Review: Beneath an Indian Sky by Renita D’ Silva @RenitaDSilva @Bookouture #BlogTour

Beneath-an-Indian-Sky-Kindle.jpg

  1. In British-ruled India, headstrong Sita longs to choose her own path, but her only destiny is a good marriage. After a chance meeting with a Crown Prince leads to a match, her family’s status seems secured and she moves into the palace, where peacocks fill the gardens and tapestries adorn the walls. But royal life is far from simple, and her failure to provide an heir makes her position fragile. Soon Sita is on the brink of losing everything, and the only way to save herself could mean betraying her oldest friend… 2000. When Priya’s marriage ends in heartbreak, she flees home to India and the palace where her grandmother, Sita, once reigned as Queen. But as grandmother and granddaughter grow closer, Priya has questions. Why is Sita so reluctant to accept that her royal status ended with Independence? And who is the mysterious woman who waits patiently at the palace gates day after day? Soon Priya uncovers a secret Sita has kept for years – and which will change the shape of her life forever…

Review

Last year I read Renita’s book, A Daughter’s Courage. It was a beautiful, emotional read that has since claimed a spot in my list of favorites. I was delighted to find out that the author has a new book . I am totally honored to share my review of Beneath an Indian Sky as part of the blog tour organized by Bookouture.

The story is set in India and partly in England. It is narrated through two main timelines and three narrators. The author did a fantastic job in seamlessly interweaving the story between narrators and timelines.  Through the chapters, we get to meet two young girls growing up in India, Sita and Mary. Sita is a fearless, rebellious Indian girl. Mary on the other hand is a shy, reserved English girl. Right from the start, readers get to see how the friendship changed the girls’ lives.  The effects of this childhood friendship are felt again when the girls later reconnect as grownups.

I really liked the description of the setting. The vivid imagery took me to India. I could visualize the exotic locations, the trips on elephants and the beautiful cheetahs that Sita liked. The author made me feel like I was right there in the beautiful garden with Mary. In my mind, I could see the vibrant colors of the plants against the background of the majestic palace.  I don’t know another author who brings settings alive like Renita does. I could see, smell and even feel India just from the way that she described it. She really does paint pictures with her words.

The setting wasn’t the only thing that was brought to life in the story; the characters were equally masterfully crafted and easy to connect with. It didn’t matter whether they were good or bad. The author made me care about all of them. I understood their motives even when I didn’t agree with their actions. The supporting characters were also very well portrayed. There are some that were present in only a few chapters but they greatly affected the course of the narrative and left their mark. The two that stood out to me the most were Charles and Sita’s mother-in-law.

This book has a number of heavy, interesting themes. One that really stood out for me was motherhood and how it is perceived in different situations. How in some circumstances, it is celebrated but in others, it only brings heartache and pain. Gender roles were also covered in the narrative and so were family ties. Another theme that I thought was quite well developed was ambition. It was interesting to see how the characters were influenced by their ambitions and just how far they were willing to go to achieve their goals. Although this is historical fiction, the themes are still relevant today. They are so realistically portrayed that they will make you identify feelings that you didn’t even know that you have experienced before. I know I have been examining my friendships a bit differently since reading this book.

This was a beautiful narrative but it was also quite heartbreaking.  It covers a span of decades and readers get to follow the girls’ lives from childhood to old age. There were disappointments along the way, a lot of betrayal and pain.

I ended up devouring this book in a day because I couldn’t stop turning the pages. This is the kind of story that brings characters into your life who end up claiming a spot in your mind and heart. I still can’t get over the heartbreak that I felt while reading the story and again, when I got to the last page and had to say goodbye to the characters.

If you have never read Renita’s books, you need to rectify that. Start with Beneath an Indian Sky or A Daughter’s Courage. I am currently on a mission to read everything that she has ever written. Definitely recommended!

 

About the author: 
 
Renita-D'Silva-author-picture-bio-250pxRenita D’Silva loves stories, both reading and creating them. Her short stories have been published in ‘The View from Here’, ‘Bartleby Snopes’, ‘this zine’, ‘Platinum Page’, ‘Paragraph Planet’ among others and have been nominated for the ‘Pushcart’ prize and the ‘Best of the Net’ anthology. She is the author of ‘Monsoon Memories’,’The Forgotten Daughter’, ‘The Stolen Girl’, ‘A Sister’s Promise’, ‘A Mother’s Secret’, ‘A Daughter’s Courage’, ‘Beneath An Indian Sky’.
Author’s links: Facebook, Twitter, Website.

Don’t forget to visit the other stops on the blog tour.

Beneath an Indian Sky - Blog Tour.jpg

 

Beneath an Indian Sky is now available for purchase. You can get your copy here.

21 thoughts on “Review: Beneath an Indian Sky by Renita D’ Silva @RenitaDSilva @Bookouture #BlogTour

    1. This book really covered the theme of friendship well and also showed how the different personalities affected the characters. It was an amazing read. Thanks Inge 🙂

  1. I hadn’t heard of this book before but it sounds like a beautiful read. The setting sounds incredible and I love the themes that it covers. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on it.

  2. I thought I had read another book by the author but I didn’t, which was that one with a missing person (the husband?) and the young woman who helped with Internet searching? LOL my synopsis is terrible

    1. I think you could be referring to Lost Daughter of India which we both read. It was by Sharon Maas though and it had a missing girl, inter-racial, divorced couple and yes, a young woman who helped with the internet search 🙂

    1. I think that you would enjoy this one then. It was quite an atmospheric read and the characters were very well crafted. You’re welcome 🙂

  3. Dear Diana, Thanks so very much for this absolutely beautiful review! I am so thrilled and overwhelmed – thank you! So happy you liked this one. You’ve made my week! Hope you’re having a good one. xxx

    1. I am happy that you read and liked my review. I really love this book so I wanted to ensure that the review does justice to it. Thank you for another amazing read.

      Have a wonderful weekend 🙂

    1. She is amazing! I also see a lot of her reviews on goodreads. She is quite a reader and I like how she supports her fellow authors. I hope that you will get a chance to read this one 🙂

  4. HI my Darling Renita
    I am so proud that I know you and have been your teacher. grow more to the hights my dear wonderful are GODs ways in your life.
    with warm wishes Sr.Hildegard.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s