Fighting for Tara is a book filled with love, restrictions and odds that women face each day. Hansa is a child bride and a mother at 13, her journey starts when she decides to save her daughter Tara and herself in the process. This book is an emotional journey of a thirteen-year-old girl and the odds she overcomes to save her daughter in a world where they are easily disposable and unwanted. The book brings to light the rampant child marriage, female infanticide, prostitution, and date rape that our girls routinely go through. “What would she tell people for who would believe her?” – Is the greatest doubt Hansa faces. Hansa finds a wonderful family with Anne in the USA yet she still lacks something, searching within and around her. She has friends yet lacks companionship and attachment so fixated she is on Tara. Yet it is Tara who finally frees her.
That Hansa has a thirst for life, learning and uses her meagre education and a lot of spunk to get across the seven seas. Her journey is fraught with dangers and obstacles and she barely holds on with her sheer tenacity. The author has penned the characters with such depth and insight into human emotions and what drives them.
Whether it was the evil, conniving Baldev or the Aunty of the orphanage, in a few words Sunanda has etched them and their vices. The people come to life as I felt the revulsion Hansa felt or the anger Wolfy feels and hatred and disgust Vikram feels. The book’s strong suit is the emotions and feelings it explores and brings forth. Excellent language and flow keep the words flying and the story flowing in Fighting for Tara.
For the kind of topics the book covers, it could have been a heavy read but the author has woven the issues of a young girl with that of an adult girl in the USA. How a woman is quite disposable and replaceable even in the most advanced country in the world. But it is in the USA that Hansa finds the freedom and support to be truly liberated. Shelia, Bela, and Rani Sahiba both bring so much reality and depth to the story. The book made me think, feel and fume yet as it ended it left me with renewed hope and faith. Bela especially was heartwarming until the end.
A feel-good book with a message that has enough twists and surprises to keep you glued to the Fighting for Tara.
DO check out her other book as well – Shadowed Promise