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The Village By The Sea

September 12, 2009

Review of the beautiful novel that I had read some time back.

thevillagebytheseaThe Village by the Sea is a fantastic novel by Anita Desai. The novel is set in the beautiful fishing village of Thul, fourteen kilometers from Bombay, India that is surrounded by rice paddies and coconut groves. The main characters of the novel are Hari and his sister Lila. Their mother is severely ill and is bed ridden. While their father, once a fisherman, is a drunkard.

Lila has to do all the chores and to look after her ailing mother as well as two younger sisters and Hari has to plow the small field that they have and to keep the house running. While Hari and Lila struggle to make ends meet, this sleepy village is abuzz with rumors that the government is going to set up fertilizer factory in Thul very soon. This meant the paddies and coconut groves would be replaced by the factory and fishing wouldn’t be lucrative anymore. The prospect of the factory meant new jobs as well. But Hari couldn’t wait for the factory project to begin, besides he isn’t sure whether he would get a job or not while he desperately needs money for the treatment of his dying mother, for the education of his younger siblings, for the wedding of Lila and to bring happiness in their sad house.

After much deliberation he gets ready to take risk for the sake of his family. He runs away to Bombay without letting anyone know. Will he survive in the monstrous city? Will he be able to make and save some money for his family? Will he get back to his village safe and sound? Answers to these questions can be found in this enthralling novel about the struggle and determination of a young boy.

The village by the sea is pleasure to read because not only it is a poignant tale that the writer claims to be based on true incident but it awesomely depicts the scenic beauty of Thul and the crazy life of Bombay. Though basically it is for the young readers still it is highly recommended if you haven’t read it yet!

8 Comments leave one →
  1. September 12, 2009 9:50 pm

    This sounds like good read. I like the fact that young readers can get a sense of life in Bombay and the scenery.

  2. September 14, 2009 8:01 am

    Thats a nicely written review. I’m intrigued to know more about the novel; will try to get my hands on it.

    You oughta send this review to some magazine or a literary page of some news paper.

    • September 14, 2009 11:05 am

      Yep! The story is so simple and beautiful… I liked it.

      ‘US’ used to publish reviews but the thing is that one should know that the book wasn’t reviewed previously. So it becomes a little difficult.

  3. September 14, 2009 8:02 am

    curious to know, how he manages the things …
    Does he also go to a call center & then KBC. 🙂

    • September 14, 2009 11:07 am

      LOL! This isn’t ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ 😀

      The novel was actually first published in 80s so basically the story is set in mid-late 80s.

  4. zarak permalink
    September 21, 2009 6:34 pm

    very nice review… will read the book!

  5. rajitha permalink
    June 25, 2010 2:32 pm

    wt about the character traits of each character?????????its not at all mentioned here…………very disappointing……….

  6. Shreya permalink
    October 18, 2011 1:43 pm

    a well written plot of the story……….we actually did this novel in school and it was a wonder reading it thanx

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