Read Three Bargains by Tania Malik Online


A tale of fathers and sons, the ties that bind, and the barriers of class that even love cannot break, Three Bargains is a stunning first novel, as potent, heart-stopping, and epic as Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner.By the banks of the River Yamuna in northern India, where rice paddies of basmati merge into fields of sugarcane, twelve-year-old Madan lives with his impoveA tale of fathers and sons, the ties that bind, and the barriers of class that even love cannot break, Three Bargains is a stunning first novel, as potent, heart-stopping, and epic as Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner.By the banks of the River Yamuna in northern India, where rice paddies of basmati merge into fields of sugarcane, twelve-year-old Madan lives with his impoverished family in the town of Gorapur. Madan's father works for Avtaar Singh, a powerful and controlling man who owns the largest factory in town and much of the land around it. Madan's sharp mind and hardened determination catch Avtaar Singh's attention. When Madan’s father's misdeeds jeopardize his sister's life, Madan strikes his first bargain with Avtaar Singh to save her. Drawn into Avtaar Singh's violent world, Madan becomes his son in every way but by blood. Suddenly it looks as if everything will change for Madan and his family until a forbidden love affair has brutal consequences and he is forced to leave behind all that is dear to him. On his journey toward redemption, Madan will have to bargain, once, twice, three times for his life and for the lives of those he loves....

Title : Three Bargains
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780393063400
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 368 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Three Bargains Reviews

  • Zoeytron
    2019-02-26 20:20

    I found this debut novel by Tania Malik to be a stirring tale of a young boy's journey into manhood, and all that it implies. The writing is first-rate, the prose moving and thought provoking, and the characters finely etched. In likening the city of Dehli to life, the author notes that in life there is order, and in this order, chaos. That just seems right on the button to me. Such vivid imagery was a pleasure to read, words that fell gently, yet landed with a thousand pinpricks, 'a town no bigger than a thumbprint', 'a flock of pigeons landing in a feathery jumble'. If you delight in such phrases, you won't want to miss this book. It's not all pretty words, though. There is a tough tale being told here. There is a drunken, abusive father who does unspeakable things to his family. There is poverty, horrendous losses, risky decisions, and life-affecting bargains made.This was a first-reads giveaway ARC. Thank you for a terrific story. Well done!

  • Lisa
    2019-03-01 19:42

    "Sometimes a storm comes and knocks just one tree down, and sometimes the same storm lifts away your house and takes everything with it." It was a close to the truth as he could get.Three Bargains is Tania Malik's debut novel, but you would never suspect it. It's as eloquent, painful, and gritty a story as you could possibly imagine. The descriptions of the country and culture made me feel like I was there, for better or worse. This is a surprising (and often times shocking) novel of desperation, crime, and poverty in India. To say that the main character of Madan is born into unfortunate circumstances is putting it mildly. His family is dirt poor and his father is abusive. After his father commits a horrific crime in order to pay off his debts, Madan's world is changed forever, and Tania Malik doesn't spare us any of the gruesomeness that comes with poverty and crime. I really had no idea where this novel was going, and I was surprised again and again at each turn in the story. And most surprising of all was the ending.I felt very torn over the character of Madan. I found myself routing for him even though I disliked him very much at times. I struggled to understand his seemingly blind loyalty to a man who clearly didn't deserve it. I'm still left with some unanswered questions, but the ending was very satisfying and bittersweet. I'm happy to have received an advance reading copy of this book from Goodreads. This is my honest review.

  • Lori
    2019-03-11 16:28

    This, the authors first novel, though not perfect was still very compelling and well thought out. 'There is one place we go first before all others, to the one man with whom, as we all do with the great cosmic giver-and-taker above, I bargained three times—once for my family, once for my life and then for you. He is the beginning of your story and mine'.... I loved this quote and it conveys very well the feeling that I'll take away from this novel. I think it's a pretty safe bet that if you were a fan of The Kite Runner you will enjoy this.

