The space between us novel
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Umrigar's schematic novel after Bombay Time illustrates the intimacy, and the irreconcilable class divide, between two women in contemporary Bombay. Bhima, a year-old slum dweller, has worked for Sera Dubash, a younger upper-middle-class Parsi woman, for years: cooking, cleaning and tending Sera after the beatings she endures from her abusive husband, Feroz. Sera, in turn, nurses Bhima back to health from typhoid fever and sends her granddaughter Maya to college. Sera recognizes their affinity: "They were alike in many ways, Bhima and she. Despite the different trajectories of their lives—circumstances The younger generation—Maya; Sera's daughter, Dinaz, and son-in-law, Viraf—are also caged by the same strictures despite efforts to throw them off. In a final plot twist, class allegiance combined with gender inequality challenges personal connection, and Bhima may pay a bitter price for her loyalty to her employers.
Set in present-day Mumbai, India , the novel follows the lives of two women: Serabai Dubash, an upper-middle-class widow, and her domestic servant, Bhima. The pair experience similar situations in their lives: abuse, the death or absence of a husband, a pregnant dependent, and the hope for a better future. Told using an omniscient third-person narrative in mainly present tense , the novel incorporates Hindi words and phrases amongst predominantly English text. Influenced by Umrigar's real-life experience with the employer-servant relationship, the novel explores social class in India and the division of power in society. Umrigar, who was born and lived in Mumbai until the age of twenty-one, modeled Bhima after a domestic servant of the same name who worked in her childhood home and for whom Umrigar had much admiration.
The Space Between Us is the second novel by Thrity Umrigar, published by William Morrow and Company in January Set in present-day Mumbai, India .
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By Thrity Umrigar. HarperCollins Publishers. IN the classic upstairs-downstairs story, you always have a sneaking suspicion that downstairs, freed of corsets and etiquette, the servants are having a lot more fun than their prim, monocled masters. But no such palliative exists in the world of Thrity Umrigar's second novel, which examines the class divide in Bombay as Umrigar continues to call Mumbai through the relationship of a mistress and her servant. In a city where the densest slums have a population of one million per square mile, "downstairs" is fairly grim. It's hardly surprising, then, that Bhima, the longtime housekeeper of a middle-class Parsi widow named Sera, has had a life of woe: her once loving husband was crippled in an industrial accident, took solace in alcohol and eventually. At the novel's start, her orphaned granddaughter, the first in the family to get a proper education, has dropped out of college because she's pregnant.
The Space Between Us , Thrity Umrigar's poignant novel about a wealthy woman and her downtrodden servant, offers a revealing look at class and gender roles in modern day Bombay. Alternatively told through the eyes of Sera, a Parsi widow whose pregnant daughter and son-in-law share her elegant home, and Bhima, the elderly housekeeper who must support her orphaned granddaughter, the two women have a bond that goes far deeper than that of employer and employee. Through their triumphs and tragedies, Sera and Bhima always shared a bond that transcended class and race; a bond shared by two women whose fate always seemed to rest in the hands of others, just outside their control. Told in a series of flashbacks and present day encounters, The Space Between Us gains strength from both plot and prose. A beautiful tale of tragedy and hope, Umrigar's second novel is sure to linger in readers' minds. In the classic upstairs-downstairs story, you always have a sneaking suspicion that downstairs, freed of corsets and etiquette, the servants are having a lot more fun than their prim, monocled masters. But no such palliative exists in the world of Thrity Umrigar's second novel, which examines the class divide in Bombay as Umrigar continues to call Mumbai through the relationship of a mistress and her servant.
The Space Between Us
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The Space Between Us book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Set in modern-day India, it is the story of two compelling.
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