Book Review – Angels with One Wing a Book by Sangeeta Singh

Book – Angels with One Wing
Author – Sangeeta Singh
Blurb – Kartikeya from India and Kadira from Pakistan meet in London and fall in love. Little do they know that their destinies were interwoven 43 years ago in pre-partition Delhi. The story begins on a Ganga ghat in Banaras, where an old sadhu shares the tale of courage and duty with a group of students. Spanning the decades of 1938 to 2019 and numerous cities—Banaras, Dilli, Lahore, Cambridge—the narrative of “Angels with One Wing” takes readers on a journey of self-realisation, leaving us with the reminder that, like angels, humanity needs both wings—individuality and collective support—to truly navigate the journey of life. 

“Angels with One Wing” embarks on an epic journey across the kaleidoscope of time, a profound multi-generational saga that unfolds against the seismic shifts of India’s history. As the narrative sweeps through three nations—India, Pakistan, and England—the lives of two families intertwine amidst the tumultuous echoes of the partition. Family secrets and unimaginable acts of sacrifice propel the drama of their lives, emphasising the profound impact of love, friendship, and family that transcends the barriers of religion and nationality. Through hidden truths and unexpected reunions, the story invites you to explore the enduring power of the human spirit against the backdrop of history’s unrelenting march.

Book Review - "Angels with one wing" by Sangeeta Singh

“Angels with One Wing” by Sangeeta Singh is a profound and intricately woven tale that transcends time, spanning the decades of 1938 to 2019. Set against the backdrop of India, Pakistan, and England, the narrative unfolds the lives of two families whose destinies are intertwined amidst the seismic shifts of history, particularly the partition of India.

The story commences on the Ganga ghats in Banaras, where a group of students engages in a passionate discussion about the feasibility of unity in a country as diverse as India. The arrival of an enigmatic old sadhu adds a mystical touch to the narrative, as he promises to share a story that delves into the realms of love, friendship, courage, and sacrifice.

One of the strengths of Singh’s storytelling lies in her ability to seamlessly merge historical events with the personal lives of the characters. The reader is taken on an emotional rollercoaster through the lives of Kartikeya from India and Kadira from Pakistan, who meet in London and fall in love, unaware that their destinies were intertwined years before the partition.

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The narrative not only captures the complexities of the political landscape during the partition but also explores the enduring power of the human spirit against the backdrop of history. Singh’s exploration of family secrets and acts of sacrifice adds a layer of depth to the characters, making them relatable and compelling.

The characters themselves are well-developed and undergo significant growth throughout the narrative. The juxtaposition of individuality and collective support, likened to angels needing both wings, serves as a recurring theme. The characters’ journeys towards self-realisation contribute to the overarching message that humanity, like angels, requires a balance of both aspects to navigate life’s challenges.

The vivid descriptions of various cities—Banaras, Delhi, Lahore, and Cambridge—add a rich texture to the narrative. Singh’s evocative prose paints a picturesque image of the Ganga ghats, creating a tangible sense of place that enhances the reader’s immersion in the story.

The book’s exploration of unity in diversity, a central theme in the early chapters, gains resonance as the characters traverse through the tumultuous echoes of the partition. Singh skillfully incorporates historical facts, allowing readers to understand the broader context in which the characters’ lives unfold.

The wise old sadhu’s storytelling technique introduces an element of suspense and intrigue, compelling the students—and, by extension, the readers—to return each day to hear the next part of the story. This narrative device mirrors the way the book captivates its readers, leaving them eager to uncover the next layer of the characters’ lives.

As the story spans generations and nations, Singh effectively addresses the complexities of relationships, the impact of political decisions on personal lives, and the resilience of the human spirit. The seamless transition between time periods is a testament to the author’s storytelling prowess.

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“Angels with One Wing” is not merely a historical account; it is a reflection on the enduring power of love, friendship, and family bonds in the face of adversity. The narrative invites readers to contemplate the universal themes of sacrifice and unity while presenting a nuanced understanding of the historical events that shaped the characters’ lives.

In conclusion, Sangeeta Singh’s “Angels with One Wing” is a beautifully crafted and emotionally resonant novel that skillfully weaves together history, romance, and human drama. The characters’ journeys, set against the backdrop of significant historical events, make for a compelling and thought-provoking read. This book is a testament to the author’s storytelling prowess and her ability to create a narrative that lingers in the reader’s mind long after the final page.

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