Video: Stories

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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Dec 18, 2007 - Fiction - 208 pages
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The ten exquisitely crafted stories in Video introduce a gifted new writer whose straight-forward, elegant prose and bewitching storytelling talent combine in brilliant miniatures of contemporary Indian life.

In the title story, an Indian man’s chance exposure to a Western-style porn film affects not only his marriage—his wife hides for hours, then days, then weeks at a time from his renewed desire—but also his neighborhood, as traditional notions of marriage, intimacy, and propriety confront the unspeakable, and the tacitly alluring. In “The Sculptor of Sands,” a superbly imagined mystical tale with the depth and resonance of legend, a slight young man’s sensuous sand sculptures transfix a seaside community and, despite their evanescence, leave an indelible impression on the women of the town. In “My Grandfather Dreams of Fences,” an aging landlord, convinced that his worker is stealing his land, desperately clings to the vestiges of a rigid class system, erecting fences with fervor while his dignity falls into disrepair. And in “The Lodger in Room 726,” a boy who daily brings breakfast to the new tenant in a rooming house unleashes a cascade of emotions previously unknown to him when he pursues his fantasy that the man is a well-known murderer on the lam.

An astonishing debut, written with a wry intelligence and an irresistible blend of humor, wit, and pathos, Video masterfully evokes traditional Indian culture as it confronts the onrush of change. In subtle gestures and keenly ob-served details, Meera Nair reveals an entire world of gleaming particularity and transcendent emotional power.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Video: stories

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Tension between the traditional customs of India and changes wrought by an encroaching Western culture is ubiquitous in Nair's first-rate debut collection. In the title story, for instance, Nair ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - heina - LibraryThing

Far from being the best collection of Subcontinental short stories, it's an okay read. Read full review


Title Page
The Lodger in Room 726
Sixteen Days in December
The Curry Leaf Tree
My Grandfather Dreams of Fences
A Certain Sense of Place
Vishnukumars Valentines

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About the author (2007)

Meera Nair was born and raised in India and came to the United States in 1997 to study creative writing. She received an M.A. from Temple University and an M.F.A. from New York University, where she was a New York Times fellow. Her stories have been published in The Threepenny Review and Calyx. Nair lives in Brooklyn with her husband and baby daughter.

From the Hardcover edition.

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