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Marrying Anita by Anita Jain
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Marrying Anita (edition 2008)

by Anita Jain (Author)

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1133178,568 (2.91)1
"Anita Jain was fed up with the New York singles scene. After three years of frustration and awkward dates, and under constant pressure from her Indian parents to find someone, she started to wonder: Was looking for a husband in a bar any more barbaric than traditional arranged marriage? After all this effort, there had to be something easier." "After announcing in a much-discussed New York magazine article her intention to try arranged marriage, Jain moves back to India - the impoverished, backward land her parents fled - to find a husband. At age thirty-two, well past the cultural deadline for starting a family, Jain subjects herself to a whole new onslaught of expectations - and suitors. Hanging out in bars, haggling with landlords, and hustling from province to province in search of a suitable man, Jain finds her struggles at once strangely similar to those she had in New York and wildly different (you don't meet many Sufi saints in Manhattan, nor does your father accompany on you on first dates). Marrying Anita is an account of romantic chance encounters, nosy relatives, and dozens of potential husbands. Will she find a suitable man? Will he please her parents, aunts, uncles, and cousins? Is the new urban Indian culture really all that different from America's?" "With disarming candor, Jain tells her own romantic story even as it unfolds before her, and in the process sheds new light on a country modernizing at breakneck speed. Marrying Anita is a refreshingly honest look at our own expectations and the modern search for the perfect mate."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)
Member:VasArch
Title:Marrying Anita
Authors:Anita Jain (Author)
Info:Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (2008), 320 pages
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Marrying Anita: A Quest for Love in the New India by Anita Jain

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In this memoir, Indian-American journalist Anita Jain discusses her attempts to get married. She tries living and dating in New York City, and when that doesn't work, she decides, pretty much on a whim, to move to New Delhi and try.

My main problem with this book is that she gives her own experience a lot more weight than I think it deserves. She paints a picture of her experience as a lens for understanding the "New India," but it doesn't really carry that much weight. This is a well-written personal memoir, that sheds some light on her family story, but I didn't really see it doing more than that.

My secondary problem was that I just didn't have a lot of sympathy for her. She wants to get married, while pursuing random sexual encounters with a variety of men. She has a very casual attitude towards sleeping with just about anyone she comes across. Granted, from what I could tell, a lot of this sleeping was just that, sleeping. However, she did move into casual sexual relationships quickly and didn't seem to connect any of that with her difficulties in marrying. She also describes meeting men that she did like, and making almost no attempt to meet them halfway - over spending (in what is still a poor country), sticking her feet out the window and singing drunkenly on a first date, etc. I don't know why she thought that her behavior was going to attract someone serious about a lifelong partnership.

To be fair, she does somewhat acknowlege this, and her ambivalence about a lot of male-female interaction. As I said, it's well written, but not much more than that. ( )
  teckelvik | May 24, 2010 |
Marrying Anita is a decent read, a breezy and fun look at centuries-old tradition colliding with modernity. But ultimately it lacks depth, and the reader ends up learning more about Anita Jain’s personal hang-ups than about India, old or new.

Read the rest of the review. ( )
  ConcordiaSalus | Apr 29, 2009 |
This was a pretty cool book about one woman trying to find a life-long companion in her ancestral home of India. What makes her journey so interesting is that she is caught in between America and India. She doesn't feel like she fits in perfectly in either place, but tries to find love in India when New York doesn't pan out. Her adventures (& difficutlies) finding a home, making friends and meeting men are universal, however more exotic due to the locale. Quite enjoyable. ( )
  eenerd | Jan 26, 2009 |
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"Anita Jain was fed up with the New York singles scene. After three years of frustration and awkward dates, and under constant pressure from her Indian parents to find someone, she started to wonder: Was looking for a husband in a bar any more barbaric than traditional arranged marriage? After all this effort, there had to be something easier." "After announcing in a much-discussed New York magazine article her intention to try arranged marriage, Jain moves back to India - the impoverished, backward land her parents fled - to find a husband. At age thirty-two, well past the cultural deadline for starting a family, Jain subjects herself to a whole new onslaught of expectations - and suitors. Hanging out in bars, haggling with landlords, and hustling from province to province in search of a suitable man, Jain finds her struggles at once strangely similar to those she had in New York and wildly different (you don't meet many Sufi saints in Manhattan, nor does your father accompany on you on first dates). Marrying Anita is an account of romantic chance encounters, nosy relatives, and dozens of potential husbands. Will she find a suitable man? Will he please her parents, aunts, uncles, and cousins? Is the new urban Indian culture really all that different from America's?" "With disarming candor, Jain tells her own romantic story even as it unfolds before her, and in the process sheds new light on a country modernizing at breakneck speed. Marrying Anita is a refreshingly honest look at our own expectations and the modern search for the perfect mate."--BOOK JACKET.

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The story of a woman who, at the age of thirty two, moves from the U.S. to India in search of a husband. While looking for love, she encounters the New India, where the traditional ways of her parents' generation clash with the modern Westernized Indians in Delhi.
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