Top critical review
on 3 October 2014
I was looking forward to reading The Many Conditions of Love, having enjoyed thr earlier book, The Marriage Bureau for Rich People. As is often the case, the second book by a writer whose work you had enjoyed, was disappointing.
Farahad Zama’s style is simple but very clear. She has a knack for describing everything in in very precise detail, so it is easy to visualise what she is describing.
This book was disappointing as some of the stories seem to come together, maybe in an artificial way. For instance, the problem of what happens to the boy Vasu was easily solved – it is almost felt as if the characters had been brought in for this reason, which is unlikely to happen in real life. In the same way, the intervention by the grandmother to end Usha’s forced marriage seemed incredible, just as Usha’s decision about her engagement. It seems that Farahad Zama’s grip on reality, very apparent in The Marriage Bureau for Rich People, was somewhat skewed in this book.
Although The Many Conditions of Love can be read as a complete book, readers may find it worthwhile reading The Marriage Bureau for Rich People first, as it gives the background to the characters in the second book.