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5.0 out of 5 stars A sensitive depiction of everyday life
Amit Chaudhuri chronicles the return to Calcutta of an Indian-American who has recently been divorced. His arrival, his return to his parents' home, his re-immersion in Calcutta, his attempt to move through each unexceptional day -- all of these are the means by which this inarticulate and inadequate man tries to deal with the great crises which confront him. Those...
Published on April 11 2001 by sgutman3

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2.0 out of 5 stars Again, Chaudhuri shows great, though unrealized potential
Amit's Chaudhuri's first collection of three small novels entitled Freedom Song won him great critical acclaim and raves, even from such master stylists as Salman Rushdie over the beauty and thoughtfulness of his writing. Yes, the writing in this collection is very poetic and well-crafted, but the stories themselves never truly went anywhere. Unfortunately, his new...
Published on Feb. 16 2001 by Corinna Byer


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5.0 out of 5 stars A sensitive depiction of everyday life, April 11 2001
Ce commentaire est de: A New World (Hardcover)
Amit Chaudhuri chronicles the return to Calcutta of an Indian-American who has recently been divorced. His arrival, his return to his parents' home, his re-immersion in Calcutta, his attempt to move through each unexceptional day -- all of these are the means by which this inarticulate and inadequate man tries to deal with the great crises which confront him. Those crises are, of course, the divorce and its aftermath, including his relations with the young son who joins him on this return to India; but they are as well the gap between himself and his own parents, who are of a different generation, who are aging, who do not understand the modern world and its habit of divorce.
The world is not always full of "sound and fury," as Amit Chaudhouri understands very well. Our destinies are worked out in the everyday, and we struggle as Wallace Stevens so aptly put it with "the maladies of the quotidian." It is the novel's triumph that these struggles reveal themselves beneath the everyday events Chaudhouri describes so well, and that a sense of loss and inadequacy permeates the quietly lyrical descriptions which are the substance of the novel.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Again, Chaudhuri shows great, though unrealized potential, Feb. 16 2001
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Corinna Byer (Cullowhee, NC United States) - See all my reviews
Ce commentaire est de: A New World (Hardcover)
Amit's Chaudhuri's first collection of three small novels entitled Freedom Song won him great critical acclaim and raves, even from such master stylists as Salman Rushdie over the beauty and thoughtfulness of his writing. Yes, the writing in this collection is very poetic and well-crafted, but the stories themselves never truly went anywhere. Unfortunately, his new novel A New World, suffers the same fate. The plot is a potentially revealing, touching and illuminating one, despite the fact that its same basic outlines have been used and reused in many different novels. Such a talented writer as Chaudhuri ought to be able to make something interesting and captivating out of it. In the novel, a man who has been living in the US, makes his regular visit to his parents in India with his young son, of whom he has custody for the summer. He has private regrets, of his failed marriage, of his relationship with his parents, and personal worries about his son, which of course are brought out throughout the course of the novel. His parents naturally have their own concerns and worries about him. So, in many ways this is meant to be an exploration of family bonds, of the strange feelings which accompany returning home after a long absence, of cultural collision in general.
In short, the novel's structure is a great opportunity for a writer as skilled as Chaudhuri to really make an impact, to write something about families, about parents and children that really captures an essence which everyone has felt. But, as in the case of his previous novels, this one ultimately drags and refuses to move, and a reader, no matter how much he loves Chaudhuri's prose, and wants to like the novel, will find himself yawning. The flashbacks are not coherent enough, the emotions expressed by the characters too vague to make a reader feel for them,and ultimately, which is Chaudhuri's main problem, there is no real story. It is static, and nothing,even on an emotional level, really happens. The characters, as well-written as their actions are, remain flat, distanced, and unconnected, and in the end, a reader will probably have the feeling that he has walked away from something which denied its potential and ended up empty and flat instead of rich and meaningful. If only Chaudhuri could work on his plot and character development as much as he seems to on his beautful writing style,he would indeed be among the upper echelons of our contemporary writers.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Could have been better, Dec 21 2000
By A Customer
Ce commentaire est de: A New World (Hardcover)
Amit Chaudhuri is absolutely brilliant when it comes to breathing life into everyday stuff like visiting a bank, taking a walk or frying fish. This skill is a lot more germane for a novel like A Strange and Sublime Address. But in a book on a serious subject like divore and its aftermath his quotitidan observations are more of a distration than anything. I wish he had dealt with the emotional undercurrents more openly and at the same level of detail as mundane things like watching TV or toothpaste or bath soap.
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3.0 out of 5 stars too much mundane is mundane, June 9 2001
Ce commentaire est de: A New World (Hardcover)
Yes, I see where the author is a very talented writer who can raise mundane, everyday experiences to a thoughtful new level. Perhaps it is my shortcoming and not his, but I need some kind of plot or a promise of a character's epiphany to keep me turning the pages. The book was set almost entirely in the apartment of the main character's parents, making it very claustrophobic. I recognize the art of the writing and the precision of the words, but I really did not enjoy reading it.
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A New World
A New World by Amit Chaudhuri (Paperback - April 6 2001)
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