Betsy Woodman
Jana Bibi’s Excellent Fortunes
May 26, 2019 Comments.. 764
Jana Bibi s Excellent Fortunes In the first of a charming series we meet Jana Bibi who has inherited her grandfather s house in an idyllic hill station in India Casting aside the conventions of her upper crust upbringing Jana Bi
  • Title: Jana Bibi’s Excellent Fortunes
  • Author: Betsy Woodman
  • ISBN: 9788184001280
  • Page: 157
  • Format: Paperback
  • In the first of a charming series, we meet Jana Bibi, who has inherited her grandfather s house in an idyllic hill station in India Casting aside the conventions of her upper crust upbringing, Jana Bibi moves with her chatty parrot, Mr Ganguly, and her loyal housekeeper, Mary, to a town where the local merchants are philosophers, the chief of police is a tyrant, and a baIn the first of a charming series, we meet Jana Bibi, who has inherited her grandfather s house in an idyllic hill station in India Casting aside the conventions of her upper crust upbringing, Jana Bibi moves with her chatty parrot, Mr Ganguly, and her loyal housekeeper, Mary, to a town where the local merchants are philosophers, the chief of police is a tyrant, and a bagpipe playing Gurkha keeps wild monkeys at bay Settling in, Jana meets the town s colorful local characters who gather at the Why Not tea shop her neighbour, the contemplative darzi, who struggles with his business and family former college friends, now respectively shopkeeper, whose shop is bursting at the seams with objects of unknown provenance, and newspaper editor, who burns the midnight oil at his printing press a tyrannical head of police who rules the village with an iron hand and the the young man with a golden voice, who wants to be a singer in the movies When word gets out that the small town is in danger of being flooded by a new government dam, forcing everyone to move and start over, Jana is enlisted to save the community Will Hamara Nagar survive With some luck and Mr Ganguly the fortune telling parrot, fate may be on their side.
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    1 Blog on “Jana Bibi’s Excellent Fortunes

    1. Richard Derus says:

      Rating 3 of five The Book Description Meet Jana Bibi, a Scottish woman helping to save the small town in India she has grown to call home and the oddball characters she considers family.Janet Laird s life changed the day she inherited her grandfather s house in a faraway Indian hill station Ignoring her son s arguments to come grow old in their family castle in Scotland, she moves with her chatty parrot, Mr Ganguly and her loyal housekeeper, Mary, to Hamara Nagar, where local merchants are philo [...]

    2. Vinitha says:

      I do not remember how this book got my to read list and when I spotted it in the library I did not have great expectations out of it It surprised me The book is like watching a soap based in India drama, humor and great characters Set in the post independent India, this book took me to part of India I am not familiar with the westerners who came to India and stayed back It is quite interesting to see India through their eyes.A perfect weekend vacation read

    3. Amy says:

      I don t know how to describe this book I liked it, but it was one that had to grow on me as I read I was not instantly smitten The characters were colorful, but the things happening to them never seemed to truly challenge them, and difficulties were solved easily, almost unbelievably so, actually The characters felt plausible, and their world felt plausible, but the neat and easy way it all worked out made this overall story fall a little bit short for me I may read the next Jana Bibi book, but [...]

    4. Sarah says:

      After some good but heavy reads lately, this novel was so refreshing Filled with colour, music, humour and philosophy, it reminded me a bit of Deborah Moggach s Best Exotic Marigold Hotel which was a novel before it was a movie.I would so love to go to Hamara Nagar, the Indian hill station and hang out with Jana Bibi, Mr Ganguly, Mary and all the localsd maybe even get my fortune told

    5. Wyntrnoire says:

      Positively enchanting Of course, Mr Ganguly the parrot steals the book I am counting on him stealing the second book as well.

    6. Shaili says:

      Writing a book review becomes enjoyable when reading the book has given one some pleasure and I have to say, writing this review is one of the easiest things I ve done Jana Bibi s Excellent Fortunes by Betsy Woodman is the story of Jana Laird, a woman with a mission to save Hamara Nagar, a town where she has recently moved, to a house which was a part of the heritage left to her by her grandfather It is a place which she has fond childhood memories of.Reading the novel is akin to watching a Boll [...]

    7. Andrea says:

      This is essentially what I would call a fun book, along the lines of The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency Set in Northern India in the 50 s, it follows the protagonist, nicknamed Jana Bibi, as she moves to an old house she has inherited in a small town and, through her involvement in a campaign to save the town from a govt dam, becomes entwined in the lives of her neighbors The book is full of the kind of lovable, slightly shallow characters that we can like without having to examine our motives or [...]

    8. Kat Warren says:

      Jana Bibi s Excellent Fortunes is an agreeable, charming read But I was taken aback when reaching book s end to learn it is the first in a series One book yes, but I expect all the best bits now have been used The author is aiming, I expect, for Alexander McCall Smith s statospherically successful Precious Romatswe series but sans the mystery story That will take some doing In any case after the third Precious, that series got tired.

