Chitra Divakaruni’s novel One Amazing Thing is the All Henrico Reads book for 2015/16. You may have heard Divakaruni’s name before in connection with Mistress of Spices, an earlier novel that was made into a popular movie.
As is customary for selected authors, Henrico County will be sponsoring a talk by Ms. Divakaruni scheduled for Wednesday, April 13 @ 7pm in the Glen Allen High School auditorium. Read more in yesterday’s RTD article about it.
If you’d like to participate in a spring discussion about this book shortly after we return from spring break (we come back to school on Monday, April 4), please complete the online sign-up form.
Here’s the Amazon.com book description:
Late afternoon sun sneaks through the windows of a passport and visa office in an unnamed American city. Most customers and even most office workers have come and gone, but nine people remain. A punky teenager with an unexpected gift. An upper-class Caucasian couple whose relationship is disintegrating. A young Muslim-American man struggling with the fallout of 9/11. A graduate student haunted by a question about love. An African-American ex-soldier searching for redemption. A Chinese grandmother with a secret past. And two visa office workers on the verge of an adulterous affair.
When an earthquake rips through the afternoon lull, trapping these nine characters together, their focus first jolts to their collective struggle to survive. There’s little food. The office begins to flood. Then, at a moment when the psychological and emotional stress seems nearly too much for them to bear, the young graduate student suggests that each tell a personal tale, “one amazing thing” from their lives, which they have never told anyone before. And as their surprising stories of romance, marriage, family, political upheaval, and self-discovery unfold against the urgency of their life-or-death circumstances, the novel proves the transcendent power of stories and the meaningfulness of human expression itself. One Amazing Thing is a passionate creation about survival–and about the reasons to survive.