  • Rachel
    2019-03-21 17:37

    I won an ARC copy of Three Bargains in a giveaway here on Goodreads. Based on reviews from other early readers and the advertisements making comparisons to books like Slumdog millionaire and The Kite Runner, I had high expectations. Unfortunately, I think the high expectations were the undoing of this story. It is difficult to hold up such a new author like Malik against such literary greats as Khaled Hosseini. I also recently read Jhumpa Lahiri's new novel, and that woman is such a wordsmith that even the most poorly woven story would seem utterly magical in her hands. Frankly, Malik does not demonstrate the skill necessary to be held up next to these master craftspeople. Everything about this story felt shallow, the characters never entirely fleshed out. I never felt drawn into her world and was bothered by the dearth of world- and character-building details (notice that she never once describes anyone's face, or properly introduces characters). While the story was ultimately a good one, it suffered in it's execution. I read nearly 400 pages that felt like an outline of a novel, so far from being fully fleshed. It jumped from plot twist to plot twist like Frogger, never landing long enough for the reader to get immersed in Madan's world or to really feel the impact of any of the many (and often, predictable) twists; there was never enough build-up to the inevitable turn of events, and these big moments that should have shocked or moved me fell extremely flat. Three Bargains is a perfect example of extreme tell-and-not-show writing, which made it impossible for me to become emotionally invested in the story. It was such a surface presentation of the people and events, it never felt real to me. I tried to reason that the oversimplified and choppy telling of the story in the beginning was meant to present the perspective of a then-12-year-old narrator, but it never got better. This story had so much potential but truly suffered without the small, thoughtful, everyday details that could have brought this story alive. I think that Malik's core idea for this story is interesting, and if it had been further developed it would have been unforgettable. Sadly, I think it needs a lot more work, more faith in an intelligent audience (especially one meant to endure the events of Madan's life), and the loss of a few plot twists in favor of a more fully fleshed cast of characters.

  • Matt
    2019-03-22 19:46

    Set in northern India, “Three Bargains” is decorated with many colorful, not always familiar, words. So many that I underlined them in pencil, when I normally don’t like to write in books, and made my own kind of glossary, thanks to Wikipedia and Wiktionary. Food, clothing, occupations, religious and cultural practices are among these words new to me, yet the clarity of the writing and story-telling is remarkable. Reading about Madan, Avtaar Singh, Jaggu, all of the characters – their personalities are immediate and well-focused. The novel tells Madan’s story through so many events, good, bad, and deadly, and never strays far from the intensity behind this young man. Avtaar Singh – always those two names together, sometimes with the suffix “-ji”, and only once as “Avtaar Uncle,” is a powerful mobster – really, I think that is an accurate comparison. For certain I do not agree with his way of conducting business; much of western culture, too is perhaps at odds with his approach, but to see the way he balanced good and evil, and how this passed on to Madan, is exceptionally well done by Tania Malik. Often Madan thinks that violence upon others will settle his soul, but how can it? That is something I cannot understand, though it is not to say that any of these people are all evil or all good. At times Madan does a good deed to follow the bad one, even involving the same person. Time, too, shapes his outlook, and that of his family as well. There is plenty to think about while, and after, reading this.I find fiction more difficult to review, because I don’t want to give away too much of the plot. “Three Bargains” reminds me of “The Last Summer of the Death Warriors” by Francisco X. Stork, in a different setting, but with many of these universal, human themes. While it can be upsetting, for the strong emotional twists and turns, it is ultimately a rewarding reading experience. This is a powerful work, and the characters and their actions will stay in my memory for a long time.Note: I won a copy of this title through Goodreads' First Reads.

