I was stopped in the grocery store and asked what I was listening to that had me grinning like a maniac. "Bellwether" takes a little while to get rolling, but the narrative voice is beautifully captured, and the ideosyncracies of the workplace, fads, and scientific discoveries enlivens a fairly straightforward storyline. Once the sheep were introduced, I found myself unable to unplug. As a sheep owner, I was similtaneously laughing and nodding over Sandy's and Ben's exploits with the ovine crowd. Brilliant fun and thought-provoking as well. Why do we embrace fads? How do they get started? Why is it that so many important scientific discoveries seem to happen by accident? What is the origin of the hoola hoop?
I have recommended this book to so many people after finishing. It is a charming snapshot of the middle classes of India - the caste system, the way people shop and work and live. I was thrilled to discover that the author spends more time with some of the secondary characters in other books and plan to read or listen to them as they become available. If you are a fan of The Number One Ladies Detective Agency, this book will give you the same feeling of recognition with a place so different from our own.
I've read other books by Kate Morton, so I know she has a formula and she sticks to it with good success. For some reason, I found "The Secret Keeper" quite slow to start out and for the first third of the book I had trouble staying focused on the story and feeling any empathy towards the characters. By the second half, while I knew what the secret was, I was still curious about how the characters had arrived at that point, which signals a riveting story and engaging characters. Ultimately, the book was very enjoyable, not great, not the most fantastic thing I've read this year, but a worthwhile expenditure of my time while walking the dog, spinning and knitting.
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