Monday 28 June 2021

Book Review: Good Indian Daughter by Ruhi Lee

Good Indian Daughter
Ruhi Lee 
How I found freedom in being a disappointment

Publisher: Affirm Press
Publication date: 25th May 2021
Genre: Memoir
Pages: 336
RRP: $32.99AUD
Format read: Paperback
Source: Better Reading Preview
About the book
Long before Ruhi fell pregnant, she knew she was never going to be the ‘good Indian daughter’ her parents demanded. But when the discovery that she is having a girl sends her into a slump of disappointment, it becomes clear she’s getting weighed down by emotional baggage that needs to be unpacked, quickly.

So Ruhi sets herself a mission to deal with the potholes in her past before her baby is born. Delving into her youth in suburban Melbourne, she draws a heartrending yet often hilarious picture of a family in crisis, struggling to connect across generational, cultural and personal divides.

Sifting through her own shattered self-esteem, Ruhi confronts the abuse threaded through her childhood. How can she hold on to the family and culture she has known and loved her whole life, when they are the reason for her scars?
My review

Ruhi Lee writes with candour and humour. Her memoir, written as she awaits the birth of her first child, is a journey into a life lived with an underlying guilt for not being the daughter her parents had envisaged.

Good Indian Daughter is an engaging read. with Ruhi Lee’s relaxed style of writing I found myself fully immersed in her story. Many areas of Ruhi’s story will resonate with readers, even those not of Indian descent.

Ruhi Lee is a strong voice for girls and women everywhere who are being subjugated and unheard. She speaks openly on bullying, body image problems, religion, misguided advice, depression, anxiety, racism and abuse.

Reading Ruhi’s story made me sad, angry and overwhelmed but Ruhi’s humour throughout also gave me a few laughs which lightened, although didn’t lessen, the overall feel of the book.

Good Indian Daughter is a brave and open story of shedding the guilt and living your own life. 

 4 / 5 stars    ⭐⭐⭐⭐


About the author 
Ruhi Lee's articles, poetry and book reviews have been featured in The Guardian, ABC Life, SBS Voices, South Asian Today and The Big Issue among other publications. In 2019, she was a recipient of the Neilma Sidney Literary Travel Fund and her manuscript was shortlisted for the Penguin Random House Write It Fellowship. In 2020, she was one of the commissioned writers for the Multicultural Arts Victoria's Shelter program. Good Indian Daughter is her first memoir. She lives in Victoria. 

Challenges entered:  Australian Women Writers Challenge #AWW2021

                                 Aussie Author Challenge #AussieAuthor21
                                 Non Fiction Challenge #2021ReadNonFic 



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