BookBrowse Reviews Sold by Patricia McCormick

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Sold by Patricia McCormick
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Sep 2006, 272 pages
    Paperback:
    Apr 2008, 272 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
BookBrowse Review Team

Buy This Book

About this Book

Reviews

BookBrowse:


A vivid window into a harsh and cruel world. For teens and adults

Sold is a devastating little book written in free verse. Although written for teenage readers, it is one of those books that can and should cross-over into the adult market. McCormick says that she wrote it as a series of vignettes because, initially, it was too daunting for her to imagine being able to tell Lakshmi's entire story. She also felt that the vignettes were the right way to tell a story that is inherently so fractured - if not shattering.

I cannot recommend it highly enough, here is a brief excerpt, with more online:

I no longer notice the smell of the indoor privy.
And I long ago stopped feeling the blows of Mumtaz's strap.

But today when I buried my face in my bundle of clothes, from home, there was no hearth smoke in the folds of my skirt, no crisp Himalayan night air in my shawl.

I have been frugal with myself, not daring to unwrap the bundle more than once a day, for fear that it would lose its magic.

But today, it became just a rag skirt and a tattered shawl.



About the author:
Patricia McCormick is a journalist and writer. Her first novel for teens was Cut, about a young woman who self-injures herself. This was followed by My Brother's Keeper in 2005, about a boy struggling with his brother's addiction; and Sold in 2006. She lives in New York with two children, a husband and two cats.

She says that she was inspired to write Sold about five years ago following a chance meeting with a photographer who was working undercover to document the presence of young girls in brothels overseas. She knew immediately that she wanted to tell this heartbreaking story from the point of view of one individual girl.

She feels that young adults want to know what's happening to their peers on the other side of the world, but that media accounts, by their very nature, cannot usually go beyond the surface. In order to research Sold she spent a month in India and Nepal tracing Lakshmi's steps - going from a poor, isolated village in the foothills of the Himalayas all the way to the teeming red-light district of Calcutta. She interviewed women in the red-light district, girls who had been rescued, and a man who had sold his girlfriend in exchange for a motorcycle. She says that it helped that she was a foreigner in the busy streets of Kathmandu and Calcutta, because she was "as bewildered and awestruck by these places as Lakshmi is in the novel."

At first she felt inadequate to the task of doing justice to the stories the women had entrusted to her. But when she thought about the young girls who might be recruited to take their places as the women became ill or died, she felt an urgency to begin to write.

This review was originally published in October 2006, and has been updated for the April 2008 paperback release. Click here to go to this issue.



This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access become a member today.
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: New People
    New People
    by Danzy Senna
    Danzy Senna has spent virtually her entire writing career exploring the complicated intersections of...
  • Book Jacket: Hunger
    Hunger
    by Roxane Gay
    In this penetrating and fearless memoir, author Roxane Gay discusses her battle with body acceptance...
  • Book Jacket: The Black Witch
    The Black Witch
    by Laurie Forest
    In The Black Witch, Laurie Forest introduces her readers to an immersive fantasy world where ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
Cruel Beautiful World by Caroline Leavitt

Cruel Beautiful World examines the intricate, infinitesimal distance between seduction and love, loyalty and duty.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Happiness
    by Heather Harpham

    A love story that follows a one-of-a-kind family through twists of fate that require nearly unimaginable choices.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Hame

Hame by Annalena McAfee

A rich, sultry novel about a young American fleeing a crumbling marriage for a remote Scottish island.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

A F Out O W

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.