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Roopa Farooki, Author . St. Martin's $24.95 (355p) ISBN 978-0-312-37556-0

Aspirations and family ties play out across three generations of the Khalil family in Farooki's fine new novel (after Bitter Sweets ). Lucky Khalil is a talented young soccer player with his sights set on taking the World Cup home for England. His father, Jinan, is the serious-minded, hard-working son of a Pakistani immigrant, married to Delphine, a modern-day Madame Bovary who's longing for a more romantic, less ordinary existence. The patriarch of the Khalil family, Zaki, is a shopkeeper and gambler with wanderlust and an attraction to his son's wife. When Delphine gives in to Zaki's advances, family bonds are stretched to the breaking point. As the characters make inroads on their ambitions, the cross-purposes of their desires and responsibilities threaten to crush the family. This complex saga can be challenging to follow through its shifting points-of-view, but it's worth the ride for the flawed yet likable cast who question what, exactly, leads to a more fulfilled life. This character- and culture-rich novel will appeal to Jhumpa Lahiri and Zadie Smith fans looking for quainter fare. (Feb.)

Reviewed on: 12/01/2008
Release date: 02/01/2009
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 353 pages - 978-0-330-44364-7
Paperback - 355 pages - 978-0-312-57787-2
Ebook - 368 pages - 978-1-4299-8911-4
Open Ebook - 300 pages - 978-0-330-53108-5
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