Jhumpa Lahiri’s new novel Whereabouts to release in April | Sunday Observer

Jhumpa Lahiri’s new novel Whereabouts to release in April

18 April, 2021

Genre – Fiction
Translator - Jhumpa Lahiri
Publisher - Penguin
Random House India

Pulitzer prize-winning writer Jhumpa Lahiri’s new novel after a decade Whereabouts is to be launched in April (this month). It follows Lahiri’s 2013 novel ‘The Lowland and 2006’s The Namesake’. The book is originally written in Italian and was translated into English by herself. It is the story of a woman protagonist and her journey through life.

“This is a story of a woman protagonist who longs to belong but dares not conform, who is moving through her life in a city that almost becomes her companion.

“From the sidewalks, parks, and bridges to the pool and the train station that leads her to her grieving mother after her father’s untimely death, she moves through the city, one season after another. Until one day, her perspective changes and the life, as she knows it, is transformed,” the publisher said in a statement.

As Lahiri said to India media this book was “born from my love of a new language”. Exuberance and dread, attachment and estrangement, in this novel, Jhumpa Lahiri stretches her themes to the limit. The woman at the center wavers between stasis and movement, between the need to belong and the refusal to form lasting ties. The city she calls home, an engaging backdrop to her days, acts as a confidant: the sidewalks around her house, parks, bridges, piazzas, streets, stores and coffee bars. We follow her to the pool she frequents and to the train station that sometimes leads her to her mother, mired in a desperate solitude after her father’s untimely death.

This is the first novel she has written in Italian and translated into English. It brims with the impulse to cross barriers. By grafting herself onto a new literary language, Lahiri has pushed herself to a new level of artistic achievement.

- Ravindra Wijewardhane

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