Amina: The Silent One by Fiza Pathan

Ratings: 4 Stars
Genre: Women’s Fiction
File size: 1864 KB
ISBN-10: 1515148378
ISBN-13: 978-1515148371
Pages: 188

The tale of Amina: The Silent One reads more like a biography than a fiction. It is a powerful story of survival, an exposé on the disregard of women in India, and an account of how one young woman finds her voice even without speaking. It is a story of hope that one day India will stop silencing women and see them as valuable contributors to society.

Born as the third female in a poor Indian family, Amina’s parents visit  Dr. Rahim for advice on giving up the child for adoption. Instead, the mentor tells them that female babies are a blessing and not a burden, and then names the child after his great-grandmother, a poet. From an early age, Amina displayed musical talent, especially with the flute. As a child learning women’s work, she overheard her older sisters talking about being educated and becoming independent. When her sisters and mother are killed in a bombing, Amina’s grandmother and father start to see Amina as a burden and marry her off quickly. In their haste to be rid of her, they do not fully vet the husband to be. Very quickly, Amina finds out that he is a sexual human trafficker. After months of enduring this slavery, Amina uses her musical talent to escape.

Beautifully told, I recommend this book for all who care about social injustice, the effects of ignorance on the plight of women, or who want to learn a bit about women in Indian culture.