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Rainbows in the Eyes, by Louisa Kamal

A year has passed since Louisa Kamal, visiting her beloved Nepal in January 2020, was caught up in the unthinkable turmoil of both the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and a love affair with a younger man.

After four painful and lonely months back in Thailand, Louisa files for divorce to extricate herself from an emotionally abusive marriage. She then returns to Kathmandu to await the case coming into court. With a daring that surprises even herself, she and Arjun have a marriage blessing to solemnise their commitment to each other, only for history to repeat itself: two days later, another lockdown is imposed on Nepal.

This time, their COVID cocoon is neither as soft nor as idyllic as before. Arjun frets at the perceived lack of freedom in their relationship and economic constraints, while Louisa struggles to balance her need to create her own niche in Nepali society with her love for Arjun.

Rainbows in the Eyes, a sequel to the much-acclaimed A Rainbow of Chaos, deserves a place on the bookshelves of discerning readers who appreciate a skillfully crafted book replete with disarming honesty, as well as in the backpacks of travelers captivated by the Himalayan region.

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