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Bestselling author Indu Sundaresan presents a candid and stunning collection of stories about contemporary Indians and the cutting-edge issues surrounding themwhere ancient tradition and modernity can often clash.A young woman who was adopted by an American family in Seattle receives a letter from Sister Mary Theresa, nun at the Convent of Little Flowers in Chennai whereBestselling author Indu Sundaresan presents a candid and stunning collection of stories about contemporary Indians and the cutting-edge issues surrounding them — where ancient tradition and modernity can often clash.A young woman who was adopted by an American family in Seattle receives a letter from Sister Mary Theresa, nun at the Convent of Little Flowers in Chennai where she stayed as a child. Unbeknownst to her, the nun is her biological mother's sister. The grandmother of an Indian journalist begs him to intervene with her husband — his grandfather — to prevent a young widow from being burned alive. A child born out of wedlock to the sixteen-year-old daughter of a peon on an engineering college campus throws the entire family into turmoil.With the lush prose, vividly rendered settings, complex and appealing characters, and compelling narratives, the stories that comprise In the Convent of Little Flowers illuminate the lives of Indians at home and abroad today, where modernity offers them opportunities that their grandmothers only dreamed of, while others experience just as much oppression as ever. Indu Sundaresan brings together stories that both embrace and reject modern values with an authenticity that only a writer of her caliber could do....

Title : In the Convent of Little Flowers: Stories
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781416586098
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 216 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

In the Convent of Little Flowers: Stories Reviews

  • Athisaya Divya
    2018-12-06 10:07

    I am a big fan of short stories and quick reads and I liked this book - In the Convent of Little Flowers . Some short stories are intense and mostly talk about lives of Indian women and the struggle they undergo. What was refreshing and interesting about this book was that each short story talks about a different issue and is set about a different class or society in India. Coming from South India, I could relate myself to some of the situations. Indu Sundaresan's writing has a different personality, that makes you turn pages and leaves much to the reader's imagination. The stories leave you thinking about the various characters even after you have finished the book. The book had more of a sad and intense tone to it, with most stories having a sad ending. It would have been better, had Indu included some stories with happy endings and also portrayed the bright side of Indian culture in few of the stories. I liked the postscript, where the author includes snapshots of her life which inspired her to write these short stories.

  • Janet
    2018-11-21 10:20

    I just finished many present-day trips to India in the pages of Indu Sundaresan's brilliant new short story collection: IN THE CONVENT OF LITTLE FLOWERS (Atria Books).The fabric of these stories is silken, the flow of language itself transports the reader. Though the stories vary in time and place, all of the striking stories take unflinching looks at human relationships. All explore the question of human value.In "Shelter of Rain" A young doctor, Padmini Marrick, receives a mysterious letter from The Convent of Little Flowers -- the orphanage she left after her adoption at the age of six to come to America. Now her long lost mother is finally contacting her. Why?In "The Faithful Wife" a reporter tries to stop a town from committing Sati, the ritual burning of a widow -- the widow is twelve years old.In "The Key Club" wives are highly valued, but there's a catch.There are too many stories to name here but the tale entitled "Three and a Half Seconds" has to be mentioned. It is riveting and terrifying, all the more so because it is based on a real story of a son's escalating parental abuse.IN THE CONVENT OF LITTLE FLOWERS is a book to own, cherish, and reread for its beauty and its unflinching look at humanity. Pick up a copy as soon as you can.

  • Marie
    2018-12-15 09:07

    I cannot believe I am giving a book of short stories four stars. I am most definitely NOT a short story person. But these won me over.I ended up with this book because I ordered it on Paperbackswap, and somehow it escaped my attention that it was a collection of short stories. So once I owned it, I had to read it! It was my first book by Indian-born Seattle author Indu Sundaresan, but it will definitely not be my last.The stories--most of them about the lives of Indian women--were heartbreakingly sad and poignant, but beautifully written. Concerning the Indian traditions of suttee, the banishment of widows, arranged marriage, women falling from grace for sex or pregnancy out of marriage, intercaste dating or marriage, parents giving up their lives and rights to their male children, etc., Sundaresan manages to evoke the beauty and flavor of India while also exposing its underbelly and the extremely difficult conditions women face there every single day. As those of you who read my book reviews know, I am fascinated with India at the same time as I am horrified by its treatment of women. My husband and I got engaged there, and I have some fond memories of our month there, but at the same time I do not have a desire to return any time soon. Reading stories like these makes me realize how fortunate I am to live in the U.S. and have the opportunities and freedom I have as a woman. They also make me wonder how I would react to the cultural restrictions and boundaries, not to mention the violence and abuse, imposed on women in countries like India...would I, like Sundaresan, have the courage to leave my country and make my home in a place where I could more freely express myself? Or would I not be the same spirited, opinionated woman I am today if I were born into a culture like that?

  • Lesley
    2018-12-05 06:20

    After reading The Twentieth Wife by this author, I found this collection of short stories and bought it... WOW, glad I did! Every story was different and fascinating. There are some pretty sad and depressing stories, but all were really well written and insightful.

