Book Review: Half Life – Roopa Farooki

Title: Half Life
Author: Roopa Farooki
ISBN: 9780312577902
Pages: 272
Release Date: April 27, 2010
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Genre: Literary Fiction, Multicultural Fiction
Source: Publisher
Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Summary:

Aruna Ahmed is married, living in London with her husband Patrick Jones.  She married him on impulse because she was trying to drown out her sorrows and forget about her past in Singapore.  However, Aruna realizes that she can’t run away from what she left behind forever and that she has to go back and confront the ghosts she thought she’d escaped from.

Review:

I’ve heard great things about Roopa Farooki, and actually own all of her books, but I’ve never read any of them.  When I received Half Life for review from the publisher, I figured it was a good place to start.

Aruna is an incredibly written character that I absolutely loved.  At the start of Half Life, she is so completely broken that it seems like nothing will make her whole again.  Over the course of the book, the reader learns how she ended up this way, as well as witnesses her desperate attempts to find some sort of healing.  Farooki wrote Aruna with such raw emotion, the reader can’t help but become fully involved in her life.  She was a beautifully written character that was so flawed, yet so easy to really feel a connection with.

The funny thing is, Aruna is not depicted as a great person.  Most of what the reader sees of her is from flashbacks, when she’s already broken.  This makes her seem like a mean and bitter person who doesn’t care about anyone else.  However, it’s clear that there is a lot going on underneath the surface and that it’s all just Aruna trying to protect herself and keep people from getting to know her.  As a result, it doesn’t turn the reader off or make Aruna an unlikeable character. 

Farooki does an excellent job tying the disparate threads of this story together.  She provides some shocking twists, but ultimately, it’s Aruna’s story of finding herself that will capture the reader.  I was utterly taken in by the beauty, pain, and brittle edges of this novel, and can only say that it certainly won’t be my last novel by Roopa Farooki.

Comments

  1. I keep meaning to read Farooki too, so I’m thrilled you loved this one! I’ve only heard good things about all of her books, so I don’t know which one I’ll start with, but Half Life is definitely a possibility.

  2. I keep meaning to read Farooki too, so I’m thrilled you loved this one! I’ve only heard good things about all of her books, so I don’t know which one I’ll start with, but Half Life is definitely a possibility.

  3. This book sounds amazing!

  4. This book sounds amazing!

  5. I haven’t read anything by this author, but it sounds like this would be a great book that I would really like. Thanks for the awesome review, it sounds like you really liked this one!

  6. I haven’t read anything by this author, but it sounds like this would be a great book that I would really like. Thanks for the awesome review, it sounds like you really liked this one!

  7. I know exactly what you mean. I am definitely going to read more of her books!

  8. I know exactly what you mean. I am definitely going to read more of her books!

  9. Wow — this sounds amazing: “I was utterly taken in by the beauty, pain, and brittle edges of this novel.”

  10. Wow — this sounds amazing: “I was utterly taken in by the beauty, pain, and brittle edges of this novel.”

  11. This sounds amazing and is going straight to my wishlist. I have a feeling that your blog is going to be a very bad influence on me!

  12. This sounds amazing and is going straight to my wishlist. I have a feeling that your blog is going to be a very bad influence on me!

  13. I got this book from the library because you told me it was good, but I haven’t had a chance to read it yet. Hopefully will be able to slip it in before it is due back!

  14. I got this book from the library because you told me it was good, but I haven’t had a chance to read it yet. Hopefully will be able to slip it in before it is due back!

  15. “actually own all of her books, but I’ve never read any of them.”…sounds weird!

  16. “actually own all of her books, but I’ve never read any of them.”…sounds weird!

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