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Under the Pipal Tree

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  13 ratings  ·  5 reviews
India, 1966: Indira and Maria, her impoverished companion, sit on the verandah, reminiscing as Maria rocks baby Rohini in her arms. Together, they whisper stories of their past to the child.

India, the present: Rohini battles periods of depression, life pulled between the demands of being a teacher, a mother, wife, and an active member of the Bengali community in Mumbai. Bu
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Paperback, 330 pages
Published March 1st 2017 by Cinnamon Press
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Ann
Apr 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book is an unfolding story of three women, woven cleverly together. I laughed and I cried along with the characters, as the story led me along paths in a country unknown. The writing let me experience the sounds, smells and colours of India, it's class differences, religions and celebrations, through the eyes of two of those who live there. The characters pulled me in and somehow we formed an emotional connection, one felt in the struggle with relationships, with illness, with life, death a ...more
Susie Williamson
Jun 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
From Calcutta to Mumbai, 1967 to 2011, the lives of three women, Maria, Indira and Rohini, are inexplicably woven. Anjana Chowdhury’s writing is exquisite and bold as she takes us on a journey through India past and present, with depth and detail bringing alive the sights, sounds, tastes and smells of culture and place, while keeping focus on the well-paced, and intriguing events of the multi-layered worlds of these women’s lives. We are touched, quite simply, by the fullness of life, in this we ...more
Karen
I was really pleased to win this novel in a Goodreads Devon book club giveaway. Set in 1960s and present day India, I was looking forward to this debut novel and it didn't disappoint.

The story centres on issues of mental health and class, bringing in the sense of issues, relating to family and relationships, piling on top of each other when you least need them, as well as the help that can be gained from meditation and counselling.

Throughout, and as a counterbalance to depression, there are lov
...more
Linnet
Jun 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
This novel enthralled me and drew me in in an unexpected way. I was enticed with beautiful descriptions of not only the textures of India, the culture, food, sights and scents but the raw emotions circling the three principle characters. I recommend it if you are looking for a story that will sweep you along in its joy and sorrow, as I both laughed and cried. I look forward to reading more from this author.
Ankit Choubey
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May 08, 2019
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Nina Frecknall
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Joy Hoppenot
Apr 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
I adored my immersion into Indian society and history with this beautiful novel about family, love, social differences, and the effects of the lies we tell to protect the ones we love. Chowdhury's luscious prose often reads like poetry, and she is also a skilled storyteller. By the end of part 1 I had difficulty putting the book down. A stunning debut.
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