Sunday, January 19, 2014

An Incurable Insanity by Simi K Rao - My review on Tour with #PrismBookTours #Giveaway

The Review Tour for
An Incurable Insanity by Simi K Rao!

Join the #Talk daily on Simi's Facebook 

An Incurable InsanityAn Incurable Insanity
by Simi K Rao
Paperback, eBook, 376 pages
Published October 8, 2013 by Tate Publishing

Her heart fluttered when she heard the sound of the key turn in the lock. She quickly adjusted her maroon silk sari with the yellow border, the one that had caught his eye, and waited eagerly for his footsteps.

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven... Yes, exactly seven steps before he stopped, hesitated for a few moments, then removed his shoes one by one and arranged them neatly side by side on the shoe rack.

She smiled. He had been mindful of taking his shoes off every day now. "I am not used to it, but I will if you want me to. It's probably a good thing to do anyway."

As he settled down, he would pick up the TV remote and, without looking at her, would say in his smooth baritone, "So how did you spend your day, anything interesting?"

Shaan Ahuja found himself bowing to tradition and agreeing to an arranged marriage to the beautiful Ruhi Sharma. He went through the motions but had no intention of carrying through on his vows. His last foray into matters of the heart with an American girl had left him scarred and unwilling to try again. Thoroughly disillusioned and disgruntled he wasted no time in making his intentions clear to Ruhi on their wedding night. But, he was completely unprepared for what his new wife had in mind.

I knew I wanted to read Simi's book when I stumbled upon an excerpt and read the entire thing, losing track of time. I followed some links to another excerpt and lost myself in that one, too. Lol. 

To read An Incurable Insanity is to be completely immersed in another world, a culture that originates in deep roots and clashes with the world I'm familiar with. It's fascinating.

The writing style is unique and smooth-flowing.  Then the conversations POP! revealing a lot about the Indian culture beyond the story. It almost felt like there was a secret code with layers of polite communication in which words were a part - a very precise part - but were combined with actions and reactions resulting in... an exotic experience.

I soaked up the details Simi shared last fall. It was a deeper look into a beautiful culture that I had never understood to the same extent before. I've seen Saris worn, even seen the vermilion red dot, but I had no clue what they meant. With the tour and the story, Simi doesn't just share the details, it felt like she took me by the hand for a personal tour of her cultural roots.

I connected quickly with Ruhi. Her reaction to Shaan was totally justified, beginning to end, in my mind. Ha!  She is strong and confident while still remaining true to her culture. Some of her expectations of herself surprised me, but I came with no presuppositions, already recognizing that I was in unfamiliar territory and LOVING it.  I guess I really enjoy experiencing new cultures, but usually I don't get to learn of them as a proficient insider.  :-)  I loved that thoroughly.

Shaan grew on me slowly, the stinker.  What is interesting is how immersed in the American culture he had become. Trying to combine the two cultures inside his home caused a big storm. His realization of things he had misunderstood and his shock of realizing what he had thrown away... these are so well expressed. I rarely dislike anyone so much... and then really like him sooo much. Very well done.

After I realized that the side characters all came from the same Indian culture, I just rolled with it.  Lol. "It" was entertaining conversations that were wildly different than anything in my experience. The way everyone communicated with each other is remarkable and singular.  

I began second-guessing my email communications with Simi, to be honest. Sometimes I am so blunt and skip over niceties... something every character in this story would never, ever, ever, ever do.  My respect for anyone & everyone coming from the Indian culture grew like a magical beanstalk. In this story, it was as if their culture demanded they follow their rules of polite engagement even if everyone around them does not... and if I was in their story, I would never know how horribly I was insulting everyone. With every encounter! 

To be completely... uh, blunt, this book did drive me insane.  It is aptly named.  Just when I thought Ruhi was coming around, Shaan would do something stupid. Again. When Shaan was finally responding the way he wanted to and was actually amazing, Ruhi remembers something and the moment is shattered. I could have strangled both of them before I reached the end of the book. Lol. 

4.5 Stars.  This book is a must-read for anyone interested in Indian culture!!  It's a thousand times better than any text book on the subject and should be a required compainion. Lol. It's similar to being immersed in the culture. It's also a must-read for romance lovers and everyone looking for something unique. And exotic.

I really don't know how to say "Thank you very much" properly, Simi, but you're welcome at my house for tea any time.  It was an honor to read your book.

You saw The Exotic Tour... you got a taste for the beautiful culture and the romantic attraction of our spunky young characters... now we're reviewing it and posting a new excerpt at each stop! Here's today's:

Read with us!

Simi K. Rao was born in India and has been living in the United States for several years. The inspiration for An Incurable Insanity came from what she has seen transpire among and within the immigrant community. Some of the experiences included are her own; some have been garnered from friends and casual conversations with acquaintances...

I am a physician–and to many I may appear serious and solitary. But once people get to know me better, they often think that I am frank, down to earth, with quite a quirky sense of humor. And that is what I bring to my writing—read and you shall see.

I was born in the dead center of India, but had the privilege of spending time both in the north and south. Therefore I have been able to sample and absorb to some extent the vastly diverse cultures and languages of both these regions (the very quality that imparts tremendous richness to our country’s heritage,) —a phenomenon perhaps not seen anywhere else in the world.

After immigrating to the United States in my early twenties and spending several years in this country, whenever I travel back to my homeland now, I find that I appreciate my roots a lot more. Still there is so much to see and learn, that a lifetime won’t suffice.

Tour-Wide Giveaway

January 13 - February 3, 2014
1 Taste of India Collection from World Market (US Only)
2 Signed Print Copies of An Incurable Insanity (US Only)
2 eCopies of An Incurable Insanity (International)

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