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The Best Possible Experience

Injam, Nishanth. Book - 2023 Fiction / Injam, Nishanth, Adult Book / Fiction / General / Injam, Nishanth 2 On Shelf No requests on this item Community Rating: 4 out of 5

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Call Number: Fiction / Injam, Nishanth, Adult Book / Fiction / General / Injam, Nishanth
On Shelf At: Downtown Library, Traverwood Branch

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Fiction / Injam, Nishanth 4-week checkout On Shelf
Traverwood Adult Books
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Adult Book / Fiction / General / Injam, Nishanth 4-week checkout On Shelf
Malletts Adult Books
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Adult Book / Fiction / General / Injam, Nishanth 4-week checkout Due 03-08-2024

The bus -- Come with me -- The immigrant -- Summers of waiting -- Lunch at Paddy's -- Sunday evening with ice cream -- The protocol -- The math of living -- The Zamindar's watch -- The sea -- Best possible experience.
"An astonishingly assured debut from an award-winning writer, an emotionally rich portrait of contemporary India and its diaspora and a yearning rendering of the people and places we call home. Vivid, vibrant, and unwaveringly affecting, The Best Possible Experience brings us intimate, impeccably realized accounts of individuals living in one of the most populous countries in the world, and its American diaspora, all haunted, in every sense of the word, by a loss of home. Classically elegant in prose and consistently modern in outlook, Injam's stories question what it means to have a home, to return home, and show, above all, that home is not a place so much as a people ready to accept you as you are. We see a young man trapped on a bus to visit his parents as his fellow passengers vanish into the restroom. A family, newly in America, determined to host a perfect luncheon for their son's white classmate, with no idea what to serve him. A woman who returns to a small village in India every summer to visit the grandfather who raised her, who lives with the ghosts of his son and wife. And a man preparing for his Green Card interview with the American woman he's paid to marry him. A sui generis talent, Injam first started writing after coming to America from India in his twenties. The Best Possible Experience, his profoundly personal debut collection, delivers a universal inquiry into the idea of belonging and preserves in writing a home he left behind before it was lost to him forever"-- Provided by publisher


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A cartography of awkwardness submitted by redwood on August 2, 2023, 1:13pm These meticulous stories follow Indian characters, most of whom are immigrants to the United States. I’d say the overarching affect of this collection is awkwardness—the awkwardness of being a new immigrant and trying to adjust to every change, the awkwardness of returning home after being away, the awkwardness of grief, the awkwardness of just being a person. Such a deep cartography of awkwardness!

There’s a lot of waiting, too. In “Summers of Waiting,” a young woman returns to India and considers her relationship with the grandfather who raised her; in “Lunch at Paddy’s,” a family prepares and waits for their son’s white classmate to come over for lunch; in “The Protocol,” a man waits to see if his sham marriage will yield him a green card. In the short and devastating “The Math of Living,” an IT employee counts down the days until his visits home.

Other themes: bureaucracy is a constant force, whether it’s immigration documents or security deposits. Difference within India—regional, religious, caste—is acknowledged but never belabored, coming up as it naturally would in characters’ lives. The characters come from various regions and urban and rural places. The relationships characters have with parents, aunts and uncles, grandparents are layered, tinged with melancholy as secrets and debts get in the way.

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New York : Pantheon Books, [2023]
Year Published: 2023
Description: 212 pages ; 22 cm
Language: English
Format: Book


East Indians -- Fiction.
East Indians -- United States -- Fiction.
East Indian Americans -- Fiction.
Belonging (Social psychology) -- Fiction.
India -- Fiction.
Short stories.