Erotic stories for Punjabi widows

Balli Kaur Jaswal

eBook - 2017

Every woman has a secret life . . .Nikki lives in cosmopolitan West London, where she tends bar at the local pub. The daughter of Indian immigrants, she's spent most of her twenty-odd years distancing herself from the traditional Sikh community of her childhood, preferring a more independent (that is, Western) life. When her father's death leaves the family financially strapped, Nikki, a law school dropout, impulsively takes a job teaching a 'creative writing' course at the c...ommunity center in the beating heart of London's close-knit Punjabi community. Because of a miscommunication, the proper Sikh widows who show up are expecting to learn basic English literacy, not the art of short-story writing. When one of the widows finds a book of sexy stories in English and shares it with the class, Nikki realizes that beneath their white dupattas, her students have a wealth of fantasies and memories. Eager to liberate these modest women, she teaches them how to express their untold stories, unleashing creativity of the most unexpected-and exciting-kind. As more women are drawn to the class, Nikki warns her students to keep their work secret from the Brotherhood, a group of highly conservative young men who have appointed themselves the community's 'moral police.' But when the widows' gossip offers shocking insights into the death of a young wife-a modern woman like Nikki-and some of the class erotica is shared among friends, it sparks a scandal that threatens them all.

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Subjects
Genres
Humorous fiction
Erotic fiction
Online Access
Instantly available on hoopla.
Cover image
Published
[United States] : Harper Collins Publishers 2017.
Language
English
Physical Description
1 online resource
Format
Mode of access: World Wide Web.
ISBN
9780062645135
0062645137
Access
AVAILABLE FOR USE ONLY BY IOWA CITY AND RESIDENTS OF THE CONTRACTING GOVERNMENTS OF JOHNSON COUNTY, UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, HILLS, AND LONE TREE (IA).
Main Author
Balli Kaur Jaswal (author)
Corporate Author
hoopla digital (-)
Review by Booklist Reviews

Nikki's begrudging agreement to help her sister, Mindi, "find a husband the traditional way" takes her to Southall, a predominately South Asian immigrant neighborhood in west London, to post a discreet marriage advert at the gurdwara (Sikh temple). Unlike Mindi, Nikki considers herself modern and independent, working as a bartender since quitting law school. Instead of brother-in-law hopefuls, Nikki finds a part-time job as a writing instructor at the temple. Her students turn out to be mostly illiterate Sikh widows with limited interest in learning their ABCs yet eager to share stories about the sensual lives they imagine beyond rigid cultural expectations of near-silent invisibility. As Nikki helps these women find their voices, she's drawn into a community in which outward appearances are sometimes more important than the truth. Jaswal's novel is undoubtedly entertaining, yet ultimately it combines too many elements—culture clash, gender disparity, family dysfunction, bawdy comedy, romance threatened and thwarted, murder mystery, and the titular erotica—to avoid the occasional stumble. Missteps aside, Hollywood has already optioned Jaswal's enticing tale, so the book will be in demand. Copyright 2017 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Library Journal Reviews

Singapore-born, worldwide-raised Jaswal, named a Sydney Morning Herald Best Young Australian Novelist, crosses more borders with the story of a sophisticated young London-based Punjabi named Nikki. When she agrees to teach a creative writing course at a community center, Nikki has a hard time reaching the dignified Sikh widows who show up until one of them discovers an anthology of risqué works. With a 75,000-copy first printing; film rights optioned. Copyright 2017 Library Journal.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

When Nikki, a 22-year-old modern Punjabi woman, decides to teach a writing workshop for Punjabi widows two days a week in London's Southall area, she goes in with the idea that she will walk the widows through how to write stories and then compile the stories into an anthology at the end of the class. Unfortunately, the widows barely know how to write their own names. But something about the women makes Nikki want to try, and when the class discover a book of erotica meant as a gag gift for Nikki's sister, Mindi, all bets are off, and a sensation is born. Jaswal's charming debut features an engaging protagonist who longs to break free from her more traditional mother's expectations and who is still smarting from her father's death, but it's the portrayal of the women in Nikki's class that is the highlight: these women are considered invisible, but through their writing they can be seen and their desires and dreams can be acknowledged. It's a precious gift to give, and one Nikki comes to take very seriously. Additionally, the mystery of a young girl's death offers an interesting twist at the end. This is a sparkling read, bolstered by a few of the women's stories sprinkled in throughout. (June) Copyright 2017 Publisher Weekly.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Reese Witherspoon’s Book Club Pick A lively, sexy, and thought-provoking East-meets-West story about community, friendship, and women’s lives at all ages—a spicy and alluring mix of Together Tea and Calendar Girls.Every woman has a secret life . . .Nikki lives in cosmopolitan West London, where she tends bar at the local pub. The daughter of Indian immigrants, she’s spent most of her twenty-odd years distancing herself from the traditional Sikh community of her childhood, preferring a more independent (that is, Western) life. When her father’s death leaves the family financially strapped, Nikki, a law school dropout, impulsively takes a job teaching a "creative writing" course at the community center in the beating heart of London’s close-knit Punjabi community.Because of a miscommunication, the proper Sikh widows who show up are expecting to learn basic English literacy, not the art of short-story writing. When one of the widows finds a book of sexy stories in English and shares it with the class, Nikki realizes that beneath their white dupattas, her students have a wealth of fantasies and memories. Eager to liberate these modest women, she teaches them how to express their untold stories, unleashing creativity of the most unexpected—and exciting—kind.As more women are drawn to the class, Nikki warns her students to keep their work secret from the Brotherhood, a group of highly conservative young men who have appointed themselves the community’s "moral police." But when the widows’ gossip offers shocking insights into the death of a young wife—a modern woman like Nikki—and some of the class erotica is shared among friends, it sparks a scandal that threatens them all.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Reese Witherspoon's Book Club Pick A lively, sexy, and thought-provoking East-meets-West story about community, friendship, and women's lives at all ages'a spicy and alluring mix of Together Tea and Calendar Girls.Every woman has a secret life . . .Nikki lives in cosmopolitan West London, where she tends bar at the local pub. The daughter of Indian immigrants, she's spent most of her twenty-odd years distancing herself from the traditional Sikh community of her childhood, preferring a more independent (that is, Western) life. When her father's death leaves the family financially strapped, Nikki, a law school dropout, impulsively takes a job teaching a "creative writing" course at the community center in the beating heart of London's close-knit Punjabi community.Because of a miscommunication, the proper Sikh widows who show up are expecting to learn basic English literacy, not the art of short-story writing. When one of the widows finds a book of sexy stories in English and shares it with the class, Nikki realizes that beneath their white dupattas, her students have a wealth of fantasies and memories. Eager to liberate these modest women, she teaches them how to express their untold stories, unleashing creativity of the most unexpected'and exciting'kind.As more women are drawn to the class, Nikki warns her students to keep their work secret from the Brotherhood, a group of highly conservative young men who have appointed themselves the community's "moral police." But when the widows' gossip offers shocking insights into the death of a young wife'a modern woman like Nikki'and some of the class erotica is shared among friends, it sparks a scandal that threatens them all.