Monday, September 3, 2012
Review: Saving Peace by Mohanalakshmi Rajakumar
Saving Peace follows a group of women thirty years from students at women only Peace University to their middle age. Siobahn, calculating, in everything she does snags the man and manages to become a local news anchor. Her ambition wreaks havoc on all her relationships, since she only interacts with people if there is some benefit to her. Mary Ann, the charming southern girl, is the first to marry but sets aside her poetry and writing to be a stay at home mom to her infant, teenage, and adult sons. Putting her dreams aside to focus on her family and her absent husband causes severe depression. Kim overcomes cancer and bulimia to become president of Peace University. Her decision to admit male students to Peace University sparks much criticism and angst amongst students and alumna of the school.
Saving Peace intertwines the stories of the three women across the years. Although outside of the first couple pages of the books, they didn't really seem like friends. Over the years they mainly communicate by voice messages and chance meetings. As the story progresses, I was left to wonder why they bothered. The benefits to continued friendship or even acquaintance seemed minimal. Not to mention that they didn't seem to have any other friends. They all are emotional train wrecks. There were also issues with time: the term Bridezilla was thrown around and Golden Girls didn't start until 1985 although the girls were supposed to be watching it together in 1977. Also one of the character's son had a Game Boy in 1988 even though they weren't released anywhere until 1989.
Mohanalakshmi Rajakumar is a South Asian American who has lived in Qatar since 2005. Moving to
the Arabian Desert was fortuitous in many ways since this is where she met her husband, had a baby,
and made the transition from writing as a hobby to a full time passion. She has since published five e-
books including a mom-ior for first time mothers, Mommy But Still Me, a guide for aspiring writers, So
You Want to Sell a Million Copies, a short story collection, Coloured and Other Stories, and a novel
about women’s friendships, Saving Peace. Most recently, From Dunes to Dior, is a collection of essays
related to her experiences as a female South Asian American living in the Arabian Gulf. After she
joined the e-book revolution, she dreams in plotlines. Learn more about her work on her website at
www.mohanalakshmi.com or follow her latest on Twitter: @moha_doha.