  • Kira
    2019-03-08 20:40

    Wonderful. This book has it all, violence, heart, mystery, and sheer determination/stubbornness of Madan, the main character. I found this book really enjoyable and great in so many ways. Madan proves that not every person is all good, or all bad. He has enough hints of evil in his character to flaw him from being purely good. He has compassion and heart. The underlying theme in this book for me was acceptance. Madan just wanted acceptance from so many players in his life, mom, "dad", girlfriend, business partner. The list goes on. In his quest for acceptance he goes through so many tough experiences and in the end he just needed to be open and honest to gain that acceptance and trust. His quest also brought him courage, an admirable trait. I love how Tania left the ending open in a way that we can imagine what can happen next and end the story in our own way. I received this book from Goodreads First Reads in exchange for my honest review.

  • Michelle
    2019-02-21 16:20

    This was an emotionally complex story with vivid imagery and intricate characters. A compelling story which pulled me in immediately.I received a complimentary copy of this book via a Goodreads giveaway. Many thanks to all involved in providing me with this opportunity.

  • Karen Klein
    2019-03-17 18:46

    NOTE: I won this from Goodreads in exchange for an honest review.Absolutely wonderful book, and as this is a debut novel from this author, I will definitely be looking forward to reading more from her! Her writing is wonderful and flows beautifully. I love reading books that are based in India; there is just something that fascinates me about the country and the people. I'm not sure if I will get to India in this lifetime, but with an author who writes as descriptively about the country and the people, I feel like I just came back from a nice, long trip.The story is based on the life of the main character, Madan - a poor 12 year old boy that is brought to Gorapur (along with his mother and sister) by his father, an abusive man who has no regard for his family whatsoever. Madan is "adopted" by Avtaar Singh, the wealthy "patriarch" of Gorapur. Madan's life seems to be on the right path now, a path that will allow him to step up out of poverty and to be able to care for his family in the years to come. Does his life change? Is this his destiny? You have to read the book to find out the rest of the story. It's an interesting one and it will be time well spent. Congratulations to Ms. Malik and please, keep writing!

  • Jim
    2019-03-20 17:38

    As this novel begins, the reader is introduced to Madan Kumar. He is a twelve year old boy from a poor family, with an abusive father, who has just moved to the factory town of Gorapur, in India. Madan meets his father’s boss, Avtaar Singh, who not only runs the factory, but the town as well. Singh almost instantly recognizes Madan as someone with the potential to rise above the class he was born into. Instead of starting a job as a tea wallah, as his father had arranged, Madan is sent to school because of Avtaar Singh. THREE BARGAINS is a book about what defines us as a person. It provides wonderful insight into the nature versus nurture psychological debate. Is our genetic material, or the people who shape our lives by influencing how and what we think about more important? Malik asks the question – Who is my family? and allows the reader to see her answer as the story unfolds. I was quickly swept into the current of Madan’s life and read with interest to see how he would grow and yet retain his core identity. This is a fine book that seeks to explain why we are all unique individuals and for those of us not familiar with it, an enlightening glimpse into Indian society as well.

  • Jenni
    2019-03-07 15:44

    Three bargains is the compelling story about the life of a Indian man trying to find his way despite the challenges life throws at him. Three times in his life he encounters radical confrontations that change him and his outlook. It is also a story of the admiration a boy feels for the man who raises him and then later the struggles he has to go through to break away from this man.As a young boy the antagonist moves with his mother and sister to his father, a violent alcoholic. The drama that ensues not only ends the life of the father, dramatically changes the life of the sister, but also adds a father figure. This charismatic father figure however comes with his own twisted morale. The novel is well written and instantly sucks you into the street life of India and the difficulties women and children face. It is also the story of the different aspects of love between family members and the components of what makes a family.As much as I enjoyed reading this book, I had a hard time relating to the ending. The relationship between the antagonist and the man who "raises" him is very complicated, but it also difficult to imagine another ending.I definitely would recommend this book any time.

