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Reviewed by Jennie More for Readers' Favorite
One Woman, Two Lives Part 1 by Ajay Nair is the story of a rich man named Kelu who fell in love with a lower caste woman named Lakshmi. Due to customs, he cannot marry a lower caste woman without facing severe repercussions, so he comes up with an elaborate plan with the help of his friend Vinay and his wife, Savitri. Their plan is successful. Kelu and Lakshmi have two beautiful daughters, Narayani and the youngest, Bhavani. Despite their success and riches, they eventually face a troubled time in their lives, and no one else can help them except Bhavani. The circumstance tests Bhavani on whether her strong-willed and feisty character can translate into action; their riches and her father's life are at stake.
One Woman, Two Lives Part 1 by Ajay Nair is a fascinating and gripping love and coming-of-age story. I was captivated by the characters' awe and similar intolerance of certain customs during a time when they were still riding carts pulled by bullocks. Therefore, Bhavani's strength is incredibly inspiring because it was frowned upon for a woman to be strong-willed. I especially loved how many emotive comments that may have gone unnoticed by the reader were brought to readers' attention, comments where characters highlighted or questioned the wisdom of each other’s words or actions. This confrontation of personal values happens throughout the novel, imprinting the importance of good family and personal values. One Woman, Two Lives Part 1 is an entertaining novel; it gripped my attention throughout, and I felt completely mesmerized by this beautiful tale brimming with meaning.