My parents are the kind of people who talk politics but never mention gay marriage, who watch the news but change the channel at the mention of gayness. Shame, dishonor, embarrassment. Five hundred Sri Lankan Tamil families in the greater Boston area, and not one of them has a gay kid…
Lakshmi, called Lucky, is an unemployed programmer. She likes to dance, to have a drink or two, and she does art on commission. Fifty bucks gets you high-resolution digital images of anything you want (Orcs, mermaids, fan couples in sexy boudoir scenes) and a nice frameable print. Lucky’s husband, Krishna, is an editor for a greeting card company. Both are secretly gay. They present their conservative Sri Lankan-American families with a heterosexual front, while each one secretly dates on the side. When Lucky’s grandmother has a nasty fall, Lucky returns to her mother’s home to act as caretaker and unexpectedly reconnects with her childhood best friend and first lover, Nisha. Nisha has agreed to an arranged marriage with a man she doesn’t know… but she wants to hook up with Lucky again.
Lucky wants to save Nisha from entering a marriage based on a lie—but does Nisha really want to be saved? And what does Lucky want, anyway? It doesn’t always get better. To live openly means that Lucky would lose most of the community she was born into—a community she loves, an irreplaceable home. As Lucky—an outsider no matter what choices she makes—is pushed to the breaking point, MARRIAGE OF A THOUSAND LIES offers a moving exploration of friendship, family, and love, shot through with humor and loss.
SJ Sindu‘s writing has appeared in Brevity, The Normal School, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Lambda Literary Review, VIDA, Black Girl Dangerous, and elsewhere. Her hybrid fiction and nonfiction chapbook, I Once Met You But You Were Dead, was the winner of the Split Lip Turnbuckle Chapbook Contest, and is forthcoming in early 2017. She is currently a PhD candidate at Florida State University.