A Suitable Boy - Part 9 Summary & Analysis

This Study Guide consists of approximately 49 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of A Suitable Boy.
This section contains 491 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)

Part 9 Summary

In Delhi, Mrs. Rupa Mehra visits a close friend, Kalpana Gaur, to enlist her in the search for Lata's suitable boy. Mrs. Rupa recognizes that boys from very wealthy families will not do because they would expect too expensive a wedding. The second boy Kalpana suggests is too tall, so Mrs. Rupa rejects him as well. The third Mrs. Rupa believes is too dark saying that she will "not have black grandchildren." By happenstance, Haresh Khanna drops by to visit Kalpana who had been a classmate of his at St. Stephen's. Haresh is still enamored of a Sikh girl whose parents will have no part of him. Haresh is looking for a new job. He meets Mrs. Rupa who believes she has never seen him anywhere before although Haresh is convinced he has seen her. Mrs. Rupa believes Haresh might be a suitable boy and sends for Lata, but Haresh has gone to Kanpur, so they set out for there. Lata is incensed that she had been brought from Calcutta on "false pretenses." Kalpana puts in a good word for Haresh. Kalpana writes to Haresh promoting a match between him and Lata. Haresh's life is one of struggle and hard work, a fact of which Mrs. Rupa approves. Haresh, after meeting Mrs. Rupa and Lata, is candid about his feelings for Simran, but also about the impossibility of any further relationship between them. Lata likes Haresh, but the thought of marrying him is ridiculous to her. Lata compares Kabir, Amit, and Haresh, and Haresh comes in a distant third. Haresh turns out to be an excellent host and takes great care of Mrs. Rupa and Lata.

Mrs. Rupa and Lata visit Mrs. Sahgal, a distant cousin of Mrs. Rupa's. Mr. Sahgal turns out to be a lecherous old man. Seth infers an incestuous relationship with his daughter Kiran, and twice the old man attempts to put his hands on Lata. Lata is in a quandary over being unable to tell anyone about Sahgal's advances. Haresh sees Lata and Mrs. Rupa to the train station and remembers that it was a train station where he had seen them before with Lata wearing a light blue sari.

Haresh has problems at CLFC and sets out to find a job at James Hawley.

Part 9 Analysis

Part 9 brings Haresh and Lata together for the first time. The "suitable boy" theme re-emerges in the negative—what a suitable boy is not. The only really unsavory character in the novel appears in Part 9. Seth touches on the idea of incest and lechery carefully, leaving a great deal to the imagination of the reader. The character of Haresh appears as a hard-working, serious young man whose positive traits outweigh his shortcomings in Mrs. Rupa's eyes. Lata is faced with the prospect of three potential husbands—Kabir, Amit, and Haresh. The theme of romantic love over arranged marriages grows stronger in Part 9.

This section contains 491 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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