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Cereus Blooms at Night Paperback – October 27, 2009
Everything We Keep: A Novel
On the day of her wedding, she buried her fiancé—and unearthed shocking secrets. Learn More
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Books are, obviously, a matter of personal taste and I know people ( who I bought copies for) who hate this book. I take issue with the reviewer who compares it to The Color Purple though. As far as I know the human condition is sadly limited to a few experiences. One might as well say that any book that writes about falling in and out of love is plagiarizing another. I suspect the only problem with Cereus is that it is such an intimate book..written from such a particular perspective about a particular place that it may not resound with all readers.
One of my friends in Trinidad who grew up in great poverty says that the book takes him back to his childhood and the little comfort corner in his mother's shed - I couldn;t put it better.
I woul also suggest getting her book of poetry..well worth it.
As an Irish born, half-Trinidadian Canadian I love this book....I hope that one day I will have the pleasure of meeting the author.
The author weaves a rare magical realism around the eerie life of Maya Ramchandin. The novel begins with the mystery surrounding Mayaâ€™s arrival in the alms house - a fragile old woman strapped to the stretcher, feared by all. The mystery only deepens as the nurse assigned to her, Tyler, tries to make sense out of the crazed ways of Maya and figure out the crime she was accused of committing. With every page the pathos of Mayaâ€™s life is laid bare - an average child who unwittingly has to pay the price for the acts of her elders- her mother, her aunt and her father. Maya is, abused, deserted and betrayed by family and friends. Traumatised she cuts herself from the world and finds refuge in nature
â€œ..Mayaâ€™s companions were the garden birds, insects, snails and reptiles. She and they and the abundant foliage gossiped among themselves. She listened intently. With an ear pressed to the ground she heard ant communities building, transporting food and breeding. She listened to worms coiling arduously from place to place. She knelt on the ground and whispered to the grass and other young plants encouraging them to grow, â€¦â€
Isolated Maya becomes an illusion, pople know she exists but no body has seen hernot she has no contact with people . To me, there could not have been a more fitting name for the heroine of this brilliant novel. Maya, in hindi, implies illusion. So much is Maya one with nature that Otoh or the cops fail to discern her presence under the mudra tree. A memorable passage in the novel is the transformed atmosphere of Mayaâ€™s garden when the cereus blooms at night. The whole place is abuzz and comes alive. The description is magical and appeals to each of our senses like the Odes of Keat's.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not my favorite, but great for studying patriarchy and sexuality in the Caribbean.Published 2 months ago by Marisa
Read it for school. There are disturbing family events, but its a good read. Definitely makes you think about things and be thankful for what you have.Published 7 months ago by K
One of the most beautiful books I ever read. a modern classic.Published 15 months ago by Samantha Jones
Favorite Fiction Book a deep complex story of love and identity.Published 19 months ago by Eliza J. Combs
You go Shani Mootoo. I loved the novel. The story was complicated and dished out in portions but all the better to digest when you reach the end.Published on February 4, 2014 by Gretna B
This is a breathtaking story with chilling ethical and moral challenges that haunted me beyond the reading of the book.Published on November 20, 2013 by Elke Martin
A few months ago when I reviewed Shani Mootoo's most recent novel, Valmiki's Daughter, I prefaced the review with an admission that I already loved Mootoo's writing before I even... Read morePublished on August 16, 2012 by caseythecanadianlesbrarian
A voice screams out at you, The momentary embrace of the eyes in a far away camera glance. A dismissal of worth. Read morePublished on April 13, 2012 by M. Vanveenendaal