Bookish Witch

A Marriage, an Affair, and a Friendship by Sabarna Roy

Blurb (as on Amazon):

This is a story where Rahul, Paromita, Suroma, and Samaresh bisect and intersect boundaries of marriage, affair, and friendship, evolving into an intriguing cocktail and mix of human relationships.

Sabarna Roy looks at a marriage, an affair, and a friendship in a very interesting, and fast-paced prose and gravitates to the idea of an open marriage in a modernist setting. It is a highly enjoyable read that strikes at our prejudices and regressive thoughts in a subtle and fleeting manner. A must-read. True to his style, Sabarna experiments within the format of prose writing inside a single piece of a novella. A starkly visual human drama!

Genre: Fiction/ Romantic Drama

Pages: 93

Format: Kindle eBook/Paperback+Hardcover


  • Kindle eBook: 149 INR/$6.00
  • Hardcover/Paperback: 299 INR/$12.00

My rating: 4.3/5

Rahul and Paromita have been married for a long time and even have two children. One day, Suroma, a work associate of Rahul puts forth an unconventional proposition. Its acceptance by Rahul changes the course of all their lives.

What I liked about the book:

->It’s a short book that covers the emotions of each character very well.
-> The story doesn’t have a specific ending and is left open to interpretation. In fact, the whole plot and the characters’ actions+choices are never judged by the author and the reader is free to decide on whether they’re for or against these choices.
-> The narrative is not linear. Some chapters are told in the first person, some in the third person, and a few in the form of a drama scene. This makes the reading quite unusual and interesting.
-> The character of Suroma is quite inspiring. We can all learn a thing or two from her as she knew exactly what she wants in her life, is truly independent financially as well as emotionally, and didn’t need a man to raise her child. These are some traits we could all do well by imbibing.

What I did not like about the book:

-> I felt that Rahul and Suroma’s story was given more limelight than Paromita and Samaresh’s. I really liked Samaresh’s character and would have loved to read more about him.

Quotable quotes:

-> Rethink your notions. Recalibrate your understanding of marriage.
-> Where does the road to polygamy take a turn into open marriage? When you’ve left all your base instincts behind?
-> Marriage is such a strange relationship. Most times we give more attention to our careers. We nurture the relationships we make in our line of work. We put our best foot forward and showcase our skills daily, feeding it with daily challenges, problem-solving, and working towards positive outcomes. If only we treated our marriages like this!
->Every woman knows when a man is interested in her but falls woefully short of words when he confesses it.

-> There is more to life than rats and races.
-> The household help are like doctors: they know the temperature of the patient by the sound of their silence.
-> Nobody said life was easy and easy is not something one should be looking for.
-> There’s no fool like an old school.
-> Do the young have no boundaries these days? Do they take what they want? Do they always get what they want?
-> It is never a cup of coffee for the young. They live life large. Even coffee is drunk in an oversized mug.
-> Since the sprouting of coffee shops around India, getting a cup of coffee needs more time at the cafe counter than getting a loan approved for a home purchase.

Check out the book here:

Author’s social media links:


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