Rakesh Satyal / No One Can Pronounce My Name

Wednesday, May 17, 2017 - 7:30pm
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Booksmith is excited to host Rakesh Satyal for his anticipated second novel, No One Can Pronounce My Name. With him in conversation is K.M. Soehnlein. Join us!

 

In a suburb outside Cleveland, a community of Indian Americans has settled into lives that straddle the divide between Eastern and Western cultures. For some, America is a bewildering and alienating place where coworkers can't pronounce your name but will eagerly repeat the Sanskrit phrases from their yoga class. Harit, a lonely Indian immigrant in his mid forties, lives with his mother who can no longer function after the death of Harit's sister, Swati. In a misguided attempt to keep both himself and his mother sane, Harit has taken to dressing up in a sari every night to pass himself off as his sister. Meanwhile, Ranjana, also an Indian immigrant in her mid forties, has just seen her only child, Prashant, off to college. Worried that her husband has begun an affair, she seeks solace by writing paranormal romances in secret. When Harit and Ranjana's paths cross, they begin a strange yet necessary friendship that brings to light their own passions and fears.

 

 

“Affecting, kindhearted, and infectiously readable, No One Can Pronounce My Name is full of memorable characters joined by their yearning to belong. Rakesh Satyal spins a funny and unpredictable multigenerational tale that glitters with warmth and wisdom.” (Maria Semple, New York Times bestselling author of Where'd You Go, Bernadette? and Today Will Be Different)

 


 



 

 

A big-hearted, hopeful, and often very funny novel about the unpredictability of love… as well as a celebration of how, in America, it's never too late to rethink who you are – or who you might become. Satyal has created a set of characters you'll cheer for. – Hanya Yanagihara, New York Times bestselling author of The People in the Trees and A Little Life

 

This humane, moving, and very funny book offers something precious and rare: a novel devoted to the life-giving bond of friendship. Through a quintessentially American tale of misfits and dreamers, Rakesh Satyal has given us a fresh vision of America: a country of strangers seeking connection, of households lit with contrary desires, held together by resourceful and enduring love. – Garth Greenwell, author of What Belongs to You

 

No One Can Pronounce My Name is a warm, life-affirming story of reckoning with past secrets, forging unexpected bonds, and finding the strength to be yourself. This big-hearted, utterly charming novel explores immigrant experience and family life with humor and compassion. – Celeste Ng, New York Times bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You

 

Rakesh Satyal writes with both tender empathy and sly wit, and his characters are vulnerable, admirable, and idiosyncratic. No One Can Pronounce My Name beautifully explores the challenges of asserting individuality in the face of societal and cultural proscriptions. Movingly and believably, Ranjana and Harit find each other, and then, thanks to their lovely friendship, themselves. – Kate Christensen, author of The Great Man and The Astral


 



 

 

Rakesh Satyal is the author of the novel Blue Boy, which won the 2010 Lambda Literary Award for Gay Debut Fiction and the 2010 Prose/Poetry Award from the Association of Asian American Studies. Satyal was a recipient of a 2010 Fellowship in Fiction from the New York Foundation for the Arts and two fellowships from the Norman Mailer Writers' Colony. His writing has appeared in New York magazine, Vulture, Out magazine, and The Awl. A graduate of Princeton University, he has taught in the publishing program at New York University and has been on the advisory committee for the annual PEN World Voices Festival. He lives in Brooklyn.

 

K.M. Soehnlein is the author of the Lambda Literary Award-winning debut, The World of Normal Boys; its sequel, Robin and Ruby; and the novel You Can Say You Knew Me When. His writing has appeared in Out, The Village Voice, San Francisco Magazine, and other publications. He teaches at the University of San Francisco. Follow him @kmsoehnlein.

 

 

RSVP appreciated but not required. If you cannot attend the event, but would like a signed copy of No One Can Pronounce My Name or any of the authors' books, place your order below and include your request in the comments section.

 

 

 

 

Books: 
No One Can Pronounce My Name Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781250112118
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Picador USA - May 2nd, 2017

The World of Normal Boys Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9781496707888
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Kensington Publishing Corporation - May 31st, 2016