Saturday, 29 August 2015

Review: The Weightloss Club by Devapriya Roy.

Book: The Weight Loss Club

Author: Devapriya Roy

Pages: 304

How Long it Took Me To Read: 3 days

Read On: Paperback

Plot Summary: Set in a middle-class housing colony, this is the story of stay-at-home mum Monalisa, who cannot clean the kitchen counter enough times; Meera, who is bullied constantly by her traditional mother-in-law; college-going Abeer, who isnt sure how to impress the glamorous Mandy; academic Aparajita, who has no takers on the marriage mart; philosopher Ananda, whom no one takes seriously; and Treeza, a former school secretary now sunk in gloom. Into their midst arrives Oxford-returned Sandhya: half hippie, half saadhvi, full spiritual guru. Under her aegis is formed The Weight Loss Club, throwing the lives of our heroes and heroines into utter and delightful disarray.

But while chemistry brews and equations change, one question remains: who is Brahmacharini Sandhya, and why on earth has she moved into Nancy Housing Cooperative?

General Thoughts: I bought this book on a blue day. A day I was in need of cheering up and this book seemed funny and sweet and just what I needed. Of course I waited a few months to read it and when I read it I loved it a lot! 

Things I Liked: 

1. I found the writing really nice, light and fun and yet very well crafted lines and such good story telling. 

2. The setting of the book was really nice too. A middle-class housing society with it's many inhabitants and their lives and stories were all very interesting and engaging. 

3. I also love books set in Calcutta, a city I spend all my summers in. 

4. I really loved that this book showed how cosmopolitan Calcutta truly is, it's not just Bengalis living in the great metropolis. This book shows a North Indian family, an Anglo Indian family and an East Indian person living in one society. 

5. There are so many stories in this book--- a typical obsessed Bengali mother, a young woman trying to loose weight to get married, a middle aged man dealing with a mother on her death bed, a Sadhvi trying to help the people in this housing society and a couple dealing with loss. Each of these stories were very interesting and I loved them all. 

6. There is also the story of a Sadhvi- Sandhya interspersed within the narrative of this housing society. I found her story very interesting and also loved the slight history lesson about the East Indians living in West Indies. 

7. The pujo preparation in the building was also fun to read about. 

8. The love story in the book is also sweet and progressed very nicely and believably. 

9. The book tackles several important issues such a parental pressure on their kids academic life,  loss of a child and infertility, postpartum depression, loneliness, societies expectations about marriage and what makes a desirable life-partner. Things that need to talked about and were dealt with so well in this book. 

10. All of the many characters in this book are so well-crafted and fun and memorable and seem so real and genuine. 

Things I Didn't Like: 

1. I wasn't a big fan of the college fest story arc and the young people in the book. I didn't care for that story at all. 

Rating: 4/5 

I really enjoyed this book and enjoyed my time reading it. I highly recommend it.

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