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October 07 , 2010

Hullabaloo in the Guava Orchard

A Novel


Winner of the 2006 Man Booker Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction for her second novel The Inheritance of Loss, Kiran Desai is one of the most talented writers of her generation. Now available for the first time as a Grove Press paperback, Hullabaloo in the Guava Orchard-Desai’s dazzling debut novel-is a wryly hilarious and poignant story that simultaneously captures the vivid culture of the Indian subcontinent and the universal intricacies of human experience. Sampath Chawla was born in a time of drought into a family not quite like other families, in a town not quite like other towns. After years of failure at school, failure at work, of spending his days dreaming in tea stalls, it does not seem as if Sampath is going to amount to much-until one day he climbs a guava tree in search of peaceful contemplation and becomes unexpectedly famous as a holy man, sending his tiny town into turmoil. A syndicate of larcenous, alcoholic monkeys terrorize the pilgrims who cluster around Sampath’s tree, spies and profiteers descend on the town, and none of Desai’s outrageous characters goes unaffected as events spin increasingly out of control.

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