The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters, the fourth novel from Balli Kaur Jaswal (Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows), is an absolute delight. It interweaves multiple family stories within the colorful panorama of a journey to India, resulting in a novel that is sad, joyful and exciting all at the same time.
Jaswal’s narrative entwines the stories of three adult sisters whose disparate lives are catapulted on a new and completely different trajectory when their mother makes a request. With her death only hours away, India-
born Sita Kaur Shergill, who raised her children in England, says she wants her daughters to undertake a pilgrimage to India—one she was unable to take—and provides detailed instructions for the trip that are daunting, life–changing and often hilarious.
The Shergill sisters—Rajni, Jezmeen and Shirina—live very separate lives, each with its own secrets. The author enfolds readers in deceptively simple stories that reveal the hidden depth, humor and pathos of each sister’s life, as little by little they learn and accept each other’s stories. The teeming, textured setting of India is captured through the author’s evocative scenes, as the sisters navigate on-the-ground travel as well as their own inner terrain.