The House of Blue Mangoes: A Novel

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9780060936785: The House of Blue Mangoes: A Novel

In 1899, in the south Indian village of Chevathar, Solomon Dorai is contemplating the imminent destruction of his world and everything he holds dear. As the thalaivar, or headman, of Chevathar, he seeks to preserve the village from both catastrophe and change, and the decisions he makes will mark his family for generations to come.

A gripping family chronicle, The House of Blue Mangoes spans nearly half a century and three generations of the Dorai family as they search for their place in a rapidly changing society. The novel brings vividly to life a small corner of India, while offering a stark indictment of colonialism and reflecting with great poignancy on the inexorable social transformations of the subcontinent.

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A memorable experience is in store for the reader of David Davidar's The House of Blue Mangoes. In a similar fashion to Vikram Seth's A Suitable Boy, Davidar's ambitious novel set in India relates many stories in one, each ineluctably merging into the other. We are shown three generations of an old family in the oceanside village of Chevathar. The patriarch Solomon strives to maintain equilibrium as caste struggles begin to create harsh conflict in the village, while his sons endure triumph and disaster as India inaugurates its battle for independence and his grandson, who may be the last of the line, undertakes his own bid for independence. All of these characters are drawn with a mercurial vividness, and Davidar has a Tolstoyan sense of the larger canvas--his epic covers the spectrum of heroes and rogues, clans and dynasties, the ugly and the beautiful.

The narrative, alternately measured and hectic, richly weaves together assassinations and passionate affairs, exorcisms and beggars' banquets. Davidar's models are often stories from India's great epics, but the fascination of the everyday is never overlooked, from making a perfect cup of tea to whipping up a flavorsome biryani. Along with the tribulations of the protagonists, we are shown the various strategies Mahatma Gandhi and Winston Churchill used in their battles, and we see how the English memsahibs played their part in the downfall of the Raj. The mangoes of India, a key image in the novel, suggest the heady, ripe taste of this engrossing and thoroughly individual novel. --Barry Forshaw, Amazon.co.uk

About the Author:

David Davidar began his career in Journalism and now works In publishing. He is married and lives in New Delhli.

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Perennial ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. In 1899, in the south Indian village of Chevathar, Solomon Dorai is contemplating the imminent destruction of his world and everything he holds dear. As the thalaivar, or headman, of Chevathar, he seeks to preserve the village from both catastrophe and change, and the decisions he makes will mark his family for generations to come. A gripping family chronicle, The House of Blue Mangoes spans nearly half a century and three generations of the Dorai family as they search for their place in a rapidly changing society. The novel brings vividly to life a small corner of India, while offering a stark indictment of colonialism and reflecting with great poignancy on the inexorable social transformations of the subcontinent. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780060936785

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Perennial ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. In 1899, in the south Indian village of Chevathar, Solomon Dorai is contemplating the imminent destruction of his world and everything he holds dear. As the thalaivar, or headman, of Chevathar, he seeks to preserve the village from both catastrophe and change, and the decisions he makes will mark his family for generations to come. A gripping family chronicle, The House of Blue Mangoes spans nearly half a century and three generations of the Dorai family as they search for their place in a rapidly changing society. The novel brings vividly to life a small corner of India, while offering a stark indictment of colonialism and reflecting with great poignancy on the inexorable social transformations of the subcontinent. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780060936785

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Book Description Harper Perennial. Paperback. Book Condition: New. UNUSED, VERY GOOD, NOT EX-LIBRARY, tanned edges, marked remainder, shows signs of shelfwear, 421 pages. Three generations of an ancient family come and go in Chevathar, the village by the sea. First there is Solomon, the patriarch, manoevuring to keep the peace as caste struggles begin to encroach on the village. Then there is the story of Solomon's sons, their fortunes rising and falling as India begins its struggle for independence. Finally, there is the story of Solomon's grandson, making his own stand for independence. A host of characters enliven these pages - from Father Ashcroft, the English priest washed up in a forgotten corner of the empire, to Mrs Wilkins the planter's wife who clings to the old ascendancy, and to Helen, an Anglo- Indian beauty who brings about the final disintegration of the family. Bookseller Inventory # 16997

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