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If You See Me Don't Say Hi

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Race for this collection They are connected to one another and have a completely different feel to the rest of the collection The writing feels refined and the exploration of people relationships and emotions is somewhat nuanced I think if the entire collection had been written with the same flair it could have potentially been a five star read I received this via Goodreads Giveaways in exchange for an honest review 35 stars overallA well done collection of stories Actually enjoyed all of them Not that I wasn t expecting to but sometimes it is in the back of my mind when I pick up any short story collection Loved taking the time to savor theseNo complaints about this one Definitely re read material down the road Individual ratings God of Destruction 3 stars Hare rama hare krishna 4 stars hey loser 35 stars ust a friend 35 stars if you see me don t say hi 4 stars the taj mahal 35 stars the other language 35 stars these Things Happen 35 Stars An Arrangement 35 Stars World Famous happen 35 stars an arrangement 35 stars world famous stars radha krishna 3 stars IF YOU SEE ME DON T SAY HI bristles with unexpected meetings and reunions recognitions and failed recognitions passions and estrangements of all kinds These stories have a sharp eye for the complexities of modern life but Neel Patel writes with the wisdom and compassion of an old soul Somewhere between 45 and 5 stars rounding upWith his debut story collection If You See Me Don t Say Hi Neel Patel serves notice that he is a talent to be reckoned with The 11 stories in this collection are packed with emotion and turn people s perceptions and stereotypes of most Indian Americans on their ear Some of the characters in these stories follow traditional paths while others are anything but traditional they re Facebook stalking exes or creating schemes to facilitate booty calls But in each of these stories the characters face moments of truth and often need to make a split second decision which could have significant ramifications These dilemmas give the stories extra weight and make them compulsively readable I read this entire book in one dayI really enjoyed all of the stories in this collection but my favorite stories included Just a Friend in which a young gay man wants to know the secrets his older married boyfriend has been hiding but doesn t uite expect what he finds out God of Destruction which tells of a woman enchanted by the wi fi repairman Hare Rama Hare Krishna which uxtaposes a teenager s navigating his parents marital troubles with his acknowledgment of his own sexuality and all of the good and bad that comes with that and the title story which follows the tumultuous relationship of two brothers from the teenage years through adulthoodThe last two stories in the collection World Famous and Radha Krishna are connected and are the two I loved best The stories follow a young man and a young woman who were thrown together as children but went their separate ways and then reconnected in adulthood only to find that both had been scarred by their lives then they d care to admit These stories were poignant and thought provoking so different than I was expecting and I could have read a novel with these two characters That is the case with some of the other stories tooPatel imbues his stories with humor emotion sexuality empathy even surprise at times He creates some characters you will root for and feel for and others you might dislike or not uite understand There is a warmth to his writing but he doesn t put his characters on a pedestal he lets you see them the way others see themI thought this was an excellent story collection and definitely heralds Patel as someone I am going to follow in the future I know not everyone is a short story fan but these are stories with some emotional heft so they feel worth the investment of your timeNetGalley and Flatiron Books feel worth the investment of your timeNetGalley and Flatiron Books me an advance copy of the book in exchange for an unbiased review Thanks for making this available See all of my reviews at itseithersadnessoreuphoriablogspotcom or check out my list of the best books I read in 2017 at. Stalking The men and women in these stories are full of passion regret envy anger and yearning They fall in love with the wrong people and betray one another and deal with the accumulation of years of subtle racism They are utterly compelling Ranging across the country Patel’s stories empathetic provocative twisting and wryly funny introduce a bold new literary voice one that feels timely than ev. ,
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Day conventions eg Facebook stalking which I may or may not do often Yay for the representation of ueer people of color I am grateful to Patel for his hard work in refining his craft and sharing his voice LOVE AND LOSS follow the characters in these eleven beautifully written stories They follow various scenarios in the lives of characters of Indian descent maintains their own customer while navigating new lives in the states The title story is so usual the one that stands out and concerns two brothers who the one that stands out and concerns two brothers who close fall out over a careless comment one of them makes Their estrangement will last ten yearsThe last two stories are connecting stories about a man and woman once involved and picks up at two different points in their lives To be honest though I enjoyed reading them all which doesn t happen very often when reading g shorts The Indian customs culture foods are explored iin different stories An Indisn online dating service is featured in the firstThe first offering by this author and he is a very smooth writer a natural storyteller The stories flow the prose gorgeous with some wonderful insights Looking forward to from this author and apparently he is now at work on his first novel Indian American Patel s short story collection is comprised of eleven tales of young men and women flailing in their attempts to find meaningful relationships Patel s characters are not afraid to seek friendship or lovers but communication seems inevitably to go sideways resulting in frayed friendships and broken hearts afraid to seek friendship or lovers but communication seems inevitably to go sideways resulting in frayed friendships and broken hearts seems to sum it up with a uote taken from God of Destruction Happiness is a currency that when it goes it goes and few people are willing to give you some of theirs All of Patel s characters are Indian Americans living in Illinois but their cultural heritage is not a major component There is an arranged marriage in Hare Rama Hare Krishna and several of the stories have characters feeling their parents expectations to achieve excellent grades be admitted to premier universities and become doctors and there is the occasional story where the character encounters racist taunts and bullying But for the most part the