Harp by Nidhi Dalmia

What a refreshing love story this has been! For me this book especially has been about choice and determination to fulfill one’s dreams, going through inner conflicts and changing oneself in order to find one’s better half, a better place to live one’s dreams.

The coming of age is definitely challenging for the characters, beautifully “drawn”yet so different through their senses. What put me off a little from the very beginning was the simplicity of the style, subjectively of course. I tend to prefer a bit of complexity to the language and ideas altogether. Other than that the book is a quaint gem to be discovered, with historical background galore.

Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for this free copy in exchange for an honest review.

The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane

A touchingly complex immersion in the lives and culture of the Akha mountain minorities in China, with all the beautiful and mixed up feelings one can get while reading about love, loss, hierarchical struggle and fight for overcoming the social condition as a woman.

And what a spectaculat journey it has been for Li-Yan! Lisa See managed to capture so well the strength and candor of love in all its forms: mother to daughter, mother to granddaughter, wife to husband, Girl to her roots, love for traditions and tea.

This journey is three-fold in my opinion. Firstly, Li-Yan’s life, her mistakes, loss, success in business and loving again and finding what she was looking for. Secondly, Haley’s growing up and rediscovering her own roots and herself. Last but not least, the changes in Chinese culture in the years after the Cultural Revolution.

There is another angle to the story, the permanance of “lineage”, of respecting and trusting the elders, traditions in as much as possible.

The ending is absolutely heart breaking in a beautiful way literally and stilistically. I kept re-reading the last pages for half an hour and still I kept absorbing the phrases.It is absolutely a must read, even if you have never read any book by Lisa See.

Release date is March 21st, 2017.

Thanks so much to Netgalley for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

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The girl before

A pretty good psychological thriller with twists and turns, deranged characters and determined women. It is a gripping novel, enjoyable, though stern and disciplined at the same time.

There is huge hype around this book and for a good reason, as it has its special elements of authentic thriller/mystery. The characters are complex, yet to a point forced in their “exhibitionism” or desire of the author to have them appear stronger or more problematic than they really are.

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If you are looking for a new read to keep you hooked and antsy, do pick this one. I am curious how you would enjoy it. I’ve changed my mind several times about it, in the end though deciding on recommending it for the twisty characters and nutty scope of the plot.

The Danish girl

A beautifully intertwined story of love, self-acceptance, identity and vision. Delicate like a whisper through art as a means of transformation, slow in pace and controversial at a first glace. I would say it is a must read just because the topic is debatable nowadays and more people should be aware of the psychological hardships a person would go through in order to transform or simply to find herself.

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The amazing story of the man who cycled from India to Europe for love

A beautiful, touching, coming of age real life story of love and determination to rise from the India’s lowest caste to having a respectful decent life. PK has been bullied and discriminated in his childhood so much that it left psychological scars on him. His determination to succeed and be free from India’s ingrained rituals and beliefs, led him on a difficult yet rewarding trip across continents to meet his one true love according to the prophecy.

This book is precious and kind, written in a calm and philosophical style at times, sprinkled with bouts of joy and sadness at the same time. I recommend it from the heart, it makes one ponder over the meaning of life and love, what we are most eager to do to change and give direction to ourselves for the better.

Thanks to Netgalley and Oneworld Publishing House for this advanced reader copy in exchange for an honest review.

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