Friday, March 29, 2013

Where The Peacocks Sing : A Palace, A Prince, And The Search For Home
by Alison Singh Gee

Alison Gee (a Chinese-American) was an entertainment writer for AsiaWeek living in Hong Kong. She meets Ajay Singh, a journalist from India and they fall in love. Her lifestyle is hectic running all over the place, dealing with deadlines, going to parties, never relaxing. They travel to India so that Alison can meet his family. It turns out that Ajay grew up in a palace but it has deteriorated. Virtually no plumbing, plaster falling off, peacocks screeching (they're actually singing), not the most friendly relatives makes the stay very uncomfortable. They plan to get married but Alison has to come to terms with this new culture and figure out how she can possibly fit in.
This book has had many positive reviews with people saying that the writing is gorgeous, an absolute delight, wonderful, riveting read, etc. I disagree. Alison writes like a reporter and throws in way too many similes. There's really not much substance here; it's mostly fluff. Alison seems quite naive and shallow. Some of the stuff that she writes about India is interesting such as the Taj Mahal and the village Mokimpur and its inhabitants. I sloughed through and was happy when I finished.
This is the kind of book to take on a vacation; it's a light read that can be passed around to others.