Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Behind the Beautiful Forevers


I read Behind the Beautiful Forevers for my new book club. It was our first selection, hand picked by a member who has traveled to India and seen the beautiful and the antithesis first hand. Normally, I would never pick up a book like this. It's a harrowing non-fiction tale of the inhabitants of the Annawadi slum. Trust me. If it was fiction, it would be easier to absorb. Unfortunately, it is disturbingly true. But, that being said, it is beautifully written and enlightening. As an aspiring writer, I'll never forget how the author describes little yellow flowers as the open beaks of baby birds. Dazzling imagery. There is so much ingenuity in almost all of the characters. Like teenage Abdul. His talent is foraging for recyclables. He digs, sorts and scraps together a meager existence for his entire family. In fact, exceeding their income far above others in their slum. And then there's Asha, clawing her way to the top by utilizing every means available to her. Rarely an honest mean is ever selected. In fact, Angela, from my book club, described honesty as a luxury in Annawadi. There's no truer statement. 

The most powerful character for me was Fatima the one leg. Her plight becomes a main plot point as the book progresses. 

You'll never forget the fighting spirit of these unforgettable characters. 


2 comments:

  1. Well, such true tales of human struggle is something I always am drawn to, and this book looks like a good one! I was so happy to see another book review to enjoy this morning. You've given me another one for my list! Hope you enjoy your book club. I just don't feel like I'd want to be part of one.

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  2. Sounds heart-wrenching but isn't life? Especially in countries far from us. I hope I can get a chance to read this one. Have fun in your book club... they can be enjoyable and enlightening.

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