“A spellbinding story of forbidden love. Three continents, three decades, three very disparate lives:
Savitri, intuitive and charismatic, grows up among the servants of a pre-war English household in Madras. But the traditional customs of her Brahmin family clash against English upper-class prejudice, threatening her love for the privileged son of the house.
Nataraj, raised as the son of an idealistic doctor in rural South India, finds life in London heady, with girls and grass easily available… until he is summoned back home to face raw reality.
Saroj, her fire hidden by outward reserve, comes of age in Guyana, South America. When her strict, orthodox Hindu father goes one step too far she finally rebels against him… and even against her gentle, apparently docile Ma.
But Ma harbours a deep secret… one that binds these three so disparate lives and hurtles them towards a truth that could destroy their world.”
I read a previous book by Sharon Maas last year and really enjoyed it, and downloaded this not long afterwards – but it has sat on my Kindle since then, and I finally started reading it recently.
As with the Small Fortune of Dorothea Q, the previous book I’d read by this author, it’s set across multiple time periods and locations. Having friends of Indian and Guyanese heritage this really appealed – especially learning about some of the massive racial tensions there were in Guyana between different factions and religions.
It was evident early on that there were to be connections between the 3 different stories that were being told – but right until the end of the book these don’t become totally clear – and it really kept me intrigued. I kept thinking I was so clever I had it all sussed, for there to be another twist or turn.
I enjoyed the book both as a stand alone story book of family life, love, career and choices – but also I found that I enjoyed being educated about different cultures, time periods and experiences. It was beautifully written really evoking the different settings geographically. India has long been on our ‘to visit’ list, and I might just have to add Guyana to that list now too!