Cracking India

Cracking India

by Bapsi Sidhwa

Paperback(Reprint)

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Overview

Cracking India by Bapsi Sidhwa


The 1947 Partition of India is the backdrop for this powerful novel, narrated by a precocious child who describes the brutal transition with chilling veracity. Young Lenny Sethi is kept out of school because she suffers from polio. She spends her days with Ayah, her beautiful nanny, visiting with the large group of admirers that Ayah draws. It is in the company of these working class characters that Lenny learns about religious differences, religious intolerance, and the blossoming genocidal strife on the eve of Partition. As she matures, Lenny begins to identify the differences between the Hindus, Moslems, and Sikhs engaging in political arguments all around her. Lenny enjoys a happy, privileged life in Lahore, but the kidnapping of her beloved Ayah signals a dramatic change. Soon Lenny’s world erupts in religious, ethnic, and racial violence. By turns hilarious and heartbreaking, the domestic drama serves as a microcosm for a profound political upheaval.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781571310484
Publisher: Milkweed Editions
Publication date: 02/09/2006
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 289
Sales rank: 380,528
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.90(d)
Age Range: 9 - 12 Years

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Cracking India 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Don't waste your time on this book if you're ignorant and unaware of the Hidden Holocaust, the partition of India, which claimed a million lives, and about which little has been written. If you are aware of the history, however, you will fall in love with the simple but powerful and thought-provoking prose and the truth-is-stranger-than-fiction semi-autobiographical story line. The narrative is first-person told by a little Parsee girl but the canvas is humanity itself: how a partition conceived as a simple geographical device generates a fundamentalist political torrent and uncages the demons inside all of us. The novel is impossible to put down if you understand the background.
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This was the first book I had to read for my Post-Colonial Literature class. On the first day, my teacher asked us, "So, what happened in 1947?" No one said anything. WWII ending? Something involving something? To which she replied, "The Indian Partition? 1 million people killed? 13 million displaced? 100,000 women raped and mutilated?" I had no idea. Before you read this book, you should read up some on the history of India. The main religious groups: Muslims, Sikhs, and Hindus. Also, read up on the Parsis and the roles that they have played in India's history.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a well-written, gripping story of the effect of India's partitioning on the lives of ordinary people in a city along the new border. It reminds us of how mob psychology and fear can turn friends against one another and cause certain personalities to commit atrocities. Too bad humanity doesn't learn from such cautionary tales; just look at the Middle East, Bosnia, Africa, Russia, ... My brother-in-law survived the partitioning, and now I better understand what he's never told us. Ms Sidwal is an adept storyteller who can maintain the distinct personalities of all the characters from beginning to end. The plot is quite believable. This is a great book.