I received a copy of The Obscure Logic of The Heart by Priya Basil as a part of the Transworld Reading Group.
This is the text from the back cover:
An epic Romeo and Juliet for the 21st century
In a bustling London café, Anil, now a famous architect, sits waiting for Lina. It is years since he last laid eyes on her, the love of his life.
Lina is running for the train – punctuality has never been her strength. After all this time she cannot be late to meet Anil.
Together, they think back to tragedies both personal and political, betrayals large and small. A past played out across three continents that house their rival worlds: Sikh and Muslim, wealthy and modest, liberal and orthodox, corrupt and moral….
Lina has one more revelation that must be shared with Anil. Might it unite them once and for all, or has it come too late?
I was kept guessing through out this book which I quite liked. As you read about their love story you know it doesn't work out because the book starts with Anil waiting for Lina after not seeing her for many years. But you never quite see when the end is going to arrive. There were several time when I thought it must be the big moment where it all went wrong but then it turned out it wasn't.
The revelation Lina had to make too had me wondering and wanting to keep reading to find out what it was. At first I briefly thought it was one thing but once I got more than a couple of chapters in I decided that whilst it was possible it was an unlikely twist. After another chapter I was sure the twist was something else. I was convinced I knew what it was and remained convinced of that for the majority of the book that was it. I was wrong there too and never figured out just what the promised revelation would turn out to be.
This is a fast paced book which moves around the world - UK, Kenya, New York, Sudan. I would have liked to have a bit more description of the places involved as I really like to get a feel for the setting of a book, particularly when it's a place I know little about. The plot is very character driven however and greater description would have been both unnecessary and possibly taken away from the plot. I could emphasise a lot with Lina throughout the book but found that my opinion of other characters such as Anil changed as I read. I suspect this may have been what the author intended.
I especially liked the way the book leaves some important points ambiguously leaving the reader to decide what they think happened. With some of them it took me a while to decide what I preferred.