The Stolen Girl
About the Book:
‘Your mother has been arrested. She stole you.’
For as long as thirteen-year-old Diya can remember, it’s always been just her and her mum, Vani. Despite never staying in one place long enough to call it home, with her mother by her side, Diya has never needed anything else.
Then, in an instant, Diya’s fragile world is shattered. Her mother is arrested, accused of abducting Diya when she was a baby…
Vani has spent a lifetime looking over her shoulder, determined to make the best possible life for her daughter. Now she must fight for her child, re-opening the door to her own childhood in India and the woman who was once as close to her as a sister.
Told through the eyes of Diya, Vani and Aarti, this is a heart-breaking story of friendship and betrayal, love and motherhood, which asks the question; how far would you go to protect your only child?
The story opens with Diya and Vani in England. Diya is a 13 year old schoolgirl; Vani works in Indian restaurants. I say restaurants because she never stays long in one place. One day when told to get ready to move again, Diya storms out; she had just made her first friend ever and she doesn't want to leave this place. When she comes back, she sees the authorities arresting her mother for stealing her from her real mother. Her real mother, she is told, is waiting for her at a hotel. She can either go there or to foster care. Diya chooses foster care and is furious at the woman who tried to separate her from her mum. The story is a combination of the events of the present day, told mostly by Diya, and the events of the past, told through the recollections of Vani and Aarti. We meet a girl who had nothing--but at least knew she had been loved and another girl who had everything but love. We see how power and influence can be used for good and for bad. We see love prevail.
I'd like to thank the publisher for making a review copy available via NetGalley. Grade: B.