The Wedding Wallah by Farahad Zama

Another book, I chanced upon by accident. I saw it on the ‘just returned books’ shelf in my library, and I had to have it!

It turned out to be a sequel to another series of books, but it still was easy enough to figure out the previous parts of the story.

Mr Ali runs a successful marriage bureau, while Mrs Ali runs a successful campaign against crows in her back yard. Their niece Pari who lives near them, is a widow, and has just adopted a young boy, Vasu. Mr and Mrs Ali have taken her(and her son) under their wings, while hoping that their son, Rehman would get more responsible.

Everybody is pleasantly surprised when Pari gets a marriage proposal from a very affluent lady for her son Dilawar. Everybody is overjoyed and feels that Pari should accept the proposal, while Pari herself seems extremely unsure. Pari had been working at a call centre and felt independent enough to take care of herself and her son. She also loved her husband, and is not quite sure about marrying again.

There is also Aruna(Mr Ali’s assistant) and her husband Ramanujam’s story interwoven with the story.

It was a very interesting read. I read it almost in one sitting. I loved the way the author has brought out scenes in everyday life. I loved his descriptions of the characters. Mrs Ali, and her neighbours, Mr Ali, Pari – all very real, and believable. Mrs Ali’s new cellphone and the way she handles the phone, is so typical of some of the older people I know. Aruna and her husband make a very cute and loving couple – again quite real, in the small town way they are portrayed. Dilawar’s dilemma – to follow society’s norms or to follow his heart..

The book addresses gay rights issues, the campaign in India to legalize gay relationships, and the kind of issues they face in society today from police harassing them to societal condemnation.

The story also brings to front, the Naxalite movement, as is prevalent in certain parts of India, where landlords have oppressed the poorer sections of society for ages.

The author manages to weave in the different political and social issues really well into the story. A fast paced, interestingly written story. I was a little disappointed with the way the book ended. There was something missing. But that might be because there is more in the series to come. I think I will definitely be picking up his other books.

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22 thoughts on “The Wedding Wallah by Farahad Zama

  1. This sounds like such an interesting read! I will definitely pick it up. šŸ™‚
    I love the cover of the book, and the title too.
    Is this a sequel to ‘The Marriage Bureau for Rich People’? I have been wanting to read that book for ages now. Maybe it is time to lay my hands on that one. šŸ™‚

    PS: How did you feel about Salem Falls by Jodi Picoult? I am almost 3/4 into the book, and loving it, but some parts of the story seem utterly unbelievable. Not able to make up my mind.

    • I loved Salem Falls. I had no idea about the Amish. After reading that book, I actually went and did research to understand more about their way of life.. Salem Falls is one of my Picoult favs. Which parts did you find difficult to believe? Was it their life style?

      • The Amish? Salem Falls is about witchcraft and rape trials and hormone-crazed teenage girls and innocent people getting framed, right?

        I found the witchcraft part rather strange. Do people actually do that kind of stuff? Also, I found the part where Jack was charged of raping Caroline a bit hard to believe. Was there nothing, absolutely NOTHING that could save him?? And why on earth did he have to take young hormone-crazed girls out on the playground wearing nothing but their swimsuits? Isn’t that like calling for disaster??

        • Sorry sorry! My bad – got confused. I was talking about Plain truth – have you read that one?

          Yes, the witchcraft book. True, some bits are a little unbelievable.. But then most of Picoult’s books do have some rather rare or rather unlikely situations, no?

          • No, I haven’t read Plain Truth. Salem Falls is my first Jodi Picoult book, so can’t really comment on that.

            Also, in Salem Falls, I found Selena (the private investigator – Jordan’s lover) figuring out Gillian’s passwords and bank PIN number and all that within a few hours. Is it really that simple?! And then, Jordan just has to go and lie down in the forest in the area where Gillian claimed to be raped, and he notices a bit of ribbon stuck in a tree – something which no police officer or investigator noticed earlier?!

            Apart from these bits, the story is very gripping. I’m finding it hard to put down. šŸ™‚

            • I think I need to read it one more time šŸ™‚ I read it ages ago – 5+ years back so can’t really recall details – but I remember liking the book.

  2. Have been following the series and reviwed it also. Had loved the 1st one & this one. The 2nd one was pretty average!!! Now waiting for next part.

    I haven’t read the previous parts – but wondering now if I should.. Coz I could figure out what the story earlier must have been..

    The most striking thing about the series is the way the small town has been described, it makes you yearn for that kind of peace & tranquility.

    Absolutely šŸ™‚

  3. Ramanujam, Aruna, Vasu – all looks like familiar tamil names to me? by any chance are they in this book?… your book reviews makes me read more and more Smitha.. thanks for that.. I am currently reading Palace of Illusions. I know I must be the last one in this blog world to read this book. I am still in the path of regularising my reading skills.. Adi is checking on me every night as which page I am on currently šŸ™‚ I wanted to read the whole book at one go but I am getting time to read only in the night :(.. Hopefully I am expecting to finish it in coming long weekend and right away start with my next book.. I have loads and loads of books in hand to finish before I could checkout any book from my library šŸ™‚ though I love to browse through the books at library.. Every week when we visit library to get books for Adi I browse adult’s section but keep my hands tightly tied reminding self that I got to first finish the books in hand.. Happy reading and thanks again for influencing me on reading path too šŸ™‚

  4. I am not into fiction anymore and I mostly read nonfiction these days. But, fiction definitely gets its inspiration from reality and hence I guess I am missing that experience. For some reason, I am not able to go back to fiction!

    Destination Infinity

  5. I put in a request in my local library. Will read it and let you know. Thanks for the review and hope you are enjoying the school holidays.

    • Looking forward to hearing your view. Do you have a blog, Gayatri? Would love to read, if so.

      Yes, we are enjoying the holidays. It snowed here today, so we’ve been doing stuff indoors – bunny trails and the like. Hope you are enjoying the hols too šŸ™‚

      • I’m hoping to get the book on saturday as tomorrow the library is closed. No, I don’t have a blog. I’m a bullet point person. I can never write like any of you. Commenting itself is a huge thing as I find other’s comments really interesting. Only started commenting recently just to let the person know that I read their blog. Have you read any of Indu Sundaresan’s books? I started reading them after reading a book review at “Mad momma’s” blog and like them. If you can’t get them, I can post a couple to you.
        It threatened to snow but did not. There’s little bit of sunshine today. Our schoold holiday schedule starts from september :). I’m looking forward to the 4-day break though. Have fun.

  6. Not so long ago, I changed the reading material I use to read, to just reading stories about Asians and British Asians. This book is on my reading list. Your review makes me want to push the book from 7th place to 2nd place on the list.

    Excellent review

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