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The Sari Shop Widow

3.29  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,388 Ratings  ·  187 Reviews
Since becoming a widow at age twenty-seven, Anjali Kapadia has devoted herself to transforming her parents' sari shop into a chic boutique, brimming with exquisite jewelry and clothing. Now, ten years later, it stands out like a proud maharani amid Edison's bustling Little India. But when Anjali learns the shop is on the brink of bankruptcy, she feels her world unraveling. ...more
Paperback, 301 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by Kensington (first published 2009)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,682)
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Manjul Bajaj
I got this book as a Goodreads First Reads win. The cover and title had suggested a certain gravitas so I was a bit distressed to discover that what arrived in the mail looked quite decisively like chick lit. Now chick lit has Least Favoured Genre status in my life and I was tempted to simply not read it. But having been on the other side of Giveaways I know what silence feels like and decided to read and review it any way. And as it happened, it turned out to be a pleasant enough experience.

Nov 01, 2010 Cassandra rated it it was ok
Shelves: secular-fiction
I signed up for the 2010 South Asian Author Challenge to expose myself to books and authors I would not ordinarily be exposed to. This book was on the list of authors and titles that fulfill the challenge requirements: to read a book by a South Asian author that deals with South Asia in some way.

I devoured this novel, hoping for a bit of an inside look into Indian culture. Instead, I found a chick-lit story with a few Indian terms thrown in. Though the main character runs a sari shop, I felt she
Sep 06, 2009 Anita rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katherine Coble
Feb 25, 2010 Katherine Coble rated it did not like it
This was a terrible book.

What makes it even worse was that, unlike most of the folks who seem to have reviewed it, I paid actual money for it on my Kindle.


--The lead character was extremely unsympathetic.

--The story structure was slipshod at best. Example: We don't read one sentence about how much she grieves for and misses her husband until sixty percent of the way through the story. At that point it feels like (yet another) unnecessary roadblock the author throws up in order to keep
Jaideep Khanduja

Book Review: The Sari Shop Widow: A Spicy Pick With Many Twists

This interesting book titled The Sari Shop Widow has been written by Shobhan Bantwal.

Anjali Kapadia is a 37 years old widow and is not too sexy but still is substantially attractive to grab attention of any man around her age. Anjali lost her husband 10 years back due to brain aneurysm, only two years after their marriage. That was the biggest shock for Anjali and her parents. They had a love
Tara Chevrestt
Sep 12, 2010 Tara Chevrestt rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
I think this author has a decent writing style, but in this case, the plot was non existent. You want me to spend two days reading about a woman with a failing business? That's it. That's all there is to it.. ?

Anjali is a widow. I don't know why. Her widowhood really played no role in the story. She only occasionally and very rarely thinks about or misses her former husband so I don't know why she was made a widow except to explain the fact she is middle aged and unmarried. ? She lives at home
Mar 18, 2010 Chhaya rated it liked it
Captivating story and an easy read. Made me goto oak tree road and indulge in some good Indian spicy food and shopping.
Sep 30, 2010 bookczuk rated it it was ok
Shelves: bookcrossing
I was not as enchanted with this book as I'd hoped to be. There were small nuggets of life in an Indian family or living as a woman of Indian heritage in New Jersey that were interesting, but somehow, the story lacked passion to me (which is kind of ironic since it was a love story.) I think also stumbling into dacoits (armed bandits of the sort who killed my brother last year in India) probably did not help me find a "happy place" with this book.

One thing that was interesting was that a huge p
Mar 12, 2013 Reema rated it really liked it
I read this book without checking to see what kinds of reviews it got and I'm glad I did as I may not have read it otherwise. The story is centered around an Indian widow who has thrown her life into her family's sari shop, and has little else going on for her. She is eventually nudged into opening her life to new possibilities in a very sedate and Indian, gujju fashion as, quite frankly, the life choices of a widow in the Indian culture, even in the US, are few are limited. I'm surprised the ma ...more
Aug 24, 2010 April rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Free Kindle download.

Given the cover design and the title, I was expecting a beautifully written story about another country, another culture, a story that would take me away from the familiar and from my usual fare, so I was a little disappointed as I made my way through this book; despite this being heavy in Indian culture, food, and Hindu words, for me it read like a lot of books in the romance genre.

