For Pri, her mother's homeland can only exist in her imagination. That is, until she find a mysterious pashmina tucked away in a forgotten suitcase. When she wraps herself in it, she is transported to a place more vivid and colorful than any guidebook or Bollywood film. But is this the real India? And what is that shadow lurking in the background? To learn the truth, Pri must travel farther than she’s ever dared and find the family she never knew.
In this heartwarming graphic novel debut, Nidhi Chanani weaves a tale about the hardship and self-discovery that is born from juggling two cultures and two worlds.
Splendid and Important Read
Priyanka Das’s mother does not like Priyanka asking questions about India and her life there, but that doesn’t stop Pri from being curious. When Pri finds a magical pashmina in an old suitcase, she is suddenly transported to the India of her dreams, full of color, good food, and majestic buildings. In order to find out if the India the pashmina showed her is as beautiful as it seems and if it has the answer she’s been looking for, she must journey there herself.
PASHMINA is a beautifully illustrated graphic novel full of family and history. Priyanka yearns to know more about her family: who her father is, what her mom’s life was like in India, etc. Readers will find her curiosity relatable and realistic, just like the bond between Pri and her mother. Both love each other dearly, but they have parts of themselves that are hard to discuss and explain. Chanani captures the emotion spectacularly, and you shouldn’t be surprised if you get a little (or more) misty eyed at parts.
While I love Priyanka’s journey to discover where her family comes from and what that means to her, the story can be a little choppy. There were several times I had to go back a page or two to try to understand what had happened. Similarly, I felt the pashmina magic wasn’t as well explained as it could have been. We definitely get an answer as to what it does, but I was still confused about what exactly that meant.
While I was left confused in parts, the wonderful family portrayal, the meaningful journey of learning more about yourself and the world around you, and the gorgeous colors in the novel make this story a splendid and important read.