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Month in review

Reviews:
Across the Pond by Storyheart (Barry Eva) review copy
The Cat's Book of Romance by Kate Ledger personal collection
The Dragons of Spratt Ohio by Linda Zinnen library book
Frog on His Own by Mercer Mayer library book
Gravitation Volume 1 by Maki Murakami personal collection
Harriet and the Roller Coaster by Nancy Carlton library book
Heat Wave by Richard Castle bookcrossing
If You Give a Pig a Party by Laura Numeroff and Felicia Bond library book
Into the Volcano by Don Wood personal collection
Polar Bears Past Bedtime (Magic Tree House #12) by Mary Pope Osborne
So B. It by Sarah Weeks library book
Stop in the Name of Pants by Louise Rennison personal collection
There's a Nightmare in My Closet by Mercer Mayer personal collection
Waterwise by Jeff Orff library book
Wee Gillis by Munro Leaf library book
Whoo-oo Is It? by Megan McDonald library book
Frog Goes to Dinner by Mercer Mayer library book
Ghost Town at Sundown (Magic Tree House #10) by Mary Pope Osborne library book
Harriet Beecher Stowe by Suzanne M. Coil library book
If You Can't Say Something Nice, Say it in Yiddish by Lita Epstein personal collection
Incubus, Succubus by Neil James Hudson review copy
Journey Around the World by Sarah Albee personal collection
King Ottokar's Scepre by Georges Remi Hergé library book
Mrs. Muffly's Monster by Sarah Dyer library book
Operation Starseed by JM Snyder personal collection
The X in Sex: How the X Chromosome Controls Our Lives by David Bainbridge
Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories by Dr. Seuss personal collection
You Had Me at Halo by Amanda Ashby personal collection
Can Kittens Take a Catnap? by Clair Palfreman-Bunker personal collection
Halfway to Each Other by Susan Pohlman review copy
I'm Not Hanging Noodles on Your Ears by Jag Bhalla library book
If You Give a Moose a Muffin by Laura Numeroff and Felicia Bond library book
Junie B., First Grader: Aloha-ha-ha-ha!by Barbara Park personal collection
Junie B., First Grader: Boo and I Mean It! by Barbara Park personal collection
Lions at Lunchtime (Magic Tree House #11) by Mary Pope Osborne library book
Madras on Rainy Days by Samina Ali library book
Max's Christmas Stocking by Rosemary Wells library book
Me, Myself and I by Jane Louise Curry library book
Paddington Bear and the Busy Bee Carnival by Michael Bond personal collection
Where Are Maisy's Friends? by Lucy Cousins library book
The Divorce Party by Laura Dave review copy
Sarah Whitcher's Story by Elizabeth Yates personal collection
What Happy Working Mothers Know by Cathy L. Greenberg review copy
The Witches of Worm by Zipha Keatley Snyder library book
Murder in the Magick Club by Byron A. Lorrier review copy
Wolf Song Visions by Scott and Linda Reade review copy
Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



Comments for Madras on Rainy Days

Madras on Rainy Days (Link goes to Amazon)Madras on Rainy Days: 12/15/09

I had just finished reading North from Calcutta by Duane Evans and was thinking of the Business World review which complained about the lack of Indian literary fiction written by actual Indians. The article contended there was plenty of pulp fiction published every year but rarely was it written in English or translated into English. India was therefore left to outsiders to represent itself to the rest of the world.

I don't know how valid the Business World observation is but it did get me to thinking and I had it in mind when my eyes were attracted by the beautiful colors on the cover of Madras on Rainy Days by Samina Ali. A quick look at the author info on the back jacket flap and I saw that she had been born in Hyderabad and raised there and in the United States. I thought it a perfect book to use to expand my horizons.

Madras on Rainy Days focuses on an arranged marriage. A nineteen year old Muslim woman has been called home from the United States to marry a man she has never met. She has come home though bleeding from an unplanned pregnancy. She is damaged goods but her family has so much riding on the marriage that she doesn't tell anyone her secret, instead allowing them to believe she might be possessed by demons.

Her miscarriage is one of two elephants in the room that everyone pretends not see. The other is her husband's homosexuality. Both secrets are revealed in the context of Indian Muslim traditions and families that are somewhat broken.

I can't say I loved the novel but I did appreciate Ali's way of weaving in the rich details of Layla's marriage and day to day life in Hyderabad. She manages to engage all the senses with enough detail to paint a vivid picture even if one isn't familiar with all the words used. It's a short but ponderous novel that requires a slower than normal pace of reading.

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Comments (2)


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Comment #1: Wednesday, December, 16, 2009 at 06:08:48

Gnoe

Well, the cover looks great... Fits your phrase of "weaving in the rich details" very well! ;)



Comment #2: Thursday, December 24, 2009 at 13:04:10

Pussreboots

The cover art is very appropriate for the book.