I don't know if that's what made this book so predictable for me, but from the first moment t
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
I have to admit, I misread the title of this book when I got it. I thought it was "The Sari Shop Window"--so I expected maybe a collection of short stories, like life through the window of a sari shop, you know? In a sense, that's what it is...the heroine's life centres around her sari shop and her designs and her family. She is a young widow, living at home with her that sense I was reminded of the movie "Moonstruck".
But aside from that, it's just another romance novel. The dashing h
Kieran Walsh
Sep 14, 2009 Kieran Walsh rated it did not like it
ok so I picked up this book from the store during the holiday weekend thinking it read 'The Sari Shop Window' and, obviously, the book was so captivating that I realized that it read 'widow' and not 'window' only 10 pages from the end. This should indicate as to how engaged I actually was. I didn't honestly think that a publisher would waste his/her time sending something like this to print. Could you possibly read a couple of hundred pages of dribble and find nothing other than a silly romance ...more
Feb 27, 2012 Sharon rated it liked it
The Indian population in central NJ has exploded in the last decade or so. This book is set in Edison, which has its own Little India and lots of neat, interesting shops like Silk & Sapphires. The second and third generations of immigrant families also face similar cross-culture problems, more traditional elders and more flexible youngers. These real-life issues are wasted as background to a romance in this novel. When the Conflict That Keeps The Lovers Apart appears, it's unbelievable and s ...more
Dec 27, 2015 Marie rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Serene Juan
Jan 12, 2015 Serene Juan rated it liked it
This book is, in my opinion, more or less reserved for two kinds of people: people with die-hard romantic souls and people who haven't had their hearts broken. Women really don't need to read about another Harlequin romance novel with an enigmatic mature man and how the female lead gradually falls in love with him because he helps solves her problems and adds an interesting edge to her life after living as a widow for 10 years. Its another book that buys into the idea that there is a man out the ...more
Book Review India
Jan 04, 2015 Book Review India rated it liked it
Book Review India Verdict:

Review: “The author brings out the colors (of culture and her characters) quite well. There’s drama, humor, emotions, love, and yes- a bit of senseless entertainment, all mixed well to make it a yummy masala read.”

The main protagonist, Anjali Kapadia, an American-Indian, is a widow who runs her parents sari shop “Silk & Sapphires”. Their exquisite tasteful collection is devoured by most but with the rising competition and building recession, bankruptcy is round the
Oct 08, 2014 Akshara rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Ok, first off I bought this book because I saw my friend as a model on the cover. Also, the name intrigued me. A little mysterious with promises of a story that was bound to be super enchanting. Unfortunately, it was nothing of the sort. Its' not bad, it's just not great. It's just...ok. That's it. It's a simple, straightforward love story which has hang ups for God alone knows what reasons! Frankly, it's a little frustrating. I mean c'mon! There are people in the world with genuine issues in th ...more
Nov 21, 2012 Vinitha rated it it was ok
Shelves: indian-authors
I am yet to find answers - why was this book so long? It was just another M&B set to Indian context - desi life in NJ, a widow battling lonliness, the Indo-Brit knight in shining armor who sweeps the girl off, the match making family, the ex who calls at the "correct" time to raise doubts - a topic done to death.

I was expecting something different and this book was just a disappointment.
Apr 09, 2016 Kazen rated it it was ok
This book started off well enough but soon got bogged down in the characters' heads. There's one scene that you 1) see, 2) see again as the heroine muses over what happened, 3) see again as the hero muses over what happened. I just wanted to get back to the story.

