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Honor Bets On...


October 2022

I discovered Thrity Umrigar’s work back in 2006 when I read THE SPACE BETWEEN US. It’s a book from which I drew so much meaning; I still know exactly where it is on my bookshelf. Her latest novel, HONOR, once again brought me memorable characters and a lot to think about.

In it, Smita, an Indian American journalist, has been asked by her colleague, Shannon, to cover the verdict of a trial in a small Indian village for her. For years, Smita has traveled the world working on stories but with one proviso: she will not go to India. However, Shannon convinces her that this assignment is urgent. Meena, a young Hindu woman, married a Muslim man. Her family is so shamed by this union that a horrific act of violence was committed on the couple by her brothers. And they are on trial.

Smita’s conflict in staying in India is predicated on what happened to her family that brought about their rapid exodus from India a couple of decades ago. The two stories intertwine; Smita confronts her past as Meena contemplates her future.

Thrity navigates readers between hate and love, and the things that divide us as much as those that bring us together. It’s one of those novels that will spur lots of conversation as we look at the oppression of women in many different settings, and the conflicts that religious beliefs can bring, even today. Book groups, there is a lot to unpack here.

by Thrity Umrigar

  • Publication Date: October 18, 2022
  • Genres: Fiction, Women's Fiction
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Algonquin Books
  • ISBN-10: 1643753304
  • ISBN-13: 9781643753300