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A Suitable Boy

Categorized as ‘unputdownable’, there are only a few books that can make you stay up all night and make you want to re-read them again and again, despite being more than 1400 pages long.

You read that right. A Suitable Boy, a Booker Prize-winning work of fiction by Vikram Seth is one of them. One of the longest books ever written, it is a beautifully penned saga of a mother, Rupa Mehra looking for a suitable match for her daughter Lata. Set in post-independence India, the novel captures the life of people across different communities, religions and age groups. The story flits from Brahmpur, a fictional town in UP, to Kanpur and Delhi and Calcutta, with Lata’s three suitors Kabir Durrani, Haresh Khanna and Amit Chatterjee. Who will she marry?

Tackling the different issues of that time, along with age-old dilemmas like love marriage, and inter-religious relationships, the story is embellished with interesting and colourful characters (especially the Chatterjee family and their impromptu couplets!). Although the ending is a bit predictable, it will keep you hooked till the very end. Read it, and enjoy.

– Janhavi Deshpande

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