The Sari Shop Widow

( 20 )

Overview

Pungent curry…sweet fried onions…incense…colorful beads…lush fabrics. Shobhan Bantwal's compelling new novel is set on the streets of Edison, New Jersey's Little India, where a young businesswoman rediscovers the magic of love and family…

Since becoming a widow at age twenty-seven, Anjali Kapadia has devoted herself to transforming her parents' sari shop into a chic boutique, brimming with exquisite jewelry and clothing. Now, ten years later, it stands out like a proud maharani ...

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The Sari Shop Widow

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Overview

Pungent curry…sweet fried onions…incense…colorful beads…lush fabrics. Shobhan Bantwal's compelling new novel is set on the streets of Edison, New Jersey's Little India, where a young businesswoman rediscovers the magic of love and family…

Since becoming a widow at age twenty-seven, Anjali Kapadia has devoted herself to transforming her parents' sari shop into a chic boutique, brimming with exquisite jewelry and clothing. Now, ten years later, it stands out like a proud maharani amid Edison's bustling Little India. But when Anjali learns the shop is on the brink of bankruptcy, she feels her world unraveling…

To the rescue comes Anjali's wealthy, dictatorial Uncle Jeevan and his business partner, Rishi Shah—a mysterious Londoner, complete with British accent, cool gray eyes, and skin so fair it makes it hard to believe he's Indian. Rishi's cool, foreign demeanor triggers distrust in Anjali and her mother. But for Anjali, he also stirs something else, a powerful attraction she hasn't felt in a decade. And the feeling is mutual…

Love disappointed Anjali once before and she's vowed to live without it—though Rishi is slowly melting her resolve and, as the shop regains its footing, gaining her trust. But when a secret from Rishi's past is revealed, Anjali must turn to her family and her strong cultural upbringing to guide her in finding the truth…

Praise for Shobhan Bantwal and her novels...

“Compelling and memorable.” —Mary Jo Putney on The Forbidden Daughter

“Vivid, rich...expertly portrays a young woman caught between love and duty, hope and despair.” —Anjali Banerjee on The Dowry Bride

“Splendidly depicts passion, brutality,and cultures in conflict.”—Dorothy Garlock on The Dowry Bride

“The Dowry Bride is an eye-opener to the challenges many Indian women face in a culture few foreigners comprehend. —ArmchairInterviews.com, 4 stars on The Dowry Bride

“A beautifully written book...Wonderful, vivid, and worth reading.”—BookIdeas.com on The Dowry Bride

“An amazing story of modern India.”—The Kaleidoscope on The Dowry Bride

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Young, headstrong widow Anjali Kapadia runs her parent's chic boutique in New Jersey's “Little India,” but she's the last to find out that their store is financially insolvent. When her parents bring in her wealthy, controlling Uncle Jeevan to rescue the business, Anjali is initially resistant to his changes, but soon has to admit that they're working—and that she's falling for her uncle's mysterious business partner, Rishi Shah. Focusing on the immigrant experience, culture clash (and resolution) and family ties, Bantwal has a forgettable story, and her Little India doesn't do much to distinguish itself—interesting for those unfamiliar with Indian culture but with little else to offer. Readers will wish Bantwal had done more with her appealing characters and New Jersey setting. (Sept.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780758232021
  • Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corporation
  • Publication date: 9/1/2009
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 1,474,592
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Shobhan Bantwal
Shobhan Bantwal
Shobhan Bantwal was born and raised in India and came to the United States as a young bride in an arranged marriage. She has published short fiction in literary magazines and articles in a number of publications. Writing plays in her mother tongue (Indian language-Konkani) and performing on stage at Indian-American conventions are some of her hobbies. She lives in New Jersey with her husband. Shobhan loves to hear from her readers.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 20 )
Rating Distribution

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(6)

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(5)

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(6)

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Sort by: Showing all of 20 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Excellent Book and the Author Shobhan Bantwal really is a GREAT writter.

    This book is a must read and if you want to get hold of a good Indian Author this it the author you want to start with. She has written 3 books and all have been excellent....she needs to write more books. Very intersting reading. Becareful....Hard to put it down....

