I put A Burning on my list because it was a TODAY SHOW #ReadwithJenna Book Club Pick. I honestly didn't even know what it was about, and the first couple of chapters were a little tough for me to get through. But once I got to know the characters, Jivan, PT Sir, and Lovely - I couldn't put it down. This is Megha Majudmar's debut novel.
“Mother, do you grieve?
The book focuses on the three characters and how they are trying to somehow rise in modern-day India. Jivan wants to move up to the middle class, PT Sir has aspirations to be something more than a physical education teacher at an all girls school, and Lovely, a social outcast, wants fame. After a terrorist attack on a train, Jivan makes a careless comment on Facebook and is subsequently arrested. The three characters' stories are intertwined and each sacrifices something to get what they want.
The writing is good. Jivan and PT Sir are both educated, and when the story is told from their perspective, you understand that. Lovely has been studying English, and that is apparent in her voice as well.
The book is tense but well-paced - I stayed up very late more than one night because I wanted to read "just one more chapter." I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, and even more so because it's a culture and class system I don't read about often. The book addresses a lot of social inequities, bias in the media, and how social media and politics can be a very slippery slope.
It's definitely not a light read, so if you're not in the mood for something heavy and charged with social injustice, this isn't the book for you.
Have you read A Burning? What are your thoughts?
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