I’ve seen this tag going around a bit, especially on booktube and though I don’t have a booktube channel I thought I’d pair up a few and share them with you! So, off we go!
1. Urmila and Sita’s Sister
Urmila is the wife of Lakshmanan who is the brother of Rama. For those that don’t know Rama, he is supposed to be the avatar of Lord Vishnu who is one of the supreme gods of Hinduism. In the Ramayana, Rama, first born son and to be appointed ruler of Ayodhya is sent out in exile because of a scheming step mother who wants her son to be king instead. Lakshmanan accompanies him abandoning his new bride because his duty to his brother comes first. I’ve reviewed both Urmila and Sita’s Sister and the reason these will be good pairs is because they’re both about the same person. Only one, Urmila, is a modern retelling of the character Urmila who goes through the same troubles that the legendary Urmila did but only in modern India.
2. What Belongs To You and Mornings After
Both of these aren’t necessarily the same but they feeling they have is similar. A feeling of vague hopelessness and detachment with characters that are involved in abusive relationships where one is the giver and the other is a taker, almost a hustler. Mornings After (reviewed here) follows a couple in Delhi who fall into a relationship unwittingly, it gets abusive for the girl and for the boy, it just isn’t what he bargained for. In What Belongs To You (reviewed here) it’s about a gay man who is lonely and a hustler whom he pays for sex. Somehow they end up in a relationship of sorts where one is abusive and the other can’t say the word no. While each is set in a different country, both are rather involved in the city they are set in. You can’t remember the story without picturing the city it is set in. I found the writing style similar too, detached enough to not get you too involved yet involved enough for you to feel like you’re getting a rather voyeuristic view of people’s most private moments.
3. Rau, Masthani and The Peshwa
I have read two of three in this, Rau and The Peshwa. But the third one, Mastani, is still languishing in my TBR. But someone told me that these must be read together so I’m recommending the same to you. Rau (reviewed here) is a bestselling novel written in Marathi and translated in 2016 into English. It focuses on the love story between Masthani and Bajirao, the Peshwa, in great detail. The Peshwa (reviewed here) on the other hand focuses on Bajirao’s life up until the point before he met Masthani. Masthani I believe is about her complete life though I’m not sure where it ends. I love the idea that we can read all three together and fall in complete love with their story, irrespective of how much we disapprove of it.
I’ve linked my reviews to each of them and I hope you enjoy these reads if you do go ahead and pick them up.