A searing, electrifying debut novel set in India and America about the extraordinary bond between two girls driven apart by circumstances but relentless in their search for one another.
'A treat for Ferrante fans, exploring the bonds of friendship and how female ambition beats against the strictures of poverty and patriarchal societies'
An electrifying debut novel - the story of the unbreakable bond between two girls driven apart, and their journeys across continents to find each other again.
Poornima and Savitha, born in poverty, have known little kindness in their lives until they meet as teenagers. When an act of devastating cruelty drives Savitha away, Poornima leaves behind everything she has ever known to find her friend.
Alternating between the girls' perspectives as they face apparently insurmountable obstacles on their travels through the darkest corners of India's underworld and across an ocean, Girls Burn Brighter introduces two heroines who refuse to lose the hope that burns within.
'Girls Burn Brighter by Shobha Rao blew my heart up. Heart-shards everywhere. I am in awe of the warmth and humanity in this book, even as it explores some incredibly dark places. I'm going to be thinking about Girls Burn Brighter for a while, and you're going to be hearing a lot about it'
A searing portrait of what feminism looks like in much of the world - Vogue
Shobha Rao writes cleanly and eloquently about women who, without their brightness, might have been left to die in their beds. She writes them into life, into existence, into the light of day - Los Angeles Times
Rao evokes the landscape of poverty with great skill . . . this is a timely portrayal of human traffi cking, cultural misogyny and the battles still fought every day by millions of women worldwide - Observer
Shobha Rao moved from India to the USA at the age of seven. She won the 2014 Katherine Anne Porter Prize for Fiction and is the recipient of the Elizabeth George Foundation fellowship. Her work has been published in numerous literary journals, including Tincture, PMS (poemmemoirstory), Nimrod and Water Stone Review. She lives in San Francisco.