Sunday, March 18, 2018

LOUSIANA CATCH, by Sweta Srivastava Vikram

Lousiana Catch by Sweta Vikram

Paperback: 268 pages
Author: Sweta Srivastava Vikram
Publisher: Modern History Press (April 10, 2018)
ISBN: 9781615993529

My name is Ahana Chopra, and I was born and raised in the most ludicrous city in the world: New Delhi. Sometimes, I feel New Delhi doesn’t understand me. Other times, I don’t understand it. 
And just like that, I was drawn into Ahana's world and her story. Ahana is a heroine recovering from marital rape.

Louisiana Catch is a book with a purpose and a thoroughly enjoyable read. It took me longer than expected to finish the book not because I didn't like it, but because I've just taken on a new role two weeks ago with my company. I'd completed my very first project and go-live with the client. During those two weeks that I had to part with the book, I was thinking a lot about Ahana and the people in her life—her Mumma, her cousin Naina who is like a sister to her, her ex-husband Dev, her charming colleague Rohan, and a few others. I have built quite a relationship with the characters in Louisiana Catch and I must say I loved Ahana and Rohan! Although I had to stop reading because of my work, I finished the book in less than two days when I was able to pick it up again after my new work situation had settled down. This is a book that makes long bus rides to and from work unnoticeable...

Earlier I mentioned this is a book with a purpose. The story highlights the emotional and psychological battles that women of marital rape face, and how that impacts their actions, relationships, and every-day life. At times I wanted to slap Ahana for the way she reacts and forms her opinion and judgement about people, but then I thought to myself, I had never gone through what she had gone through. She's strong and weak at the same time, but that's what I loved about her. She's human.

As a person who practices yoga, I absolutely loved how Sweta, who is a certified yoga instructor, has weaved yoga into the story. I loved how supportive the people in Ahana's life are. Sweta has a way with words and I was in tears a few times. I was thoroughly absorbed in the Indian culture and although the book is set in NOLA (New Orleans), it also gives a rich taste of New Delhi.

I really, really enjoyed this book. Will I be reading more of Sweta Vikram's work? Of course!

About the Author
Sweta Srivastava Vikram, featured by Asian Fusion as “one of the most influential Asians of our time,” is an award-winning author of 11 books, five-time Pushcart Prize nominee, mindfulness writing coach, and wellness columnist. Sweta’s work has appeared in The New York Times and other publications across nine countries on three continents. A graduate of Columbia University and a certified holistic health counselor, Sweta performs her work, teaches creative writing workshops blending yoga, meditation, and Ayurveda, and gives talks at universities and schools across the globe. She lives in Queens, NY with her husband.
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A note of appreciation:
I would like to thank Sweta Vikram for contacting me and giving me the opportunity to read and review Lousiana Catch before its release date.

Where to buy Lousiana Catch

Lousiana Catch by Sweta VikramAbout the Book: Ahana Chopra, a wealthy thirty-three-year old New Delhi woman and newly minted divorcee, flees the pain of her mother’s death, and her dark past, by accepting a huge project in New Orleans, where she’ll coordinate a debut international conference to raise awareness of violence against women. Her half-Indian, half-Irish colleague and public relations guru, Rohan Brady, who helps Ahana develop her online presence, off ends her prim sensibilities with his raunchy humor. She is convinced that he’s a womanizer.

Meanwhile, she seeks relief from her pain in an online support group, where she makes a good friend: the mercurial Jay Dubois, who is also grieving the loss of his mother. Her work in the U.S. and the online medium brings the two men into her life, and Ahana learns that neither is what he seems. With their differing sensibilities on a collision course, Ahana finds herself in a dangerous situation—and she discovers a side of herself that she never realized she had.

Louisiana Catch is an emotionally immersive novel about identity, shame, and who we project ourselves to be in the world. It’s a book about Ahana’s unreliable instincts and her ongoing battle to determine whom to trust as she, Rohan, and Jay shed layers of their identities.

As Ahana matures from a victim of domestic sexual abuse into a global feminist leader, she must confront her issues, both with the men in her life and, ultimately, with her own instincts. Whom can she rely on to have her best interests at heart?