Thrity Umrigar biography, plus links to book reviews and book excerpts from books by Thrity Umrigar.

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Thrity Umrigar

Thrity Umrigar

Thrity Umrigar: thri-tee oomrigar

Thrity Umrigar Biography

Thrity Umrigar is the author of three other novels—The Space Between Us, If Today Be Sweet, and Bombay Time—and the memoir First Darling of the Morning. A journalist for 17 years, she is the winner of the Nieman Fellowship to Harvard University and a 2006 finalist for the PEN/Beyond Margins Award. An associate professor of English at Case Western Reserve University, Umrigar lives in Cleveland.

Link to Thrity's website

This biography was last updated on 01/17/2014.

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Interview

Thrity Umrigar discusses her life and her books, Bombay Time and The Space Between Us, and the reality of servitude in India.

Tell us a little bit about your growing up years.

Well, I was born in Bombay and lived there until I was 21, when I came to the U.S. I was raised in a joint family, which meant I grew up around very loving aunts and uncles. And since I was an only child, it helped to have all those extra adults in my life, for love and guidance. I've always had many sets of parents and even today, have a knack for "adopting" parents.


What do you remember most about growing up in Bombay?

I have two overriding childhood memories or impressions: One, was always being excruciating aware of the poverty around me. Now, as a middle-class kid, you're not supposed to be that aware of--or certainly not supposed to be tortured by--the poverty around you. It's a defense mechanism of sorts, to be able to ignore it. For whatever reason, I was never able to ignore it and to some extent, it really affected my childhood, made me a hypersensitive child.

Two, I always wrote. Writing was my way to make sense of the world outside and inside my home. Despite the recollections of the adults in ...

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Books by this Author

Books by Thrity Umrigar at BookBrowse

Recommended in Detail at BookBrowse

The Weight of Heaven
The Weight of Heaven

by Thrity Umrigar

Filled with satisfyingly real characters and glowing with local color, The Weight of Heaven is a rare glimpse of a family and a country struggling under pressures beyond their control. Umrigar illuminates how slowly we recover from unforgettable loss, how easily good intentions can turn evil, and how far a person will go to build a new world for those he loves.
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Thrity Umrigar but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Aravind Adiga

    Aravind Adiga

    Aravind Adiga was born in 1974 in Madras (now called Chennai), and grew up in Mangalore in the south of India. He was educated at Columbia University in New York and Magdalen College, Oxford. His articles have appeared in ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Weight of Heaven

    Try:
    The White Tiger
    by Aravind Adiga

  • Monica Ali

    Monica Ali

    Monica Ali is the daughter of English and Bangladeshi parents.

    She came to England at the age of three, and her first home was Bolton in Greater Manchester. Ali later studied at Oxford University.

    Her first novel, Brick ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Space Between Us

    Try:
    Brick Lane
    by Monica Ali

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