The Caretaker by A. X. Ahmad
What’s it about?
This literary thriller finds Captain Ranjit Singh working on Martha's Vineyard as a caretaker. Captain Singh is a former Indian military officer that left India in disgrace. On the island he inadvertently becomes caught up in a secret, international cover up that puts himself and his family in danger.
What did I think?
This is a great beach read or travel book. Captain Singh is a Sikh (a monotheistic religion found mostly in India) and this informs his daily life. The book was interesting, and also a quick page-turner. I did find the beginning a little slow, but once it picked up steam it was really good.
Should you read it?
Pick this one up for your next plane flight!
“Ranjit looks away. Any more self-disclosure, and the next time the Senator sees Ranjit, he’ll be distant and aloof. That’s just how rich people are, their bursts of fellowship followed by a great remove.”
If you like this try-
Marry, Kiss, Kill by Anne Flett-Giordano
Silence Once begun by Jesse Ball
The English Girl by Daniel Silva
Norwegian by Night by Derek B. Miller
The Tsar of Love and Techno by Anthony Marra
What’s it about?
This is a collection of short stories that are so interrelated, the book reads almost like a novel. Most of the stories revolve around Kirovsk, an industrial mining city, located in Siberia. A place I hope never to go. The stories span from the 1930's to present day Russia. As time moves forward the Chechen war also plays a role in the book.
Anthony Marra's, "A Constellation of Vital Phenomena" was one of my favorite books a couple of years ago. I seem to be on a phase of revisiting author's I have appreciated. So far I have not been disappointed.
What did it make me think about?
This is a great book, and like all great books, it made me think a lot! How did a political ideology that was begun to help the masses, end up being so cruel to all but a few? Anthony Marra gives us a glimpse into this world of communism and what has been left in it's aftermath. It was a harsh existence, and it leaves behind a legacy.....
Should I read it?
I am sure this book will garner tons of awards and recognition. However I would recommend it because it is a beautiful book. Somehow Anthony Marra is able to show humor and love in the worst of situations.
"We wanted to become gangsters, but who could we look up to? Where are our heroes? Our fathers drove gypsy cabs, washed dishes, and pumped gas, their blood so timid a guillotine couldn't make them bleed. They longed for the old days, not because their lives had been better, but because there had been an equality of misery back then. We were the sons and we wanted more."
If you liked this try-
A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra
The Orphan Master's Son by Adam Johnson
The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen
Girl at War by Sara Novic
9 1/2 stars
some favorites of the last decade
best of winter 2020
best of summer/fall 2019
best of winter/spring 2019
best of summer/ fall 2018
best of winter/spring 2017-18
best of spring/summer 2017
best of winter
best of summer 2014
last spring favorites
on my nightstand
edge of your seat
― Charles William Eliot
3 to 4- I found some aspect of this book redeeming but would not recommend it.
5 to 6- I really enjoyed something about this book (characters, plot, meaning etc.) but it was uneven. Some aspects were stronger than others.
7 to 8- It was a good book. I liked lots of aspects of this book. I would recommend it.
9 to 10- I was sorry to turn the last page. I highly recommend this book!