Under the Bakula Tree

Buy At: Amazon 

Pages: 55

Author: Prasannakumary Raghavan

Genre: Fiction

Format: eBook

Publisher: Self-published on Amazon KDP

Book Blurb:

Sorrowful, traumatic, and intensely romantic, Under the Bakula Tree, set in Kerala, is the story of a widow tormented by patriarchal traditions. A mother of two, she finds love again, but as a widow, it is forbidden.

Then something happens; a sisterhood turns a corner, ready to take up her challenge. They meet under an old Bakula tree, where Sara finds the secrets to find love again.

My Review:

'Under the Bakula Tree' is a short story on female friendship, sisterhood and resilience in the face of the world. In the heart of this narrative lies the intertwined destinies of three remarkable women. Leading the trio is Sara, a resilient widow and devoted mother of two, who confronts societal barriers head-on in her quest to rediscover her self-assurance and independence. Yet, her path is fraught with challenges; in a society that scrutinizes and judges single women relentlessly, Sara's journey is anything but smooth.

Amidst this turbulent landscape, Sara discovers solace in the solidarity of her female companions. Gathering beneath the comforting shade of a Bakula tree, the trio convenes regularly to share their triumphs and tribulations, forging a bond that transcends friendship to become a sisterhood. Through this alliance, Sara resurrects her dormant aspirations, embarking on a new chapter of her life infused with newfound confidence.

Supported unwaveringly by her allies, Viji and Alina, Sara's blossoming romance and burgeoning self-esteem mark the dawn of a new era. Their collective strength, epitomized by the enduring sisterhood they cultivate, serves as a testament to the unwavering power of camaraderie and faith.

The book delves into a myriad of themes including friendship, sisterhood, love, loss, dreams, hope, patriarchy, societal restrictions, and above all, freedom from all these shackles.

Central to its narrative is the profound impact of sisterhood in reclaiming shattered dreams and breaking free from the shackles of patriarchal norms and regulations. This overarching theme captivates readers, shedding light on the invaluable role of female solidarity in navigating the complexities of womanhood.

Indeed, the book's thematic resonance with women from all walks of life underscores its significance in portraying the struggles and triumphs inherent in the female experience.

However, there were moments when I found myself yearning for greater depth of thought and complexity in the storyline as I immersed myself in its pages.

About the Author:

Under the Bakula Tree is Prasannakumary Raghavan's debut eBook, a short read that fulfils her life-long creative ambition. Born and brought up in Kerala, India, she wrote her first story at 7. Her mother, after reading it emphasized, she graduates in science--story writing and publishing were the prerogatives of the privileged class at that time.

After her marriage in 1978, she joined her educator husband, employed in Africa, and together they served a string of African nations. She took early retirement in 2011 and joined a creative writing course to fulfil her childhood passion. It was a long journey and Under the Bakula Tree-- got released to the world on the Amazon KDP platform on 18 December 2021. More stories are taking shape on her laptop.

She and her husband now live in Cape Town, South Africa. Cooking delicious meals to entertain their two daughters and their husbands during visits is her other passion, which she accomplishes jointly with her husband. The pandemic has sadly stolen away that joy from them.

The story theme is sisterhood. It explores the females' struggles to break away from the shackles of genderism and patriarchy in a male-dominated, materially developing Kerala and how they can employ the power of sisterhood for that.

This review is powered by Blogchatter Book Review Program.


Queeristan by Parmesh Sahani

  Queeristan (Amazon Link) Thanks to Audible Free Trial I listened to this amazing non-fiction on LGBTQ inclusion in Indian workplaces. Author Parmesh Sahani identifies as gay Indian, working closely with Godrej higher management and employees for years to create an inclusive workplace, both legally and in spirit. This book is a result of those years of experience, research, collaboration with individuals from difference spectrum of the society and organizations who has successfully transitioned into a queer friendly one.   Indian history is inclusive. From the Khajuraho temple architectures, to Konark to the Rig Veda, there is existing proofs even 2000 years ago of Indian inclusiveness of queer. It’s the draconian British law that criminalised it, which was scraped in 2009, came into effect once again following a sad judgement in 2013 and eventually was scraped off for good in 2018. I am in awe of the lawyers who fought this legal battle- colleagues and partners – Arundhati Katju

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