The authoress of this novel is Rukshana Smith. She was born in Birmingham in 1948, but has lived most of her life in London. This book is based on the experiences of a young Asian friend she met. When you read this book it`s the director who tells the story, but she`s not a part of it.
This story deals with the life of an Indian family, the Patels, which have to move out of Uganda, because the president of Uganda, president Amin, has announced that all foreigners have to get out of the country, unless they will get killed.
They move to Britain where they can give their four daughters a good education. But the family which had been rich and respected in Uganda were threated like they were stupid in England because they couldn`t speak English well, except Sumitra which had learnt it at school in Uganda. Because of this they only got bad jobs and became a poor family. This resulted in housing problems, and they had to get help from the Housing Department. First they lived at Antonio`s Guest House, where it was many strict rules to follow and very noisy. At the guest house they met many mean people, but also some nice people to. One of the nicest was Maria, who became a good friend of the family.
After a long time and after many phonecalls to the Housing Department, they finally got rehoused to their own house. Here could Bap, the father, be «the boss» again.
When Sumitra was staying at the guest house she got a job of a friend at Saturdays. But she is eating her lunches in a pub with her white friends, which is unacceptable for an Indian girl. Jayant, her uncle, watches her going into the pub one time, and this gets her into a lot of trouble.
Sumitra has only two choises; either to stick with her family and their Hindu values with a life like a prisoner, or to run away from home to the English life and freedom. It`s not easy for Sumitra to choose because she wants the best from both the English and the Indian culture.
The theme in this book...
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