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Venkatraman, Padma.
New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons, 2008
ISBN 0399247467 
Click on the book to read Amazon reviews
The year is 1941, the place, India. Vidya is 15 years old, and unlike other girls her age who are consumed with the idea of impeding nuptials, she dreams only of attending college. Being the outspoken, willful, and adventurous girl she is, she unknowingly pulls her father into a protest march that turns violent where he is brutally attacked and rendered brain damaged. Now Vidya and her close-knit family are forced to move into her paternal uncle's traditional household where the women are expected to be subservient to men and are married off as soon as possible. This shatters Vidya's dreams of attending college. Vidya’s heart is heavy with her sense of responsibility for her father's disability, her changing role as a young woman in a traditional family, and the pressures she now feels to accept an arranged marriage. While taking care of her aunt’s baby as one of her chores, Vidya breaks the rules and sneaks up the stairs into the library that is off limits to women. Not only does she find refuge there, she meets a young man named Raman. She is surprised to discover she is attracted to this young man who treats her as an equal and encourages her to pursue her intellectual interest. Read Climbing the Stairs by Padma Venkatraman, and go with Vidya into an unknown and uncertain future.
Prepared by: Carol Ross for South Carolina Young Adult Book Award Nominees, 2010-2011
SUBJECTS:     Family life -- India -- Fiction.
                        Prejudices -- Fiction.
                        Brain damage -- Fiction.
                        India -- History -- British occupation, 1765-1947 -- Fiction.

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