Alibi V.12 No.44 • Oct 30-Nov 5, 2003 

Art Article

The Namesake: A Novel

Jhumpa Lahiri
Houghton Mifflin
hardcover
$24

Jhumpa Lahiri has already been hailed as one of the best young writers to hit the scene in years. Her short story collection, Interpreter of Maladies, won a Pulitzer, a New Yorker Debut of the Year award, a PEN/Hemingway and buckets of acclaim from critics and readers all over the world. By most accounts, her new novel, The Namesake, possesses the same kind of self-assured, unflashy storytelling grace that's quickly built her international literary reputation. The novel tells the story of an Indian-American man who's unfortunate name—Gogol Ganguli—causes him all kinds of trouble as he struggles with limited success to assimilate into American culture. Advance readers have praised the book for its humble, unaffected narrative and believable characters. This should be a good one.