[fusion_builder_container backgroundcolor=”” backgroundimage=”” backgroundrepeat=”no-repeat” backgroundposition=”left top” backgroundattachment=”scroll” video_webm=”” video_mp4=”” video_ogv=”” video_preview_image=”” overlay_color=”” overlay_opacity=”0.5″ video_mute=”yes” video_loop=”yes” fade=”no” bordersize=”0px” bordercolor=”” borderstyle=”” paddingtop=”20px” paddingbottom=”20px” paddingleft=”0px” paddingright=”0px” menu_anchor=”” equal_height_columns=”no” hundred_percent=”no” class=”” id=””][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][fusion_text]Nine strangers from very diverse backgrounds find themselves in the middle of a catastrophe in the office of an Indian consulate in an American city. All are applying for visas to travel to India for various reasons only to find themselves trapped. There is very little food, no electricity, no phones, and water rising in the office. As the situation becomes dire and they anxiously await rescue, survival is paramount. Each character falls into a role that slowly takes shape as the hours and minutes tick by; the leader, the survivor, the caregiver, the outcast, the military. Each one struggles with the psychological stress of their dilemma as they wrestle to find their own way to cope with their tenuous situation. Then the young grad student suggests that they each take a turn to share “One Amazing Thing” about themselves to help to pass the terrifying time. The tales that enfold are heart breaking, private and intimate, revealing a great deal about the characters to each other as much as the characters recognize their own strength and weaknesses.
“We think that that terrible events have made us into stone. But love slips in like a chisel—and suddenly it is an ax, breaking us into pieces from the inside.”
The prose and style of the writing is intense, fluid and touching, really drawing the reader into their narrow world at this point. Each character has their own story to tell – some will satisfy and some will disappoint. The reader will decide.
The ending – what to say. This is the kind of ending the reader will either love or hate. Some discussion has developed that the ending was intentional vs. that the author ran out of steam OR that there was a sequel already in the works. Since it was published in 2010, the hopes for a sequel are dwindling. For me, the ending fit though it did leave room for my imagination to take flight. Chitra Divakaruni takes the reader on a bumpy ride with a tale of survival.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]