Sunday, January 21, 2007

The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Deaai

This book is 2006 Booker Prize Winner. Must be a great read? You would say.
Well, I didn't like it. This book reminds me of - Gone with the Wind, genre type of books. Everyone says that, Gone With the Wind is a very great novel; America's most beloved Epic Novel,huh! But, even after countless, sincere tries I have never reached beyond 100th page of that book.
Although, I did read 324 odd pages of Inheritance of Loss, but that was more like forcing myself to just complete the book and get it over with, rather than enjoying it.
The story is about a retired judge living in Kalimpong, with his grand daughter Sai and his cook. The cook's son Biju. has gone to America to make it big there. The plot is set up in 1980s or so - at the time of Indra Gandhi and people in an around Kalimpong rioting and demanding a separate Gorkhaland for themselves. The story revolves around the judge's own past - How he was able to go to London, how he became judge etc. etc. about young Sai, the cook, his son Biju in America and of course the strikes and riots etc. - very very boring I would say.
The plot is nothing to write about, the story doesn't moves much - doesn't have much of a great start or for that matter any great end. When I reached the end I didn't expect it to finish so abruptly.
If you want to go to sleep then start reading the book. This book helped putting me into sound sleep at night, continuously, for more then a week.
I read most of the books in long stretches, which I typically call - long sessions - but, it was impossible to read this book in long sessions at one go.
The only parts which I liked a little bit were the meetings between Sai and Gyan. Gyan was a teacher just a few years older then Sai, whom judge had appointed to teach Sai.
I have been thinking - Why did this book got a Booker Prize?
The only reason I can think of is that probably all the judges who were appointed to select the Booker prize winner were old, buddha log - who might have liked the story because its about their old buddha times - so they ended up selecting it.
There is other thought also lingering in my mind that probably there is something missing in me which makes me fail to appreciate this kind of work, whereas others are able to appreciate it.
Anyway, according to my personal views, this book is very boring and not much worth to write about but others might have different views.


At 9:02 PM, Anonymous Deepak Jeswal said...

Havent read this one. But the last Booker winner that I read (Arundhati Roy's God of Small Things) left me as cold as u hv described ur own state here. But then, i hv always been more a fan of 'pulp fiction' than these serious works!

At 3:28 PM, Anonymous Mehak said...

I am currently reading this book...yes yes...even I fail to have my long reading sessions with this is really boring..But, I have planned to read it till pg 324..:)..lets see when I reach there...still a looong way to go..& in the middle I might move on to some other book...leaving this one in my to-read books list.

At 2:40 PM, Blogger The Bhandari's said...

This review reminds me of another book for which I felt the same, although I haven't read the one you reviewed and now have no intentions either, the book am talking about is Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie, and I felt too bored to read it that I left it in middle, it has some 13 chapters and I managed to read till 6th, in the story it self there is a word mentioned P2C2E- a Process Too Complicated To Explain and I feel the same way too.

At 12:22 PM, Anonymous Juneli said...

I also picked it up to read because it got the Booker prize but I think I should not :(

I knew it will be this kind of book (boring) - but the word Kangchenjung mentioned in the very first para made me to read but I think now I should not have picket it up. As I picked up a book The Name Sake by Jhumpa and read 8-9 pages and dumped it.

I've picked it to read a month back and I've finished upto chapter 40. 13 more chapter to go but the chapters are small hope I will finish it by next week.

But I read the 4-5 pages of My Name is Red by Pamuk Orhan (Nobel Prize winner - 2006) and it sounds interesting. My next reading is this title :). Hope it won't disappoint like Desai's book.

LOL@ your reasoning to get prize by this book - Buddha judges :D.

I picked up the Kite Runner but I dump that too.

Like Deepak - I'm too not much interested in such serious works!

Happy Republic Day :)

At 2:45 PM, Blogger anks said...

The reviews made the book sound so, so, so depressing that i decided to stay away from it. wondering if all booker winners are melancholy works...

At 8:59 PM, Blogger Navjot Kashyap said...

Yeah - I also like "pulp fiction" only..
Were you able to complete the book or not?
I had a perception that Salman Rushdie would be a good writer..but seeing your comments... I won't even try to read his works..
Kite Runner is good - boring in the start but builds up slowly... a good read I would say...
Thank for Republic Day wishes...
Yeah Anks ...don't read it unless you want to go to sleep...


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