Involving and Wonderful Read
My rating: 5 out of 5
Ranji is out scouring the roadside for fallen wood to sell when he finds a tyre. He imagines the value of the tyre, against that of his bundles of wood, and hurries to secure it, little realising the enormous effect the tyre will have on his life and that of his family.
Set in Puttur, India, Ranji’s life is one of extreme poverty, as he survives day by day as a member of the lowest caste in the social system. He lives with his wife and daughter and is very proud of his daughter’s achievement at school. His son has gone off to a distant city to earn a living. This is a fascinating, positive, story of about a family where a chance happening changes so much of their life.
Ranji’s life living in a shack, is compared with his son’s life in the city. The caste system of India is thoughtfully portrayed, as is Ranji’s philosophy of life. How these people survive the scorching hot days and then later the monsoon season is fascinating, and the everyday happenings of Ranji and his son and family are all blended well into an absorbing story, of a life of love, contentment and stresses with none of the “essentials” of the Western world.
5*s from me for this great story, and wonderful look into the lives of this fictional family. I was really drawn into the life of Ranji and his family, and loved every moment of this beautifully written book.
There are quite a number of Indian words in the text, so I found reading it on my e-reader beneficial for quick translations.
Great read for schools, book clubs and everyone else!