FINDING TAKRI by Palo Stickland

takriI loved reading Finding Takri. It was easy to read, and understand, and easy to fall in love with. The story is about a young girl (Takri). We follow her life – her marriage to an unknown man from another village, her children, and grandchildren’s lives too. We learn of a love she had prior to her marriage, and see his story through his viewpoint at different points in the novel.

Takri’s story is heartbreaking, but we do see happiness. Palo Stickland balances the two areas with grace. As an Indian myself, I loved revisiting the Indian words Palo used subtlety. It was fresh, and not hard to understand.

Let’s talk about the characters: Takri, who is the main character, is lovely, and I liked her instantly, for her pleasant, and caring attitude to life. We feel sorrow, but when she finds happiness, we can’t be happy enough. Her husband, Basant, loves Takri a lot. We see his caring side, but also his jealous side, and his life takes a turn. We meet Karam, Takri’s love. He is a strong, decisive Punjabi, who is ┬áheadstrong, yet sensitive. His life is haunted by his love for Takri. All three characters are bound to one another, and all three spend a lot of time apart from each other too.

Palo’s writing is clean, and sincere. Her voice is natural. It is easy to get lost in the prose without any grammatical disturbances. I cannot emphasize how finely her book is written.

I really recommend you read this book. Not only would you enjoy it, but you shall also learn a few things of India’s struggle against the British Raj, in the 1940s. This is one debut I will never forget.

A fantastic piece of writing, worthy of a literary prize!

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