Parul Kapur Hinzen

Book Reviews

Parul’s wide-ranging book reviews and interviews with leading American authors such as Richard Ford, Karen Russell and Isabelle Wilkerson can be found at

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
The Sea by John Banville

"Tracking Shifing Sands of Memory"
When the Irish writer John Banville recently won the Man Booker Prize, Britian's top literary award, it surprised many people, not just because he won against bigger names - Zadie Smith and Kazuo Ishiguro - but also because his theme seems so much smaller than theirs.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Sightseeing by Rattawut Lapcharoensap

"Sultry Collision"
Given the scarcity of Thai literature in English, translated or orginial, we have not witnessed the ways in which ordinary Thai people think, feel and see the world. Talented young writer Rattawut Lapcharoensap, who was born in Chicago and raised in Bangkok, opens up contemporary Thailand as new ficitional territory in Sightseeing, his debut collection of seven stories.

New York Newsday
A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth

"Purdah and Prejudice"
Gossip seems a legitimate place to begin discussing a novel that goes to extremes, is comic at moments, is glib in parts and resists looking beneath the surface of anything. A good deal of speculation surrounded the making of this big book, which, at 1,349 pages, sits like a couple of bricks in your hands.

Show Business New York Newsday
Show Business
by Shashi Tharoor

"Mogul India"
India is a country mesmerized by the movies - great, gaudy, lushly sentimental melodramas, whirring with music and dance - and it's a wonder that no Indian writer has contemplated this phenomenon in fiction until now.

Daughters of the house New York Newsday
Daughters of the House by Indrani Aikath-Gyaltsen

"A Woman Finds Power, Rooted in Isolation"
Indrani Aikath-Gyaltsen's provoking and ultimately disquieting first novel about a young Indian woman's struggle for autonomy reverses the conventional feminist stance that a woman is liberated only when she breaks loose from the confines of home.

American Book Review
by Thomas Bernhard

"Done in by Society"
"Nothing matters," exclaims an acquaintance Thomas Bernhard encounters by chance on a Salzburg street, twenty-five years after he first knew him. Bernhard, the acclaimed Austrian novelist and playwright, recalls in his autobiography Gathering Evidence the nostalgic lunch he shares with the man, now a drunken bare-chested construction worker.

Sultana's Dream American Book Review
Sultana's Dream and Selections from The Secluded Ones
by Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain

"Women in Hiding"
It's remarkable that Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain - essayist, educator, and occasional fiction writer - ever wrote a word. Born in 1880 into an orthodox Indian Muslim family that kept its women in seclusion (purdah) and denied them an education, she grew up learning to read in secrecy. Her teacher was a sympathetic older brother who tutored her in English and Bengali late at night when the household was asleep and they were safe from discovery.





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