Monday, July 17, 2017

Book Review: Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows by Balli Kaur Jaswal

First line: Why did Mindi want an arranged marriage?

I pretty much started hungering for this book the moment I learned its title. How can you resist?

The premise of this book is equally fun: Nikki, a young Londoner from a Sikh family, is casting about for direction when she becomes a writing instructor at a Sikh community center. At odds with her family, Nikki's foray with the Sikh widows in her class ends up centering her within a serious tension in their community, even as their wild class liberates the women and reveals the deep passion many -- including widows -- hunger after.

This book was swimming with laugh out loud moments, especially early on, when the class discusses their thoughts on passion, seduction, and romance. Jaswal includes excerpts of the erotic stories the widows pen, and they're fun.

The feel of this book will be familiar to anyone who watches contemporary British comedies like Bend It Like Beckham or Calendar Girls ("charming" keeps coming to mind): generally fluffy with a thread of some serious social issue . In this case, religious extremism; and while the subplot has relevance (and deserves to be explored in fiction), I don't think it actually gave anything to the general story. (It didn't detract, either.)

A perfect summer read -- fluffy enough one can keep track of the plot even after a few drinks and with enough backbone that one need not worry about getting mush-brained over vacation.

Title: Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows
Author: Balli Kaur Jaswal

Genre: Fiction (Contemporary / Sisters / Sikh Culture and Community / London / Romantic Relationships / Intergenerational / Writing / Erotica)
Publisher/Publication Date: William Morrow (6/13/2017)
Source: My public library
Reading Challenges: Read Diverse


  1. You've made me anxious to read this now!

    1. It's really so fun -- I keep recommending it to everyone!

  2. Love the title, very creative.

  3. I love the title of this one; makes you want to read it.

  4. I was very happy to find that my library has this on order. So I added myself to the queue!