  • Lori
    2019-03-05 17:43

    I was a goodreads first reads winner of "Three Bargains" by Tania Malik. the main character in this book is "Madan" the novel starts in 1983 when Madan is 12 years old and follows his story up to current times. three Bargains takes place in India. Madan and his family are poor from age 12 he tries to get jobs to help support his family, his father is drunk and abusive and even commits an unspeakable act toward his family. Madan is the boy who has to "bargain" for his life and family. he witnesses and experiences tragedies and triumphs. he goes from poverty to success of his own. and faces many hardships along the way. I do not want to give away any spoilers. I will say I really enjoyed this well written book and found myself involved in what happened to certain characters in this novel. I was glad I got the chance to read Three Bargains.

  • Katherine
    2019-02-21 18:47

    This book is a difficult one to rank. It is extremely well written, but some parts of it are very violent. After the first few chapters, it was very hard for me to put down. The main character, Madan is child of a very poor family, whose father is an abusive, drunk, gambler. When the father trades Madan's six year old sister for a forgiven debt, it almost destroys the family.Madan's fortunes change for the better when the town's wealthiest citizen takes him under his wing, pays for his schooling and teaches him how to run a business.The story takes place in India and there are Indian words that are unfamiliar, but it is fairly easy to figure what they mean.How Madan saves his family, loses the favor of his mentor, becomes homeless, and rises again make a story that moves quickly.

  • Barbara
    2019-03-16 18:36

    This ARC book was a giveaway from you.I loved every beautiful word of this excellent book!The story takes place in India and the main character is 12 year old Madan who lives in poverty with his family. His life begins to change when he meets Avtaar Singh the richest man in the town of Gorapur and they develop a relationship that is both loving and violent. This book is riveting in its brutality and heartache and you won't be able to stop reading it. I'm keeping my review short because I don't want to spoil the impact this book will have on you.I highly recommend "Three Bargains" to anyone who doesn't want to miss reading this stunning book.

  • Mike
    2019-03-11 19:37

    this was a great book. I read it in 2 sittings and was enthralled the entire time. telling the story of Madan's rise from poverty to riches, from owned to owner, it is captivating and well written. reminds me of books by Khaled Hosseini, author of A Thousand Splendid Suns. themes of friendship, marriage, loss, grief, abuse, and triumph over adversity are masterly interwoven which makes a great read.

  • Christina
    2019-02-25 22:31

    I won this book from Goodreads. I really thought I would love this book. Especially since it said, it was for fans of The Kite Runner and Slumdog Millionaire, which I am a fan of both. I did not connect with any of the characters and the different story lines felt disconnected at times. The story did not hold my interest and I often thought of not finishing the book.

  • Lizzy
    2019-03-06 14:33

    sometimes hard to follow but an interesting story

  • Diane
    2019-02-23 19:37

    I LOVED this book - about a boy in northern India - can hardly believe this is the author's debut novel! Could hardly put it down. The characters are unforgettable. Highly recommend this book.

  • Kookie
    2019-03-24 18:41

    Great story. Can't help but think it would make an excellent Bollywood movie (my mind cast Ranveer Singh in the lead). Very touching ending, too. Highly recommended.

  • Michelle
    2019-03-21 20:19

    3.5* Disturbing on many levels.

