Author: Patricia McCormick
In Sold, a National Book Award Finalist 2006, Patricia renders a heart wrenching tale about a 13 year old Nepali girl, Lakshmi sold into sexual slavery in India. Lakshmi lives with her poor family in a hut perched on a mountain in Nepal overlooking the Himalayan meadows. When a heavy monsoon washes away all the rice crops and their hopes, Lakshmi is forced by her stepfather to leave the family and take up work. Sold to a glamorous wealthy-looking woman Bimla for a meagre 800 Rupees, Lakshmi undertakes a long and tiring journey from Nepal to India, with a gleaming hope that she would come home one day to Ama with her hard earned wages. If only she knew what awaits her at the "Happiness House", the brothel place in India. Appalled by the truth that she was sold to prostitution and unable to resist the tyrannical rule of Mumtaz,the pimp, Lakshmi sobs her heart out and feels like she is already buried alive. She was violated, beaten and starved and trapped there to pay off her debts. Will Lakshmi escape from this dreadful place? Written with a haunting poignancy, it evoked profound sadness in me as I read along. It was unfathomable to think of the hardship these women endure in order to survive and as Ama says in this novel perhaps "Simply to endure is to triumph"... A Must Read!!
My Rating: 5/5