Oleander Girl by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
Choosing this read was a bit of a departure for me. I had not read Divakaruni’s work before and wasn’t sure at the beginning of the book if I would be able to adjust to the cultural differences in her writing style.
Korobi Roy has led a very sheltered life in Kolkata, India where she was raised by her grandparents due to her parents’ death. Her grandfather lives and breathes for Korobi and will do anything to protect her. What she longs for most from her grandfather is more information about her mother; unfortunately her passing is too painful for him to give Korobi what she desires. But she has one thing, a love note her mother wrote to her father that describes a powerful love. A love she wants for herself and believes she has found in her fiancé Rajat.
Korobi’s grandfather dies suddenly and her grandmother is finally free to tell a devastating secret that takes Korobi on a journey to a post 9/11 America. What she learns may not just destroy her but also the reputation of her future family. Can she resist the siren call of America and return to marry her fiancé?
At times it was difficult to decipher who the author was referring to due to the endearing names they use for each other. Once I adjusted to this, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was an unexpected storyline and definitely not a normal cookie-cutter love story.
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