Set among the upper classes in the gracious, repressive and complex world of 1920s Ceylon (Sri Lanka), this evocative novel tells the story of two people who must determine if it is possible to pursue personal happiness without compromising the happiness of others. A young teacher, Annalukshmi, whose splintered family attempts to arrange an appropriate marriage for her, must decide whether the independence she craves will doom her to a life without love and companionship. It is also the story of Balendran who, respectably married, must suppress-or confront-the secret desires for men that threaten to throw his life into chaos. With sensuous atmosphere and vivid prose, this masterfully plotted novel re-creates a world where a beautiful veneer of fragrant gardens and manners hides social, personal, and political issues still relevant today.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
READING GROUP GUIDE
Other editions - View all
akka Alli Alliston Amma Annalukshmi looked Appa arrived Arul Arul's asked Aunt Bala Balendran felt Balendran looked Balendran stared bedroom began bicycle Brighton brother Ceylon Ceylon National Congress Ceylonese chair Chandran Macintosh Cinnamon Gardens Colombo cousin cried daughter desk Donoughmore Commission door drawing room eyes father feel front Galle Face Hotel girls glanced Govind hand headmistress heard husband Jaffna Jayaweera knew Kumudini Letchumi Lotus Cottage Louisa Lukshman Macintosh boy Malaya Manohari marriage married meeting Miss Adamson Miss Lawton morning mother Mudaliyar Murugasu Muttiah Nalamma Nanu Oya nephew Nesiah never nodded Pakkiam Parvathy Pillai quickly replied Richard rickshaw sari seated Seelan shook her head silent Sinhalese sister smiled Sriyani stood stopped talk Tamil tell thing thought Tirukkural told took turned verandah voice waiting walked wife woman women