Top critical review
Disappointing when compared to C. B. Divakaruni's other novels.
1 February 2017
I have loved and spent nights reading some of Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni's books because I could just not put them down, but I must admit I did not feel the same about this one. I found that there were too many topics raised in this novel and that Korobi was not real. I usually feel moved by this author's characters but I did not identify myself or felt something strong towards her. She is going through a difficult and long journey that takes her from India to the U.S.A.. It is all described with interesting details, well enough to picture the people and the places, but it did not feel realistic in the end. It gives a good idea of the different social classes in Kolkata at that time with a good focus on the political context, but it was not enough to make any of the characters likable. I am not saying that the reader should like the characters to appreciate a novel, but I have been used to feel close and moved by Divakaruni's characters, so I was sad that I was not feeling something similar with the Oleander Girl. I even felt that during some chapters the author was writing chick lit'... Overall disappointed, but it is still an interesting and easy novel to read. I let others make their choices based on the various reviews available!