Friday, April 30, 2010


As I restart my computer again and again, hoping for a few minutes of activity from my daylight simulation software before my computer freezes it, I am reading pages from The Inheritance of Loss, by Kiran Desai. (Previously I have read A Hullabaloo in the Guava Orchard by the same author. I am thinking of re-reading that book.) I shall have more to say about this book; there is a lot to say. It is a very good book.

But first, explanatory geography (or "finally deciding I would stop making mental approximations of locations in my head and just look at a damn map"):

If you know some basic geography, it's fairly easy to figure out that the book is set in northern India -- they can travel (relatively) easily to Kathmandu, see Mt. Everest in the distance in other locations, etc. Though I was familiar with the word "Darjeeling" (as in "Darjeeling tea") I did not realize that it was in West Bengal state; though the characters in The Namesake, by Jhumpa Lahiri, speak in Bengali, somehow I skipped finding out that it is one of the states next to Nepal.

I also marked Gujarat on the map because that is the origin of the judge in the book. I did know where Gujarat was, though, as we had to do a solar house design project set there for building technology lab.

Edit: A quick re-check of the beginning of the book informs me that it is actually set in Sikkim state, right above Bengal, and crammed between Nepal and Bhutan.

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