Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Friday, January 2, 2015

The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing by Mira Jacob...

How I Heard About It:  To be honest I had a gift card to Barnes and Noble and wanted to use it.  As I was browsing for books, I came across this title which was also 30% which brought it down to the price of my gift card.  I believe I had seen the book written about somewhere, but didn't know much else about it.    

What It Is About:  Amina and her family were from India and moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico.  They are beginning a new life in America and have left some family members back in India.  Amina's father is a doctor and her mother stays at home.  She has an older brother named Akhil.  The story goes back and forth in time between 1979 (when the family visits India) to 1983 (when Amina and Akil are in high school) to 1998 (when Amina returns home to Albuquerque from Seattle to visit her parents).  Her family has deep roots from their homeland, but are also trying to "make it" in America.  Amina is a professional photographer, but decides to take a break from it to take the kind of pictures she wants.  The family is struck with a tragedy while the kids are in high school and it changes the course of her family.  During her visit back home in 1998, another tragedy is put upon the family and Amina is the one that tries to keep everything together.  

What I Thought Of It:  Being that I didn't know a whole lot about this novel, I wasn't sure what to except.  It is a long story (at 512 pages) and the beginning was a bit slow for my taste.  Once I got into the story (maybe a bit under a hundred pages), I really started to enjoy the story and couldn't put the book down.  This is Mira Jacob's first novel and is really well written.  I liked reading about each of the four family members and came to know each of them quite well.  The story moved along nicely (after the first few chapters) and had a great flow to it.  As I moved toward the end of the book, I didn't want the story to be over.  This is always a sign of an excellent book for me.  

Who Should Read It:  I would really recommend this book to any adult reader that enjoys a GREAT fiction story.  This is a bit longer book, so it will take you awhile to finish.  If you enjoy reading about other cultures and family structures from other parts of the world, then this is the novel for you.  I'm so happy that I pick it up off the shelf and gave it a try;  well worth my time.  Happy Reading!  

Rating:  5 STARS out of 5 Stars

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