We’re delighted to see that Amitava Kumar’s Immigrant, Montana appears on The New York Times’ list of 100 Notable Books of 2018, stating that;
Kumar’s novel of a young Indian immigrant who recounts his loves lost and won as a college student in the early 1990s has the feeling of thinly veiled memoir. It’s a deeply honest look at a budding intellectual’s new experience of America, filled with both alienation and an aching desire to connect.
Published in the UK by Faber & Faber and under a different title, The Lovers in India, Knopf released the title in the US.
One winter morning, a monkey stole into Mamaji’s room. He climbed on the huge white bed and finding Mamaji’s pistol brandished it — they say — at my cousin, born two months after me and still in her crib. No one moved. Then, turning the pistol around, the primate brain prompting the opposable thumb to grasp the trigger, the monkey blew his brains out.
Meet Kailash. AKA Kalashnikov. Or AK-47. Or just plain AK. His journey from India has taken him to graduate school in New York where he keeps falling in love: not only with women - Jennifer, Nina, Cai Yan - but with literature and radical politics, the fuel of youthful exuberance. Each heady affair brings new learning: about himself, about America, and his relationship to a country founded on immigration, but a country that is now unsure of the migrant's place in the nation's fabric. How do you educate yourself in belonging when you are in a constant state of exile?
Immigrant, Montana is the story of AK's sentimental education. His intellectual, emotional, and romantic journey gives the book a new narrative form, one that thrillingly reinvents the campus and postcolonial novel through wry, comic intelligence. A sharp cultural satire for a generation losing an ideological sense of itself, Immigrant, Montana is erotic and tender, provocative and playful - a meditation on courage and endeavour, and what it takes to truly be heroic.