Sunday, March 31, 2013

The World We Found

by Thrity Umrigar

I have a habit of getting stalled when reading books that I don't care for, and that is what happened with The World We Found. I kept trying to engage with the story line and I kept trying to care about the characters, but it never happened, which was a huge disappointment given how much I liked Ms. Umrigar's previous novel The Space Between Us.

The theme had potential. Four girl friends who have been separated by time and circumstance try to reunite when one discovers she is dying of cancer. The problem was their friendship seemed to rest solely on one event that Umrigar kept rehashing. And although the characters had some interesting aspects, they were underdeveloped and came across poorly.

In this book, Umrigar tried to present both political and religious tensions in India. Through one of the women's marriage, she offered a compelling perspective on the status of Muslim women within their homes and societies, but then failed to take a stance. She also highlighted some political and social tensions through the husbands, but again just presented the issues without a particular point of view, which is good for a newscaster, but not so much for characters in a novel.

At least this meets one of the reading challenge's title requirements.

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