A free offer you can’t refuse. Free download of my first novel, set in Madras and Glasgow ‘Twice Born’ on Smashwords. Just enter the coupon : BN54B and download on your new Kindle, or tablet.
Here’s a synopsis of the novel:
Although a romantic at heart, Sita consents to an arranged marriage to a medic Ram and starts her new life in Glasgow.Her feisty, confident, vivacious personality wins her friends. ‘Here comes chapatti and curry,’ laughs the big guy of the tipsy duo.’ Aye and what are you, mince and tatties?’ retorts Sita, ‘Learnt the patter, hen?’ smiles the big guy. It is in contrast to the introverted Ram who says little, seems obsessed with his work, politics and cooking. He is content, a pragmatist, not for him the gush of desperate love. ‘Saying I love you, is a western concept, it’s unnecessary,’ he states. Sita yearns for more. Incompatible in every way, yet, they stay together. The unplanned birth of their daughter Uma brings them closer. Though there is no love in the marriage, there is mutual respect. ‘Twice born’ peels away the layers and presents the simmering progress of their life in Glasgow. Their struggle is heightened by her family’s rosy view of ‘life abroad’.
Some elders in the Glasgow, living in a time warp resent any change in their perceived idea of Indian culture. Aunty BB, a gossipmonger and hypochondriac is the bane of Sita’s life. BB clings to her like a leech directing her bile in broken English on all, claiming to uphold the Indian culture. ‘Shameless girls, showing, showing skin, mini skirt bad, all forget everything Indian, I blame parents,’ is her rant. Straddling the two cultures, putting down her roots while not forgetting her own liberal family values steeped in an ancient culture is a delicate balance for Sita.
Glasgow in the 1970’s, the soot encrusted, blackened, smudged city creeps into Sita’s soul. As it unravels its beauty as the European Cityof Culture, she develops affection for it and a feeling of belonging deepens. As the family searches for its identity, Scotland’s political future parallels with its fight for its own Parliament. Ram’s interest as a SNP activist gives a unique perspective to a changing Scotland. ‘What’s the use of Indian politics? We’re living here, this is what matters. An Independent Scotlandis the future.’ Ram’s challenge to Indian friends, fall on deaf ears as Indian politics interests them more.
In an unexpected twist in her life, a middle aged Sita falls in love with Neil, a new colleague at work. Her heart yearns for the life of love with Neil but the freight of family and the fear of the Indian community’s reaction leaves her in a quandary. Glasgow, an upside down world now becomes her hesitant new reality. Neil, Sita’s soulmate tries to persuade her to leave all she knows and loves, the hardest decision of her life. Could she face the life ostracised by the close- knit community that had stood by her? She is truly ‘twice born,’ entwined in two cultures enriched by the Indian womb that had nurtured her soul and the Scottish cradle that had nurtured her being, her heritage unique.
Feedback of Twice Born:
At last! I got your book from Amazon last week (they had to order it), but it was woth waiting for. I enjoyed your story very much – and also enjoyed learning about the Scotland-Indiaconnections. Hope you’re working on the next one now. I’m looking forward to reading more.
Dr. Ann Mc Laren Vice- President of Scottish Association of Writers
“Watch out for emerging new writer Leela Soma …” in ‘Discovering Scottish Literature’ by
Professor Willy Maley
Professor of Renaissance Studies/Graduate Convener
Department of English Literature
School of English and Scottish Language and Literature