That Long Silence

Shashi Deshpande

fiction
emotional reflective slow-paced
Jaya's life comes apart at the seams when her husband is asked to leave his job while allegations of business malpractice against him are investigated. Her familiar existence disrupted, her husband's reputation in question and their future as a family in jeopardy, Jaya, a failed writer, is haunted by memories of the past. Differences with her husband, frustrations in their seventeen-year-old marriage, disappointment in her two teenage children, the claustrophia of her childhood—all begin to surface. In her small suburban Bombay flat, Jaya grapples with these and other truths about herself—among them her failure at writing and her fear of anger. Shashi Deshpande gives us an exceptionally accomplished portrayal of a woman trying to erase a 'long silence' begun in childhood and rooted in herself and in the constraints of her life.

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