A Good Indian Wife as the name suggests dwells on Leila who struggles with her infidel husband and life in a new country. Leila is waiting for her knight in shining armour with two younger sisters who form her protective shield. Neel is living the american life he dreamed when he was 20. Dead against arranged married, tricked to land in India and forced to tie the knot while there – This book travels through the familiar travails of NRI’s. Struggling in a new country with a new language, making new friends and finding the bond with her husband Leila is a breath of fresh air.
There are some parts of the book that are appreciable – Leila’s first day in SFO, her chance meeting with Rekha, her explanation to Anu’s silence when abused and always striving to be her amma’s daughter. Although the book fails to capture and entertain us with anectodes on adjusting to the american life, why Leila would put up with her infidel husband and what forces Neel to marry Leila, it is an interesting read.
There is no dearth in the Indian Born American Living authors and though Anne Cherian is no Jhumpa Lahiri, she does keep the pace moving and is definetly worth a read.
When you move halfway across the globe, its not enough to change your wardrobe, accent or hair style, you must also restyle your tolerance, adaptablity and kinship. You are always trying to identify the new person on the outside while being the same person on the inside.