23rd Oct: It's time for the second TV Tropes Halloween Avatar Contest, theme: cute monsters! Details and voting here.
It is an exceedingly hot summer for the small Indian town of Shahkot, Punjab. All kinds of strange causes have been hypothesized, a giant fan has been built to alter the monsoon, and Red Cross planes soar overhead, carrying food and colorful tins from distant lands. Yet none of these prove to be much help, until one fateful day where the rain does pour on the secluded little town. On this day do the people dance in the streets, the power goes out as usual and Kulfi, the strange young wife of the Chawla family give birth to their first son Sampath. Such is the beginning of Hullabaloo in the Guava Orchard, a 1998 novel by Indian author Kiran Desai.It is twenty years later when we return to the little Indian family. Sampath has spent his time at school with a disappointing performance, and is indifferent to his tasks at the post office. Perpetually keeping his mind away from the rush and the noise of humanity, he does little apart from losing himself in the mounds of letters he deals with, drawing the ire of his father and grandmother. It does not take long before he loses his job due to an unfortunate incident at the boss's daughter's wedding, and here life offers an opportunity to leave daily contrivances and lead a peaceful, solitary life in the countryside. And soon enough, tales of an omniscient holy man upon a guava tree spreads through the small town, bringing about a turn for the quirky as all kinds of chaos dawn upon the inexplicable "Monkey Baba" and the unassuming citizens.
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