Book review

A Cage of Desires by Shuchi Singh Kalra #bookreview @penguinindia @shuchikalra

Hello lovely readers. Here’s wishing you a great week ahead. I pray for your patience today as this review is word – ier, longer than my usual. The story is about Love so you can understand, right 🙂

A woman centric title, erotic one, penned by a woman, a smart one at that. Well, interest had me colored and since I don’t have many views or knowledge on how the Indian urban woman is currently thinking in terms of desires, this title sounds like a good start.

Now don’t get me wrong when I say I don’t have many views, it’s just that I live under the rock aka my books #tbr ; being somewhat an anti social, seeing how people tend to ask dumb questions most of the times. Well, getting back to the book, I enjoy the author’s wit, smart writing and thinking style so it’s was a no brainer, I said Yes to the review opportunity. Happy Reading.


Title : A Cage of Desires

Author : Shuchi Singh Kalra

Published : 21 May 2018

Publisher : Penguin

Rating : 5/5

Profession of lead characters : House wife, secret erotica best selling author.

Location set in : Lucknow, India.


There’s a kind of love that makes you go down on one knee, and there’s the kind that brings you down on both. You don’t need the latter, because no matter what you do, you cannot make anyone love you back.’
Renu had always craved for love and security, and her boring marriage, mundane existence somehow leads her to believe that, maybe, this is what love is all about. Maya, on the other hand, is a successful author who is infamous for her bold, erotic books.
What do these two women have in common? How are their lives intertwined?
Renu’s thirst for love and longing takes her on a poignant journey of self-exploration. The answers come to her when she finds the courage to stand up for herself, to fight her inner demons and free herself from the cage of desires . . .

My thoughts

A cage of desires is about Renu, a housewife with a lonely existence in the midst of her children, aging father in law and an absentee husband. To cure, forget her married life which is stuck in a rut, Renu turns to writing, something she loves, is good at and is her most needed escape, a secret she nurtures. Renu is an erotica writer who writes under another name, she finds her escape in writing her desires, her muse in Arjun, who is the catalyst in her transformation from a woman living in shadows to a talent basking out in the limelight.

Like all secrets, it comes out and destroys Renu’s lonely, cocoon of married, forgotten existence. It’s not sad because from the destruction of a dead marriage rises a powerful, confident Maya. One who writes, battles with her inner desires, still wants to give love, intimacy another chance.

The story is about love in all its glory and its fall. Love in it’s all consuming, overpowering ,destroying and restoring mixed with redemption and reclaiming form. A cage Of desires shows us how love – the lack of it, the forbidden morsel of it makes a mundane person’s life go from boring to exhilarating to darkness and back.

At the start I felt it’s about how lonely housewife finds solace in erotic writing and then a very cliched secret, lusty affair with her tenant . However, it was not to be so for long, the affair sets the lead character ,Renu, on a path of self discovery, of finding herself, redemption and reclaiming herself.

There are stories where we see a teenager in a situation that helps them come of age. I feel this story is in some ways finding yourself again or rather reclaiming yourself after a mid life crisis. I don’t like pointing out the age thing but am purely saying that because the characters were middle aged; I’d prefer getting oneself out of a rut. That’s the simplest way I can summarise the story.

That’s not all though , the whole process of loneliness , longing, the extremes of love , lust, betrayal, revenge , moving on and finally a place of peace that the lead goes through makes this a very moving read. A story that makes you drift away, but never force you, into thinking, reflection.

This story made me feel that Love in its myriad forms as an emotion , even the mere illusion of which no doubt makes a person go through heaven , hell and everything in between with a mere look between the lovers. And what happens next is infact what stories , poems and words dripped in affection, pain and every emotion out there, are written about. A cage of desires is not just about desires but everything before, after and long after it’s all said, done and dusted.

I know and admire Shuchi’s way of writing, her no nonsense, clarity of thoughts and opinions. She weaves this story – all its pain, glory and honest beauty in a way which takes it to a different level, not your regular erotica. This is all about a strong, beautiful soul who emerges from pain, the kind which can only be brought on by love and passion in its raw, unrestricted , pure , gritty form.

I really loved this story for not every storyteller is brave and confident to
bring to its readers only the parts of love which make it an easy, walk in the sunset, happily ever after side.

About the Author

Shuchi Singh Kalra is the Amazon bestselling author of two novels-Done with Men and I’m Big. So What!? Her short stories have appeared in Love across Borders, Stories for Your Valentine and NAW Anthology 2013. In her freelancing career of over a decade, Shuchi has written for major print and online publications such as Femina, Good Housekeeping, Hotelier International, Huffington Post and Home Review, among others. She has also been listed among the top women authors to follow on Twitter.
Twitter: @shuchikalra

One thought on “A Cage of Desires by Shuchi Singh Kalra #bookreview @penguinindia @shuchikalra

  1. This is a very interesting premise. I have been reading reviews of this book and all have so many good things to say. I must read this.


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