East of the Sun is a pleasant enough novel by Julia Gregson about three young English women who travel to India in 1928 – Rose is going to be married to a virtual stranger; Victoria (oddly nicknamed Tor, which I’ve never heard as a nickname for Victoria!) is Rose’s bridesmaid and is desperately hoping to find a husband too; and Viva (another odd name!) is hired as their chaperone for the voyage out. There’s nothing earth-shattering about East of the Sun but Gregson does a nice job of setting the scene (I did wonder a bit about Viva’s seeming imperviousness to eating Indian street food – at the very least, I’d have expected her to get a bit of an upset stomach! I’ve been to India lots of times and I would never eat food prepared on the street and neither would most of my Indian friends!) This is mostly a romance novel, and all the romances are nicely set up and I must admit that I got a little misty-eyed about the arrival of a very nice-sounding baby boy at one point.
(Read from April 12-13, 2010)