The characterization bothered me, as well. Rishi starts off very happy not being married, and has trouble seeing himself getting married. His live-in girlfriend is just his speed. But then he goes back to England on business, breaks up
Sep 07, 2009 Deb rated it really liked it
This book was delightful and entertaining...nothing heavy which is sometimes just what you need on a holiday weekend...truly a pleasurable read. I will definitely consider Shobhan Bantwal's other books on India.
I say Ive read it but I actually gave up on this book which is unusual for me. Maybe if you know nothing about Indian culture it could be interesting, and maybe Indians read it on a deeper level but I didnt get very much out of it at all. The story was quite banal.. Indian widow runs sari shop with her parents, the business gets into trouble and an uncle comes to help them out accompanied by a handsome stranger etc etc. It was a bit like chick lit withouth the laughs. You get very little idea of ...more
Mar 21, 2016 Heather rated it liked it

Anjali has been working in her parents' sari shop in New Jersey since her husband's sudden death ten years ago. She loves designing clothes that are fancy enough for special occasions and weddings. Her father handles the finances so she doesn't know that they are close to bankruptcy until he calls in his dictatorial older brother from India to bail out the business. He brings his new business partner to help.

This is a typical chick lit story with the twist that Anjali lives with her very conser
Jan 18, 2015 Cassie rated it did not like it
I have read Bantwal's two other books and really enjoyed them. I expected to enjoy this one as well but found myself just....not. Which makes me kinda sad. The story premise was good, but the character development and the descriptions were just not equal to what I found in The Dowry Bride or The Forbidden Daughter. In her other two books, the female protagonists were strong; Anjali in this book did not come across as strong to me, but rather as weak. And Rishi, the male protagonist, seemed reall ...more
May 12, 2015 Jessica rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2015
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ranjan BAsu
Jul 07, 2015 Ranjan BAsu rated it it was ok
Mishel Zabala
Oct 27, 2009 Mishel Zabala rated it liked it
Shelves: for-review
Anjali is a strong woman faced with a serious dilemma. She co-owns a sari shop in a small Indian enclave in New Jersey with her beloved parents that is about to go bankrupt. After a breakdown from her husband's death ten years ago, she picked herself up and poured her devotion into the shop. Anjali refuses to see it go under after everything she has put into it. Thirty-seven and living with her parents hasn't stopped Anjali from having her own life either. It's a life she keeps a secret from her ...more
Trupti Dorge
Jan 28, 2011 Trupti Dorge rated it it was ok
Shelves: library
had such high hopes for this book but only a few pages in and I knew I was not going to like it. But I thought I would give it a chance since it was easy to read and I was hoping it would improve. But as you can see from my rating, it didn’t. Before I tell you what I didn’t like in the book, let me tell you about the plot.

Anjali Kapadia, a 37 year old widow, owns a high-end boutique of Indian clothes and Jewelery called ‘Silk and Sapphires’ in Little India of New Jersey. She lives with her paren
May 23, 2011 Urs rated it liked it
Recommends it for: chick lit fans, romance fans
My sister downloaded this book as a free read from the kindle store before I had my own device. It was lendable, so I borrowed it from her to use as my first read for the 2011 Colorful Chick Lit Challenge.

After reading the reviews for the book, I was not sure whether or not I would enjoy the book. After reading, though, this book turned out to be just what I expected, which was good.

The story is about Anjali, a thirty-seven year old, Indian, widow who lives with her parents and brother in the
Oct 13, 2010 Amanda rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who like romance
Shelves: fiction
The Sari Shop Widow is a book about Anjali Kapadia a woman in her late thirties who has overcome tremendous heartache of the loss of her husband by throwing herself into the business she runs with her traditional Indian parents in New Jersey, Silk and Sapphires. Silk and Sapphires is a Sari shop that brings tradition of Indian dress to New Jersey with elegance and grace that Anjali created. For years her life felt normal and when her father let her know that their business was struggling financi ...more
* Goodreads First Reads *

I got my free copy from the Goodreads giveaway,

Honestly, I have mixed thoughts about this book. It was a really nice story about a widow in Little India and how she and her family work towards reviving their failing business. If I don't think much about how much better it can be, I would say that it was a nice fresh story. Predictable but definitely not boring. The characters are quite well developed (according to me atleast) and likable. The scenario of an Indian househ
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Shobhan Bantwal is the Indian-American author of THE DOWRY BRIDE, her debut novel set in India and slated for release by Kensington Books in September 2007. It is the first of a two-book contract with Kensington.

Since 2002, Shobhan's articles and short stories have appeared in a variety of publications like India Abroad, Little India, U.S. 1, Desi Journal, India Currents, Overseas Indian, New Wom
More about Shobhan Bantwal...

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