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Fire on the Mountain Paperback – 2008


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Paperback, 2008
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 159 pages
  • Publisher: Random House (2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 818400057X
  • ISBN-13: 978-8184000573
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 5.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,396,306 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By HORAK on February 2, 2007
Format: Paperback
Nanda Kaul, an elderly lady, decides to live a secluded life in Carignano in Kausali. All she wishes to entertain is stillness and calm in this period of her life. All her life the care of others, her 3 daughters and her husband the vice-consul has been a religious calling she has believed in, a vocation that one day went dull as though its life-spring had dried up. She suffered from nimiety, the disorder caused by the fluctuating and unpredictable excess of the presence of family members, friends and acquaintances.

When one day Nanda receives a letter from her daughter Asha asking her to take care of her great-granddaughter Raka, a feeling of anger, disappointment and loathing arises in her. She doesn't feel like conversing again, she doesn't want to make sure of another's life and comfort, she doesn't want to get involved anymore.

Upon Raka's arrival they work out means by which they can live together and each feels she is doing her best at avoiding the other. Nanda is a recluse out of vengeance for a long life of duty and obligation, Rak is a recluse by nature and instinct. Her parents have long given up to try to socialise her. But slowly the child has the capacity to change things and Nanda discovers new needs within herself. When finally violence explodes, she has to face the truth.

An original novel full of delicate observations about human nature and parental relationships.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Neily Trump on February 29, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Set in contemporary India; Nanda Kaul has finished raising her family - children, grandchildren, greatgrandchildren - and seems to want nothing more than to be left alone in her remote hillside home to finish out her days in isolation, peace and quiet. That is until her greatgranddaughter Raka is unexpectedly left with her while the child's mother is ill. Raka is even more remote and independent in nature than Nanda Kaul. The style of writing is poetic; that is, there is no excess of words, and what words are there create vivid images. The story is character-driven, thus proceeding at a slow pace. And it is sad. I would definitely not recommend this book to readers who prefer their stories to wrap up neatly and with happily-ever-after endings.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By amina on December 2, 2003
Format: Paperback
like nanda kaul, every one of us tries to cope with life, its reality, its horrors, the best way we know. but a human being can do, can PRETEND only as far as life, as far as FAITH will let her/him. once the lies we pretend are our life go up in flames, it is only appropriate that the rest of the world goes up in flames as well. i think that a very 'nice', rather ironic touch is given by the fact that the 'world' (the mountain) is set on fire by nanda kaul's own flesh and blood, the one from her family who is most like herself.
for ME this was an excellent book, which doesnt mean u will necesseraly like it. if ur looking for some meaning, maybe this book could help u find some. it surely helped me.
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By Nayana Chekka on September 20, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
In the beginning I had to force myself to plod through the pages. I was reading this for my book club and hence forced myself through. Eventually I began to line it. The complexities and the sadness of the characters get to you. You are slowly drawn into this broken characters of Nanda Kaul and Raka. Ila Das seals the deal and you are lost in the tragedy of their lives.

If you are looking for a tale of hope, then this is definitely not one for you. The narrative is slow and dragging and I could not wait yo get to the end of it.
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1 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 22, 2001
Format: Paperback
This book is boring. The book is character driven, but it never gets deep enough into the characters to make them interesting. It's overly wordy and too descriptive to the point that it is excessive and overloaded beyond the point of being able to draw an accurate image of what is being described. I only finished the book because it was pretty short, but even that took me a while because it was so slow and boring.
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