Just finished reading Rohinton Mistry's acclaimed novel Family Matters and it seriously was one of the best I felt. Here is a good review:
In the phrase "Family Matters," you could treat 'Matters' as a noun and relate it to all the issues ( good, bad, worse) that a typical Indian Family deals with. A typical Indian Family on the edge, trying its level best to embrace modernity ( Westernization) while sticking to its century-old traditions (religion). With a typical "Indian Family" I am not limiting to all those who reside in India alone, but all those too: scattered all over the World; basically of Indian Origin. The book though describes a lower-middle class family residing in India's biggest city; Bombay.
Also in "Family Matters," 'Matters' could be very well treated as a verb describing a noun : Family. Here we could relate to the fact that family really matters a lot. As a matter-of-fact how much ever you try to deny this truth you are confounding yourself. From the book, you could deduce that a person who went against his families' desires, in the end had no one to bank on except his kins, in whom he found refuge. May be he had no choice because, in the end all it matters is survival, and family did matter to him when it came to survival. I could refer to the book relating to this, when the Son-in-law realizes that, when the End nears, you have nothing but compassion to give to the dying. After-all "All ends that ends well" a famous Bollywood movie adage :) Hence, for someone who went against the family throughout his/her existence had to embrace them.
Also one interesting aspect of the book is how nicely the author described the constant strife between parents and their kids. Book describes the differences religion can make of-course some good and bad which are left to readers discretion to judge. How a person's attitude towards adversity and prosperity changes under the influence of religion is mentioned beautifully.
The most reminiscing aspect, which made the book even more intriguing was the very fact that the protagonist (an old man suffering from Parkinsons) reminded me a lot of my deceased Nanaji (Grandpa). All the suffering he underwent, the loss of vision, the harrowing bedpan and troubles with his decaying teeth ( he couldn't afford dentures) were so much similar. Only one difference and a strong one: the character in the book was a loner and yearned for the love of his life, while my nanaji had his beloved ( my nanima ( granny)) with him 24/7.
I also noticed so many similarities between Zoroastrianism ( the religion described in the book) and my own Dawoodi Bohranism :). May be I could dedicate a whole post on that. Nonetheless it was time worth spent.