There aren’t a lot of books set in Sri Lanka, my motherland. So I was thrilled to read The Tea Planter’s Wife, a story set in the early 1900s when Sri Lanka was known as Ceylon. The protagonist of the story is Gwen, a nineteen-year-old white lady who joins her older, widowed husband, Laurence in […]

My Chivalric Fiasco is set in a theme park which is based on medieval court life. One night Martha from scullery gets raped by the theme park’s boss, and Ted, a janitor is the only one who knows it. The boss tries to get away with it by promoting both Martha and Ted in exchange […]

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is one of Agatha Christie’s most famous Poirot novels and considered to be a cornerstone of vintage crime fiction. The novel’s wow factor was not clear to me at the beginning; it started out quite ordinary. Roger Ackroyd knew too much about the affairs of the woman he had been […]

Home is a story about Mike, a veteran returning home. His house (his Ma’s house, actually) looks the same, more or less, but the people who make that house a home aren’t the same except for his Ma who is fiercely loyal to Mike. Ma’s old partner has moved out and her new partner, Harris […]

The novella Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age is written as a single (unfinished) sentence! Long sentences that run for pages are not my usual cup of tea. I still remember how daunting it was to read Gabriel García Márquez’s (he is one of my favorite authors) The Autumn Of The Patriarch. And that […]

The Semplica-Girl Diaries has a dystopian feel to it. Its epistolary narrative is written by a man who just turned forty. Although he hasn’t given up on the American Dream, his family with his wife, Pam and three children, Lilly, Thomas, and Eva are not well off. The narrator is a good man, caring for […]

Marianne, in her sixties, has been married to Lothar, her controlling husband for forty-one years. During a trip to Paris unable to take Lothar’s mistreatment anymore, Marianne decides to end her life only to be saved thanks to a Samaritan. The episode doesn’t win Marianne any sympathy from Lothar, who chides Marianne and leaves her […]

The setting of Al Roosten is a Local Celebrity Auction, a charity event organized by a small town chamber of commerce to raise money to fight drugs. According to Al Roosten, the title character, himself and Donfrey are “the twin pillars of the local business community.” But in reality, Al is running a failing business […]

Here and Gone follows the story of Audra Kinney. Audra is running away from her abusive husband to San Fransico with her two children. In Arizona, she gets pulled over by the local sheriff who charges her with possession of marijuana. But when she gets to the station, her kids are gone, and the sheriff […]

Now I’m not sure what this was all about. In a memo, Todd, a low-level manager explains the importance of positive outlook to his underlings. He tells them about the dead whale which he and a few of his friends had to lift onto a flatbed. They had first tried to lift the dead carcass […]