Thursday, January 5, 2012

Novelist Thrity Umrigar Kicks Off Book Tour in Lakewood Tonight

Cleveland author Thrity Umrigar appears at Rozi’s Wine House in Lakewood tonight, one of five local appearances she's making to promote her new novel, The World We Found.

The novel, released Tuesday, bridges her two disparate worlds: contemporary America and the India she knew in her youth.

Born in Bombay, Umrigar grew up in a home where books and flowers were considered indulgences.

“Every time I brought fresh flowers home, I would get a lecture on saving my money, not wasting it,” she tells Stuart Warner in "Life In Motion," Warner's profile of Umrigar in the January issue of Cleveland Magazine.

In 1983, Thrity Umrigar left her family and flew to the United States. Inspired by Joan Baez’s doleful song “Banks of the Ohio,” she headed to Ohio State University, where she received her masters in journalism. Umrigar turned to writing novels after writing for newspapers for nearly 20 years.

“There were things I wanted to say, worlds I wanted to describe, people I wanted to memorialize," she tells Warner. “None of that was possible in journalism.” Her second book, The Space Between Us, became an international hit.

The World We Found tells the story of four Indian women who grew apart 30 years ago. In their youth, they wanted to change the world, but life took them away from their youthful idealism. One made the bold decision to marry a Muslim, who became a conservative fundamentalist after. Another moved to America. Diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor, she invites her friends to the U.S. in hopes of a reunion.

Thrity Umrigar will also be signing her book at the Woodmere Barnes and Noble (28801 Chagrin Blvd.) January 10 at 7 pm, the Hudson Library (96 Library Street) January 12 at 7 pm, the Berea branch of the Cuyahoga County Public Library (7 Berea Commons) January 14 at 2 pm, and the Coventry Village Library (1925 Coventry Road, Cleveland Heights) February 1 at 7 pm.

Tonight’s event at Rozi’s Wine House, 14900 Detroit Avenue in Lakewood, is a benefit for the Lakewood Public Library. Tickets, $35, can be purchased online or at the door.

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