Last night we celebrated the launch of Lucy Beresford’s Invisible Threads at Waterstones Piccadilly.
Below is the full text of my speech to mark this memorable occasion.
When I received Lucy Beresford’s manuscript I read it in two sittings over a weekend.
The story was most intriguing, and I could not wait for the unraveling of many of the mysteries the book so cleverly weaved despite being taut to the very end.
Although the narrative is a work of fiction, the background is based on events that take place in an India few Westerners ever see.
Sara, a therapist, always thought her husband Mike died in Afghanistan – but when she learns he was actually killed in India, her desire to uncover the truth leads her to a clinic in New Delhi.
Once in India Sara is dazzled by the country’s culture and its people. At the clinic, she grows close both to her patient Pritti and a bewitching, low-caste driver named Hemant.
Yet Sara finds herself increasingly appalled at the treatment of women in a country of old traditions and new opportunities, where so much remains shocking or forbidden, like the practice of ‘Devadasi’ – prostitutes who work at temples.
The truth about the death of her husband finally emerges to give an unexpected twist to the whole saga.
Lucy is a dab hand at her craft. A successful writer, broadcaster and physiotherapist, she’s also the acclaimed Agony Aunt for the women’s glossy Healthy, besides being the Radio Shrink for BBC Radio London.
Her style of writing is easy to grapple with, and has a natural flow which keeps the reader entranced to the last page.
I strongly recommend her book – and ask this gathering of well wishers to buy as many copies as they can afford and recommend this gripping oeuvre to their friends.
Authors love recognition, like the rest of us, and with this in mind we should ensure that Lucy leaves this evening feeling appreciated and encouraged.