The Girl in the Garden: Book summary and reviews of The Girl in the Garden by Kamala Nair

The Girl in the Garden

A Novel

by Kamala Nair

The Girl in the Garden by Kamala Nair
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  • Published in USA  Jun 2011
    320 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

The redemptive journey of a young woman unsure of her engagement, who revisits in memory the events of one scorching childhood summer when her beautiful yet troubled mother spirits her away from her home to an Indian village untouched by time, where she discovers in the jungle behind her ancestral house a spellbinding garden that harbors a terrifying secret.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Nair creates a satisfying coming-of-age tale with smooth prose and a lustrous backdrop." - Publishers Weekly

"A daring fairy tale of a story, Nair's first novel audaciously tackles issues ranging from puberty to friendship to abuse, providing plenty of adventure as well." - Booklist

"Pitched as a cross between Frances Hodgson Burnett's classic The Secret Garden and Jhumpa Lahiri's The Namesake, this debut could do well with reading groups." - Library Journal

"Lush and mysterious, The Girl in the Garden casts its spell from the first page. Kamala Nair weaves an intricate tale of family bonds, buried secrets, and the pain that comes when we must leave the innocence of childhood behind. This is a deeply satisfying novel." - Kelly O'Conner McNees, author of The Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott

"Kamala Nair has crafted an evocative, passionate, tragic novel about love, loss and the terrible cost of family secrets. An impressive debut." - Thrity Umrigar, bestselling author of The Space Between Us

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Reader Reviews

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Louise J

One of the Best Books of 2011
The story that emerged the summer Rakhee was 10 will stay with me forever! I adored Rakhee, such a caring, intelligent and extremely caring and understanding girl for her age. I loved the other characters just as much, especially Tulasi and Krishna. This story reminded me so much of Rohinton Mistry’s ‘A Fine Balance’, which I also thoroughly enjoyed.

The writing in “The Girl In The Garden” was brilliant, intelligent, fluid and flowed beautifully like a stone being tossed upon the water and watching the concentric circles of water teaming out one after the other. “The Girl In The Garden” could be a best book of 2011 and in my opinion, ranks right up there with ‘The Help’ and ‘The Kitchen House’. This is an unbelievable accomplishment for a “debut” novel!! Kamala Nair writes with the passion and talent of a well-seasoned author.

Thank you Kamala Nair for one of the most beautiful and entertaining stories I’ve read this year!!

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Kamala Nair was born in London and grew up in the United States. A graduate of Wellesley College, she studied literature at Oxford University and received an M.Phil in Creative Writing from Trinity College Dublin in 2005. She currently lives in New York City, where she has worked at Elle Decor.

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