The essence of this story is that there are no friends like old friends. Neither changing fortunes nor the distance between us can break those bonds.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
TEN stars for this beautiful book. April 18 2012
By K. Franklin - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product
Four girls who were best friends during college have lost touch. Now they are middle-aged, each living her own life. Then they get a request from one of the friends who is dying in America - can you come, just one more time before I die? It seems like a simple request, but turns complicated right away.

This is a beautiful book about female friendship - set in India. What will friends do for one another? What are the limits? What are the responsibilities? Each character is very much alive and 3-dimensional. I found myself caring very much what happened to them as they decided whether or not to go to America. I learned a lot about Indian culture, both secular culture and Muslim culture.

A fine, colorful, heart-felt novel. One of the best things I've read all year.
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
WONDERFUL NOVEL Nov. 9 2011
By Patricia L. Marks - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product
Have you ever read THRITY UMRIGAR'S work ? If yes, then you will welcome THE WORLD WE FOUND. If she is new to you then get this book, or one of her other writings and prepare to be delighted in her eye for characterization, turns of phrase; complex yet wholly understandable tales of human virtues and foibles.
One of the friends is dying and summons the others to come to her before the end. How they get together, plan and execute this journey is the meat of the story and the book. They were young once, full of knowledge-or so they thought- of what is necessary for societies. They learn, each in their own way, that things are not that simple, that it is nearly impossible to turn around whole systems which have been in place ,perhaps, for centuries.
Love is not always recognizable, and contentment seems always distant. It may be a sad wisdom to find love and happiness right where you are or in what you had, but it is real. The conclusions are both true and somewhat ethereal. I cannot imagine that you will not love this book and its author.
24 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Definitely Not As Good As "The Space Between Us" Dec 11 2011
By Wandering Hoosier - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product
I enjoyed Thrity Umrigar's earlier novel, "The Space Between Us" and wanted to equally like this book; however, I did not. In "The Space Between Us," Umrigar does a beautiful job combining dialogue with descriptive writing in order to tell the stories of her main characters. The book touches on many thought-provoking themes and gives insight into Indian life.

On the contrary, "The World We Found" failed to spark my interest in the main characters and the themes discussed in the book. The novel follows the stories of four Indian women (Armati, Nishta (aka Zoha), Laleh, and Kavita) who had been inseparable in college and part of an active socialist movement. Only Laleh and Kavita remained in touch for the past 20 years since college.

The book begins as Armati, who had since moved to California, calls Laleh to tell her that she has been diagnosed with incurable, fast-acting brain cancer and wants Nishta, Laleh, and Kavita to travel from Indian to visit her before her death.

"The World We Found" follows the thoughts of the three women as they decide whether they should/should not travel to visit Armati and how all four women come to terms with their life since their socialist days in college. It also stories since college of the four women's partners and how they come to term with their status/role changes.

I found the "The World We Found" to be repetitive, as Umrigar spends too much time returning to the same stories from the four women's college days. It also was very cliché in that the relationships between the four women and their partners were entirely predictable. Even the lesbian interlude failed to spark my interest, as it follows a familiar path.

Umrigar tells most of the story by using dull dialogue. She rarely sheds light on anything but the common aspects of Indian society and she fails to develop the interesting historical stories in the book, such as the Muslim-Hindu conflicts. I hope that Umrigar's next book far surpasses the quality of this one, as she has previously shown that she can do.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Life Happens: The World We Found Feb. 18 2012
By Kinseysmom - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I'm not sure how I missed one of the finest novelists I've read in a long time. Having just finished this wonderfully compelling and beautifully written novel (which I read in less than two days because I was virtually unable to put it down!), I realize that I have found an author who I will want to go back and read everything she has written. I'm already making a mental note to look for her next book.

We meet four women now approaching 50 who have grown apart. One moved to the United States and married a well-off American. Two of the women are still in touch. They have all lost touch with the fourth who married a Muslim in defiance of her family. Now one of the women is dying and wants to see her friends one more time. As the women come to grip with the news that their friend is dying, they remember their college years together. The dying woman also remembers and wants to see them just one more time.

The things we thought we knew, the things that were black and white when we were young - what happens to them? "Life happens." What a wonderful, joyful, sad, and exhilarating statement. Ms. Umrigar knows that nothing is simple. Life isn't simple.This is one of those books with so many layers of thought and ideas. It would make for an extremely lively book club meeting - one that might even go late in the night!

Ms. Umrigar knows how to weave a skillful narrative about these four women against a backdrop of class, money and political power. Life is messy and glorious. It's a good lesson told in a joyful way.


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