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Love, loss and family in an amazing book


Despite its size, I could not put this book down. It is a multi-generational family drama set in historical, political, religious and social context in twentieth century India. It delves into why people marry, how love develops when given a chance, the secrets families keep, and why; into class and caste divisions, the attachment to land, to place, ambition, disillusionment and the price we pay individually-and as a group for our choices and secrets. The writing is rich, and lyrical. I fell in love with the matriarch and hung on every word of the story. I enjoyed it so much I am rereading Verghese's last book, Cutting For Stone. I hope we do not have to wait ten more years for another book by him!


From Bookbub:

"Spanning the years 1900 to 1977, The Covenant of Water is set in Kerala, on South India’s Malabar Coast, and follows three generations of a family that suffers a peculiar affliction: in every generation, at least one person dies by drowning—and in Kerala, water is everywhere. At the turn of the century, a twelve-year-old girl from Kerala’s long-existing Christian community, grieving the death of her father, is sent by boat to her wedding, where she will meet her forty-year-old husband for the first time. From this unforgettable new beginning, the young girl—and future matriarch, known as Big Ammachi—will witness unthinkable changes over the span of her extraordinary life, full of joy and triumph as well as hardship and loss, her faith and love the only constants.

A shimmering evocation of a bygone India and of the passage of time itself, The Covenant of Water is a hymn to progress in medicine and to human understanding, and a humbling testament to the difficulties undergone by past generations for the sake of those alive today. It is one of the most masterful literary novels published in recent years."


My book, Redeemed, A Memoir of a Stolen Childhood will be published June 25, 2024.

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