One of my all time favourite books has been ‘Sister of my heart’ by Chitra Bannerjee. It’s heartening to know that it wasn’t a one-off gem by an Indian author. ‘Secret Daughter’, by Shilpi Somaya Gowda is written with a similar empathy and understanding of human relations. I personally despise books that use the English language as a baton to tom tom in front of the reader convincing him/her of not being intellectual enough to appreciate it. Thus, I could never really find myself singing praises of Salman Rushdie and the likes (oh no, how uncool am I??). What attracts me to a writer is the ability to communicate emotions in a manner that they find their way straight to the heart of the reader.
Secret Daughter is the story of a girl born in a village in Maharashtra. To save the life of her unwanted girl child, her mother secretly gives her up for adoption where she is taken in by an Indian/American couple. The story traces the lives of the 2 mothers and this secret daughter that ties them. Not only does it delve deep into the psyche of an adopted child, it also intermingles that with the yearning of a person trying to find roots when they were growing right under her feet.
Secret Daughter is a tale that touches the heart. It is beautifully crafted, wonderfully narrated and begs to be read. Get yourself a copy.
Rating: 4 on 5