I found Rahul Mehta’s Quarantine and initially I thought it was more about being gay in an Indian family. While dealing with the super taboo element in the Indian family, there are many other prevalent themes.
The first story “Quarantine” focuses on how the narrator’s mother takes care of her father-in-law, the elderly Indian grandfather. While the story leads the reader to believe that the title comes from the grandfather’s stint in the hospital for developing TB, there appears to be another character stuck in this space, unable to get out.
Then there’s “Floating,” a story about an Indian American man and his boyfriend traveling around west India and befriending a local who talks about the great things he does when it’s not entirely the truth.
When reading short stories, it’s easy to compare them and consider which ones are the best. For me, it was hard to choose. I enjoyed every story in this collection. I’ve only highlighted a few here, but it’s only because I don’t have more time.
Most of the other stories were original and incredibly well done. I’m excited to find a new author with a writing style where I want to savor every last word. There are several stories in this collection that you need to read and then reflect upon, a quality I really enjoy!