Customer Reviews for

Unaccustomed Earth

Average Rating 4
( 160 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(73)

4 Star

(55)

3 Star

(18)

2 Star

(8)

1 Star

(6)

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 160 Customer Reviews
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  • Posted July 11, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Delightful Read! I did not want it to end.

    Jhumpa Lahiri has a beautiful way of drawing the reader into her characters and their stories. I actually believed that I was reading a collection of short stories until I was half way through the book when it dawned on me that I was reading a novel. Ms. Lahiri has a marvelous gift for surprise that keeps the reader in a perpetual state of wanting to learn more about her characters and their lives. Each story holds it's own on an individual basis and yet when taken collectively they make a a breathtaking collage. I would invite anyone to appreciates the written word to pick up a copy of her book and indulge themselves.

    14 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Even better than The Interpreter of Maladies

    Call me a fan of Jhumpa Lahiri's beautiful writing. I loved her first Pulitzer prize winning book of short stories and last winter when I was reading her novel, The Namesake, I heard that this book was even better than the Pulitzer prize winning short story collection, The Interpreter of Maladies. It proved to be the truth. I loved this short story collection at least as much as the first, if not more. Reading these stories transported me to familiar, yet slightly foreign, culture where I lived for the duration of my reading experience. Ending the last story was like finishing a sad but hopeful novel because a series of interrelated stories concluded the book.

    From my perspective, you can't go wrong with this author. I love her writing and look forward to whatever she publishes next. Her stories are a piece of 21st century America infused with strong cultural perspectives. Her characters are universal yet highly culturally bound...a delight to experience.

    9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 14, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Lahiri's best

    I've read all three of her books - I think this might be her best. I loved The Namesake, but she tries new techniques as a writer here. And she has the power to hit you with once sentence that just kills you in the middle of a story.<BR/><BR/>The third story - Only Goodness - really hit home for me. I'm glad the Indian community has a voice like this. And if you're not Indian, I think you might enjoy her books even more because she sheds light on a new world of Indian-American fusion. Great great book. I devoured it in a weekend - I think you'll do the same!

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2010

    Excellent Collection of Short Stories

    I just finished this book and I was impressed with the writing style and ability to keep the reader's attention. I generally do not read short stories but this book was well worth making an exception. Each story provides a vivid image of the cultural clashes the characters experience with their traditional Indian/Bengali values upon being assimilated into the western culture through their respective journeys. I especially enjoyed the "Hema & Khausik" part that explored the lives of two lovers from their childhood and how they manage to reunite after years of separation. I would recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in romance novels, Indian culture, classic literature, or anyone looking for a good book to have for a book club or to escape reality.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2010

    Wonderful Read Even if Short Stories Aren't Your Thing

    Didn't think I was a fan of short stories but these are incredible. Lahiri is an accessible yet deep writer -- Try Interpreter of Maladies too.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 5, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Touching and Heartbreaking

    For anyone who has read Lahiri's The Namesake, you know that she is a fantastic writer. In many ways, that skill becomes detrimental in this book of short stories: you become so attached to the characters that you don't want the story to end! There is beauty in the way short stories work, but I loved each one so much that I wished she would write a book about each of them. However, be prepared for unexpected endings. And by unexpected I mean probably not what you prefer. Her stories are beautiful, but at times I wished for an over-the-top magical happy ending, but this is not her. That is not to say that there is subtle beauty and happiness in the ending of each--all the characters experience epiphanic moments that are critical to their existence. However, while the book should be read by all, you may want to pick an upbeat book to read afterward.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 9, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    The stories are full of south Asian immigrant family experiences where children of fitst generation highly educated Indian sub-continent families come of age in America and their adapting to challenges of life here...

    The stories invariably bring to life immense pressure to succeed that children of first generation immigrants from Indian sub-continent face while growing up in households that straddle two cultures. While most of the characters come out of this crucible with admirable credentials and ability to balance their background and their new American identity, there are some who stumble and therein lies Jhumpa's mixture of empathy and dread of their predicament.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 26, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A Warm and Intricate Tapestry of Character

    I read Interpreter of the Maladies several years ago in a literature class and fell in love with Ms. Lahiri's style of story telling. I can visualize and actually hear the voices of her characters and feel, at times, as though I know these people. The title story, Unaccustomed Earth was the most touching of the stories, but none let me down.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 18, 2012

    Stellar.

    Extraordinary read. Dive in and don't worry about drowning.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 12, 2011

    An Insightful View of Family- Recommended Reading.

