Love Marriage is the latest offering from Monica Ali, with admirers having to wait ten years since her last novel was published. Set in London, the plot follows protagonist Yasmin, who is engaged to be married to Joe. As their families come together, the dynamics take an unexpected turn of events that create complex and revealing situations for all involved. Family ties and the difference between each generation’s experience of love is explored in-depth within the Ghorami family.
It would be easy to assume, based on the book’s title, that the plot would form a simple love story; but as two cultures meet, the complex relationships of the characters in this novel do not allow for such an easy route. The length of the novel enables a multitude of themes to be explored – from love to death and family racism, with the impact of specific current affairs such as Brexit capturing the timeliness perfectly.
Within this emotional read, difficult situations are explored whilst conveying the essence and the emotional aspect. The expansive characters, and there are many of them, create so much drama – and seem to be inexplicably linked, which at times does feel a little convenient. However, this tightly plotted, satisfying novel deserves praise.
Love Marriage, Monica Ali (Virago)
Price: £18.99. Info: here
words RHIANON HOLLEY
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