After Lowland, this is the long-awaited new novel by Pulitzer-winning Jhumpa Lahiri.
Lahiri’s new short novel Whereabouts, originally written in Italian and later translated into English by herself, is a story of an Italian woman in her forties, who lives alone and is insecure and at times, a stranger to herself. The book does not mention her name and the city she lives in. However, the readers get a wonderful view of the city’s landscape as they take regular walks with the protagonist through the city.
The protagonist seems comfortable in the city she lives in and has never really left it. She is happy with what she has. She is not highly ambitious but likes her work at a university, where she is a popular educator. Yet she remains alone. The more one dives into this book, the more her loneliness and melancholy come to light, and the image of a strong woman begins to crumble. Her loneliness makes her look closely at the people around her on the streets, at the manicure, in the supermarket, on the train.
Jhumpa Lahiri, known for her fine powers of observation and precision in portraying characters, has created a moving atmospheric picture of a woman who reaches a turning point in her life and whose fate is unquestionably going to touch the readers’ hearts.