New York : HarperCollins,
IL 3-6, RL 4.1
India, parents hope to make good marriages for their daughters. Young Koly's
parents matched her to Hari, the son of the Mehta family. The marriage
was fraudulent, for Hari was desperately ill with consumption, and his
family had wanted Koly's dowry to make a pilgrimage to the holy city of
Varanasi in hopes that the sacred waters of the Ganges River would improve
Hari's health. On arriving at the sacred city, Hari's consumption worsened
and he dies. Koly becomes a widow who is just thirteen-years-old, in service
to her spiteful mother-in-law. Eventually, Koly's mother-in-law abandons
her at the temple in the holy city of Vrindavan. Frightened and alone,
Koly discovers that Vrindavan is a city of thousands of widows, many who
have been abandoned, who spend their days chanting in the temples to be
the monks for food. Will Koly give in? Can she find some kind of employment,
not an easy thing for a single woman in traditional Indian society? To
find out read this culturally enlightening tale of universal emotions,
and learn how this spirited young woman experiences her world. (Jeannie
Young Reader's Choice Awards)
Courage -- Fiction.
India -- Fiction.
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