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Rescuing Ranu Paperback – April 2, 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Author

The theme underscoring Rescuing Ranu is altruism. Whom do we rescue, and how related must we be to want to - i.e. how many cousins are worth one brother?  The following are questions for discussion:
  • · Ashoke is related to Nela, and yet he betrays her. Mami exploits Ranu, but later helps Nela to save her. Why? The child's deformity serves as a symbol. Of what?
  • · Although Nela and Jackson do not plan to stay together, they marry in order to get Ranu to safety. Would you consider this a purely altruistic act?
  • · Jackson sacrifices his personal happiness with Nela because the village needs him more than she, and Nela puts her child's needs ahead of her own. What's the cost/benefit ratio of their decisions?
A recurring motif in Rescuing Ranu has to do with flocking behavior. Nela's flight from, and return to, the places she regards as home mimic the choreography of a murmuration of birds, and give rise to the questions:   
  • · Is the bird in front (Nela) leading, or being chased? In which instances?
  • · Were you surprised that Nela would take Ranu back to India, after sacrificing so much?
  • · Why is Nela happier in India this time? What part does her lingering shame (discussed in Shiva's Arms) play? Jackson's sincere support of her work?

About the Author

Cheryl Snell's other books include a debut novel, Shiva's Arms (The Writer's Lair Books), and the poetry collections Flower Half Blown (Finishing Line Press), Epithalamion (Little Poem Press), Samsara (Pudding House), Prisoner's Dilemma (Lopside Press), Multiverse (GOSS),. In addition, she and her sister, artist Janet Snell, make chapbooks for Scattered Light Library, most recently Warped Passage and Live Through This.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 250 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1st edition (April 2, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 144213254X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1442132542
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,687,832 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Cheryl Snell has woven a compelling story; a page-turner that is emotionally rich without being predictable.

Throughout the book, I found myself trying to imagine being Nela, the main character, and wondered what decisions I would have made given her circumstances. Ultimately, the difficulty I had in imagining myself in her capable shoes gave me great respect for the decisions she made/directions she chose...and I am still thinking about them days afterwards. Though Nela is highly intelligent (a scientist) and independent - the kind of person who could quite easily spend life alone - she is not impervious to love's inexplicable ways, which gives her a delightful charm. Strong women everywhere will applaud and root for her.

When the end came, I was sorry I couldn't travel on with these rich characters. The ending is applaud-worthy and will leave you longing to know more about these rich characters and the motivations that drive their actions.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
An entertaining read that makes you think! It's hard to write a novel of ideas in which the ideas matter-- but Cheryl Snell has managed to do that. An Indian professor --and her lover -- in a rocky relationship of their own, try to help a little girl. There are so many twisty moral dilemmas in this story- and you'll think about them after you put the book down.
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Format: Paperback
"How can we tell whether a bird is being chased or leading?" asks Nela, trying to analyze the motion she sees in the sky. Author Cheryl Snell leads her readers to view the world through different eyes in this intricate novel, Rescuing Ranu, and her story is a delight to follow.

Flying home from India, Nela sits next to a westerner on the plane and muses on math and the importance of seeing someone's eyes. Sitting together in a car, two mathematicians smile, "You iterate and I converge." Mathematician that I am, I'm hooked. But lyrical descriptions of Indian tradition are equally enticing, and pages pass in a fire-fly dance of otherness, belonging and story.

The author conveys the passion of mathematical mystery just as beautifully as that of love, and opens the worlds of university, India and mathematics to delightful scrutiny. But Jackson and Nela don't just come from different geographical places. The mystery of family ties and separation fuel their relationship too, and Nela's relationships with her future, job and students.

Particularly impressive is the author's ability to include Indian words and concepts without need for obvious explanation. Images flow naturally and vividly with powerful emotions. The scene shifts; one leads, one follows, and in India little Ranu flits, sometimes young, sometimes old, on a path that skirts disaster. Perhaps love plots the turning shape of the graph.

In the end, a story that starts on one part of a circle ends on another, but the circle's the same, unbroken despite the distance it lies across. Nela completes her best work, and hope and story survive.
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