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Secret Daughter: A Novel Paperback – April 5, 2011
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Top Customer Reviews
Asha (Hope) was secretly named Usha (Dawn) by her birth mother, Kavita, and is adopted from an Indian orphanage by a married American couple when she is just a year old. Kavita, already grieving the infanticide of a previous daughter in a society that prefers male infants, had made the long journey to Shanti to deliver her 3-day-old child there for safety so that her husband and his family would not also destroy this second unwanted female child. She left her daughter with only a thin silver bracelet and a wish that Asha be allowed to live, grow up, and perhaps have a better life.
Somer and Krishnan Thakkar, both doctors -- she's a pediatrician and he's a neurosurgeon -- have been unable to have a child. He is Indian and came to America to attend medical school and stayed for a better life. She married him without fully appreciating the Indian heritage and his connection to the land of his birth and to the family and traditions he left behind there. When they adopt Asha and bring her back to America to raise, little do they realize that their new beloved daughter will one day defy her parents and seek to restore their connection to their Indian relatives despite the fact that she may hurt them when she begins to trace her birth parents to find out who she is and why they gave her up for adoption.Read more ›
Kavita Merchant, having had her first child heartlessly ripped away from her and simply "disposed of" in the manner of an unwanted chattel, defies her family, her husband and her culture's social mores to spirit her second child, Usha, into an orphanage. All that Kavita can bequeath to her daughter is a small silver bangle and life itself. Separated by two oceans, thousands of miles and an entire universe of cultural differences, Somer and Krishnan Thakkar, both successful doctors in North America are struggling with Somer's inability to conceive and carry a baby to full term. All attempts at producing their own child having failed, they reluctantly decide, in homage to Krishnan's ethnicity and his family, to adopt an Indian child from an orphanage in Mumbai. SECRET DAUGHTER is the story of two families and the life of the daughter who was given the gift of a chance at a life that nobody but her mother wanted her to have.
Although Gowda's concerns and dismay over the Indian culture's preferential treatment for sons is clear enough, she does not (thankfully) indulge in heavy-handed proselytizing or hand-wringing.Read more ›
(What comes below talks about more of the plot than you may want to know if you plan to read the book.)
It is not clear what attracts Somer and Krishnan to each other in the first place; perhaps Somer is drawn in by the exotic, foreign Krishnan, so different than anything else in her otherwise plain vanilla life. Somer has little if any interest in Krishnan's culture, so unless Krishnan is trying to escape all memories of India (and there is nothing that indicates this), it is hard to see what attracts him to Somer (yes she is bright and attractive, but can someone really love another person who has no interest in his native land/culture?).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a wonderful story of conflicting worlds and emotions. I enjoyed the voices of the different characters and the glimpse into life in India. Read morePublished 3 days ago by Sandy
I bought Secret Daughter expecting to get a bowl of spicy, rich curry in literary form. What I got instead was, well, what one of Asha's cousins calls the "tourist version"... Read morePublished 3 days ago by Stephanie McCall
Adoption is so complicated and this novel does such a good job of expressing and sorting and understanding. I learned and felt so much love.Published 4 days ago by Amazon Customer
I was expecting a lot from this book since i read few preview pages on Kindle. I felt there were a lot of secrets or some really intriguing story about this girl who was a secret... Read morePublished 4 days ago by Amazon Customer
Once you start reading this book, you wouldn't want to put it down. Very interesting. Very well written and close to reality!Published 15 days ago by Amazon Customer
Awesome read! The author definitely takes the reader through a wave of emotions. This book was very fast paced and the author's writing style gave me a great visual of the... Read morePublished 18 days ago by MAYA'S BOOKS N THINGS
We picked this book for our book club and although I had never heard of the book or the author, I was pleasantly surprised. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Susan Floss
I really enjoyed this book. It was very interesting reading about the Indian culture, and I loved how it switched characters so flawlessly.Published 1 month ago by Bridget
very well written story which also introduces cultural education regarding India which is also interestingPublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer