The Roof Beneath Their Feet: Book Review

Author: Geetanjali Shree

Translator: Rahul Soni

Book Summary:

Roofs are meant for wild things. They are meant for romance and play. A place to dry pickles and grains while exchanging gossip about quiet caresses.But above all, they are realms of freedom.

This is the story of Chachcho and Lalna and their much- talked-about friendship. Chachcho lives with her frigid husband in Laburnum House, a cluster of a hundred or more houses that share a common roof. She leads a lonely life until she takes in Lalna, who’s been dumped by her husband. Their closeness makes many uncomfortable.

Then suddenly one day, Lalna has to leave, to return only after Chachcho’s passing. There are rumours and there is gossip in the neighbourhood while Chachcho’s nephew tries to piece together his memories of the two women, one of whom is his mother. The truth he is searching for could destroy him forever, but to not find out is no longer an option.

A beautifully crafted story with many twists and turns, The Roof Beneath Their Feet is easily one of the best contemporary Hindi novels you  have read in a long time.

My Review:

This is a story of two women, stuck beneath the harsh scrutiny of the society (which sees what it wants to see) and are able to retain their friendship.

While reading, it felt like I was in someone’s dream. The sentences were loosely woven and present and past intermingled  with ease.

A complex storyline was presented in a light, breezy way.

We have seen a ton of stories which features ‘bromance’, but this was one of the very few stories by Indian author that focuses on a strong friendship between two women against all odds.

I loved the way society’s perceptions were portrayed. When “they” see Chachcho and Lalna on the terrace, how they conveniently see Lalna “with a man”. It is evident by the rumours about Lalna, and the facts that are presented by her, that the society will see only what it wants to see, you could either cover up and become invisible or you could be true to yourself.

I thank Readers Cosmos for picking me as a winner for the Giveaway :)

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