Honor, a review by Di

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Thrity Umrigar

Algonquin Books
January 4, 2022
336 pages

Amazon | Goodreads

I’m almost at a loss for words. The more a book touches me, the harder it is for me to review it.

There are 2 main characters. Meena is a Hindu woman who marries a Muslim man. Consequently, she is attacked by her village and family. Smeeta is an Indian-American reporter who returns to India to cover a story. Both women have their own incredible stories.

HONOR is a very compelling story. At times it is hard to read.

It is about love and prejudice and misguided honor. It is about the hatred that burns between the Muslims and the Hindus. It is about the caste system in India. It is about the rules of life and their interpretation.

Misogyny runs rampant throughout the book. The traditions and culture exhibited in the book are so foreign to us and our upbringing. Here is a quote from a male character that caught my eye:
“Life is different for us. Here it is a matter of dishonor for us to do women’s work.”

But, despite all the negatives, Ms Umrigar has written a provocative and interesting story. It’s a story that needs to be told. The ending gives the reader hope. In fact, I would love to see a sequel. I think there is still more to be told.

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