- The cover, plain and simple.
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Summary from GoodReads:
The redemptive journey of a young woman unsure of her engagement, who revisits in memory the events of one scorching childhood summer when her beautiful yet troubled mother spirits her away from her home to an Indian village untouched by time, where she discovers in the jungle behind her ancestral house a spellbinding garden that harbors a terrifying secret.
What is it about these stories set in India and why do they keep hooking me? Is it their beautiful covers? Their promise of something deep lurking within? The hope that such a sad story might possibly have a happy ending?
Whatever it is, I am so incredibly glad that I gave in to the urge and picked up The Girl in the Garden. This is not the typical sad, heavy story set against the backdrop of India. Yes, there is a touch of poverty, yes, the caste system is firmly in place – but instead of being thrown into the strange world and stranger people, I was taken gently by the hand and led through the story by the narrater, a woman now grown, telling the story of a summer spent in India with her mother and her family.
Like me, this narrator grew up in the United States. While she suffers from being made fun of for looking different, surrounded by the blonde-headed, blue-eyed kids in Minnesota, she possesses a strength of character, even at 10 years old, that gripped me and drug me along.
The Girl in the Garden starts with a simple letter, a letter to a man she is about to marry and accompanied by her wedding ring – because before she can get married, she needs to tell him her story and she needs to find an ending to that story back in India.
I seriously wept several times while reading this book. I kept turning the page, wanting and dreading answers, hoping against hope for a happy ending but unable to see how one could possibly come about, but I was wrong and this book surprised me in more ways then one.
Beautifully written, descriptions of gardens and places in India that actually had me longing to visit and a unique coming-of-age tale that left me satisfied and glowing with happiness. You can’t ask for more than that.
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