Family life, Akhil Sharma

Ajay, his older brother Birju and his parents emigrate from India to the US when Ajay is eight years old. They come into a new world full of possibilities and abundance and everything seems possible. The family has high hopes for Birju, especially when he is accepted into a prestigious school.

Unfortunately, during the Summer vacation Birju hits his head in a swimming pool and suffers from brain damage and can’t recover. From that moment the whole family life is centered around Birju. The different family members have different ways of coping with their grief, and there is little attention for Ajay.

Although Family life is a book about a family that emigrates, emigration is not the most important aspect in this story. It is mostly a book about a family and how each member of the family deals with the tragedy and how this effects everybody. 

I did like the story, but I did feel like something was missing from it, I did not like it as much as I had hoped.
I think this is because the story is told by Ajay, from his (eight year old) perspective. He mostly tells what he feels, so I could not really empathize. Ajay, I am sorry to say, is also not a very nice boy, at least, I did not care for him very much. All this makes I could not really get involved in the story.

In short, I am afraid I did not like it as much as I thought (and hoped) I would. 

Published in 2014


  1. From the premise, it sounds like this book could have been so good. It's too bad that it wasn't what you hoped it would be. I hate being disappointed like that. Hopefully your next read will be better. :)

    1. I hoped it would be as beautiful as The lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri, but it was not. I am reading some good books at the moment!

      Kind regards,

    2. Can't wait to read about them. (I'm always looking for new authors and titles to add to my reading list.) I just started a book by Nele Neuhaus: Snow White Must Die. It's good so far, but I'm only on page 50. Have you ever read her?


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