Year Published: 2011
Publisher: Random House
"In the small village of Edgecombe St. Mary in the English countrside lives Major Ernest Pettigrew (retired), the unlikely hero of Helen Simonson's wondrous debut. Wry, courtly, opinionated, and completely endearing, the Major leads a quiet life valuing the proper things that Englishmen have lived by for generations: honor, duty, decorum, and a properly brewed cup of tea. But, then his brother's death sparks an unexpected friendship with Mrs. Jasmina Ali, the Pakistani shopkeeper from the village. Drawn together by their shared love of literature and the loss of their spouses, the Major and Mrs. Ali soon find their friendship blossoming into something more. But, village society insists on embracing him as the quintessential local and regarding her as the permanent foreigner. Can their relationship survive the risks one takes when pursuing happiness in the face of culture and tradition?"
This is probably not a usual kind of book I often read. But I feel like I want to be more unpredicted in terms of books I read. This definitely falls to Real-Life Adult Modern Contemporary Fiction. Based on the synopsis above, this is definitely not a romance story between a hot guy with a naive high school girl or in other words teen-love story or hot-steamy-adult story. This is a story about old people (but they are just amazing fictional old people).
But how I love everything in this book. It's just so charming and heart-warming. A story about a widow and a widower from two different cultural backgrounds in a modern-world setting. I love how it feels so real, the story, the characters, the dramas, the intrigues, and (this is what I love the most) the dry humor. It made me laughed, conflicted, cried, smiled, surprised, but all in all it was all very good feelings. It really warms my heart. All things that these characters have to endure and fight for love. This is a very contemporary novel in a very classy style. The writings are so classic and pretty, I feel like when I read it, it felt like I eat chocolate.
There are so many beautiful words and sentences that can really captivate (me) the reader. I love how mature and lovable these characters, especially Major Pettigrew and Mrs. Ali (two of the most charming characters). There are also other amazing characters that I really like in the book thou they are not shared most of the spotlight in the story, but still play a very integral part in it. Other not so charming characters in the book are also so well developed and written.
This book is really worth to read. A beautiful piece of work, really..