Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Dear Great Book Guru,  This is a big weekend in Sea Cliff with the Chill Out starting Friday at 5:30 on the Village Green and then Saturday with the  Civic Association's  always popular Progressive Dinner. Last year this event was doomed twice over, first by Hurricane Sandy and then by the Blizzard of 2013. Well, this year the weather forecast looks fine and with its many  guests and hosts  signed  up since last year, this sellout event promises to be spectacular.  However busy the weekend, of course, there is always time for a good book- what do you recommend?                              Chilling and Dining Out in Sea Cliff

Dear Chilling and Dining,  What fun awaits us this weekend, and you are right- there is always time for a good book -and I have a very good book to recommend: THE LOWLAND by Jhumpa Lahiri. Set in Calcutta, Rhode Island, and California, told in alternating chapters by four generation of the Mitra family, this is a tale of promising beginnings and tragic endings, and all that happens in between. The Mitra brothers- fifteen months apart- are the archtypical Cain and Abel . Subhash is gentle, responsible, fearful while Udayan is daring, resourceful, and violent.  The student unrest movements of the '60's  here and in India fuel the plot but its heart lies in the bittersweet unfolding of the lives of these brothers. Universal questions of what makes a moral life , what  one owes parents, siblings, spouses, children, country, and what sins are unforgivable-  all these make for a profoundly moving  book!

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