The Covenant of Water by Abraham Verghese 736 pages

Abraham Verghese’s second work of fiction was a long time coming but well worth the wait. It is a family saga that covers three generations of a Christian family living in Kerala which is on the southern coast of India. Each generation produces at least one individual who has a fear of water and dies from drowning. There is no escaping water in Kerala. Parallel to this saga is the life of Digby Kilgour, a Scotsman who becomes a brilliant surgeon in Madras, India and eventually becomes the director of a leper colony. Of course, Verghese eventually brings these plots together in an surprising yet heart warming way.

I adored Cutting for Stone and was afraid The Covenant of Water would be a let down. NOT AT ALL. Characters, plot and descriptions are terrific. It is the kind of book I couldn’t put down, yet didn’t want to finish.

Warning: There are many medical descriptions in The Covenant of Water-surgeries, ailments, and examinations. I found them interesting and sometimes fascinating but others may not.

The Covenant of Water by Abraham Verghese 736 pages

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