- Paperback: 544 pages
- Publisher: Razorbill Canada (Jan. 3 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 014317472X
- ISBN-13: 978-0143174721
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 2.4 x 21 cm
- Shipping Weight: 422 g
- Average Customer Review: 2 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #372,883 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Karma Paperback – Jan 3 2012
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“A riveting, historically accurate coming-of age tale of gutsy survival, self-sacrifice, and love... With artful compassion, Ostlere reveals the infinitely complex clash of cultures within both India and Maya’s family... A fascinating, epic page-turner.” - Booklist, starred
“Ostlere does a terrific job of transporting the reader to India, recreating this turbulent time in its history, and adding to the mystic of this country by writing the story in verse. It is made all the better because of the tender romance that entwines the story.” - VOYA Magazine
“In contrast to the hatred, mistrust, and violence, the friendship—and then love—between Maya and Sandeep offers hope, rebirth, and renewal.” - Publishers Weekly, starred
About the Author
Cathy Ostlere is the author of Lost: A Memoir, which was shortlisted for the 2009 Edna Staebler Award for Creative Non-Fiction. She lives in Calgary. Karma is her first novel for young adultsSee all Product description
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This novel illustrates the difficulties of immigration from the perspective of a first generation Canadian. Maya is Indian to Canadians, and Canadian to Indians. She is always the outsider, and stands out in every culture she belongs to. Born to a Hindu mother and a Sikh father, Maya follows elements of both religions and cultures. Her mixed heritage puts her in grave danger when during her trip to India the Prime Minister is murdered, and the two cultures go to war on one another.
The book is marketed as a love story, and it does contain a compelling one, but that is not what got my attention. The very nature of humanity is explored as Maya deals with survivor’s guilt. It not only places blame on the rioters who burn men alive and rape young girls, but on those who stand by and do nothing to stop it. Maya is justifiably frozen by fear as the horrors take place, but she later thinks about how many lives could have been saved if the bystanders spoke up. The denial of everything that happened by the government and so many people in the city is chilling, and leaves a lasting impression.
The snowball effect of hate, as the men fight an eye for an eye reminds me of the beautiful take on a nursery rhyme that plays at the beginning of the film Free Zone. Click this link and read the subtitles. [...]
This would be a fabulous choice for a book club, because it deals with so many great discussion topics:
-poverty/ class systems
I think this novel has much wider appeal than it’s hot pink cover shows. I think the cover is beautiful with the swirly fonts, but there is plenty in this novel that would appeal to boys, and I don’t believe many would pick this up.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
I do feel the main character acts/speaks a little older than her age at times, she was raised differently than I and then goes through this horrid experience, so I can look past such a thing.
I hope the lack of reviews does not mirror how this book as sold, because it deserves to be read and shared with others. Pick it up. You won't be disappointed.
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