Sleeping on Jupiter

A novel that promises much but delivers little. Anuradha Roy’s “Sleeping on Jupiter” tugs at your heart all the time, there is a lingering suspense throughout the story, the ending disappoints.

The story starts with three late aged women going on a train journey to Jarmuli a temple town by the sea. In their compartment they meet up with a young bohemian type girl who is engrossed in her music. The train stops at a station, the girl gets off never to be seen again.

As the story progresses, you feel there is a connection between the girl Nomi and the three women, Latika, Vidya & Gouri and you sort of long for it, but it is the girl’s story that takes center stage. Her early life with her parents & brother, the violent upheaval, her subsequent life in an ashram with all its nefarious goings on, and that sort of breaks you apart.

Nomi is on a mission to find her roots and her long lost friend Piku from the Ashram days. There is a tour guide Badal quite desperate to get the attention of Raghu, a hulk with the tea seller, both of them have their own untold stories of angst and despair. There is lot of noir in the story, and you want some light in the story in the form of recognition amongst the characters, a bonding, love, but everything is left dangling in the end. Goodreads 2/5

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