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 26, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    "The Sari Shop Widow" by Shobhan Bantwal is an easy read, filled with one-dimensional characters, and very predictable.

    In the novel, the author traces the fulfillment of dreams of a young Indian widow in the United States, through her personal loss, entreprenurial success,and relationships. She has dreams for herself and her father's business, but even as an adult, she must submerge her true feelings in deference to her parents' wishes. The author depicts the dichotomy of cultural values as the story develops of the Indian woman in her adopted country.

    The characters are predictable, and do not grow to assume multi-dimensional facets. The love story between the two main characters is the main theme against the backdrop of a tired sari shop that needs renewal, belief, and a new face lift.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 19, 2009

    Good Read......

    Interesting story line, good characters.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 7, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    This is a super ethnic family drama

    Anjali Kapadia had once dreamed of raising children, but after a decade since she cremated Vikram, the Indian-American has little hope of a second marriage as she has not found anyone she wants to marry though she has a secret boyfriend she hides from her parents. Nearing forty with her biological clock winding down, she has all but given up on her dream. Everything else in her life is good as she and her parents Mohan and Usha run the Silk and Sapphires upscale boutique in the Little India neighborhood of Edison, New Jersey where she designs clothing.

    However, Anjali is ignorant of the fact that the shop is failing. Her desperate father Mohan asks his wealthy older brother for help. Anjali's Uncle Jeevan-kaka has not been state side in five years, but comes from India to see what he can do to save the boutique. He is a benevolent dictator who drove Anjali and her mom crazy with his demands on his last visit. Jeevan arrives in New Jersey with his London-based business partner Rishi Shah, an expert on saving businesses buried in red ink. They plan to save the shop but also demand fifty-one percent ownership of the store. As Anjali and Rishi fall in love, she must decide can she trust him with her heart, her boutique, and her future when he already has a client girlfriend?

    This is a super ethnic family drama from an author who consistently provides readers with great profound novels that give insight into the Indian especially the Indian-American Hindu culture (see THE FORBIDDEN DAUGHTER and THE DOWRY BRIDE). Once again the fully developed characters make for a strong deep look at Hindu life in central New Jersey with the romance augmenting the insightful look. Shobhan Bantwal's enjoyable novels are incredibly entertaining but also enlightening as the reader sips masala chai.

    Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 12, 2012

    skip

    It started off well ,story was interesting and the main character was great. But as the story progressed, the characters and plot become flater and soooo generic.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 1, 2010

    I really enjoyed this book.

    I actually only was able to read the book half-way, before I forgot it at the laundromat. Oops!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 7, 2010

    Golly Gee....

    Loved this book. Part of my family is Persian and I understand some of their customs. This is so well written I didn't get lost and not understand where the story was going. You knew exactly what and when was happening....the author managed this extremely well. Read book in two days. Now I am ordering her other books. Thank you Shobhan Bantwal for this wonderful story.

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  • Posted February 26, 2010

    Cool Read

    This was my first time reading this author and my first time reading about this culture. And it was interesting. Loved the setting of the Sari Shop and the plot. The characters and culture was interesting and a bit different but not much. The ending was flimsy though. It needed solid turbulence to bring the book home but the author's over dramatization of the ex-girlfriend angle did it an injustice and unfortunately downgraded the book in my opinion. If she had a solid ending it would've been a really good read but it didn't so it wasn't. Not horrible or anything it's just that she had the ingredients to make you fall in love and in the end we got an empty bucket of chicklit.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Easy Read

    Shobhan Bantwal clearly stated in her Author's note that she intended this book to illustrate Indian culture and portray the lives of Desi's in America. Her goal, however, was overshadowed by a sappy love story that had a Pride and Prejudice type plot with a rich, handsome man falling in love with a middle-class, headstrong woman. This seemed more like a romance book with detailed love scenes rather than a cultural experience. At the same time, it was nice to have an easy read with a simple writing style, a straight forward plot, and a predictable ending. This book is great for those who just want to relax and not think too much.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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