The Dowry Bride

Author: Shobhan Bantwal

Publisher: Kensington

Release Date: August 28, 2007

Blue Ribbon Rating: 4

Format: PRINT

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Megha's marriage was arranged by her parents, and although she would not have chosen the man that is now her husband, she has tried to be a dutiful wife. One night she overhears a conversation between her mother-in-law and her husband. Her father has been unable to pay her dowry. They plan to kill her so that her husband will be free to remarry. Fearing for her very life, she runs away. The only person that may be able to help her is Kiran. He is the nephew of her mother-in-law, but he has always shown her kindness.


Kiran is aware of his aunt's ability to be cruel and he believes Megha's story. He offers to hide her from their family, placing himself at risk. Kiran has always been attracted to Megha's beauty and kindness. He finds himself fighting the forbidden passion that is growing between them.


In her debut novel, Shobhan Bantwal has written a fascinating story that mixes traditional Indian Culture with controversial and contemporary ideals. This is a story about a beautiful young woman trapped in an unhappy arranged marriage and something that is not spoken of, the burning deaths of dowry brides. Megha finds herself fighting a forbidden love and the guilt of breaking traditions in this beautifully written and somewhat frightening tale, THE DOWRY BRIDE.


An evil person filled with jealousy and greed wants Megha dead. Her life becomes a living nightmare as she finds herself running from danger. This begins her rollercoaster of emotions from fear of danger to her fight to survive. Megha's belief in tradition is so strong, that many of the things she must do to survive makes her feel guilty. One of the strongest things causing her guilt is the risk that Kiran takes by helping her. Even when Kiran and Megha begin to realize the passion between them is mutual, they feel guilty because she is married. This takes away from the few moments of joy they share. The strongest emotion that I found throughout though, was anger, anger that she was made to feel guilty for trying to stay alive and that something like this could actually happen.


With the constant suspense that Megha could be discovered, I was drawn into the story and anxiously waited to see how the situation would finally be handled. I could only hope that Kiran and Megha would eventually find happiness. Shoban Bantwal has written a passionate suspense-filled story of one woman and her fight to survive another's evil greed and jealousy. The Dowry Bride is a fascinating look into an exotic culture and a story that I recommended everyone.


By Romance Junkies Reviewer: Anita

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