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Coromandel Sea Change

3.67  ·  Rating Details  ·  161 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
Blaise and Mary arrive at Patna Hall, a hotel on India's shimmering Coromandel coast, to spend part of their honeymoon. Patna Hall is as beautiful and timeless as India itself, ruled over firmly and wise by proprietor Auntie Sanni. For Mary it feels strangely like home.

In a week that will change the young couple's destiny, election fever grips the Southern Indian state and
Published January 1st 2007 by Pan MacMillan (first published 1991)
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A Passage to India by E.M. ForsterThe Far Pavilions by M.M. KayeThe Siege of Krishnapur by J.G. FarrellKim by Rudyard KiplingThe God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
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Community Reviews

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Apr 30, 2016 Jeanette rated it really liked it
Oh this one holds some true clashes of temperament and entire worldview sensibility. It's entrenched within the culture of India and within a Coromandel coast hotel. Think much like the hotel "Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" - that kind of setting but on a cove of that wild coast. It's in the week prior to a local election. The first pages of this novel list the myriads of hotel characters. Employers, clients, employees, associated neighborhood help and they run to the dozens. It's 4 pages in my boo ...more
Jan 13, 2009 Nancy rated it really liked it
I love Rumer Godden. Her style charms me, and I mean that in the sense that I become enrapt in her magical bookscapes. Coromandel Sea Change is about an Englishwoman who goes to India on her honeymoon and becomes deeply involved in the local politics. It sounds like it would be about "real things" but it's really about inner things...falsehood and truth, and the nature of reality. The Indian background is dreamlike, almost mystical, and it makes a perfect contrast and backdrop for Mary's sharp, ...more
Aug 30, 2015 Anne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A nice story, charming even, marred unfortunately by glaring anachronisms. The book came out in 1991, but it's impossible to tell when the book is set. The main characters, uptight young British diplomat and his teenage bride, have a conflict of a kind that couldn't imaginably happen more recently than the 1960s. The election belongs to a time that could be any time after the invention of the helicopter, but before mobile phones. Late in the novel, one of the characters mentions that the hotel r ...more
Oct 12, 2007 Stephanie rated it liked it
Recommends it for: people seeking an unusual beach vacation
Shelves: mycuppa
The chief attraction of this book is its exotic locale -- a luxury seaside hotel in India. Godden is a master at capturing the essence of a place. Reading Coramandel Sea Change is probably the closest I'll ever come to lounging around a gorgeous resort.

This is also a story of sexual repression, which I believe was inspired by Rumer's first marriage to Lawrence Foster. It's impressive that she could conjure such bitter scenes years after her own disastrous honeymoon. She gives an interesting acc
Dec 20, 2009 Ellen rated it it was ok
Lightly entertaining but not one of her most interesting (Black Narcissus, The River). Takes place over one week in a hotel on the south east coast of India during a local election. Between the hotel staff and the guests, there are lots of characters and stories but the characters are a bit stereotypical (I had to wince when an American woman said something was "real fun") and the events a bit predictable. Interesting descriptions of the area, food, and politics but overall not much depth.
Aug 31, 2012 J rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Disappointing. I fell in love with the author after reading In This House of Brede, but this book wasn’t on the same level at all. There is a certain lyrical quality to the writing but the content was lacking. There were also tones and themes I was disappointed to see from a Catholic author. Free spirits (including free love) seems to be the order of the day in this novel.
Tessa Sainz
Sep 23, 2015 Tessa Sainz rated it liked it
Interesting - kind of liked the eye-opening of the main character to the world and to loving everyone and everything. It was interesting juxtaposed against the other character who only sees the world in how it can relate to himself. It kind of ended abruptly, like a throw away ending though and I didn't appreciate the 'bad' guy being beaten by having him accused of homosexuality and pedophilia (the pedophilia was possible, but unclear, but that doesn't relate to homosexuality and only really rel ...more
Feb 27, 2010 Ali rated it really liked it
I would rather like to spend some time myself at Padna Hall. Having been there in mind if not in body for the last few days I can say that (the) Coromandel Sea Change has done me good.

Rumer Godden has created a world here that is timeless and in a way mysterious. The outside world does little to intrude upon the world at Patna Hall, although the residents listen to the news and read the papers. The indian election is ever so slightly farcicial (but aren't they all) with Krishnan the candidate i
Dec 08, 2015 Yvonne rated it liked it
Although released in 1991 this has an old world feel. A strange story which may take a while to decipher....
May 09, 2014 Sonia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: india, fiction, 2014
Starts out slowly but rolls into quite a startling ending. I'd like to visit Patna Hall.
Jul 08, 2014 Meredith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: india
Jan 12, 2014 Maureen rated it liked it
I had hoped to like this one more but sadly didn't. I can't quite put my finger on why but it may come from my own dislike of hot, humid, tropical climates. I suspect that colored my feeling for a story set in one.
Dawn Van Ness
Nov 01, 2012 Dawn Van Ness rated it it was amazing
I wasn't expecting to really love this book, but now that I have finished it, I actually want to reread it. There is enough going on the surface for anyone to enjoy it, but then there is another layer that is a bit philosophical, and then another that makes use of symbolism. Favorite Quote: Why to religions ever have to come with edges?
Jun 28, 2011 Maggie rated it really liked it
Shelves: india
Enjoyed this book set in India during pre election times. It deals with the guests and staff at a smallish hotel. The guests are mostly if not all British, including a newly married couple whose marriage is clearly an oddity. I enjoy most of Rumer Godden's books and this was no exception.
Apr 03, 2012 Barbara rated it really liked it
The characterization in the book is excellent and her descriptions of the hotel and area in India make you feel as if you were there. I only gave it 4 stars because it was a bit disturbing and sad.
Mar 27, 2013 Lesley added it
Not one of the Goddens that I love, for whatever reason. Which is probably why I'd pretty much forgotten what it's about when I did this re-read, having picked up the recent re-issue in a sale.
Carol Eshaghy
Dec 12, 2012 Carol Eshaghy rated it really liked it
Tuner Godden's books on India are always fascinating. This one features a newlywed couple, a political race and an unforeseen tradegy.
Mary Alice
May 01, 2012 Mary Alice rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
A young woman has a life changing experience at an Indian seashore hotel. The sights and sounds of India with a tight story line.
Aug 27, 2014 Alane rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
This is a lovely, charming book. It's my first Rumer Godden, but it won't be my last.
Elizabeth Bradley
May 03, 2010 Elizabeth Bradley rated it really liked it
Gorgeous,but the pace and her unsparing eye keeps it from getting humid.
Apr 24, 2011 Sara rated it really liked it
Just as I remembered: a sensual and heartbreaking catalyst.
Sep 06, 2011 Sadie rated it it was amazing
Fantastic! My favourite of all her books. Just amazing.
Claire marked it as to-read
May 01, 2016
Jim Razza
Jim Razza rated it liked it
Apr 25, 2016
Dorcas marked it as to-read
Apr 20, 2016
Christine marked it as to-read
Apr 10, 2016
Amy rated it really liked it
Apr 08, 2016
Ann K Henry
Ann K Henry rated it it was amazing
Apr 06, 2016
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She was born in Sussex, England, but grew up in India, in Narayanganj. Many of her 60 books are set in India. Black Narcissus was made into a famous movie with Deborah Kerr in 1947.

Godden wrote novels, poetry, plays, biographies, and books for children.

For more information, see the official website: Rumer Godden
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