    In Jhumpa Lahiri's newest collection of short stories, she highlights the tragedies and minute triumphs of familial relations. Throughout each story, Lahiri weaves a fairly simply web. Though most of the plats are predictable, they are crafty and imaginative because they're predictable. Lahiri seems to be aware of each ploy of family life and through this, is able to render and portray emotions in imaginative ways. her placid voice is tragic, yet evokes feeling that is not generally associated with those in our lives that we are supposed to "unconditionally" love and cherish. Lahiri even made me realize things about my own family and the ability of a writer to create a connection between the reader and the characters is a talent that many writers are not graced with.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2010

    Original compilation of short stories

    Excellent book

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 28, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Another Lahiri Triumph

    I became a Lahiri fan after seeing the movie "The Namesake" then reading "The Interpreter of Maladies". If you liked either one of those novels,you will enjoy this as well. The short story format does not allow for as much character development as the author's other books, but her talent as a story teller, and her unique voice as Indian American shine through nevertheless.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2015

    L&beta

    I think l mixed up parts o.o oops. Try to number it if things move a lot. Hehe. Especially in such a large search. Pretty nice chapter though.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2015

    Cool.

    Could you possibly be more detailed, and make the stories a little longer? Otherwise, I love it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2015

    Earth Rising- Four

    Benjiro was never known to give up so easily, but he fell to his knees in utter despair. He thought about his sister, wondering if she was even safe.<p>
    "You can have me. Let her go." He said, defeated.<p>
    "No, Ben!" Callidora choked out as she was let go. She fell on the ground, fingerprints embedded on her throat. "You never give up!" She weakly blew air at the armored man's mask. "I can't do much right now, I feel like my bending is clogged." She told him, whispering softly. Benjiro nodded in agreement as they were chained up and thrown in the back of a cart filled with sacks of rice.<p>
    Over the next few hours, the ride was bumpy and uncomfortable. Benjiro faded in and out of sleep, and once he remembered the death of his mother, he slammed his head against the steel in anger, causing a welt to swell on his forehead.<p>
    "Hey, you guys alright?" A unknown voice mumbled.<p>
    "Who are you?" Callidora said, under her breath.<p>
    "Tarmon. I was captured a few days ago. This man's name is Canh, and he plans to use all the benders he catches for something probably evil and dastardly, I presume. I don't what, though."<p>
    "I'm Callidora. Airbender."<p>
    "I'm Benjiro. Avatar."<p>
    Tarmon's voice was suddenly excited. "The avatar?! Wow, that's awesome! But how did you get captured...." His voice trailed off.<p>
    "It's a long story. I'd rather not talk about it." He lay on his back, trying to unclog his chakras.<p>
    Suddenly, the doors swung open. A man with a high bun and a military uniform stood before them, scowling.<p>
    "Officer Canh will see you now."<p>
    [ heheheheh that little reference. XD well, do you ship tarmon x benjiro, callidora x benjiro, or even adlisa x benjiro so far?]

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2014

    NOT WORTH READING

    This book was interesting until....the author starting new stories about different families that never tied into the original families...my final assessment...was annoyed I wasted good money on an empty story.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 23, 2013

    Enjoyable author

    Given this book as a gift, I really enjoyed it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 16, 2012

    captivating read

    i loved this book from beginning to end. her characters are so realistic and have so
    much nuance and depth; no sugar coating here. can't wait for her next book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 25, 2010

    Finding a place

    The characters in this short story collection are varied, interesting and thoughtful. Even with the feeling that all of them could have attended a party in The Namesake (Lahiri's elegant, acclaimed novel), they are skillfully delineated and caringly presented in the transitions each confronts: whether to stay in an imperfect marriage; or to shield an incipient romance from the eyes of adult children. Lahiri's understanding of the struggle with choice is nuanced and beautifully delivered. Beyond the individual transitions, the understanding of people standing balanced between a new culture embraced cautiously and the culture left beyond the transitional airports in Europe is thought eliciting. Whether this helps with recognition of your own path, or helping to make sense of another's, this is a timely contribution and challenge to facile discourse on immigration.

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  • Posted March 18, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Great Book Club Book!

    We did Unaccustomed Earth for book club and I was amazed how successful the discussion was. Everyone- and we are a diverse range of ages and backgrounds- got something out of this book, a testament to Lahiri's remarkable weaving of generational perspectives and the juxtaposition of two cultures, old and new. It provides an opportunity to explore what it is to be a first generation immigrant and how different that is from being established in one's birth country. We discussed cultural responsibilities and the decisions the characters made for themselves in spite of or in favor of their family's expectations. Her writing style is elegant and descriptive without being flowery, and her gentle way of inviting the reader into her character's lives and minds is unique.

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 160 Customer Reviews
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