In these eleven stories of novelistic breadth and ambition, global tensions and harmonies come alive as rarely seen in contemporary fiction. Shivani takes the measure of the fallout from globalization as well as its advantages, exploring diverse cultures to gauge their ultimate resiliencies.
An undocumented Indian worker in Dubai, an Issei man in a California internment camp, a persecuted Baha’i novelist in contemporary Tehran, a Chinese-American conservator at a Boston museum, a Hungarian gypsy girl in 1950s rural Indiana, a dissatisfied Muslim industrialist in post-independence India, and a loyal-to-the-core Jewish trader in the Ottoman empire—these are the kinds of strong, sympathetic, fully realized characters who bridge place and individuality in this powerful collection.
The genre of multicultural/postcolonial short fiction will never be the same again. These stories push us to confront the hardest intellectual challenges of the emerging world, while never letting go of narrative urgency, concision, and lyrical power.