  • Elena
    2018-12-18 10:25

    I love indian writters.Nevertheless Indu Sudaresan was grown up in the USA, her delightful way of writting amuses me.

  • Peeyush Kumar
    2018-12-13 05:17

    Don't let the low rating of the book and the negative reviews for the book befool you. This is an amazing book and most of the short stories in the collection are amazing and compelling characterised by heartfelt and passionate characters coming from different walks of life which most of us have seen in India. These stories are not the like great stories you often hear about, but they are soulful and being set in contemporary India and are the stories of the people you either are intimate with or you know them well and the modern issues surrounding them — where ancient tradition and modernity can often clash. Her prose and wit may not match with Lahiri but it is flourishing and all those disappointing lives of the people in the stories may not make you cheer or dance but their wide variety of forms will make you animate for sure.

  • Ladiibbug
    2018-11-29 06:15

    Fiction - Short StoriesAuthor Indu Sundaresan continues her superb, powerful writing. Her short stories focus on the deeply entrenched cultural and caste system that affect Indian women's lives and choices (or lack thereof). Various aspects of India's centuries-old cultural and caste systems are explored in these well developed stories. I was very impressed with the perfection of Ms. Sundaresan's character and plot development, not always achieved in many short stories.Some of these stories were upsetting, depressing and emotionally hard to read. I did have to take a couple breaks after particularly harrowing and powerful stories, but reading them revealed a world I didn't know existed.

  • Lakshmi Mohan
    2018-12-03 08:29

    3.5 stars, maybe.I was never a big fan of short stories. I am of the impression that even though they are meaningful and really well written, they end too soon. Indu Sundaresan had me hooked with her books on Indian historical fiction and I felt I should give this book a chance. It didn't disappoint. The stories were really good. Giving the readers an insight into life as it is in India, each story is distinct and covers a diverse array of social issues.

  • Anneke Alnatour
    2018-12-07 06:30

    Rather enjoyable collection of stories. Some stories I definitely preferred over others, but I like that the author tried to write stories beyond what we usually get to read when it comes to stories from India. "The Key Club" does come to mind, certainly not the best story in the collection, but a memorable one. A fast read, and did not disappoint.

  • Rasyachari
    2018-11-18 05:17

    Random browsing landed me on this book.. I havent heard of the author and thought will just pick it up and i am so glad i did. In the Convent of Little Flowers by Indu Sundersan is a heavy book, yet the book doesnt weigh on you.. A collection of short stories which deal with various issues like adoption, old age, selfless love, jealousy, lust. It reminds you a little of classics as the author beautifully outlines the emotions, the set up.. Like she mentions " The intense moment" a person feels at various events in life and you can relate to them.. Quick and breezy read which makes you ponder a little and at times, you might just be caught nodding your head unknowingly, as you agree and relate to them!

  • Nags
    2018-11-26 02:13

    While reading the book, I kept forming words in my head to review it. Now that I am done, all I have are the visions that keep coming and going from the different stories. All of them are set in India, mostly the South, and they are strong. It felt like drinking a double strong shot of espresso and then you realise that the espresso you have been drinking so far was just not strong enough. The author has mentioned in the afterword that most of the stories were inspired by true incidents, and that makes sense. No imagination can be this strong, the element of truth has to come from somewhere, not fiction. Some of the stories are going to stay with me for a long time.

  • Marisa
    2018-11-17 10:11

    Indu Sundaresan is, as promised on the back cover of "In the Convent of Little Flowers," a gifted storyteller. Each short story in this collection is sharp, unexpected, insightful, and startling. Although I am more of a novel person than a short story person, I highly recommend this. I gave it three stars because of my general ambivalence towards the short story format, but in all honesty, there is nothing I would change about this book. It's like a whirlwind tour of India itself: you get to take a quick and devastatingly beautiful look at different parts of the country, but you don't get to stay in any one place long enough to really fall in love with it.

  • Ronda
    2018-11-19 07:10

    This book was a series of short stories based in India. It was a little depressing for me. I would have loved to have had a few more happpier stories mixed in with the depressing ones. Some themes that I found most prominent throughout the stories were greed, elder abuse, and of course women being treated like chattel. Not my favorite topics, however, it was an easy and fast read. I don't think I would recommend this book but I understand the novels that the author Indu Sundarsan wrote are quite wonderful.

  • Pygmy
    2018-12-13 08:12

    After the first story, the three that followed after were horrifying and super depressing. Sadism, murder, torture, rampant victimization, betrayal or inaction of bystanders who just go with the flow/tradition no matter how wrong it is.If you want to subject yourself to some dark (but well-written) reading material that will make you question your faith in humanity, then I recommend at least having a unicorn chaser on standby. As for me, life is tough enough without having to rage against fictional people and their messed up lives (or deaths, as is more often the case).

  • Kelly McCloskey-Romero
    2018-12-04 02:23

    Wow. Story after story about awful events in India. Pettiness, greed, reactionary attitudes, and disappointment all collide to cause pain to all or most of the characters. There are very few rays of hope. It's well written and compelling, so hard to put down, but ultimately so depressing that it gave me a stomachache. I've read my fair share of tragic stories about India (a Fine Balance is a fine example), but these stories take every bad thing I've heard about India and wrap the country in misery. Is it important to immerse oneself in such a dark world?

