I was quite hesitant to pick up a book with such a delicate subject. I was worried if it would leave me grim and blue - and i couldn't have been more right about this. It is a not a lovely book you read on a vacation. It is a heart wrenching and morose book that will stay with you. It touches on the dark side of the subject of domestic violence. If you are someone who has ever gone through / witnessed any form of domestic violence, I recommend you read through this.
A brutal searing account of domestic violence and it's far-reaching consequences. The story is taken forward and narrated in third and fist person through the eyes of four characters, each deeply affected and flawed as a result of the violence and abuse they have faced. In spite of the grimness of the subject, Badani has succeeded in making it a page-turner. The reader gets immersed in the lives of the characters and the horrors they faced that are peeled off layer by layer. And, while I shan't give away the ending, it worked for me
A heart-rending saga of 3 sisters and their mother in a foreign land. Well narrated. Well etched out character with good story plot and flashback. The supporting characters too were nicely written. A new voice from Indian NRI circuit. Expecting a lot from her future works.
I thought this was a truly wonderful novel. It touched my heart, filled me with empathy and made a huge impression on me. I’m sure I will never forget reading it.
The story is of Brent and his wife Ranee, who left their humble home in rural India to bring their family to America with the sole purpose of making a better life and a richer future for them. When they arrived in America their life soon changed in ways they could not possibly have imagined. Brent had to settle for a menial job way beneath his level of skills and was subjected to bullying and out and out racism. He turned from a loving husband and father to an angry and vengeful man, taking out his frustration and disappointment on the very family he had wanted so much for.
Years later, when Brent is admitted to hospital and is on life support in a coma, Ranee summons the family together to say goodbye to him. Brent will be leaving behind a wife, three grown up daughters and a treasured teenage granddaughter. As his doctor puzzles over his condition, the family begin to unravel. One by one their lives spiral out of control as the secrets of the past begin to emerge. Marin, the eldest daughter and her own daughter Gia have a huge falling out, whilst Trisha, the middle daughter and favourite of them all, has to face the consequences of an untold secret kept from her husband whilst Sonya, the third daughter reluctantly rejoins her family for the first time since she fled from them, an outcast living her life running away from everyone. Ranee herself is custodian of a massive burden that she knows she must reveal to save her family. But at what cost to them all?
I found the story quite slow to begin with but soon it was like a hidden pearl emerging from its shell. It filled me with emotion and I was completely swept away by the majestic storytelling; from the injustice, the brutality, the hidden truths and lies, the heartbreak, love, forgiveness the sense of a family trying to heal from events of the past. All these played a part in my overwhelming enjoyment of the elegant novel full of home truths, legend and healing. Sejal Badani drew on her own personal experience of abuse and also the knowledge of the beliefs and culture of this family and painted a picture rich in colour and with skilful artistry.
I would like to thank Netgalley and Lake Union Publishing for my copy of this fabulous novel in return for an honest review. I adored it and have absolutely no hesitation in recommending it to you. It’s a real gem of a read.
Sejal Badani is undoubtedly my new favourite author. Loved this poignant story which will move you to tears. It will then inspire you and finally give you closure. A book dedicated to all victims of abuse who believe in the power of their dreams.
Author Sejal Badani is a name with which I am not at all familiar, and when I was given the chance to review her book, I waded through the pages uncertain of what to expect. As with many other first-time authors, I was excited but was also well aware of the limitations. And the subject of domestic violence was not too appealing.
Yet, this is a very unique story. Brent and Ranee are just another ordinary couple with three daughters – Sonya, Marin and Trisha. And like many other families, theirs is a dysfunctional family, with the family falling apart. While many readers may not understand the terms used in the book, the author has compiled a glossary of the “foreign” words at the end of the book which one can easily refer to. What I really liked about the story is the depth of emotion and feeling the characters carry with them.
Wow, what a brilliant novel. No wonder it is a finalist in the Goodreads Choice Award 2015. A few pages into the book, and I knew the writing style was classy. Very, very classy. Midway through the book I was certainly irritated by most of the characters (quite unlikable) and the inexplicable decisions they take, but the secrets which they hide forced me to continue. The narration is extremely fluid, despite the novel being a tad long. The language is exceptional, extremely fluid and lucid, yet supremely classy. The characterization is impeccable in every way. Every emotion, every doubt, every apprehension, every confusion faced by each character in the past or present is described in vivid detail. This is the work of a genius. I felt irritated where I should, laughed where I should, and felt emotional too, especially towards the end. The satisfactory ending resolved most of the doubts that a reader will certainly have until the end. Some parts of the novel are disturbing but thought-provoking, nevertheless. Another thing worth admiring is how, without the usage of cuss words and explicit sexual references, the author has described the feelings of abused people dexterously. Hats off! The descriptions of ambiance, places are also great and never too excessive.
I have become a fan of Sejal Badani (Sejal Badani), and I have voted for this book too. I would recommend you read this modern classic and vote for her. This book deserves awards and popularity. I assure you that your reading experience will be truly fantastic and fulfilling. I, as a writer, have learnt a lot from the novel in terms of plotting and writing style, too.
An almost perfect novel. 4.8 stars for this (0.2 stars are cut for making most characters a bit too unlikable till the end – you could have done a slightly better job there).