Book Review: The Mother I Never Knew

The Mother I Never Knew is a book comprising of two novellas written by the acclaimed Indian author Sudha Murty. The two novellas explore the quests of two different men- for their biological mothers they never knew.

The first novella is about Venkatesh, a bank manager who is transferred to Hubli. His family includes his ambitious wife, an equally ambitious son and a loving daughter who is his only solace. He stumbles upon his look alike one day and curiosity makes him probe further. His search made him discover his father’s hidden past which includes an abandoned wife and child. His stepmother is a victim of dire injustice and lives in abject poverty. Venkatesh wants to make amends for the extreme hardships that his stepmother has gone through but is unsure if he will be able to repay his father’s debt.

The second novella tells the story of Mukesh, a young man of rich inheritance working in London. On his father’s death, he is shocked by the chance revelation that he is actually adopted. Confused and shocked, he sets out to search for his biological mother but his search led him to even more shocking discoveries. He is torn between his loyalties to his biological mother and towards the mother who raised him. Meeting his biological mother finally puts all his confusion to rest.

The stories are heart touching. However I liked the first one better than the second one which I felt was quite dramatic. The second story was more of a Bollywood movie style with some predictable twists which could have been avoided. Both the stories are beautifully written in a simple language and are overflowing with emotions. The book was fast paced and engaging. It makes for an easy, light hearted read. You will enjoy reading it for its simplicity and emphasis on values.

© 2017 Shaloo Walia All rights reserved

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