Monday, September 21, 2009

#BookReview: The Sari Shop Widow - Shobhan Bantwal

Widowed when she was just twenty-seven, Anjali Kapadia moved back in with her parents to run their sari shop and transform it into the boutique she always envisioned. Fast forward 10 years and Anju is still living with them, but the boutique is no longer turning a profit. When her father places a call to his brother in India pleading for financial assistance, Anju and her mother just know that her Uncle Jeevan will come in and run roughshod over them like he always has.

To Anju's surprise, the tyrant formerly known as Uncle Jeevan is somewhat subdued and allows his unannounced partner, Rishi, to make decisions for him. Also unusual for traditional Indian culture, Uncle Jeevan encourages Anju and her mother to give input into his and Rishi's idea to make the sari shop an all-in-one boutique complete with a salon and tea house.

As Anju begins to work more closely with Rishi, the forty-two year old British/Indian businessman, she feels an attraction to him, but is afraid to move beyond the memories of her deceased husband. Uncle Jeevan's secret is the key to moving her forward.

I'm typically not into romances and I might not have read this if I had realized it would take me down this path, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. It's always fun to read about other cultures and the author certainly brings the reader into the world of a traditional Indian family living in America.

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