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The Romantics Pankaj Mishra is one of the most promising talents of his generation, and this stunning, universally praised novel of self discovery heralds a remarkable careerThe young Brahman Samar has come to the holy city of Benares to complete his education and take the civil service exam that will determine his future But in this city redolent of timeworn customs, where pilgrims bathe in the sacred Ganges and breathe in smoke from burning ghats along the shore, Samar is offered entirely different perspectives on his country Miss West and her circle, indifferent to the reality around them, represent those drawn to India as a respite from the material world And Rajesh, a sometimes violent, sometimes mystical leader of student malcontents, presents a jaundiced view More than merely illustrating the clash of cultures, Mishra presents the universal truth that our desire for the other is our most painful joy

About the Author: Pankaj Mishra

Pankaj Mishra is a noted Indian essayist and novelist.In 1992, Mishra moved to Mashobra, a Himalayan village, where he began to contribute literary essays and reviews to The Indian Review of Books, The India Magazine, and the newspaper The Pioneer His first book, Butter Chicken in Ludhiana Travels in Small Town India 1995 , was a travelogue that described the social and cultural changes in India in the context of globalization His novel The Romantics 2000 , an ironic tale of people longing for fulfillment in cultures other than their own, was published in 11 European languages and won the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum award for first fiction His book An End to Suffering The Buddha in the World 2004 mixes memoir, history, and philosophy while attempting to explore the Buddha s relevance to contemporary times Temptations of the West How to be Modern in India, Pakistan and Beyond 2006 , describes Mishra s travels through Kashmir, Bollywood, Afghanistan, Tibet, Nepal, and other parts of South and Central Asia.

10 thoughts on “The Romantics

  1. says:

    The novel is a coming of age tale that s practically Victorian Our protagonist, but a mere spectator of a modern and exciting merger between East and West Living in India, Samar is an intellectual who loves to read He has this gift to take on Western classics like

  2. says:

    Pankaj Mishra is another of those writers from Asia influenced by V.S Naipaul and it shows here in his first novel The succinct sentences and reflections on the small dramas of ordinary life are familiar The book is madepleasant than some of Naipaul s writing by the refr

  3. says:

    The Romantics is, in many ways, about the unbridgeable gap between two disparate cultures between the supercilious sense of superiority which the West holds over the East, a feeling which is perpetuated by those who claim to hold an affinity to the East, seeking to reduce it s

  4. says:

    The Romantics, Mishra s only novel, is well stated, with a lovely use of language and semantics But if I, an unestablished not yet emerging author, had written this novel for a creative writing class, I m sure it would have come back to me slashed and bleeding red ink all over the pla

  5. says:

    This is Pankaj Mishra s first book Since the book is set in Varanasi, I had to read it But frankly i was quite disappointed to read it A depressing book, it follows the pseudo acceptance of the West s fascination and way of looking at Varanasi There is no coherence of central plot or idea an

  6. says:

    86th book for 2019.A beautifully observed story, set in 1980s Benares, where a young Indian has gone to self educate themselves by reading classic novels, and ends up learning as much about life through the simple action of living as much as by reading words.Made me nostalgic for my confused twenti

  7. says:

    Giving this three stars because of an amazing beginning The 100 first pages were so good, I was definitely thinking this would be a 5 star rating The culture clash between Europeans and Indians was so interesting to delve into, especially from an Indian point of view However, after 100 pages the plot just

  8. says:

    Well at least I finished it this timeBoredom got to me last time I tried to read this book The narrator is a dull, insecure observer who doesn t reveal enough of himself or others for this reader to be drawn into his world Samar reminisces about his time as a student in the holy city of Benares, where he hoped t

  9. says:

    Pankajbhai disappoints I abandoned this book half way when I realized that all that I was doing was wasting my time and being rendered melancholic.I expected the book to be a colorful account of Pankaj Mishra s days in Dehradun It does not deliver The characters, the Romantics are a bunch of shallow, pretentious indivi

  10. says:

    The Romantics, by contemporary Indian author Pankaj Mishra, seems to be his only novel Which is a pity, because I really enjoyed it.Last weekend I went to a Melbourne Writers Festival session called Bookwallah, which I thought was going be a promotion of Indian writing, but instead the session turned out to be primarily journ

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