Would be more YA than adult fiction. Too much girlish angst and repetition. Some interesting Hindu religion insights but could get that easily by reading other texts.
An interesting book that kept me engaged. There were many family secrets.
You know the last scene in the play "Cymbeline", with its 24 gobsmacking plot revelations in as many minutes? I was reminded of that while reading this otherwise okay book. U.S. born Rakhee is whisked off to India after her unstable mother receives several mysterious letters. While staying at the family compound, Rakhee quickly surmises that Something Is Not Right; there are secret meetings, secret lovers, secret houses, secret documents...you get the picture. I began to wonder if anyone in this goofball family was capable of uttering a simple declarative sentence devoid of Hidden Meanings; then I just stopped caring. Nair is a decent writer with an ear for dialogue and description, but she needs to learn that less is more, and that, unless you're William Faulkner, ONE devastating family secret is as much as a novel can sustain.
I am a big fan of reading Asian authors. I was first introduced to the genre through the writing of Amy Tan. (If you haven’t read The Kitchen God’s Wife yet, stop reading immediately, run to your local library and check it out!)
Asian authors tend to be richer story tellers, and I love to read about far away countries like India, Singapore and China. Good writing can transport you to a different time and place, all from the safety of your favourite arm chair.
Kamala Nair has written an exquisite tale, an homage to The Secret Garden. The beautiful descriptions of life in an Indian village, the mysteries and family skeletons that are unearthed as Rakhee Singh, the protagonist, delves deeper and deeper into the walled-up garden located behind the family compound will keep you riveted to this book until the very last page.
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