March 21, 2013

The Hope Factory by Lavanya Sankaran



Publisher: The Dial Press
Publication Date: April 2013
Categories: Family Life, Literary, India
Source: Random House

Description:

Anand is a Bangalore success story: successful, well married, rich. At least, that’s how he appears. But if his little factory is to grow, he needs land and money, and, in the New India, neither of these is easy to find.
 
Kamala, Anand’s family’s maid, lives perilously close to the edge of disaster. She and her clever teenage son have almost nothing, and their small hopes for self-betterment depend on the contentment of Anand’s wife: a woman to whom whims come easily.
 
But Kamala’s son keeps bad company, and Anand’s marriage is in trouble. The murky world where crime and land and politics meet is a dangerous place for a good man, particularly one on whom the well-being of so many depends.
 
My Thoughts:

I'm smitten with tales set in India. I'm besotted by convincing characters. I'm crazy about skillful prose. The Hope Factory contains everything on my literary wish list. 

This is the tale of two families. Anand and his family seem to have it all. Kamala and her son live on the very edge of poverty. In reality both families are dealing with matters that could send them over the brink to ruin. 

This novel is populated with corrupt politicians, shady coworkers, and unseemly friends.  Anand and Kamala  even have to be cautious of their own family members who don't have their best interests at heart.

At the core of The Hope Factory is the desire that Anand and Kamala have to be good parents. I was especially struck by the struggle that Kamala goes through to make sure that her son is educated and able to rise above their current station. 

The desire for a better and secure future is something we can all understand. Lavanya Sankaran uses that theme to write an outstanding story. 


25 comments:

  1. This certainly sounds like a story that all parents can relate to, regardless of where they live. And that cover is so striking!

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    1. I love this cover! I love the insides even more ;)

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  2. I haven't read many books set in India, or by Indian authors, but I must say I also love tales set in India. It depends on the author and how he/she sees the country, but I love how the characters are believable and relatable and reading about the lives and issues the people in India have to deal with on a daily basis. Corruption, poverty, revenge, etc.

    My comment probably has very little to do with this book, but oh well :)

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    1. I don't know why but I'm always excited to read things set in India. I'd love to actually go there one day.

      LOL, you can ramble on for as long as you want here. And ABOUT whatever you want ;)

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  3. I like the premise a lot, the way decisions can affect a different family in that way. The thread of Kamala trying to help her son sounds interesting, too.

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    1. I was really rooting for Kamala, she's a great character!

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  4. I agree that I have something for books that take place in India (also in China, for some reason), and last night I watched Life of Pi (having already read the book a few years ago). . . so this sounds like I must read it!

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    1. Ditto Rebecca! I love learning about Eastern cultures. I read Life of Pi years ago as well. I'm looking forward to seeing the movie one of these days as well :)

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  5. I like books with a strong setting. This sounds like it would fit the bill. You read great books.

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  6. Sounds interesting, and that cover is really striking. It pulled me in even before I read your review!

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    1. Isn't it something? It looks even better in person! It sure makes a statement sitting on my shelf :)

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  7. I have heard good things about this book. It sounds like it really has a great assortment of interesting if not so nice characters.

    I also need to read more books about India.

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    1. The characters are fascinating for sure Brian :) I'm not sure why I have such a love for Indian culture. Perhaps it's only because it's so different from my own?

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  8. Sounds like a great one, and I do like that setting.

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  9. O.K., I'm sold! You write such terrific, concise reviews.

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    1. Sweet! Thanks a zillion girl, you made me blush ;)

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  10. Thanks for stopping by.

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  11. For some strange reason I can't reply on your comment :( Wanted to say the last one I read was a young adult novel called Midnight Palace.

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    1. Blogger might be having fits this morning...it's been known to happen ;) I don't think I've heard of that one. I'll have to look it up!

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  12. This sounds great! I'm fascinated by India, and the struggles faced by both rich and poor families sound really interesting.

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    1. Me too! I don't know exactly why but it's a crazy interesting place to me :)

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  13. I adore books set in India too (country of my birth). I'll have to look for this one!

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    1. Please do! I hope you find it and enjoy it as much as I did :) Thanks so much for visiting Nupur!

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