Fireflies by Shiva Naipaul Download (read online) free eBook (PDF ePub Kindle)

Fireflies

Fireflies tells the story of Trinidad’s most venerated Hindu family, the Khojas. Rigidly orthodox, presiding over acres of ill-kept sugarcane and hoards of jewellery enthusiastically guarded by old Mrs. Khoja, they seem to have triumphed more by default than by anything else. Only ‘Baby’ Khoja, who is parcelled off into an arranged marriage with a bus driver, proves an exc

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    James

    Jul 04, 2014

    rated it
    it was ok

     · 
    review of another edition

    Shelves:
    fiction,
    family

    I waited a long time to write the review of this book as I struggled to find anything meaningful in my own response to it.

    The Khojas are The preeminent Indian family in Trinidad, not least in their own estimation, and the story starts with a minor family member being parceled out in an arranged marriage to a bus driver and then follows her life over the years.

    Published by VS Naipul’s younger brother Shiva in 1970, the book garnered a certain amount of acclaim and then was “rediscovered” more re

    The Khojas are The preeminent Indian family in Trinidad, not least in their own estimation, and the story starts with a minor family member being parceled out in an arranged marriage to a bus driver and then follows her life over the years.

    Published by VS Naipul’s younger brother Shiva in 1970, the book garnered a certain amount of acclaim and then was “rediscovered” more recently. The book reminded me a lot of “a house for Mr. Biswas” which I enjoyed much more perhaps for no other reason than I read it first. This made me feel rather sad for Shiva, who was described by Paul Theroux who to continue his streak as worst family friend ever described him as a drunken sot overshadowed by the towering presence of his brother.

    Judging the book on its own merits I struggled to find anything funny about it at all, the humour felt awfully dated and more than a little sneering. The highlight for me was the slow development of affection and in the arranged marriage combined with the sadness that the lack of recognition of this contentment. This was the only part which felt rooted in a empathetic reality.
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