The Windfall


The book revolves around a number of different families and individuals; and how their lives changed when Mr Jha acquires newly attained wealth, and decides to move his family into a much bigger house in a fancier neighborhood.

The book is written through point of view of 6 individuals.


Anil Kumar Jha has worked hard and is ready to live well. After thirty years in a modest flat, he and his family are moving to Gurgaon, one of Delhi’s richest areas. But his wife, Bindu, is heartbroken about leaving their neighbours, and doesn’t want to wear designer saris or understand interior decoration. Meanwhile their son, Rupak, is failing business school in the US – and secretly dating an American girl.

Once installed in their mansion, the Jhas are soon drawn into a feverish game of one-upmanship with their new neighbours, the Chopras, as each couple seeks to outdo the other with increasingly lavish displays of wealth. As an imitation Sistene Chapel is pitted against a crystal-encrusted sofa, Bindu wonders where it will all end.


For past 30 years Mr and Mrs Jha’s life has been revolving around Mayur Palli, Gossiping Neighbors, stale marriages and dramas of stolen yoga pants. But then after a successful business venture; luck strikes Mr Jha and an enormous amount of money comes his way, he decides to move his family to a fancier neighborhood.

The first part of the book starts with with Mr, Mrs Jha and Rupak (their son) giving a farewell party to their friends and life in east delhi and diamond studed sofas from Japan . Second part is all about Gurgaon, and Rupak ( Mr Jha’s son )  living in Upstate New York , who is failing his MBA and is torn between two women ( one a American girl and another a girl form Delhi). And the competition between Mr Jha and Mr Chopra, jealousy. Mrs. Ray (Mrs Jha’s old neighbor) and Mr Upen Chopra (Mr Chopra’s elder brother) falling in love
And the closing chapters connecting these people and their lives is straight out of a bollywood movie!

My point of view

This book is a very light fun read , it has  romance , comedy, and a bit of culture. It has an important lesson on jealousy and competition between neighbors.

The story is peppered with pleasing laugh out loud details which kept me glued to the book, basu’s prose is refined, and the story is lucid.

About the author

Diksha Basu is a writer and occasional actor.

Originally from New Delhi, India, she holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University and now divides her time between New York City and Mumbai