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THE FORBIDDEN DAUGHTER
SHOBHAN BANTWAL
ISBN#: 978-0-7582-2030-1
August 2008
Kensington Publishing Corp.
850 Third Ave. 16th floor, New York, NY 10022
Trade Paperback
$14.00
324 Pages
Women’s Fiction
Rating: 4 Cups

Isha Tilak is a young widowed mother in Palgaum, India. Isha grew up in a very privileged and wealthy family, and married a man within the same caste. Her life of being pampered and protected started unraveling the minute she gave birth to a girl.

Dr. Harish Salvi worked diligently for many years to achieve his goals. His father was not a wealthy man, but instilled in him the drive for excellence. Now he is a very respected and successful pediatrician.

Isha was devastated by her husband Nikhil’s death, but to find out he was murdered only increased her anguish. There was little joy in being pregnant with their second daughter when her in-laws made it very clear they wanted only grandsons. His parents began to forcefully insist that Isha have an abortion. Isha knew she had to leave the home of her in-laws for the safety of Priya and her unborn child. Seeking refuge in a nearby convent, Isha soon gives birth to her second daughter Diya. The one bright light in her life is the visits by Dr. Salvi, the pediatrician for the convent’s orphanage. He quickly becomes a confidant and friend. When Isha finally receives her insurance settlement, Harish is with her every step of the way. She knows his feelings for her go much deeper than friendship, but she is not ready to move on from Nikhil. The details of Nikhil’s murder come to light, and once again Isha finds herself and her children in grave danger. If not for Harish, she certainly would have fallen apart, but putting him in danger is not something she is willing to risk. Harish will not be deterred, and tries to make certain that Isha and the girls are safe. They have become an integral part of his life.

The concept that this story is based on is so terrifyingly real, and amazingly practiced in many parts of the world. Ms. Bantwal delivers a vivid and shocking portrayal of female infanticide in India. Her characters are seemingly straight out of a documentary, and their story reads so very true. It is heartbreaking to know that this kind of practice not only exists, but flourishes in many countries. This story is very poignant and beautifully written. I know that anyone who reads this will be moved, and very glad to have experienced Ms. Bantwal’s talent.

Lototy
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance
Reviewer for Karen Find Out About New Books

 

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