The Mango Season by Amulya Malladi

The name caught my attention. Having loved Malladi’s A Breadth of Fresh Air, I was tempted to give this a try.


Priya Rao had left India 7 years ago as a twenty year old student. For seven years she avoided coming back, and managed to flout most of the strict rules that her mother had handed out, most important of them all – not to marry a foreigner. Well, she’s not married him yet, but she’s engaged to him. And the biggest challenge she faces this holiday is to tell her parents all about Nick, the man in her life.

Returning back to India, Priya realizes that while she has changed a lot over the last few years,things seem to have remained same back home in India. Things she grew up with, suddenly felt alien and strange, although her family, her really extended family seemed to be just the same. The same values, the same power struggles and conflicts, the same beliefs, some of which included very narrow view of Westerners. All of which, of course seems even worse now, now that Priya wants to marry one. How on earth is she supposed to tell them that, when the whole family seems more interested in getting her married to a nice Indian boy? They seem to be ready to do anything to get her married off to a nice Indian Boy.

While her family arranges bride-seeing ceremonies, Priya is at a loss. She feels torn and a traitor to both her family and Nick. She knows she will have to choose between her love and her family, and it’s no easy choice, even though her family gets so annoying at times, even though Nick is just perfect for her. Both are equally part of her. To have to choose is so brutal.

I particularly enjoyed the descriptions of the mango season, the way life in India in the hot, sultry summer was depicted. I could almost feel the sweat, taste the tangy mango pickle that was made, hear the bargains that Priya’s mother stuck up.. and Priya’s embarrassment. It was just great! I love these sort of books, which totally take you to the place they are set. Priya’s dilemma felt real as well. Especially given the family that she came from. Although the story could have been predictable, the manner in which it unfolds is quite nice. And there is a nice little twist at the very end.

A quick, fun read, one that will keep you entertained and asking for more. The ending was a wee bit abrupt, but never mind, I still liked the book, over all.

19 thoughts on “The Mango Season by Amulya Malladi

  1. I don’t know exactly know how the mango connects to this. But yes the presime sounds very familiar. A lot of girls going through this would really identify with this.

    • The Mango connect is just the fact that all this happens during the mango season, so there is this background of mango pickling that is happening, and progressing with the story… And that does add to the whole atmosphere, if you want to call it that.

  2. A friend of mine offered this book to me, i didn’t take it as i had other books to read. Will pick this book from her, most of my books i take from library are from your list Smitha, thanks for introducing me to new books.

  3. definetely sounds promising! N I was jus thinking does the summer heat add to the misery of it :-). If the same story was set in winter would it hv the same appeal ?

  4. I would probably pick it up for the yummy mango cover pic. As afterthoughts how do you manage to read so many books? What’s ur reading speed? And do you remember all ur past reads in detail becoz howsoever I hav enjoyed any book, all I remember is a wide outline of the story, is it same with u?

    • I have no idea what my reading speed is. I read whenever I get the time. There are days when I just don’t get the time to read, while other days when I get loads. Especially if I have official work to get done, then I would have loads of waiting time:)

    • As for remembering the storylines. Some books stay with you. While others are forgettable:) I don’t normally review books I did not like, unless they had been sent to me for a review.

  5. LOved the cover and the title of the book! Lovely story, too. Would love to pick it up sometime. 🙂 Thanks for the thumbs-up!

    I have heard a lot about this book, but somehow kept feeling that it would be a very difficult read. So, never got it home. 😦

    • Me too, Saks, Me too! I have such wonderful memories of mangoes too! At one point we had two mango trees in our garden and what fun days those used to be!!!

  6. I really want to read this book but it is quite expensive 😦 Let me check out if it is out for renting in any library that I know!

    Good review 🙂

    • All her books are very expensive! I wonder why though. I got this from my library, but there are some others I want to read too, but they are way too expensive to buy- I’m a cheapskate. I buy only those books which I am sure I will re-read.

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