Love and Longing in Bombay: Book summary and reviews of Love and Longing in Bombay by Vikram Chandra

Love and Longing in Bombay

Stories

By Vikram Chandra

Love and Longing in Bombay
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  • Published in USA  Mar 1997,
    268 pages.

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Book Summary

Chandra's collection of interconnected stories begins in an out-of-the-way bar in Bombay, as an enigmatic civil servant, Mr. Subramaniam, recounts an extraordinary sequence of tales to those seated around him. Each of the tales is rich in character and atmosphere and falls into a distinct genre: "Dharma" is a ghost story in which a soldier recuperating from a leg amputation discovers that his house is haunted by the spirit of a young child; "Kama" follows a detective as he investigates a murder and discovers a web of sexual and political misdoings; and in the love story, "Shanti," a twin brother is consumed by his love for a married woman.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Love and Longing in Bombay stands out as a considerable accomplishment, one in which the author marries his storytelling prowess to a profound understanding of India's ageless and ever-changing society." - The New York Times.

"Each sumptuous and suspenseful tale is strikingly different from the others even as they all reflect the intricacies of Indian culture and Chandra's profound sensitivity to the vagaries of the heart and the implacability of circumstances." - Booklist.

"A brilliant work, equally effective in its radiant separate parts and as a pleasingly complex and highly original construction." - Kirkus Reviews.

"Impeccably controlled, intelligent, sensuous and sometimes grim, Chandra's timeless and timely book is remarkably life-affirming, considering the dark areas of the heart he explores." - Publishers Weekly.

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Author Information

Vikram Chandra Author Biography

Photo: Melanie Abrams

Vikram Chandra was born in 1961 in New Delhi. and completed most of his secondary education at Mayo College, a boarding school in Ajmer, Rajasthan. After a short stay at St. Xavier's College in Mumbai, he came to the United States as an undergraduate student. In 1984, he graduated from Pomona College (in Claremont, near Los Angeles) with a magna cum laude BA in English, with a concentration in creative writing.  He then attended the Film School at Columbia University in New York. While in the Columbia library he happened upon the autobiography of Colonel James "Sikander" Skinner, a legendary nineteenth century soldier, born of an Indian mother and a British father.  This book inspired him to write his first novel Red Earth and Pouring Rain, most...

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