The Far Pavilions by MM Kaye

I came across this book by accident as I was searching through my mother’s library of audio books. What an inspiring accident to behold!

The story is of a little boy named Ashton whose father was a British Scientist in India during the British Raj (a time of British rule in India during 1858-1947). Ashton’s mother died as a result of complications in child birth and his father died a few years later of cholera, leaving the toddler in the care of his ‘Ayah’, Sita. Sita attempts to take Ashton to English relatives in the city of Mardan but soon finds out he will be put to death if he is discovered to be of English descent. In effort to protect the boy she adopts him as her own and leaves for safety.

Narrated by Sita, the story is told of how they find safety for a few years but are soon required to flee again. Sita does not live through the second run from enemies but continues to tell her sons story. Ashton, after finding safety with relatives back in England commits himself to returning to India as a British Soldier. Little does he know that his responsibilities with the Army will bring him back into contact with his childhood friends and enemies.

This story brings with it a great deal of love, hate, conspiracy, history, and brutality. The relationships are unique and heartfelt. At times I felt frustrated by the unlikely turn of events but before long I found the resolve I was looking for.

I definitely recommend The Far Pavilions for readers who enjoy learning the cultural events of a rarely discussed time and place. If you enjoyed Dovekeepers, Pope Joan, and Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, you will appreciate The Far Pavilions



After reading your review I went immediately to my library....I do books on CDs....unfortunately they don't carry the audio....only one book also (and we are a large city). I thought it would make a great BookClub suggestion. So....I'll just have to wait until a time I can donate to 900 pages. (I did forget if it actually was listed as 900 pages....just guessing)

By Lexy (not verified) has this book available for download if that is an option! And yes, it would make a great book group discussion.

By jayme

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