The Splendor of Silence By Indu Sundaresan

The Splendor of Silence is a sweet romantic story, woven into the period where India was still under British Rule.

It starts off with Olivia, an American girl, getting a trunk filled with her Indian mother’s belongings. She has grown up with her grandmother and father, who has always been curiously quiet about her mother. In the trunk, she finds a letter which begins to tell her the story of her parents.

It was 1942, Mila, the daughter of the Political Resident, Raman, is betrothed to Jai, the Prince of Rudrakot. Raman, is a widower, with 3 children, 2 boys and a girl – Mila. He dotes upon Mila, giving her opportunities that most Indian parents would have balked at, in those times. He is determined that his daughter has the opportunities that his wife did not. At a time, where people would not even want girls, Raman was the exception to the rule. One day, Sam Hawthorne, an American captain reaches Rudrakot and everything changes from that point on. Sam, ostensibly, was there to rest his injured shoulder, has another hidden agenda, which is very important to him, personally.

The author has done a wonderful job in characterization. Each person in the story has a very well etched out character. It is quite understandable at the end of the book, why some of the main characters behaved the way they did. Mila’s confusion, her choices, and her decision, are all understandable given the circumstances and the society that she lived in.

She has also very brilliantly captured the dynamics of India in those days. The caste system, the racial discrimination between the British and the Indians, the manner in which Indians remained less than equal. The political sentiments that prevailed at that point is brought out very well in the narrative. Mahatma Gandhi’s influence, the manner in which some people chose to interpret it, and the confusion of some Indian, who genuinely believed that the British in India, was doing a good thing.

I love the book. I loved everything about this book. I would give it a 4/5. Anyone who likes historical fiction, is sure to love this one.

40 thoughts on “The Splendor of Silence By Indu Sundaresan

    • Interestingly, this ws my last book review πŸ˜‰ Let alone posts, I hv nt written even reviewed a single book since then πŸ˜› πŸ˜› Wonder what sort of a block this is πŸ˜‰

      • Indu Sundaresan is one of the best when it comes to writing historical fiction isn’t she πŸ™‚ I so want to lay my hands on her ‘Shadow Princess’ No library unfortunately 😦 and I think its too expensive to buy. Lucky if u can find it @ urs πŸ™‚

      • Really? I wonder if this is going to happen to me as well πŸ™‚ I can’t thank you enough for introducing me to Indu Sundaresan’s books! I love the way she writes!

        • Baap re! I hv no more storage space for all ur thanksgiving lol πŸ˜‰ Hw much shud I thank u then πŸ˜‰

          LOL! No, no, what I meant was that I had no idea about this author until you reviewed her πŸ™‚

          And so sorry I cud nt call u bk that day. Returned home really late bcoz of the rains. Wil do so soon πŸ™‚

          Arre, no issues! Will call you – I got busy as well.

  1. Interesting story line..and its been long i didnt read anything other then chicklits πŸ™‚

    Me too- I read a lot of chick-lits in the past few weeks.

    will definitely read this one…your book review reminds me i also have to do review my recently read books πŸ˜† πŸ˜†

    Please do! Waiting for them!

  2. I too feel that she is the best historical based story writer. Her narration is very good. Now, will keep this book in mind to read, when I get free time and mood!

  3. Lovely review. πŸ™‚
    Have never read Indu Sundaresan, though I have heard a lot about her books. Never read any historical fiction too, as I am not sure whether I’ll like it or not.

    This book sounds interesting. Should pick it up some time.

  4. I am going to the library today and must pick it up sounds so intersting

    I think you would like this, Mon.

    damn my list of books to read is only increasing

    I know! So many books to read, and such little time! So unfair πŸ™‚

  5. Now i am hooked on Indu’s writing.. i haven’t read many historical fiction books and that too by Indian authors.. but this book sounds way too interesting to pass up.

So, what do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s