Aussie Author Challenge Australian Women Writers Book Reviews

Book Review: Deranged Marriage by Sushi Das #AWW2018

Growing up in 1970s Britain in an Indian family, Sushi Das attempted to rebel against her strict upbringing. While her parents thought she was hanging out with girls, she was at the pub with boys. Her parents wanted her to have an arranged marriage just like every other good Indian girl. But that’s the last thing Sushi wants even though being the oldest of three, she is expected to set an example for her siblings.

Sushi’s parents don’t want her to leave home for university but she does. She knocks back an arranged marriage offer only to have her sister Vin say yes in order to save face for the family. Sushi then commits the ultimate crime – falling in love with a British academic. Following this, she moves to Australia with him, eventually working as a journalist for Fairfax.

Her memoir follows her life in Australia, her marriage, its dissolution and what happens after. Throughout her memoir, she touches on the racism experienced in both Britain and Australia, her frustrations at patriarchy and the seemingly narrow-mindedness of Indians, Brits and Aussies in their own ways. In the end, though, it is a memoir about tolerance and change, about culture – the good, the bad and the different, and about the importance of sticking to your guns regardless of the outcome.

I quite enjoyed this memoir given I probably have similar views as Sushi did about certain Indian traditions. Like her, I have steadfastly refused to have an arranged marriage since my teenage years. I have stuck to my guns more times than I can remember – sometimes things have worked out, sometimes, they haven’t. But you live and learn. Unlike her parents, mine are a lot more easy going. But the quirks, the lectures about the family name, the views about what others think – they are all so similar and entrenched in Indian culture. It was an easy read, with laughs and some poignant questions raised.

My rating:

Where to find the author:

Website | Twitter

***Read and reviewed for the 2018 Aussie Author Challenge and the 2018 Australian Women Writers Challenge***

Until next time,

You Might Also Like

  • Rachna Parmar
    30 August 2018 at 12:26 am

    Sounds like an interesting read. Will put it on my TBR.

  • Rajlakshmi
    30 August 2018 at 8:23 am

    Wow this sounds like an inspiring journey and an intense read too. Being a rebel in those days needed lot of courage. Well, even now… Things haven’t changed in a lot of homes.
    Rajlakshmi recently posted…A bunch of tangled patterns – ZentangleMy Profile

  • Obsessivemom
    31 August 2018 at 1:31 am

    This one sounds like a decent read. And identifiable too. Even if you are in India and choose to deviate a little bit from the accepted norms you have a struggle on your hands. I can only try to imagine what it would have been like for her.
    Obsessivemom recently posted…How I Became a Farmer’s Wife #ReviewMy Profile

  • Soumya
    1 September 2018 at 12:10 am

    Every Indian girl who has had to rebel at least a little will definitely identify with this one.

    Putting it on my TBR for now.
    Soumya recently posted…Action Replay + Gratitude List: August 2018My Profile

  • August 2018 Reflections - Sanch Writes
    1 September 2018 at 12:31 pm

    […] and then this week, I caught up on all my pending book reviews. I reviewed Breath by Tim Winton, Deranged Marriage by Sushi Das, Tin Man by Sarah Winman and of course, Small Spaces by Sarah Epstein. I’d read […]