Sunday, March 11, 2018

Book Review: The Temple Bar Woman by Sujata Parashar

The Temple Bar Woman is Sujata Parashar's fourth novel. First for all, I'd like to say that it's very thoughtful of the author to choose this theme. It covers several social issues.

The title of this book is intriguing (the author is known for choosing interesting titles). Also, even though the book is published by a lesser known publisher (Vishwakarma Publications --- at least I haven't heard of this publisher), the book (page, layout, font) looks good & professional. Unlike other books, it has a cast table in the beginning.

The Temple Bar Woman tells the story of an educated and courageous woman Radha aka Rani aka Radhika Chaudhary who after being brutally tortured, ends up at an upscale brothel called 'Temple Bar'.

Rakshit Singh, a young politician and a single parent, is intrigued by Radha's behaviour and wants to know more about her and her past. He comes to know that Radha was found near Temple Bar in a distressed condition, and has lost her memory. He decides to help her and hires her (of course, after spending a lot of money) as her daughter's governess. What Rakshit does not know is that Radha is using him to avenge herself against the man who destroyed her life. 

The writing is neat, however I felt the book needs another round of proofreading as there are some noticeable writing/editing errors like misplaced words, commas & missing quotation marks. 

Descriptions are good especially Temple Bar descriptions. The good thing about this book is that even though it's predictable, I wanted to read it; wanted to know how? However, I couldn't resist wondering if the author could've made this story a little less predictable (And more shocking). The book has been told in omniscient point of view, sometimes shifting point of view. I usually do not like it, but the author has managed it well.

But when I reached the last section of the story, my thoughts about the book started to change. It felt rushed. There is so much 'telling'. I couldn't help thinking 'what is this & why?' The end of the book almost betrayed my eagerness to know the 'how' and the time I invested in this story. Last section of the story is utterly implausible (For example --- role of a prominent character, Mala in the last section).

The interconnected prologue (lengthy) and the epilogue are totally meaningless. And sadly, in the end, the character Rakshit who is so nice, looks like a stupid. 

Overall, for me, it was an average read. I liked reading the first part, but, I believe, the end of a story is very important. You must feel a sense of satisfaction when you finish a story. Don't you think so? However, you can pick this book for a thoughtful theme and strong women characters. 

I received this book from Writer's Melon for an unbiased review.


  1. I agree completely. The end/ climax is so very important because that's what stays with the reader. I've seen many authors who rush the ending tying up the knots too neatly. That never works for me.
    You've done a wonderfully balanced review Tarang.

  2. like this....keep posting such informative articles