  • A Storied Soul
    2019-03-07 17:17

    Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a review. This review was originally posted at my blog: The LiterariumFirst, I must say that Indian literature is my favorite genre, it's my area of expertise, and when this book was promoted as being in the same vein as Slumdog Millionaire (Swarup, Q&A), I was immediately intrigued. However, it's important to note that Three Bargains goes much deeper than Millionaire, to me--much deeper--and I feel that it's leagues above its predecessor. I have to say thank you to WW Norton & Company for this amazing and rewarding experience. I knew about 50 pages in that this was going to be a expertly crafted story, and I expected nothing less coming from Norton & Company.Madan lives a humble childhood as the son of servant-class parents in 1980s Northern India. He quickly grabs the attention of Avtaar Singh, a wealthy and prominent man in the small town of Gorapur where Madan and his family live. Avtaar takes Madan under his wing and Madan is quickly introduced to a life he previously could only have dreamed of, but this attention comes with a price that costs Madan everything he has and forces him to leave behind his home, his family, and all he's known. However, where such circumstances would leave most people defeated, Madan doesn't let society or its constraints keep him from rising above expectations. Using the education and business savvy that he learns with Avtaar, along with "three bargains" he must make with people along the way, he works his way through various jobs until he becomes a well-off businessman in his own right. Madan's success eventually sends him back to his hometown where he will have to confront the past and people he left behind.I took my time with this book because I quickly learned it was one that should be savored, and I also wanted to take my time because I wanted to understand the intricate lives, thoughts, and motives of all the characters Malik introduces us to in this, her first novel. Furthermore, this is a novel that forced me to slow down and think about what was happening and how culture and society plays into the circumstances we find ourselves in because of these elements. We first meet Madan as a little boy who is trapped in India's rigid and forbidding caste structure; he's a servant boy with dreams and India has little patience for boys like him. This notion is what Malik draws attention to with beautiful, crafty, and subtle prose that gets to the heart of how Madan feels and how he interacts with and against society. Madan defies expectations in that he isn't pushed back down to "his place," but he instead pushes back at every obstacle that blocks his path. And yes, Madan meets many obstacles, often losing things near and dear to him, as if these events are meant to punish him for the choices he makes--even Avtaar tells him early on in his life that every choice has a consequence. Madan learns this the hard way but still presses on. This is one of the main things about Malik's book that is so endearing: we can learn from Madan to persevere through the toughest of life's situations--we learn the strength of the human heart, humanity's will to survive, and we learn the strength of love and family bonds. Furthermore, in the midst of hardship, even if we can't immediately see it, there's always hope.This book is the perfect choice if you like fully realized and developed characters, believable plots, a lot of action, and a hopeful outlook on the future. This would make a great end-of-summer read or a book to kick off your fall reading. I highly recommend it and I will be purchasing a copy myself.

  • Mandy
    2019-03-13 16:43

    RATING 5 STARSI am not sure I know exactly what to say about what I just read but I am going to try.This "rags to riches" tale was extremely heartbreaking to read, but also beautiful in ways and beautifully written. It is is difficult for me wrap my mind around the fact that this is Malik's first novel. We start out on our journey through Madan's life when he is twelve years old. He is dirt poor, is living with his family and grandfather in servant's quarters under the man {Avtaar Singh} who pretty much owns the entire town and the people in it, and his father is an abusive drunk. He has an extremely rough start in the world. It starts to get better when Avtaar Singh notices Madan's intelligence, and takes a liking to him, but soon after they make acquaintance trouble with his father starts brewing. His father has debts to pay, and to pay them off he commits the unforgivable crime against his family of (view spoiler)[ selling Madan's six year old sister off into marriage. Avtaar Singh helps find his sister, but when they find her she is beaten severely and needs major hospitalization. His father has officially destroyed her at six years old, and she isn't the same after that. Avtaar Sihgn then "rights" this wrong by sending his men to kill Madan's father for his wrongdoings, which Madan ends up watching.(hide spoiler)]Avtaar Singh then takes Madan in, pretty much, as a son of his own, but also introduces Madan to a slick spiral down to a life of crime. And Madan, who is intelligent, lacks common sense and hangs on to the Avtaar's every word. …And that is where the real story begins. This book started out as being a gruesome tale of the life of poverty, then for the majority of the book it becomes the story of poverty and crime. I really wasn't sure where this book was going to end up, but the way Malik writes made me feel like I was right in the heart of India. I have not had much experience or knowledge about the culture of India, and Malik still did an amazing job in keeping me caught up and in explaining the story right through those pesky cultural barriers.I was amazed at how well the ending came together, even though I really didn't like that (view spoiler)[ Madan's son died (hide spoiler)] I really LOVED the ending and how bittersweet Madan's (view spoiler)[distant relationship with with his daughter ended up being. (hide spoiler)] I wasn't sure if I liked Madan at all throughout the majority of the book, just because of how much he got himself into trouble and how willing he was to heed Avtaar Singh's every command - even when it involved the murder of, what seemed like, innocent people. I LOVED Jaggu, and that love just kept growing. I HATED Avtaar Singh and was extremely disappointed when Madan (view spoiler)[ ended up going back to him. Yes, he ended up being his father as he knew it, and yes, he ended up giving Madan's daughter an education and making sure she was okay, but he never once apologized for introducing him to life of crime, to ordering for Madan to be murdered, for breaking promises, and for disowning him when Madan needed him most. And I hated him for that.(hide spoiler)]All in all I am extremely satisfied with this book, it is a new favorite of mine, I will be re-reading it. After all of the violence and troubles, I did not expect for this book to end up so bittersweet and heartfelt, but was happily surprised.Original review at**I won an ARC of Three Bargians for free through a Goodreads First Reads Giveaway****This review is based on an uncorrected proof, the novel is subject to change until publication**

