Author: Vasundra Tailor
Published by: Lake Union Publishing on Sep. 1, 2022
Genres: Historical Fiction
Source: Thomas Allen & Son
Book Rating: 8/10
Navsari, India. Penniless and trapped in a loveless marriage, Nirmala spends her days anxiously caring for her sick young son, Varun. Looming over Nirmala’s impoverished home is an imposing mansion built by her grandfather, and from its balcony her cruel aunt scorns them, refusing to help in any way.
But when a mysterious letter addressed to her long-dead father arrives from Zimbabwe, it opens a door to a past Nirmala never knew existed and a future she never imagined possible. If the contents of the letter can be believed, not only does she have family in Africa, but they might also hold the answers to a family mystery that spans three generations.
While travelling to Zimbabwe might lead to a brighter future for Nirmala and her son, it could also reignite the bitter family feud that condemned her family to poverty. Nirmala is ready to risk it all to uncover the truth, but how will she cope when this journey changes her life forever?
Atmospheric, pensive, and moving!
The Secret of Elephants is an emotional tale predominantly set in Navsari, India, that takes you into the life of Nirmala, a young mother who, after her son is diagnosed with epilepsy and her loveless marriage finally falls apart, journeys to Zimbabwe after receiving an unexpected letter from a cousin she never knew she had to unravel her family’s history and discovery the secrets of her father’s past.
The prose is vibrant and expressive. The characters are multilayered, vulnerable, and troubled. And the plot is an intriguing, tender tale of life, loss, family, tragedy, secrets, betrayal, prejudice, segregation, caste division, and forgiveness.
Overall, The Secret of Elephants is a lush, intriguing, absorbing debut by Tailor that does a lovely job of blending historical events, intense emotion, and thought-provoking fiction.
This book is available now.
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Thank you to Thomas Allen & Son for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.