A Bittersweet Reprieve by Leena Varghese

34144752.jpgI received the book A Bittersweet Reprieve by Leena Varghese as a review copy from the author and am thankful to her for the same. This book is the story of a couple who are separated due to a misunderstanding: she thinks he is dead and he thinks that she has nothing to do with him.

The blurb:

A man who comes home from battle to find that his wife has deserted him…
A woman who thinks her husband pretended to be dead and never cared enough to return home…
Maj. Tejveer Singh is an ex-serviceman from the Indian Army, decorated for his exemplary courage. After resigning from service with near-fatal wounds, he returns home to the life-altering news that his wife, Megha, has disappeared. A devastated Tej comes to the painful conclusion that she has deserted him for good.
Megha has a different story to tell. The news about Tej’s ‘death’ at the hands of the enemy breaks down her emotional equilibrium. She escapes to London, far away from everything that would remind her of Tej.
Three years later, Megha, now a gourmet writer, returns to India. Life grinds to a halt again, when she comes face-to-face with Tej at a party in Mussourie.
Fired by rage and betrayal they confront each other even as unresolved issues, an unequal power equation, buried suspicions and angst from their troubled marriage hover like phantoms once more.
Both want to know the truth about the other. Pride and mistrust prevents both of them from revealing it first!
Cut off from the world for a week, they become engrossed in a utopia where neither of them talks about the past or the future. However, time is ticking by…and the potent secret between them is waiting to explode.
Will they be able to resolve the deadlock without tearing away from each other?

The story:

Major Tejveer Singh met Megha at a polo match and they married much against her father’s wishes and there was no love lost between the two men too. She had felt crushed between the two men. Tej and Megha too had their share of fights and then during his brief stint with the Special Forces in the Indian Army, Tej goes missing. Eight months pregnant Megha is told that he is dead and she goes into depression. Tej is told that Megha has had a miscarriage and does not want to meet him.

Now, three years later, thirty two year old Tejveer lives in Mussourie, manages the orchards and estates. He never mingles with anyone, be it the local or the elite. Nobody has ever seen him beyond the work place. His business partner, Pamela Sodhi, is always persuading him to attend some party or another. This time she is coaxing him to attend a Christmas party three days away, when he hears her take the name Megha during one of her phone calls. And he decides to go to the party, Because Megha would be there.

Megha, now lives with her parents and daughter in London and is a gourmet writer. Her father wants her to marry Neel Randhawa, a shareholder in her father’s company and a friend of Pamela. Her father wants Megha to be more than friends with Neel, but Megha is not interested. And when she sees Tej at the party, she gets scared.

She wants answers and Tejveer wants to make her pay for cutting him out of his life without a word of explanation or apology and he will make her pay for it.

What happens next? Read on………………..

My take:

The book has been written in simple language. The flow is good. The characters are realistic and have been developed well and the feelings of both the characters have been depicted. The descriptions are detailed and even the scenic beauty of Mussourie has been described in detail and also the war scenes.

Loved the book immensely.

Would love to read a sequel featuring Neel and Pam.

Disclaimer: I received a free e-copy of the book from the author in return for my honest review. I have NOT received any monetary compensation for the same.

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