March 1, 2012

Tea for two and a piece of cake by Preeti Shenoy

A book set in Mumbai and Pondicherry, about the life of a middle class girl, who marries a rich man and then seeks happiness in being the perfect mother to her two children. The rich man though has different plans and walks out on his wife and two kids for a younger woman. He is unhappy about the way his life has panned out and he is set to make amends. He believes it was not his calling to be a father and that too at such a young age when his career was the most important factor. The girl, now a woman, a mother, decides she needs to get a grip on her life, move ahead and moreover she is also set to prove that she is capable of making a success of he life, which he has so easily mocked.

I will not detail the entire story from here, but only what I thought was most striking in this book. Preeti has touched upon many topics which affect many women in India and all make this a book where you will find yourself silently nodding your head as you read through the pages.

A single mother and her dilemma on what the society and world will talk makes her go into a cocoon and not trust even the most trustworthy souls. Friends play the most important role in helping her gain strength and show her that she has it in her to succeed and put her pluses to her benefit. This is all easier said than done and a friend who stands by you as a pillar only goes to show how important you are in the person's life.

In India, trust is something which is built very slowly, and here we see that there is an elderly lady who has opened her heart and house to these new comers on her floor. And this turns into true trust and love when she takes care of the kids when the girl has to go and earn her living. How many of us can trust our neighbors completely to leave our kids with them for hours? As she also says, it is much better an elderly lady than a house-hold help.

And finally, love the second time around. Completely shunned by many in this land, a woman has a role to play as a wife and a mother, but not as a wife again if the first time does not work. A man on the other hand is not seen to have any societal restrictions, and he can take a lover, marry and settle, all very easily. When a woman does the same, there are so many questions on what would parents say, those around say. Preeti has never really expressed these thoughts openly, but the many occasions where the girl is happy on the world seeing her as a happy family with her lover only shows how she is looking for the society acceptance and how it is an unsaid requirement.

And the very sweet mind of a small child, who yearns for her father to return. The many instances where she is sure her father will come back for her, and he could possibly not have left her.  But, a small dessert, yummy food and a book to read in bed helps her adjust to her new surroundings without a whimper.

The book is a very easy read, and I did sit back and think of how we all sit back at times and take on the role of the pillion rider of our very own lives and you need something to come by and hit you for you to sit up and think straight. At the heart of the book, its about sweet love. Love when it seems inappropriate, the love for a child, the love one showers those who are not even blood related, and most of all, the love that you need by your side to live life completely. 


  1. I can't read books Aathira, but your gist is really making me want to read one.. I m sure the book has many emotions and journey to unfold.

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  3. Luv the cover of the book! I hv nt read even one of Preeti's books, though I really intended to. This might be the one I will pick up first. Thanks for the nice review :)

  4. YEah read very good reviews on the book .. all the best to Preeti. and thanks for the review.


  5. It is a good review. I haven't read the book but the points you raise are very pertinent. Wish life were that easy where you find a neighbor trustworthy enough to leave your kids with or a second chance at love. I can imagine that it is a nice easy flowing tale like her other book that I read.

  6. will add to my to read list :)


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