Literary Fiction

Daughters Inherit Silence

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This book will launch on Mar 21, 2021. Currently, only those with the link can see it. 🔒

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Daughters inherit silence is such a fantastic book, that I can think of only word to describe it – Unputdownable!

Daughters inherit silence is such a fantastic book, that I can think of only word to describe it–Unputdownable! Though this is the first time I am reading this author’s work, she has done such a wonderful job that I could visualize every character, the scenes and the setting. I did not feel as if I was reading a book, but I felt as if I had become a part of the book.  

This is not just the story of Jaya, but of countless other women brought up to inherit silence. It’s not just a narration of social stigma and despair, it is a story of second chance. It’s a positively satisfying read.

 

In many cultures across the world, girls are given secondary treatment. A female is seen as a lesser being. A son is preferred over a daughter. As a mother of two daughters, I’ve experienced it often. The sly glances, the pitiful expression, and the insensitive questioning - ‘oh you don’t have a son?’ The partial treatment, the condescending attitude stems from the deep-rooted patriarchy we have been conditioned to, more often becoming inanimate puppets in our own life stories. Similar is the story of Jaya set in a village Lingampally in South India.

 

Jaya, an engineer is an intelligent, kind and considerate woman. I couldn’t help but admire the way the author has portrayed her character. Her struggles, confusions, and desires are expressed beautifully.

 

A young widow, and a mother to a ten-year-old daughter (Ananta) she is leading a fairly independent life–managing her computer business, driving a 4-wheeler, and even supporting her in laws financially. And yet, she is forced to live an obscure life as per society’s diktats. Being judged by one and all, every moment of her life being open to scrutiny. Conditioned to lead a life in silence, she fears the silence will be her daughter’s inheritance as well.

 

The only support is her elder brother Madhav, who stands by her under all circumstances. Madhav and Jaya’s bond is touching and heart-warming. Her relationship with her mother is toxic and non-existent. It’s only towards the end, the author reveals the reason behind it.

 

Small minds, small thoughts–this proverb describes the villagers of Lingampally perfectly, where even the smallest incident gets blown out of proportion. Kovid is an American Indian doctor visiting his parents - Jaya’s neighbors. He is a widower; whose daughter Nina is the same age as Ananta. A friendship strikes between the children, and their parents. Finally, Jaya has a friend with whom she can talk freely, and be herself. But unfortunately, their friendship sends the gossip mills working, and they find themselves in a difficult situation.

 

The story then proceeds with the way Jaya and Kovid handle the situation, the decisions they make and the way it impacts not only them but Ananta and Nini too.

 

The story has some other well-etched and memorable characters–Ramu, the vegetable vendor; the neighbors Ramani, Pavani, Prakash and Jeff Alcosta. Even Jaya’s self-centered parents-in-law are described in such a realistic manner, I felt like punching the old man!  The story has a wonderful arc, realistic characters, and extra-ordinary narration. The cultural spin adds a magical touch to the story, making it excellently engaging. 


A riveting book from the very first word. 

Reviewed by

A published author in many anthologies and online platforms, I am fond of reading and writing. I love reading books and try my level best at sharing honest and unbiased reviews.

The Old Man

About the author

Rasana Atreya’s debut novel "Tell A Thousand Lies" was shortlisted for the UK-based Tibor Jones South Asia Prize (2012). She's one of India’s self-publishing pioneers. Rasana is now working on her series, Tales From The Deccan Plateau. These are standalone books which may be read in any order. view profile

Published on February 08, 2021

80000 words

Genre: Literary Fiction

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