By Richa Pokhrel/@nepalichoriblog
The first book I have read this year was Good Girls Marry Doctors. It’s an anthology of stories from South Asian women. The theme is obedience and rebellion. There are 26 stories. It’s easy to read the book in one day. Each story is different and each women has their own take on what it means to be obedient and rebellious. I found the book to be about survival, strength, and courage. It gave me comfort in knowing that I am not alone in this.
Since the US election, I have been in a gloomy state, not unlike many others. For the past few weeks I haven’t wanted to leave my house for many reasons, mostly the lack of optimism about the state of the country and the world. However, after reading this book, I have found some courage to not let fear take over my life. I don’t think I have a favorite story, all of them were good. Some were harder to read than others. The story that was hardest for me to read was “Amma” by Hema Sarang-Sieminski. My childhood was completely different from hers, but I cried so much when I read this. There are a lot of hard elements to the story and I don’t want to give them away, but it has to do with abuse. I immediately googled her after finishing her story and I was glad to know that she is okay and happy. I will warn you that there will be tears, tears of pain, tears of sadness, but also tears of joy. The book is a bag of mixed emotions.
One thing I noticed about the book is that there aren’t any Nepali or Bhutanese submissions. Afghanistan and the Maldives are part of South Asia too. I am pretty sure India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka are represented. Also something else that I noticed was that many of the women grew up in households with doctors, engineers, professors, mostly middle class households. I wasn’t sure if there were women who grew up in lower income households. I wish there was more of that too. These are not criticisms of the book because I obviously loved it. They are just things I noticed. I highly recommend this book to you.
Growing up as a Nepali woman/South Asian woman, we have to deal with a lot of sh*t. I’m sorry to curse, but it’s true. We survive though, we do it with dignity and courage. No matter what kind of lifestyle each of us Nepali woman lives, we’ve all had hard times. We all obey and rebel in our own ways. I hope you see Nepali Chhori as a place to be yourself, to speak your mind, and not be afraid to share. I found the book to be very similar to what we are trying to achieve here.
This year, we are adding book reviews as a new addition to this site. We would like to review books written by South Asian women. Please share books in both Nepali and English. Unfortunately, I can’t read Nepali, but others can. HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE! Stay strong!