characters Indian culture is irrelevant Rather they are universal coming of age stories where the protagonists are both sympathetic and yet flawed Enjoy If You See Me Don t Say Hi is a collection of eleven fictional short stories about different experiences of first generation Indian Americans The stories are written with the goal to subvert the model minority myth and break down stereotypes I am not Indian so I cannot say whether Neel succeeded in his endeavour from an own voices point of view I do however find it interesting that each story contained a character that was either a doctor engineer lawyer or something of the sort and in terms of the model minority myth that aspect seemed to somewhat contradict the purpose of the book The stories explore a variety of intriguing themes such as identity love betrayal sexuality and mental stories explore a variety of intriguing themes such as identity love betrayal sexuality and mental with relationships and sex being the central focus in most if not all stories Because of the similar themes in every story by the third one it starts to feel repetitive and mundane especially since infidelity was a consistent theme throughout Ultimately the characters feel one dimensional due to the lack of variety in voices and storylinearcs The stories are almost a retelling of themselves and I found myself uestioning whether the characters were flawed and realistic or ust extremely unlikable and if I m honest I think it is of the latterI wasn t particularly fond of some of the dialogue written for the female characters and felt some descriptions to be tasteless Describing women s body parts like molds of gelatin and pillows of dough ust seems like lazy writing and every time I read a description like that I cringed In addition to that there is some racial dialogue that I thought were problematic and further perpetuates certain stereotypes rather than breaking themThe last two stories World Famous and Radha Krishna were the saving Ld never guess; three women who almost gleefully throw off the pleasant agreeability society asks of them; and in the final pair of linked stories a young couple struggling against the devastating force of community gossip If You See Me Don't Say Hi examines the collisions of old world and new world small town and big city traditional beliefs like arranged marriage and modern rituals like Facebook. .
15 starsHighly avoidable One dimensional characters in stories that are extremely repetitive in essence and ust about everything Themes were intriguing which is the reason I picked this one up but it was a total disaster in terms of execution It felt as if the author had merely changed the names and places but the story line or arc was the same What irritated me changed the names and places but the story line or arc was the same What irritated me most is the casual nature with which the author has talked about some of the most serious issues like depression mental health sexuality and other similar ones that are prevalent even todayThe only saving grace for this collection was the last two linked stories which showed some sign of Growth However In The End However in the end story kind of fizzled out although I wouldn t say it was as bad as the others in this collection That s the only reason for the additional 05 star What I liked most about this book is that it was an easy fast read The book left me lost and confused The details were clear the characters were all sad and strange Depressing but I didn t feel bad for them I almost wanted something horrible to happen to them ust so I could see some type humanness Can a book be boring and intriguing at the same time This was a different type of read for me Honestly this review says it about as well as I could me discuss this book 35 starsA great debut short story collection that centers the complex lives of first generation Indian Americans some ueer and some straight Neel Patel an emerging voice in literature dispels the model minority myth with these 11 well written stories Though people often make assumptions about Indian Americans eg they are rich all they care about is working hard and getting their kids into good schools their families all abide by the same traditions this collection reveals the messier truth that Indian Americans experience forbidden desires and devastating heartbreak that the forces of racism and classism and homophobia affect their lives and Indian Americans individual wills can clash with their community s aspirations in brutal ways This collection struck me as bittersweet than hopeful though regardless of its final tone the stories convey great perceptiveness and empathy for the regrets and the choices that make us humanThe strongest stories in this collection stood out due to their deep emotional resonance and the layered relationships between characters often influenced by markers such as class and gender My favorites If You See Me Don t Say Hi a story about the tumultuous bond between two brothers that took my breath away The Other Language about a boy who travels with his family and develops a crush on a servant boy that becomes marred by class and clashing longings and the two ending stories that feature the same set of characters World Famous and Radha Krishna in which a man and a woman contend with the community gossip that threatens to tear them apart I love the drama Neel Patel inserts into these stories how for the most part they serve to undermine stereotypes about Indian Americans about women and about ueer people These stories reveal sad truths about what happens when we do not treat people well or when we live in a society that makes it so difficult for immigrants to succeed well or when we live in a society that makes it so difficult for immigrants to succeed when they push themselves to I keep coming back to the emotion and the word bittersweet as I feel like it captures the wise compassionate and sometimes funny melancholy that pervades If You See Me Don t Say HiWhile some of the stories did not resonate with me as much I felt that they did not have the depth of the other stories or their characters relationships did not pull at my heart as much I would still recommend this collection to fans of short stories or contemporary fiction especially those interested in LGBT narratives I read that Patel is working on his novel and I am excited for it as I felt that I could have read full novels about the characters in my favorite stories from this collection Also props to Patel for oining together traditional aspects of Indian Americans lives eg arranged marriage with modern. In these eleven sharp surprising stories Neel Patel gives voice to our most deeply held stereotypes and then slowly undermines them His characters almost all of who are first generation Indian Americans subvert our expectations that they will sit uietly by We meet two brothers caught in an elaborate web of envy and loathing; a young gay man who becomes involved with an older man whose secret he cou.


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