Chenrx من عند Tharwahi, Bihar, الهند
I know this is considered Roth's masterpiece and there were several reasons that I can appreciate his writing in this novel. He describes everything, from the glove making industry to Newark, New Jersey to the Weather Underground with such detailed precision that you think that he must be a verified expert in each of those categories. However, something that he is not an expert in is Jainism. The main character's daughter converts to Jainism at a pointin the book (after she has been in hiding for several years for bombing a post office) and his description of the newly Jain girl makes you think she is a complete and utter freak. She doesn't wash herself, doesn't brush her teeth, chants mantras all day...she's portrayed as a crazy person. I understand that part of what he was going for was the irony that someone who had done something so violent is now obsessed with a religion which is based on non-violence and that he's saying that her obsessive nature has made her an extremist in these beliefs as well. But...there aren't that many major Western works that talk about Jainism at all and I thought it was disturbing that this is the image that's out there in this widely read novel.