    9. Sharen says:

      After discovering Emeralds Included , the 3rd book in this series and enjoying it tremendously, just went back to the first bookgood fun Definitely interesting to learn about living in India as well the geography, the culture, the daily life, and interactions between people of different faiths Leaves you feeling positive A great antidote to the long winter in snowier climes

    10. Theresa says:

      The life of Jana Bibi in India is an excellent story The story is set in the 1960 s full of wonderful characters and a woman who is living her life the way she wants to Every one thinks Jana is a white woman from a white country but in fact she s a white woman from India A country she loves and doesn t plan on leaving as she moves an sets up house in a different part of India Great book and very interesting.

    11. Jo-anne says:

      An entertaining novel enriched by eclectic characters and life in India.

    12. VaultOfBooks says:

      By Betsy Woodman Grade A In the first of a charming series, we meet Jana Bibi, who has inherited her grandfather s house in a quaint hill station in India.Casting aside the conventions of her upper crust upbringing, Janet Jana Laird moves with her chatty parrot, Mr.Ganguly, and her loyal housekeeper, Mary, to Hamara Nagar, a town where local merchants are philosophers, the chief of police is a bully, and a bagpipe playing Gurkha keeps wild monkeys at bay Settling in, Jana meets the town s colour [...]

    13. Susan in NC says:

      I really enjoyed this story about middle aged Scotswoman Janet Laird aka Jana Bibi moving to Hamara Nagar, a Himalayan Hill station, to take over a house she inherited from a scandalous grandfather Set in India in 1960, this was not an India I had read much about and I found it fascinating Jana inherits the Jolly Grant House and decides to leave her posh music tutor post in a nawab s palace the last child shortly to leave for boarding school in Switzerland, she knows she will soon be bored Widow [...]

    14. Ariel says:

      Thank you to Henry Holt and Company for providing me with a review copy of this novel.Jana Laird is a woman with one foot in India and the other in Scotland After a past marred by a smallpox epidemic which blinded her husband and killed her two young daughters, she inherits the Jolly Grant House in India from her grandfather She decides to leave her surviving son Jack, now a grown man in Scotland and moves in to her grandfather s former residence When she first sees the house it is a decrepit me [...]

    15. Angela says:

      Jana Bibi s Excellent Fortunes is the first in a series about a Scottish lady living in India in the 1960s Janet Laird, aka Jana Bibi, is a Scot by nationality but grew up in India and has Indian citizenship She inherits a property from her grandfather and moves to a charming Indian village despite the protestations of her son, Jack, who lives in Scotland and wants her to move there Jana, her housekeeper, Mary, and the parrot, Mr Ganguly, soon discover that the town is in danger of being destroy [...]

    16. Saloni says:

      This book was given to me as part of a reading challenge for the TSBCChallenge for March The name was quirky, the cover alluded to fortune reading and obviously, I was sold.The premise is promising The book narrates the adventures of Jana Bibi, or, prosaically, Janet Laird, of Scottish descent, born and bred in India, who has chosen to make her life in India, despite the many and continuous protestations from her son, living in Scotland The book references an interesting time period post Indepe [...]

    17. Jaylia3 says:

      Janet MacPherson Laird, aka Jana Bibi, is Scottish in heritage, but she s lived in India for most of her 58 years and it s where she most likes to be, so she s very pleased when she learns she s inherited her Grandfather s Jolly Grant House estate in a small village in Uttar Pradesh There s trouble almost immediately, of course The house is overrun by monkeys who have despoiled everything inside and are only frightened off by the sound of bagpipes played by a friendly local Gurkha Then, not long [...]

    18. Book Concierge says:

      3.5 Janet MacPherson Laird a k a Jana Bibi is a Scotwoman born and raised in India where her father was a cultural minister for Britain As a young woman she marries William Laird, but loses him to small pox Still, she remains in the country she loves and is an Indian citizen In 1959 she inherits the Jolly Grant House, located in a small Himalayan village, from her grandfather Jani brings to her new home her faithful ayah, Mary, and her extraordinary pet parrot, Mr Ganguly Soon she has collected [...]

    19. Rachel says:

      This was a charming book with an eclectic cast of loveable characters It reminded me of a Fannie Flagg novel, only set in a small fictional town in India instead of a small town in the southern United States The people of Hamara Nagar are each quirky in their own way They are just plain nice and want to help other residents of the town When the town is threatened, they band together without question to help save it There is a bad guy and some conflict but nothing too distressing This novel is de [...]

