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Other Waters

3.20  ·  Rating Details  ·  214 Ratings  ·  63 Reviews
"A Jane Austen-ish plot gets a delicious Indian accent in this effervescent novel by former PEOPLE editor Gage . . . in this exotic, mysterious setting, cultures collide, love grows more complicated and
Maya finally discovers just whom – and where – she is really meant to be." --People, ****

Maya is an accomplished psychiatric resident with a supportive boyfriend, loving fa
Paperback, 352 pages
Published October 16th 2012 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published February 14th 2012)
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(showing 1-30 of 771)
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Dec 06, 2011 Kimy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I won Other Waters by Eleni N. Gage through a Goodreads Giveaway. I find it enjoyable to read novels about other cultures. I was drawn into the story through the main character, Maya. While some of the things she did made me want to shake her to realize she is being silly, that is no different from most people in the world. Eleni captured human nature very well through this book.

I loved the scenes in India when the book was describing the Indian culture and countryside. From the beginning of the
"In Eleni Gage’s Other Waters we meet Maya, a high achieving Indian- American woman living in New York City. On the surface her life is ideal: she has a family who loves her, a successful career in psychiatry, and a sweet boyfriend. But after her beloved Grandmother passes away, and her family is cursed by a bitter servant back in India, things begin to fall apart."

See full review at:

Mar 19, 2013 Alyssa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book. It talks about a single Indian woman, Maya, who works as a resident psychiatrist in New York. Her cousin is getting married in India, and Maya and her American best friend, head to Mumbai for the wedding. Fascinating glimpse into Maya's struggles with meshing her "modern American life" with her Indian background and all the familial expectations that go with that.
George Coologeorgen
Enjoyed thoroughly,but felt let down at the end of the book. Was able to draw definite correlations to the ethnic theme of the book - at the end of the day, being Greek and being Indian in America presents many of the same complications. More universally, the struggle that Maya goes through is spot on to what most people probably go through in their pursuit of individual happiness.
Oct 01, 2012 Kiran is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
May be 1/2 star... trying to read it since 2-3 weeks, but finding it hard to connect with the book. The story lacks depth and the gripping factor so far...
I won this novel through a giveaway several years ago and couldn't get into it despite beginning to read it three or four times. I finally finished it as part of the 2015 Popsugar challenge and I'm glad that I did. Originally this seemed like a mystical novel about a family curse but it was really more about a young woman finding herself as she straddles the span between two cultures. What I thought would be a fantasy novel really fit more into the category of realistic fiction.
The protagonist,
Nov 21, 2011 Janet rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
Other Waters is the story of Maya, a modern, twenty-something Indian American woman torn between her inherent culture and the modern one in which she's grown up. She can't help but compare herself to her older sister and brother who seemingly have it all figured out. But when Maya's father returns from a trip to India and reveals a possible curse has been placed on the family, Maya's world turns upside down. Now the question remains: Who holds the family's destiny in their hands? Is it fate or M ...more
Dec 13, 2011 Tami rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
Haven't received the book yet, just received notice I had won. 10/31/11
Received my copy yesterday, hope to start it soon. I have 2 more in front of it. 11/16/11
Started this morning. 12/9/11
Finished last night. 12/12/11

Maya is Indian, living in New York. She is doing her residency in psychiatry, has the perfect boyfriend, if you ignore the color of his skin, and a very spunky best friend. Her family adores her best friend and has no idea as to her having a boyfriend. Her cousin is getting married
The Joy of Booking
Other Waters is a light, chick-lit-y novel but with more depth than I expected. I really liked the immersion into Indian-American culture as I got to know Maya and her family, even if all of the stereotypes didn't quite ring true. I appreciated the honesty with which some of her romantic relationships played out - I was afraid for a while that I could predict her relationship status at the end of the book, but I was glad to be surprised there, and pleased that the author didn't take the obvious ...more
Mar 04, 2012 Karen rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I found this book to be very problematic. First and foremost, I think there was an editing problem; probably 1/4 of the text could and should have been cut. I thought some of the sections were included simply to educate the reader about India, serving no useful purpose for the actual narrative. Additionally, I kept having to re-read sentences, finding myself confused about basic elements of the plot. Second, while I liked the underlying premise and themes, I thought most of the characters were u ...more
Sharon L. Sherman
Gage's narrative about living in two worlds (Indian and American) starts with almost-30 Maya's troubles with her almost live-in boyfriend when her Kalamazoo/India family is faced with the supposed consequences of a vengeful curse.