  • Wendi
    2018-12-14 10:24

    I assumed this would be stories about the convent or the orphanage, but instead, it is another sad book with stories about people who do not value family and the consequences. A depressing book that leaves you thinking about your own values and the consequences of choices you've made in the past regarding your family. What are your values? Is your family more important to you than your religion or your traditions?

  • Darla
    2018-12-15 03:07

    Tragic, heartbreaking, and beautiful. I usually don't care for short stories, but I didn't want to put this down. I highly recommend it as an insightful, beautifully written quick read."Do you notice, as you go through life, how many people think they have a say in it? How many people give you advice for various useless reasons? They've lived longer; they know better; they are just smarter.""When freedom comes too easily it is not valued..."

  • Anita
    2018-12-18 03:30

    Indu Sundaresan is definitely one of my favorite authors. After reading this book, I remembered why I loved her writing so much. She has a knack for pulling the reader in and not letting go until you're finished; and then you're wanting more. This collection of stories was a perfect example of that, especially since there are so many different types of stories that will get you thinking. My favorite story was "Fire" and second was the title story. ENJOY!

  • Yvonne
    2018-12-10 06:05

    Sundaresan weaves some pretty dark stories here filled with ghosts from the past, the modern clashing with tradition and even a tale of something other worldly.Three and a Half Seconds is probably the saddest one of all as Chandra and Meha meet their end in such an unexpected and painful way.All the stories are full of hurt and pain and that can make it hard to really enjoy the book but in the end it's all an honest look at how the generations change and treat the generations before them.

  • Anne-Marie Hodge
    2018-12-04 08:15

    This is a collection of dark but very moving stories, and it does an excellent job of portraying the difficulties of confront major changes in life, whether they happen suddenly or progressively. It reminds me very strongly of Nathan Englander's story collections, albeit set in India rather than in Jewish communities.

  • Rajeshree Vejasegaran
    2018-12-04 04:22

    In the Convent of Little Flowersby Indu Sundaresan comprises of several short stories that potrays the life of Indian women today who are struggling to preserve the ancient traditional believes while embracing modernism in India and abroad. Beautifully written with tragic and painful ends.

  • CK
    2018-11-18 10:09

    Oh dear me, you're no Jhumpa Lahiri, are you? But you really wanna be. Get thee to a writing class, my dear. Or maybe just stop trying so hard. (Forgive me for being harsh, but then you did go and make such a spectacle of yourself, what with all of the east-meets-west, already-been-done-before-by-authors-so-much-more-talented-than-you-so-why-even-go-there schtick.)

  • Michaela Evanow
    2018-11-20 03:13

    Couldn't finish it. A terrible read. Clunk, piecemeal Indian literature. Don't waste your time on this collection of short stories. They are depressing, with no hope, and Indu Subndaresan's style does not impress me. I've read a lot of books by Indian authors, have lived in India, and can stomach a depressing read, but these stories were just hard to follow and boring.

  • Amanda
    2018-11-29 10:27

    I couldn't do this one. It gets a DNF (did not finish). It's short stories and I think I read three and two were TERRIBLY depressing, and the first one was pretty depressing. I just couldn't do another one. Of course Sundaresan wrote them beautifully and it saddens me that I'll miss out on her amazing writing because of the sad stories but I just had to stop.

  • Diane Luzar
    2018-12-18 05:14

    This book of short stories regarding India's ancient cultures and how they can still affect Indians of today was so well written. Yes, each story is sad and even violent at times but the way the author writes with such descriptive prose made me turn each page enthusiastically. Her writing alone would make me want to read more by her.

  • Luminalsl
    2018-12-18 03:29

    Je ne m'attendais pas du tout à des nouvelles aussi fortes, aussi coup de poing ! La première histoire en tout cas ne laissait pas du tout présager un tel panel par la suite ! Mais chaque nouvelle est prenante et poignante et surtout très dures ! Beaucoup m'ont touché et vont me rester pour un bon moment. Une très belle plume que je recommande !

  • Anne
    2018-12-05 06:06

    Indu being one of my favourite authors,I bought this book of short stories..This was unlike most of her other historical fiction novels..I liked most of the stories..loved the title story..They are well written and Indu’s writing style takes you to that era ..I am now proud to have read all of Indu’s books and now eagerly waiting for her to write more!

  • Karen
    2018-12-13 08:27

    Nice writing but each of these short stories felt like the agonizing climax to a longer story. They were all so overwrought that it was hard to enjoy them, especially reading them one after another. I should check whether this author has any novels so the drama could be interspersed with more lighthearted material.

  • Emily
    2018-12-04 08:24

    I love this author, but the third(?) story in the collection, about the couple that jumps off a balcony was so sad that I couldn't pick the book back up. I was sad for days after I read that story....

  • C Marcia
    2018-11-25 04:04

    It was definitely interesting to see this author make the trip from historical fiction novels to modern fiction short stories, but I think she did a really good job. I enjoyed her other books as fluff reads, but this was a bit more substantial.