Title: Well-Behaved Indian Women
Author: Saumya Dave
Reviewed by: Michaelene M
Well-Behaved Indian Women is Saumya Dave’s debut novel spanning the lives of 3 generations of women. Mimi is the grandmother who still lives in India and lately, has been curiously unreachable. Nandini is Mimi’s daughter and a mother of two who immigrated to America hoping for a better life for her children. Simran is a psychology student who begins to question her future career as well as her upcoming marriage to her best friend and high school sweetheart.
Though the story is told in two points-of-view–from Simran and her mother, Nandini–this is a layered, multigenerational story that explores what happens when one’s reality and expectations don’t match. All three are led to question where their lives are headed, if they made the right choices, and if changing course or pushing forward is the right path. From Nandini feeling as if she had to sacrifice her career for her marriage, to Simran who is caught between making her mother and fiancé happy and following her own course, even after everything is said and done.
The characterizations truly shine as readers are offered glimpses into mother-daughter relationships, the ups and downs of marriage, and the personal journey to change and acceptance–whether that’s based in tradition, modernity, or a little bit of both.
Readers searching for an intimate story will greatly connect with these multi-dimensional women and their journey to define their own identity and personal autonomy.
Well-Behaved Indian Women is available as a paperback in the library. Call us at 580-234-6313 to reserve this title.