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336 pages, Paperback
First published September 17, 2015
Two lines run through my head:Spectacular! Historical fiction at its finest. Layered, rich in detail, clear in its time and place, this book uses 3 perspectives, from 3 generations of the same family, to slowly construct a narrative surrounding the dark days British Raj in India through to the end of the First World War. Unlike many novels utilising multiple perspectives, I thought each perspective was as important and poignant as the others, and I think that was thanks to the fantastic characterisation. There were so many dark reveals in the final chapters, which I don't want to say too much about. The ending was troubling and tragic, but fantastically done, and Sinha treats her characters and this troubling history with great compassion. I really was not prepared for how good this novel would be, and am very much struggling to get that across now. And apparently this was a debut novel! So I must wait to see what Sinha writes next...
Beware! the root is wrapped about
Your mother’s heart, your father’s bones
They are from ‘The House of Eld’ and I understand them now. We carry our parents inside us, their blood in our veins, their voices in our heads.
[...] And, as I think that, I catch my reflection in the mirror and for a moment Mother is looking back at me, and her eyes are saying, ‘See, you are more like me than you know,’ and I feel the root tangling round my heart.