Written by Jhumpa Lahiri
More About the Book
The Namesake was published in 2003. The story is set in the modern-day United States and follows the life of Gogol Ganguli
Gogol Ganguli - main character
Ashima Ganguli - Gogol's mother
Ashoke Ganguli - Gogol's Father
Maxine Ratliff - Gogol's long time white girlfriend, until his father dies
Moushumi Mazoomdar - Gogol's wife (for now)
Sonali (Sonia) Ganguli - Gogol's Sister
To make it simple: Gogol hates his name and Bengali heritage, so becomes as white as possible. He ditches his name, dates white girls, like Maxine, and goes to Yale and Columbia Universities. Then, his dad dies. He immediately dumps Maxine and goes back to being Gogol. He then gets back to his Bengali roots, and reconnects with his family to a point. Not an overly happy-ending type conclusion, but it wraps the book up well.
It is very relatable to teens, because the main theme of the story is finding and accepting who you are. This is something that many teens struggle with and go through.