    20. Deborah aka Reading Mom says:

      I had been eagerly anticipating my complimentary copy of Jana Bibi through First Reads no review was required and practically ripped it out of the mailbox to curl up and immerse myself in it Janet Laird is a Scotswoman who has spent most of her life in India, and is in fact, an Indian citizen by choice She has a wonderful and adventurous nature in spite of various tragedies in her past At the beginning of the book, she learns that she has inherited her Scots Uncle s home in Northern India in a s [...]

    21. Susan Johnson says:

      I loved the name of this book It just sounded fun and it was Jana MacPherson Laird is a lady of Scottish heritage who has lived most of her life in India Since her missionary husband s death she has supported herself in odd jobs such as playing in a band and a nanny in a palace She inherits her grandfather s home, the Jolly Grant House in Hamara Nagar Jana finds the house overrun with monkeys and hires an Indian bagpipe player to drive them out and sets up housekeeping She is joined by her talki [...]

    22. Celia Kennedy says:

      What I loved most what Betsy Woodman s ability to change the voice and cadence of the characters in the book As a result, I immediately felt transported in time and place.We meet Jana Bibi, a Scottish mum who has lived most of her life in India She is an independent soul, and despite the desires of her son that she give up this silly adventure and return to Scotland, she remains independent and seeks her adventures When we meet her she is finishing up her career as a violin instructor at the pal [...]

    23. Sterlingcindysu says:

      It took me about 30 pages to get into the Indian Asian background There is a glossary in the back to explain some terms and a foreground that describes the area in the novel back in the 60 s After awhile I stopped looking up the words and wanting to google the towns and just read the story If you re unfamiliar with India this is still a good story that pulls a town together I don t know if I concur that engineers are bad people or what example the townfolk did to stop the planned expansions I th [...]

    24. Tinika says:

      Jana Bibi s Excellent Fortunes is about a small town with colorful personalities Everyone is nice and helps each other and even the one officious character is easily tamed What really differentiates this story from others is the exotic locale an Indian hill station Janet Laird aka Jana Bibi inherits a house in Hamara Nagar and gets to know her neighbours That about summarizes the plot The big problem, the possible building of a dam that would wipe out the town, is background to the day to day dr [...]

    25. Brigette Streeper says:

      I won this book in a sweepstake, and I am glad I did This was my first Indi book, and it took a little bit of time getting used to the different names The glossary in the book was wonderful for unfamiliar words I enjoyed learning about the culture and loved the quirky characters that were introduced While the book was a little slow at the beginning, it quickly built pace and was a pleasure to read Jana Bibi discovers she has inherited an old building in a small town called Hamara Nagar She is qu [...]

    26. Ampersand Inc. says:

      If you are a fan of Major Pettigrew s Last Stand or the Guernsey Literary Potato Peel Pie Society you will love Jana Bibi s Excellent Fortunes It is the story of a Scottish widow who inherits a house in a hill town in India from her uncle She is middle aged and her grown up son is living in Scotland he can t understand why she would want to live in India when she could live with him in Scotland and decides to move into the inherited house Unbeknownst to her, it is currently inhabited by aggressi [...]

    27. Harold says:

      Great summer read The characters are lovably eccentric Jana Bibi, the Scottish widow of an American missionary who stays on in India after her husband s death her son who wants her to return to Scotland, Mr Ramachandran, who owns the Treasure Emporium a glorified knick knack shop , Feroze Khan of Royal Tailors, Mary, her housekeeper, the bagpipe playing Gurkha, who keeps the wild monkeys away, Mr Ganguly, the chatty parrot and the bullying, extortionist police commissioner, Mr Sharma Bandu The s [...]

    28. Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance says:

      Jana Bibi impulsively heads off to a new life in India with her parrot, Mr Ganguly, and her housekeeper, Mary, to take up residence in an old home left her in her grandfather s will.Of course, as you might hope, India is a charming place, and Jana and her companions quickly make new friends in the village she now calls home But there are also troubles in this new home, with talk of flooding the village to make a government dam, and a tyrannical head of police who rules the village with an iron h [...]

    29. Nora says:

      I loved this book From the very start where Jana Bibi reminded me of one of my all time fave author s creations Madame Karitska Everything from the people to the town to the bazaar It lived breathed I gulped it down like a little wolf As a wannabe historian, Anglo Indian relations have always interested me this was a glimpse into what life was like for some Anglos born raised for the most part in India transplanted miserably to Great Britain or the US, before returning home to India It also give [...]

    30. Barb Moore says:

      Delightful, nostalgic visit to a remote mountain village in India as the villagers attempt to thwart the building of a dam that threatens their beloved town They convince a newcomer, widowed Scots Indian Jana Bibi, to become a fortune teller to enhance the village s reputation as a tourist attraction Jana aka Janet Laird and her clever talking parrot are up to the challenge Jana dons the elegant, bejeweled traditional costume complete with slippers with turned up toes to act the part, though she [...]

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