A Suitable Boy is a massive (approximately 1500 pages) monumental novel written by Vikram Seth way back in 1993 and is now about to be released as a six part TV mini-series. I can hardly wait. In a nutshell ….
“A Suitable Boy is set in the newly post-independence, post partition India of the 1950s. The novel follows the story of four families over a period of 18 months, and centers on Mrs. Rupa Mehra’s efforts to arrange the marriage of her younger daughter, Lata, to a “suitable boy”. Lata is a 19-year-old university student who refuses to be influenced by her domineering mother or opinionated brother, Arun. Her story revolves around the choice she is forced to make between her suitors Kabir, Haresh, and Amit.”
Way back then I read the closing of the dedication ….
“Buy me before good sense insists / you’ll strain your purse and sprain your wrists”
With a dedication like I had to take him at his word. I could not simply put the book aside without reading it. Sometimes a big novel can turn out to be chore. But not this one It turned out to be a magnificent read about complex family, racial, political and cultural issues set in the newly independent India. Added to that there were healthy doses of background material to feed my long standing interest in Indian music.
The book is still sitting on my bookshelf just begging me to take it down again and re-engage in that wonderful world created by the author Virkram Seth. I might just do that before the mini-series hits the airways.