Wednesday, October 29, 2008

100 Shades of White

100 Shades of White by Preethi Nair

Maya, her mother Nalini, and her brother Satchin have left a carefree life in India to come to England. But when Maya's father disappears, leaving only deceit and debt behind, they are left to fend for themselves in a strange, damp land. Maya, though, doesn't know of her father's betrayal. Nalini, determined to preserve her children's pride, tells them that their father died in an accident and, as their struggle to make a life begins, whole realities are built on this lie. But even a white lie cannot remain hidden forever—and when the truth resurfaces, it changes everything.

I read Nair's first book, Gypsy Masala, and enjoyed it (though I thought the writing was a bit disjointed at times) so I was looking forward to reading this one.

I enjoyed 100 Shades of White despite the fact that it reminded me a bit too much of Roopa Farooki's Bitter Sweets (a book I haven't got around to posting about). Apparently 100 Shades of White was published first so I suppose I should feel down on Bitter Sweets because the two novels are so similar and it was published second, but I can't. I supposed that is because I feel that Bitter Sweets is a much stronger novel.

In any case, I liked the story being told from multiple perspectives. I also liked the role that food (and creativity in general) has in 100 Shades of White. Unfortunately I do think that the novel could have been better. There were times reading it when I noticed a missing connection things that I think an editor could have picked up on and helped the author to fix in order to make the book stronger.

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