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Book Review: Sideways on a Scooter: Life and Love in India by Miranda Kennedy

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In this memoir, author and journalist Miranda Kennedy moves to India from New York to explore life as a freelance foreign correspondent.

While setting up her new life in New Delhi and struggling to become a journalist in a country that is low on the list of desired coverage areas, she learns a lot about the culture of India through friends and others she meets along the way.

Although Sideways on a Scooter had a lot of similarities to Eat Pray Love, the 2006 novel by Elizabeth Gilbert that eventually went on to become a popular film starring Julia Roberts, rest assured it is not the same book by a different author. There is no yoga, and although there is a lot of discussion about love and relationships friends she makes, it is not a book of self-exploration and learning how to love the way Eat Pray Love is.

Miranda meets various women of different ages, castes and from various parts of India all however share the same or similar perspectives about what life is like for an Indian woman when it comes to working, dating and just living day to day,  and as Miranda finds quickly discovers these rules apply to all women living in India.

In one of her first Indian experiences she discovers that the only way she can get an apartment in India is to not only lie and tell the owners of the buildings she is married, but also that her “husband” will be joining her soon.

As an aspiring journalist and someone who longs to travel and live all over the world, especially India, I found Miranda Kennedy’s documentation of her first few years living in the country and getting set up as a freelance journalist incredibly inspiring and educational. I appreciated the fact that although it comprises her memoirs, Sideways on a Scooter – rather than recounting Kennedy’s own life and findings from self-exploration — talks more about her observations, relating stories about life in India gathered from friends and people she meets,

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