  • Melinda
    2019-03-23 17:30

    This was an interesting book to read and a somewhat difficult book to review. It was an engrossing story and kept my attention from the first page. However, I can't say that I always enjoyed reading it. But, then again, I don't believe that the author meant for this book to be enjoyable.Madan is an interesting character--he almost strikes me as being Dickensian. He's very dynamic as he coasts the arc of this rags to riches to rags to riches to....(I'm not going to tell you how it ends up!). I didn't find any of the other characters in this book to be as faceted as he is. However, for the most part, that is fine. The only character I wish did have more depth was that of Avtaar Singh, who seemed just a bit too mysterious for me.This book came touted as being along the lines of Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner. While I believe that Three Bargains is in that vein, I wouldn't say it is quite up to the level of The Kite Runner. Like Hosseini's book, there are some truly violent and hard to read to read scenes in this book (although I found the scenes in The Kite Runner to be harder to stomach). However, it doesn't seem to have the same urgency as The Kite Runner.This is definitely a book I'm glad I read and I would recommend it to some readers--specifically to those with an interest in books from different cultures and who can stomach a fair amount of violence and profanity. This would also be an excellent selection for a book club as there is much to discuss in it.I won a copy of this book through the Goodreads First Reads program. I was encouraged, but not required, to write and post an honest review. I received no other compensation for this post.

  • Karen M
    2019-03-21 16:26

    It’s hard to believe that this is a first book for the author. To put it plainly, it was a very enjoyable read. The journey of the main character, Madan, is powerful and fascinating to follow. From an abused childhood of near poverty to being a self-made powerful businessman is always an intriguing story but the wonderful details are what make this book truly interesting and hard to put down.Slumdog Millionaire is mentioned by a number of reviews but to me this is only on the surface. There is no magical money falling from the sky only hard work and the kindness of near strangers. Madan is a complex character who as a child is very protective of his sister and mother but later, when all he had gained is lost again, he abandons them. He eventually recreates himself and choses to leave his past and his abandoned family’s existence locked away. After a tragic loss he suddenly desires to see his mother and sister again and revisit his past in the hopes of reclaiming a part of his life which he had once let go.Wonderful story and so very well written. I highly recommend reading this book.I won this book in a First Reads giveaway.

  • Sara Smith
    2019-03-12 15:21

    I received a free ARC of this book from the Goodreads First Reads program.This book is a rag to riches story of a boy named Madan in India. He lives with his parents, sister and grandfather in the servants' quarters working for a man named Avtaar Singh who runs the town by making loans and then taking payments for your business to keep running. Avtaar Singh sees something in Madan and sends him to school. Later, he takes Madan under his wing doing increasingly criminal acts. Eventually Madan makes a mistake and has to leave or die. He flees, but regrets who he leaves behind. He can't return until he is a big success. Towards the end of the book, Madan loses his son and realizes that the riches he worked so hard to achieve mean nothing without his child. This was an epic book, but it has so much cruelty in it that it is difficult to like the main characters. It makes you realize how much life can change based on our choices.

