Top positive review
A wonderful world
on 20 December 2017
This is a beautifully written book, Vikram Seth has the ability to make his characters so real that we are fully involved with them. India comes so alive that even if you have never been there you feel, rightly or wrongly, as though you have. The tensions of post-partition India and the effect on her people intensify the action, and left me, at least, fuming over Britain's behaviour towards the country. Once started, the book is nearly impossible to put down; you really care about these people. Although the story centres on Lata and her mother's search for a husband for her, in fact I thought her the most colourless character in the book. This is probably deliberate, as she forms the still centre around whom the action swirls and develops. I did so wish she had insisted on marrying her Muslim student, who really loved her, but in the setting of the book it was clear that religious tensions would eventually pull them apart. Her eventual choice may have been "suitable", but not very romantic! - Which shows how involved you can get with the characters. My favourite characters were the Chatterjees, and especially Kakoli and the disastrously misnamed dog Cuddles.
A wonderful cast of people and a view into a warm, colourful world so different from cold, wet Britain. Each time I read it I part from them with real sadness, and can't wait to get back into the book again!