The Bandit Queens by Parini Shroff

A group of Indian women brought together by belonging to a loan group decide, one by one, that they need to get rid of their husbands and so they do but not without a few twists to the tale which were unexpected.

What I did think was a bit over the top was the number of issues the book covered – domestic violence, rape, the caste system, women as chattels, women without children, women without husbands, alcoholism and the range of horror husbands inflict on their wives such as throwing acid at them out of jealousy and then marrying them (!). Despite all of this, the book is not doom and gloom but more showing how women who support each other are capable of beating the system and getting what they want.

The book was on the longlist for the Women’s Prize for Fiction and although I did not think it a winner, I still think it better than Black Butterflies.

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