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Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows

Narrated by: Meera Syal
Length: 10 hrs and 34 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (83 ratings)

Non-member price: $19.47

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Publisher's Summary

Hilarious and heartwarming, an East-meets-West novel for fans of The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul.

Every woman has a secret life....

When Nikki takes a creative writing job at her local temple, with visions of emancipating the women of the community she left behind as a self-important teenager, she's shocked to discover a group of barely literate women who have no interest in her ideals.

Yet to her surprise, the white dupatta of the widow hides more than just their modesty - these are women who have spent their lives in the shadows of fathers, brothers and husbands, being dutiful, raising children and going to temple, but whose inner lives are as rich and fruitful as their untold stories. But as they begin to open up to each other about womanhood, sexuality and the dark secrets within the community, Nikki realises that the illicit nature of the class may place them all in danger.

East meets West and tradition clashes with modernity in a thought-provoking cross-cultural novel that might make you look again at the women in your life.

©2017 Balli Kaur Jaswal (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic Reviews

"Big-hearted, earthy and funny: turns so many preconceptions upside down and opens up a world that so many of us have only glimpsed. A rattlingly good story." (Deborah Moggach, author of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel)
"Compulsive, funny and wonderfully original - this novel glows with witty sensuality. I love it." (Helen Lederer, author of Losing It)
"Poignant, intelligent yet wickedly funny - a delightful read that reignites one's belief in the power of sisterhood." (June Sarpong)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Well this was a surprise!

I don’t know what I was expecting but this was a pleasant surprise - this story is layered, intelligent and well paced. Loved it!

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Fantastic book

This book wasn't what I was expecting but I loved it! it had humour, mystery and culture.

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  • Michele
  • Western Australia
  • 25-10-2018

funny moments

there were some funny moments, overall a good book to pass time. felt a little dragged out.

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thanks Reese Witherspoon for another recommendatio

such an eye opener to how valued honour is in indian culture, I had no idea.

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Brilliant!

Excellent narrator, heart warming story with a lot of laughs and some delightful characters. Will definitely listen to this again!

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Good but some voice acting

My one qualm with the voice acting was two characters turned South African and Irish at times.

The story itself is interesting and fascinating: a glimpse into a culture most people don't know about but sometimes the prose was too expositional and bare boned for my liking.

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Another good book on Reese Witherspoon’s book club!

Excellent story into the lives of a fascinating group of women. Story keeps you engaged the whole way through. No matter the culture we all have a lot of the same problems with love and life.
The American accent the narrator uses is slightly irritating but it isn’t in there too often. Definitely a must read

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  • Naomi
  • 11-08-2018

Enjoyable

I found the story a little predictable but overall it was an easy and enjoyable read.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • GB
  • 25-10-2017

Great Discovery

I bought this book on the title. It started off like a YA novel that was well written and well read but it soon became a fascinating journey into a complex world.
It deals with the lives of people in an alien environment who live within a introverted self protecting society.
Its characters are likeable and sympathetic and strong without being unrealistically aggressive
The story is compelling enough to keep you wanting more.
The reading is really good. The readers light tone only draws attention to the issues that are drawn out.
Altogether excellent entertainment though an interesting landsacpe

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  • Rozemarijn
  • 07-04-2017

Enjoyable story with some depth

Lovely book with a bit of everything. I liked the cross culture storyline. The main characters seemed real and sympathetic.
The story is a bit suprising and not to predictable. Light enough and real enough.

The erotic stories were suprisingly poetic and well read. A real achievement.

There is real heartfelt drama and also fear. Many funny "parts" and real human dilemma's. I fully recommend this book.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Louise
  • 20-03-2017

Laugh out loud funny


I absolutely loved this audiobook. It was a perfect combination of storyteller and narrator. Even though there were some serious subjects, the book was upbeat and enjoyable. It really was laugh out loud funny. A rare gem!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Mrs JEL
  • 09-04-2018

An interesting glimpse into a community

I think the reason I liked this book so much was that it helped me understand and respect communities that exist within the uk today of which I had only the briefest knowledge. Yes, as everywhere there is wickedness, but the widows and their friends kick back at it successfully and emerge triumphant.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Reema
  • 11-01-2018

unnecessary details. too long.

struggled to finish. Idea and concept was good though. but could have been better in editing department. unnecessary details tends to lose objectivity of the story

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Suswati
  • 13-09-2017

Interesting, a little repetitive

I wasn't sure what to expect with this bizarrely named novel, and I was slightly worried it would be some Karma Sutra style book but it was nothing of the kind.

A group of old Punjabi women attend an English language class run by a British Asian young woman who mistakenly brings in an erotic book one day. It opens up a world of sensuous pleasure for the women, who are normally quite conservative about such topics.

While it's quite a novelty and funny at the beginning, the stories become repetitive and it becomes a little boring. The honour crime story was far more interesting and I wish there was more focus on that side instead of turning it in to a Gurinder Chadha type of novel. The stories are meant to open up other aspects of the community such as arranged marriages and the impact of honour - but it just doesn't seem to connect that well.

The protagonist Nicky is great though who reflects many British Asians growing up with dual cultures. Good but not great.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Mrs. P.
  • 03-04-2019

Great fun with a serious message. I loved it :)

An excellent balance of hilarity and poignancy. A peek into second a third generation immigrants’ social confusion and conflict. I really loved this book 😊

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • mumof4
  • 13-11-2018

Loved it

Wasn't really sure what to expect with this book, I saw it recommended by the Reece Witherspoon book club and thought I'd give it a try.
Really good story line, made me laugh and many thought provoking moments.
definitely worth one of my credits.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Leemull
  • 12-10-2018

good book

Nicely read by Meera Syal, it is a beautiful story of life, death and love and very different to the books I usually read, so glad I finished it, it's really quite heartwarming.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Ladychi
  • 23-09-2018

Absolutely loved this book !

My first audible book and I really enjoyed the story , and the narration , something different.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Claire
  • 01-04-2017

brilliant performance

Meera Syal's performance brings this book and it's characters to life. Fans of Alexander McCall Smith should give this book a try.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful