Rohinton Mistry’s enthralling novel is at once a domestic drama and an intently observed portrait of present-day Bombay in all its vitality and corruption. Warm, humane, tender and bittersweet are not the words one would expect to describe a novel that portrays a society where the government is. A quarter of the way through Family Matters, Yezad divides the Indian authors who write about Partition into two camps. On the one hand are.

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It reads rlhinton though no word is wasted. You knew none of it was real, but it let you imagine there was a better world somewhere.

When he got the bill he said, Sorry, no money. The full misery of India breaks over him like a wave, with all its paradoxical accompanying dignity. Jehangir, especially, pitches right in and feeds him.

Reading “Family Matters” was sometimes sad it hurt, other times, so dramatic–I I laughed silly: India is so large and diverse that it is impossible to give a comprehensive assessment on any matterd and inevitably a story-teller has to choose a point of view.

There is plenty of anthropological information in Family Matters about Zoroastrianism – rituals of sandalwood and brazier, quirky beliefs about the cosmic significance of the cat, the cock and the spider.

It’s all a bit of a mystery

Perhaps inevitably, Nariman starts to fade into the background. Nov 14, Craig rated it it was amazing. Yezad, who is an honored employee at the Bombay Sporting Goods Emporium, tries various things to help fatten the family budget envelopes.

While there are political undertones to the book,quite definitely, two major themes being the orthodox v reform debate within the Parsi community, and communalism in Bombay following the Babri riots, and while these events materially and directly affect the lives of the protagonists, the spotlight is, to a much greater degree, matterz the characters themselves and their relationship with each other.


Like many who dream of yesteryear, it may be a Bombay that only exists in his mind but he is passionate enough to flirt with the idea of running for office himself, though he knows his election chances are slim.

The various characters in the apartment where the principal characters live. And as usual, with any story written by an Indian immigrant, I read the story personally — ultimately, this was a tribute to a city from the eyes of one far away from it, revealed through distinct memories and descriptions of photographs and rohintno to Hindi songs and idioms, and charatcers highlighting its chaotic blend of creed and religion and class.

I mean look at that title! Family Matters from BookRags.

The one thing that is common to all cultures is the difficulties in taking care of our aged parents or other family members. That the sea of life will keep us afloat for a while and then swallow us without exception is a reality that eludes us when we are on shore.

Yezad rediscovers his lost religion, becoming a regular worshipper at the fire-temple. At the opening matyers the novel, Nariman is living with his stepchildren in a large rohintoon in a building known as Chateau Felicity.

Family Matters Summary & Study Guide

While I still preferred A Fine Balance of the two stories I’ve read by him it was grander in scalethe more intimate Family Matters is still percent 5-star fare with rich, evocative, Dickensian characters, set against the sprawling, corrupt, fwmily backdrop of Bombay-soon-to-be-Mumbai, India.

This novel was another of my bibliotherapy prescriptions, specifically intended as a cure for worry about ageing parents.

How does the description of Yezad five years later p. Would things have been different if Nariman had not gone to live with Roxanne?

Family Matters

I looked up more information about Zoroastrianism Stay in Touch Sign up. The titular family matters under discussion are principally the care of the elderly Nariman, afflicted with Parkinsons and a broken ankle he is unceremoniously deposited with his daughters family, the care of whom places enormous strain on an already stretched family budget. Family Matters is a beautifully written account of both life in Bombay and the Parsi Zorastican culture as well as the universal experience of aging and for that I recommend it.


As to ageing parents, this is a pretty relentlessly bleak picture, but there are some sparks of light: This was written in – 13 years ago His return to his faith perhaps betrays a guilty conscience as it seems to give him a sense of peace that he is seeking.

Family Matters by Rohinton Mistry – Reading Guide – : Books

By following the rules, beliefs, traditions, customs, of the Parsee Zoroastrianreligion – Nariman wasn’t allowed to marry Lucy because she wasn’t of fxmily same faith.

We are experiencing technical difficulties. This is the story of a Parsi family living in Mumbai as they progress through life. Yet, another big difference between my retired professor’s friends life and most of our livesthan with Narimam, was ‘freedom-of-choice’. When the flute of life suddenly starts belting cantankerous sounds, it is easier to blame the flute maker; the chinks in our playing armour are conveniently swept beneath the carpet.

Also the repetition of everything throughout history is tackled in a smooth way which doesn’t seem forced: Not everyone will invest in the characters in such a way that the experience becomes meaningful.