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The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters Paperback – 25 Jun 2019

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Review

Supposedly, there are only ten basic plots in all of fiction and every book is just a variation of one - or more - plots. While I don't know if that's true, it seems likely enough to assign "a book/a plot". With Balli Kaur Jaswal's latest novel, "The Unlike;y Adventures of the Shergill Sisters", we have "fighting siblings/parent's death". Whether it covers all the bases in the book, it comes close enough. The book is set in London, Melbourne, but mostly, India. The sisters - ages from mid-40's down to early 30's - have been quibbling all their lives. Rajni, the oldest, has a fairly satisfying life with her husband in London, but her 18 year old son throws her a curve ball just as she's to leave on a pilgrimage to India with her late mother's remains. Her London-based sister, Jezmeen, is an aspiring actor and social-media star. Their Melborne-based sister, Shirnia, has married a traditional man who wants a traditional wife, and things aren't working too well in their young marriage. The women set off on their trip to Punjabi, India squabbling with each other and at odds with others in their lives. Okay, so a book with this setup plot can go different ways. It could degenerate into non-stop sister-hissing, or it can pull itself together and get serious. (While it might be fun for a while to read sister-hissing, the non-stop part would get a bit tiresome.) Maybe you can guess the ending, but the fun is how Jaswal gets the reader there. She's full of surprises and I think the book flows pretty well because of that. (Each chapter of the book begins with a guide to the sisters from their mother, outlining their day's journey. I don't know a great deal about India - though I love reading books about the country and the people - but the Shergill sisters are Sikhs. I've never read about Sikhs before and so was very interested in that part of the story.) --By gammyjill on May 4, 2019

This is a story about three sisters who embark on a pilgrimage to India to honor their late mother. All three are grappling with their mother s death and legacy, and with issues of their own that the other two are unaware of. It s a wonderful look at family dynamics and the price of maintaining a perfect image to the world. I adored the first novel by Jaswal s that I read, Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows, but I think I actually even liked this one more! The dynamic between the sisters is so authentic. The characters are well developed, which their own flaws and struggles. The way those flaws and struggles play out throughout the novel and within the sisterly relationship is captivating. I also loved the setting. I found myself googling the various places that the characters visited so that I could marry the image described in the book with real life. They were often very similar. And Jaswal does not shy away from deep conversations or heavy topics. These complicated issues are woven throughout the book expertly and confronted with grace. If you haven t picked this one up, I highly recommend it! --By Jenni K on Jenni K

About the Author

Balli Kaur Jaswal is the author of Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows. Born in Singapore and raised in Japan, Russia and the Philippines, she studied creative writing in the US and the UK. She was inspired to write her debut novel after living in Southall, West London. She currently lives in Singapore.

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1 July 2019
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Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars 41 reviews
gammyjill
5.0 out of 5 stars Three sisters on a pilgrimage...
5 May 2019 - Published on Amazon.com
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12 people found this helpful
Jenni K
5.0 out of 5 stars Dynamic Story with Characters You Can Relate To
29 May 2019 - Published on Amazon.com
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5 people found this helpful
Kindle Customer
2.0 out of 5 stars A great disappointment
18 September 2019 - Published on Amazon.com
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2 people found this helpful
Tracey L Hall
5.0 out of 5 stars Meeting the Shergill sisters was a pleasure
20 May 2019 - Published on Amazon.com
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One person found this helpful
Tammy Courts
5.0 out of 5 stars Sisterly
21 July 2019 - Published on Amazon.com
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One person found this helpful