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Life Blossoms Like A Rose In Thorns by Raghavan Jayaprakash was an intriguing story. 

Starting with the life of Smitha,  a young Indian girl who believes that arranged marriages should no longer be as they were accustomed  to.  When her sister is arranged to be married,  Smitha is angered by the fact that the husband is only out for her father's fortune.

Smitha is determined to break free from tradition,  earning her education hoping to be the one woman who fights for all in India.  When she learns of her brother in law's abuse toward her sister and their children,  she refuses to be put in the same situation.

She earns her education,  traveling to Ethiopa to teach.  It is here that she stumbles upon a conversation for assassination of the president.  Sure that no one will believe her,  she takes her information to the guards,  as she is even more sure that she cannot live with such knowledge should something happen that she could have prevented.

When she is taken seriously,  and the President is saved,  she is given instant leadership by the president,  where she learns military skills and gains riches.  Upon her return to home,  she is presented with multiple marriage proposals.

Much to her surprise,  one man she actually felt a connection with and they were married.  To her surprise,  he too had wealth,  and was not only after hers.

They bore two children,  who were told would be great in the world.  Though both children were like night and day,  they both grew to make their parents proud.

After the death of her husband from a tragic accident,  Smitha mourns for over a year.  It is when her brother summons them home that they return to their native land.

The boys,  Bhaskar and Prem,  both attend private school and excel at a rapid pace.  Bhaskar falls in love,  only to win a scholarship where he must leave his one true love Anna behind.

After years of being gone and becoming a world class heart surgeon,  he is paid a visit from his mother and brother,  who left training for the Olympics to see his brother.  When they land there is a tragic accident that claims his brothers life.  Heart broken and grieving, Bhaskar decides to call his lost love,  only to learn she has married another.

The years pass,  and Bhaskar is called to an emergency heart surgery to save a wealthy Indian.  As he boards the plane he sees a familiar face.  "Good Morning Anna,  how are you my Dear?"  Shocked at the appearance of one that Anna thought was lost forever,  she is more than happy to see her long lost love.  After the flight they get together where they talk of the past and learn neither is married.  They both agree to wait no longer and marry in a private ceremony before Bhaskar is scheduled for surgery.

The surgery was a huge success,  Bhaskar is deemed a hero,  and the love between him and Anna only grows deeper.

This was a great story.  The only thing I had a problem with was that there was no notice of change in character.  This title is entirely in the first person,  and switches to first person of another character with no advance notice.  I loved to learn about how there is wish to change customs in India,  and found Smitha a very strong and empowering woman.  I think the story could have ended better,  having Anna meet Smitha and seeing her reaction to an interracial marriage by her son.

I give Life Blossoms Like A Rose In Thorns ***1/2 (3.5) Stars,  BK Walker.
http://bkwalkerbooks.weebly.com

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Learn more about this author - Raghavan Jayaprakash

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