A big, intensely involving and evocative Indian novel, perfect for fans of Vikas Swarup's Slumdog Millioniare, with its emotive and, ultimately, redemptive story.
`Will she recall that night? Or is it one of those too horrible times that her brain, taking pity on her soul, will choose to wipe out the memory? When she realizes what happened, she will recall it as the night she did her duty for her family, with no sense of shame or lingering fear. She will be matter-of-fact about it, resigned and, therefore, resilient.'
Mamta, born low-caste and female in rural India against a backdrop of poverty and prejudice, is destined to be some man's property. Her father says that bringing her up is only `tending someone else's garden' until a husband is found for her. Eventually saved from becoming one of the nameless and faceless millions of rejected humanity, Mamt survives but at a terrible cost.
Lyrically told, this powerful story of a woman's struggle to find acceptance compels us to question: Is life random? Or do we have a destiny?
Dipika Rai, was born and raised in New Delhi. She was educated in one of India's most prestigious boarding schools in the foothills of the Himalayas and then went on to do an MBA before going into banking. After a career change, she worked as a journalist for many years, writing for publications including Vogue India and Marie Claire. She now divides her time between India and the island of Bali where she lives with her husband and two children. This is her first novel.