by Patricia McCormick
He introduces her to a glamorous stranger who tells her she will find her a job as a maid in the city. glad to help, Lakshmi journeys to India only to learn the unthinkable truth: she has been sold into prostitution.
An old woman named Mumtaz rules the brothel with cruelty and cunning. She tells Lakshmi that she is trapped there until she can pay off her family's debt -- then cheats Lakshmi of her meager earnings so that she can never leave.
Gradually, Lakshmi forms friendships that enable her to survive in this terrifying new world. Then the day comes when she must make a decision -- will she risk everything for a chance to reclaim her life?
I am not exaggerating when I say that this is one of the best books I have ever read. This book is definitely not a light read, but it is definitely going to be stuck in my heart and my head for a very long time.
I started it Friday morning and didn't stop reading until I closed the final page. I could not put it down for anything. And when I was done, I just stared at the last page like I was waiting for more to magically appear. I'm aching to know what happened to everyone after that ending.
All the characters were beautifully rounded, even those that were evil beyond compare. Besides Lakshmi, I was particularly fond of Monica, Harish, and the tea boy. I loved that how even though her world was dark, there were still those tiny sparks of kindness.
The writing itself is beautiful and lyrical and fit the book perfectly.
Overall: 10/10 I highly recommend this book to everyone.