Set in the early nineteenth century, A Tapestry of Tears is about female infanticide, and the unmaking of tradition. If a woman gives birth to a female child, she must feed her the noxious sap of the akk plant. That is the tradition, parampara. Veeranwali rebels, and fights to save her offspring.
The other stories span a spectrum of emotions and also bring to life the varied culture and social spectrum of India. Woven into this collection is the past and the present, despair and hope, and the triumph of the human spirit.
by Gita V. Reddy
HERE ARE MY THOUGHTS AND REVIEW
This is a compelling and touching collection of 12 short stories of India told by Gita Reddy. The first story just breaks your heart because it is the story of female infanticide, when female children were poisoned at birth. It tells of the emotional turmoil, depression and guilty of these women having to kill their own babies as soon as they were born and their rebellion to change this tradition. Not only did the new mothers have to come to terms with killing their own child, they were blamed for giving birth to daughters by their husbands and his family.
One woman brought hope to them and floods of tears to me. A beautiful idea literally blossomed and it brought a tiny piece of self forgiveness and courage to change this tradition. This is such a powerful, tender and courageous story.
These are stories of some of the most courageous women I have read about. I can’t even begin to imagine how much suffering these women endured to finally be heard on so many issues. The guilt and shame they had to accept from not only outsiders but members of their own families for being born with a disability. A child thinking the reason she couldn’t keep pace with her mother when they were out was because she was smaller, to finally realise it was because her mother didn’t want to be seen with her. Each story just touches your heart and takes your breath.
I can’t even begin to think of the mental torture that some of these women went through on a daily basis. What stands out in the story is how strong they were to endure these terrible things. They knew that once they began to rebel that they would be going home to beatings, not just from their husbands but from their mother-in-laws too. This is a beautifully written book that holds nothing back. Perfect for those 15 minute coffee breaks, before bed, or like me to read in one session, I just had to go from one story straight to the next. Beautifully written.
HERE IS A LITTLE ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Gita V.Reddy is a writer of fiction for children and adults. She enjoys thinking up tales of different genres. She has written women’s fiction, historical fiction, mysteries, adventure, fantasy, science fiction, and even an animal tale for children. Ms Reddy was born in India, is a post graduate in Mathematics, worked in a bank for twenty-six years, is married to a physics professor, has a son doing research in neuro-electronics, and loves literature. Yes, her life is as mixed up as the multiple genres she writes. She enjoys trying her hand at new things and spending time with her family, and LOVES walking in the rain.