Through it all Maya does some inner work with her psych mentor/advisor as she completes a psych degree without forcefully analyzing everyone around her to death. The story climazes when Maya is in India for a friend's wedding where the reader is immersed in the living
Bonnie Brody
Though Maya was raised in Kalamazoo, Michigan, her family has very strong Hindu Indian values. A graduate of Dartmouth College, Maya is in love with a white man named Scott who is blond and blue-eyed. She knows that her family will not approve of him because he is not an educated Indian so she keeps her relationship a secret from them. She, along with all the other women in her immediate family, is a doctor. Maya's specialty is psychiatry. Thus, when her father returns from India and tells Maya ...more
Melanie Coombes
I liked this story. Maya is almost 30 years old, Indian and not yet married. This causes lots of stress and worry for her family who wants to see her settled.
When Maya's dad returns from India saying a curse has been put on their family, Maya pays little attention to it. However, after several bad luck incidents, Maya begins to believe in the power of the curse. She returns to India for a wedding, with the hope that while there, she can have the curse taken back.
I thought the story would revolve
Julie Smith (Knitting and Sundries)
This review first appeared on my blog:

Maya is a second-year psychiatry resident, an Indian-American who is keeping her long-term relationship with her boyfriend Scott a secret from her parents, especially her mother, who wants nothing more than for her to find a nice Indian boy to settle down with. Her sister Priya married Tariq, who is Indian, but Muslim, and even now, two children later, her mother Seema has still not fully accepted him.

After her grandm
Jun 16, 2016 Teresa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Maya is a beautiful and successful Indian woman in New york. Her grandmother is very sick and after a while she dies. Maya is very heartbroken and her and her family have to travel across the waters to see her grandmas soul. Maya has to leave everything she has in New York to go back to india with her family. I do recommend this book if you're more of a family oriented person i think people can really relate with that.
Aug 20, 2015 Knitme23 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed this novel much more than I expected to. It's written by a Greek-American woman in the voice of an Indian-American woman, focusing on the issue of relationships, finding a spouse, and pleasing one's parents. The inside-view of life in India was fascinating even as I wondered how legitimate it was. Enjoyable and vivid, if a little "where is my life going/why can't I find a guy?" whiny in spots.
I really enjoyed this book. It is one of those books that is more talking than action. Maya is Indian, born to parents that immigrated from India in the US. She is nearing 30, unmarried, and uncertain of how she fits in the US since at times she feels more Indian. Her grandmother dies in India and the servant who lived her whole life with the grandmother curses the family. Illness strikes the family and Maya thinks the curse real. She heads to India to lift the curse and find out who she ...more
Apr 18, 2012 Dasha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I began reading this book, thinking it was too slow for me. That is the only negative thing I have to say about it.

The author did a wonderful job attempting to merge both cultures (Indian & American). I got to visit a different country and feel different personalities- all without a plane ticket.

I found myself following Maya in her life and thoughts. Sympathizing with the experiences with guys. She seemed to find idiots from both extremes of the guy spectrum. But that is life, right?

What Ma
Catherine Gordon
I was fortunate enough to win this book through Good Reads. It starts with an interesting premise when an Indian family are cursed after the death of their grandmother. Whether the curse is real or not doesn't really matter it is more how the daughter feels a sense of displacement as she feels the link to Indian is weakened by the loss of her grandmother but is still uniquely tied to that culture, but has grown up in the West where her parents hoped to give her a better life. I appreciated that ...more
Jaclyn Day
Jan 02, 2013 Jaclyn Day rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book sounds a little bit like the prototypical chick lit if you read the publisher’s description, but don’t be put off by the girl-in-NYC-who-finds-herself-in-India clicheness of it. That’s a bare bones synopsis that doesn’t fully convey how well-written and thought-provoking this book is. It’s a subtle novel—it definitely grew on me the more I read. There’s a lot in it about relationships and about family, but it’s never thrown in the reader’s face or laid out in a series of quotable quote ...more
Lori Anaple
I am not giving this a rating because I didn't finish it. I didn't like it. I thought it was boring and superficial. The main character, raised in Kalamazoo MI has strong Hindu roots. So when her father gets back from a funeral he tells her that a former servant put a curse on the family. Then bad things start to happen. Mya is a resident in Psychology and I just couldn't buy that this woman should actually be seeing clients! She is so one dimensional and lacks thought. Her boyfriend is not Indi ...more
Dec 02, 2011 Lauren rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chick-lit
I enjoyed this book more than I thought I would at the start. It's chick lit in that it is focused on a female character and her romantic struggles, but it's not mindless or cliche like some.

Maya manages to over think almost everything in her life, but in that way I found her realistic and relate-able. The story was not as predictable as I originally thought it would be, and I was pleasantly surprised by the ending.

Perhaps my favorite part of the whole book was being introduced to a culture wh
Jan 21, 2016 Rhonda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent - I love the authentic feel and lush descriptions. Being a fan of Bollywood, India, and Greece, this mesh actually works. I would have enjoyed a glossary supplement, being somewhat out of the loop on terminology. Can't wait to read more by Eleni Gage. Oh, now I want to watch my Kama Sutra DVD with the main character named Maya...
I'm really having some bad luck with novels. This book doesn't seem (according to the description on the dust jacket) to be a chick novel, but the more I read, the more it is going in that direction. It's not badly written but I don't care about the characters all that much. As much as I hate to add another book to my "can't read" shelf, I'd hate even more to spend another week struggling to read it when I could move onto something better. I can't even give advice on whether anyone should read i ...more
Kitty Honeycutt
Jul 05, 2012 Kitty Honeycutt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Book Title: "Other Waters”
Author: Eleni N. Gage
Published By: St. Martin’s Press
Age Recommended: 18+
Reviewed By: Kitty Bullard
Raven Rating: 5

Review: Eleni’s writing style and the story itself somewhat reminded me of “Eat, Pray, Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert. The heroine, Maya has the perfect life in the states, but when tragedy strikes the family she finds herself not only in the position to save them all, but to make a journey that soon has her finding herself.
This story is timeless, beautifully w
Jun 19, 2014 Andrew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nice story, a bit slow moving, but the situations and family dynamics seemed real.
May 21, 2012 Ellen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel was pretty enjoyable but there were a few jarring bits of dialogue that just didn't sound right. Gage is Greek so I'm not surprised at this. The characters in this book are mostly Asian Indians educated in the US or England. I found the conflict that the main character has between wanting to please her family by marrying and wanting to please herself by taking her time in choosing a husband to be pretty realistic and the lack of resolution to also be pretty realistic, even if I would ...more
I did enjoy this book. I liked the struggle that Maya was going through, trying to fit into two very different worlds, keep everyone happy and still be true to herself. As a result of this conflict Maya is not truly aware of who she is. Learning to accept herself and those around her as they are was difficult, but inspiring for her. Well done Gage - this was written in a engaging and fluid way. I was however disappointed with the ending, or lack of ending. I felt that there should be more- leavi ...more
Lois Reed
I think, had this book been written in the first person rather than the third person it would have had a better flow. I felt distance from the characters with the story written in tis manner.

A shame, because it was a lovely story in a lovely setting
Jessica Norris
Apr 26, 2015 Jessica Norris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well, I haven't finished it, so I will update this review, but I am definitely hooked! I had just reached the midpoint of the series of unfortunate events when my mom and I had a miscommunication and she took it with her on a trip (I recommended it, didn't mean to give it to her!). I just ordered a kindle copy so I don't have to wait 6 days until I get it back to keep going. That must mean 5 stars!!
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The daughter of a Greek father and a Minnesotan mother, Eleni Gage grew up in Athens, Greece, and Worcester, Massachusetts, and has always been fascinated by cultural rituals, traditions, and syncretisms. That interest led her to study Folklore and Mythology at Harvard University as an undergraduate, and, eventually, to earn an equally practical master's degree, an MFA in Creative Writing, Fiction ...more
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