Monday, June 20, 2011

Review & Giveaway: "Sisters of the Sari" by Brenda L. Baker

Kiria is the CEO of a successful video game company, but behind her professional demeanor and poised appearance, she hides the secret pain of her past. While vacationing in India, Kiria's wallet is stolen and former slave Santoshi comes to her aid. The two women form an unlikely bond and when Kiria returns to the United States she is unable to get Santoshi and her impoverished circumstances out of her head. When Kiria discovers that she is unable to feel the passion for her job that she once did, she returns to India to create a hostel for impoverished women who have no men to support them.

While building the hostel Santoshi guides Kiria through the surprising ways and culture of India, while Kiria begins to teach Santoshi that there is more to life than she ever thought possible. Despite their very different backgrounds and life experiences the two form an unlikely bond that will teach them both things about themselves.

I love books set in India. I find the culture fascinating and rich in history, and it is so different from our own. In that aspect Sisters of the Sari did not disappoint. It is full of the vivid imagery of India, and not just of the India that you would expect. The story does not touch much on those who are well-off, but rather on those who live day by day, simply doing what they have to do to get by regardless of what that is. We encounter rag pickers and prostitutes, maids and beggars, all hoping for a better tomorrow. I found out after reading the book that the author actually spent some time volunteering in India, and I appreciated the fact that some of this book was based on the insight that she gained while actually living there.

I found our two main characters, Kiria and Santoshi, fascinating. They were so different, but there were threads of their life experiences that bound them together enough for them to form a bond. I was fascinated with Santoshi's past and how that contributed to the person that she is today, and I thought that Kiria's past lent some interesting aspects to the story as well.

Sisters of the Sari is a fast-paced book that offers interesting insight into the Indian culture for the armchair traveler as well as a story about a bond between two very different women for those who prefer women's fiction. With its unexpected yet satisfying ending this is one that I can definitely recommend.

Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Challenges: 2011 100+ Reading Challenge, South Asian Challenge 2011

To Win:

Would you like to win 1 of 2 copies of Sisters of the Sari? Due to publisher's shipping restrictions this contest is open to US residents only. To enter:

1. *Mandatory Entry* Leave me a comment and let me know that you would like to win. It's that simple! Please include your e-mail address so that I can contact you if you are the winner.

2. *Bonus Entry* Become a follower of this blog through Google Friend Connect and let me know that you now follow. Current followers are eligible as well, just let me know that you are a current follower.

2. *Bonus Entry* Spread the word about this contest in some way. Facebook about it, tweet about it, or post about it in your blog. Just make sure that you leave me a comment to let me know what you did!

The mandatory entry and bonus entries can be combined into one comment if you choose. This contest will run until July 4, 2011 at midnight EST, with winners being contacted after this date. Good luck and thanks for entering!

19 comments:

  1. Sounds like and interesting comparision between the two women.

    Canadian. Too bad I can't enter.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sounds very good. Like Heather too bad I can't enter. Am from Sri Lanka!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I would like to read it count me in please.

    I already follow GFC

    Tweet http://twitter.com/#!/frellathon/status/83116269666177024

    frellathon(at)gmail(dot)com

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  4. This sounds like a wonderful story. I would love a chance to win.

    bibliophilebythesea AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks for this heartwarming and memorable book giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  6. This sounds like an interesting read - thanks for doing the giveaway.
    Ann
    cozyintexas@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. I'd really like to win this one. It just sound so good. It's been on my wish list for awhile now.

    I follow in google reader!

    je2kids(at)gmail(dot)com

    2 Kids and Tired Books

    ReplyDelete
  8. I would love to win! Thank you for the contest!!


    +1 I'm a gfc follower!

    inthehammockblog at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  9. awesome giveaway, of what sounds like a wonderful book!

    jmndowning@gmail.com

    i tweeted about the contest.

    ReplyDelete
  10. This sounds like an interesting story,

    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  11. I would love to win this book! Thank you so much!!

    PelicanJL@hotmail.com

    + Old GFC Follower (Patricia's Particularity)
    + Tweeted: https://twitter.com/#!/PelicanJL/status/87703328867368960

    ReplyDelete
  12. would love to read this novel...thanks for the chance :)

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  13. i'm a follower :)

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  14. This looks great!
    I'm a GFC follower!

    Shana
    shanaelyse@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  15. This book looks interesting. I think I will enjoy reading a book that takes place in India.

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

    ReplyDelete
  16. GFC Follower

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

    ReplyDelete
  17. Tweet! Tweet!
    @NancyeDavis

    http://twitter.com/#!/NancyeDavis/status/88085671562063872

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

    ReplyDelete