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The Widows of Malabar Hill (A Perveen Mistry…
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The Widows of Malabar Hill (A Perveen Mistry Novel) (edição 2018)

por Sujata Massey (Autor)

Séries: Perveen Mistry (1)

MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
8135420,781 (3.82)72
"Introducing an extraordinary female lawyer-sleuth in a new historical series set in 1920s Bombay. Perveen Mistry, the daughter of a respected Zoroastrian family, has just joined her father's law firm, becoming one of the first female lawyers in India. Armed with a law degree from Oxford, Perveen also has a tragic personal history that makes her especially devoted to championing and protecting women's legal rights. Mistry Law has been appointed to execute the will of Mr. Omar Farid, a wealthy Muslim mill owner who has left three widows behind. But as Perveen is going through the paperwork, she notices something strange: all three of the wives have signed over their full inheritance to a charity. What will they live on if they forfeit what their husband left them? Perveen is suspicious, especially since one of the widows has signed her form with an X--meaning she probably couldn't even read the document. The Farid widows live in full purdah--in strict seclusion, never leaving the women's quarters or speaking to any men. Are they being taken advantage of by an unscrupulous guardian? Perveen tries to investigate, and realizes her instincts about the will were correct when tensions escalate to murder. Now it is her responsibility to figure out what really happened on Malabar Hill, and to ensure that no innocent women or children are in further danger."--… (mais)
Membro:debfung
Título:The Widows of Malabar Hill (A Perveen Mistry Novel)
Autores:Sujata Massey (Autor)
Informação:Soho Crime (2018), 400 pages
Colecções:A sua biblioteca
Avaliação:
Etiquetas:to-read

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The Widows of Malabar Hill por Sujata Massey

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Mostrando 1-5 de 54 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
What a fabulous book. I didn’t know the author and I half expected a mediocre mystery novel (having read too many such in my day), thus leaving myself entirely unprepared for this fascinating and well paced book.

Massey takes us takes us into the rich cultural mix of Bombay in a time before Indian independence. But she doesn’t simply set her story in an interesting time and culture. She gives so much detail in such a painless and interesting way — no long winded info dumps, but we nevertheless learn much about Parsi law, Muslim inheritance laws, female seclusion in both Muslim and Parsi culture (though in one case it is a life of purdah, and in the other it is seclusion during menstruation). And as someone who has sworn off sugar for a month, reading a book with so many references to sweets almost pushed me over the edge.

I’m doing a very poor job of explaining the many different layers of interest to this book. For instance, there is a strong element of feminism, beginning with the protagonist's struggle to become the first female lawyer in Bombay, and then to function fully as one at a time when women lawyers were not allowed in court. So instead of struggling on to try to express why this book is so wonderful I am just going to encourage you to read it if you have any interest in good mysteries, in law, in women, in India, in history… Need I go on? ( )
  thesmellofbooks | Sep 14, 2021 |
India, Bombay, mystery, purdah, legal ( )
  JenMDB | Aug 31, 2021 |
The book club members who read this book out of our Sujata Massey collection somewhat enjoyed the story, although they felt the historical details of the characters/setting detracted from being able to follow the story. Overall the rating was 6/10. ( )
  Tofey | Aug 30, 2021 |
I really can’t recall how but I just somehow stumbled upon the sequel of this book when it released a couple of months ago, and was pleasantly surprised to know that a pre-independence era India historical mystery series existed. It instantly captured my attention and I decided I had to start at the beginning, and I’m so happy I did.

I don’t think I’ve read many historical books set in India, especially ones which don’t have anything to do with the freedom struggle. This was such a contrast because the author gives us a look into the affluent Parsi community in 1920s Bombay, who are rich and cultured, British educated and have respected professions. I thought the author did a brilliant job bringing the rich culture and customs of the Parsi community alive through her descriptions - I especially enjoyed getting to know the wedding ceremony details and all the different kinds of Persian and Irani food, and also some very interesting insights into Parsi marital laws. (There was one offhand mention of a sweet from my state of Andhra which is hardly known outside, so that really delighted me). On the other hand, we also get to know about the Muslim women who decide to live under purdah and the way they conduct their affairs under the circumstances - all while never casting aspersions on the custom itself. We also get to know the struggles the women faced during the time, despite being highly educated and qualified and it truly gives us an appreciation for such amazing women and their allies who fought for all the rights we enjoy today. The authors lists many sources towards the end of the book and I’m really thankful for that, as it gives me an opportunity to explore more about my country’s history. The story is told in two timelines, the past detailing the MCs married life and the present following her as she tries to solve a murder mystery and protect her clients. The writing was very good at balancing both the aspects, and while the mystery wasn’t full of twists and turns, it had it’s tense moments that kept me glued. It took a while for the story to get going but about 30% into it, it got very interesting and I didn’t wanna put it down.

Perveen Mistry is the only female lawyer in the city of Bombay, but she is still not allowed to appear in court and can only work as a solicitor. She is a vibrant, fiesty woman who is confident about her abilities and it really grates on her that she is disrespected or just dismissed because of her gender. The insight into her past marital issues also gives us an insight into how much she has changed over the years and the reason for some of her actions. She is a true go-getter, even impulsive sometimes, but I really enjoyed getting to know her. My only gripe was that she could be dismissive of her father sometimes despite him being one of her biggest champions.

Reading about her life immediately after marriage was a bit painful and I really felt for her, and I think it’s very relatable to many women even now who go from liberal parent’s homes to conservative or orthodox marital homes, and it’s such a tough adjustment. Her parents are really amazing and I loved reading how supportive they were of her, and believed her completely. Her best friend Alice is an Indian born British woman, and despite being Oxford educated herself, seems to be in a similar predicament unable to make her own choices. The best part of the book for me were definitely Perveen’s interactions with the three widows who were her clients. I loved how involved Perveen got into making sure they knew their rights and were able to provide for themselves and their kids. While she was reckless herself, she was much more concerned for their safety and went above and beyond to ensure that, and it really endeared me to her. While the mystery is resolved pretty easily, I thought the point of this book was more to setup the character of Perveen herself and acquaint us with her capabilities.

Finally, I want to say that this was a surprisingly interesting, but very quiet historical mystery novel. The stakes never felt dangerous but definitely felt important and the author maintained a steady pace throughout, so I never felt bored. If you want to get a glimpse into 1920s Bombay and follow alongside a lawyer heroine while she takes on all the obstacles and prejudices in her way, then pick this book up and you won’t be disappointed. ( )
  ksahitya1987 | Aug 20, 2021 |
This is billed as a mystery, but it's somewhat lacking in that department. It's a well researched (if anything, the author works a little too hard at it) historical novel with a mystery element. It's fairly well written and the intertwining plots link up at the end in a reasonably satisfying way, but it goes a little slowly. ( )
  arosoff | Jul 11, 2021 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 54 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
The Widows of Malabar Hill is wholly satisfying..Perveen, daughter of an established Zoroastrian family in Bombay, works alongside her father, Jamshedji Mistry, a progressive man whose lifelong dream has been to have his daughter work with him at the family law firm. Why he wants this for her is one of the most heartwarming aspects of the novel, and is slowly revealed along with many other details that make this family one I plan to follow through as many storylines as possible.... Her tale is one that is just as absorbing as the murder mystery and has a quiet power all its own. Each thread is carefully paced; Massey clearly knows just what she's doing, which is giving readers both a captivating whodunit and a lasting base for more books featuring this same cast of characters. Massey is also making a case for gender equality, religious tolerance and racial harmony and it's a lovely thing that she does so with such understated persistence..And, happily, although the denouement is wholly satisfying, there is much left unsaid, particularly about some of the supporting cast members
 

» Adicionar outros autores

Nome do autorPapelTipo de autorObra?Estado
Massey, Sujataautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Agro, JanineDesignerautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Davidson, AndrewArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Nankani, SoneelaNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Schwartzberg, PhilipInterior mapsautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado

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"Introducing an extraordinary female lawyer-sleuth in a new historical series set in 1920s Bombay. Perveen Mistry, the daughter of a respected Zoroastrian family, has just joined her father's law firm, becoming one of the first female lawyers in India. Armed with a law degree from Oxford, Perveen also has a tragic personal history that makes her especially devoted to championing and protecting women's legal rights. Mistry Law has been appointed to execute the will of Mr. Omar Farid, a wealthy Muslim mill owner who has left three widows behind. But as Perveen is going through the paperwork, she notices something strange: all three of the wives have signed over their full inheritance to a charity. What will they live on if they forfeit what their husband left them? Perveen is suspicious, especially since one of the widows has signed her form with an X--meaning she probably couldn't even read the document. The Farid widows live in full purdah--in strict seclusion, never leaving the women's quarters or speaking to any men. Are they being taken advantage of by an unscrupulous guardian? Perveen tries to investigate, and realizes her instincts about the will were correct when tensions escalate to murder. Now it is her responsibility to figure out what really happened on Malabar Hill, and to ensure that no innocent women or children are in further danger."--

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