  • Penny (Literary Hoarders)
    2019-03-16 20:28

    I would be wrong in saying this book surprised me - because that's not what happened at all - this is definitely something in my wheelhouse of books that I would pick up, so I guess what I would say is that this was a very good story. I would give the audiobook however more of a 3.5 star rating. And while the narrator did an excellent job of giving distinction to the different characters with authentic accents and all, I really never could shake that he was reading it like he would to a group of children gathered around on the carpet for storytime. He read slowly and over-enunciated his words. But once I overcame my frustration with that I settled into this wonderful story - I found that I was anxious to return to it to find out what was happening to and with Madan and following him on his journey and the three bargains he has to make. A big thank you to the author for allowing me the opportunity to listen to the audiobook - I really enjoyed this one and recommend!

  • Liz
    2019-03-06 20:32

    I received this book through a goodreads giveaway and I enjoyed it. The author did a good job telling the story and building up the characters. However, I felt lost at times not knowing exactly where the author was going with the story. It was supposed to be about a boy who bargained three times to end up in his current present, but those bargains weren't revealed until the end, and during that time I was left out in the dark wondering when the book was going to get to the point. When the message of the story was revealed it ended so abruptly. The author worked so hard to build up the characters and their relationships and it sort of fell flat in the end. I was hoping for a more powerful ending that would stay with me for a long time. With that said, the story itself had potential to be so much more and I wish the author could have delivered the moral of the story better than she did.

  • Tara
    2019-02-23 20:35

    I won this book in a Goodreads First Reads Giveaway and was so excited. The author's cultural and geographical background alone(born in New Delhi, educated in boarding schools in the Himalayas, and raised in India, Africa, and the Middle East. She received her degree from the University of Delhi and currently lives in northern California)intrigued me and I had heard great things about this book from a friend of mine. I was not disappointed in the least. It is the kind of story that, to be given justice, has to be told by someone who has personal ties to the formative culture that is the driving force in this novel. I am not going to give away the plot and other reviewers have summarized this book sufficiently. Just put this on your to-read list. You won't regret it.

  • RoseMary Achey
    2019-03-12 14:35

    Following a desperately poor 12 year old Indian boy into adulthood, this novel will keep your attention throughout all 358 pages. This young boy has a family; a hard working mother, grandfather, sister and low-life father. When the father's actions negatively impact the family, the boy, Madan, must make the first of three bargains with a rich and powerful business owner. Each of the three bargains represent a major turning point both for the novel and for Madan's life, While the prose is not as crisp as Khaled Hosseini'sKite Runner, author Tania Malik shows real promise in this first novel.

  • Cathy
    2019-03-07 14:28

    Written by my good friend Tania Malik. While I can't pretend to be unbiased I can tell you I loved this book. Set in India of the 80s and 90s, a young boy must make difficult decisions that allow him to rise above his servant family origins and make his fortune. In adulthood, however, a great personal loss forces him to reexamine all of his priorities as he searches for new motivation to go on living. This story is told in simple, yet elegant prose which, to my American ear, with its blend of Hindi and British locutions, sounds charmingly musical. As the protagonist matures, so do the themes of this book, which touch on marriage, parenthood, and friendship.

  • Bea
    2019-03-08 22:46

    I really wanted to give this 4 stars since I thought the writing is very good, but I just couldn't get past all the really stupid things the main character, Madan, did when he was obviously a really smart guy trained by a very street-smart street lord (or whatever you call him). I think some of the things she needed to happen to make this a good story could have happened without making them all the mistakes by Madan. It just didn't make sense to make him so wrong headed or naive.The book does go into life in India from the 1970s to 1990s. I will probably read other books by the author as she writes them.