THE RICE MOTHER by Rani Manicka ISBN 0 340 82383 6 published in 2002
The book is set in Malaysia and has at its heart the story of three generations of women who struggle with war, duty, love and lost dreams. Lakshmi is the matriarch who is tricked into a lower marriage than she hoped for, and cannot then accept the humble gentle man she is married to. She struggles with her need to fullfil her own ambitions and pushes her children hard. She hides her beautiful daughter from the invading Japaness, keeps the family feed but creates a cruel household. Her grandaughter falls in love with a handsome ruthless man and though money is now plentiful happiness is still elusive. The book is a rapid torrent of emotions and struggle, intense with the unfairness of war. Lakshmi`s great grandaughter tracks long hidden truths and brings deep buried secrets up to the glare of the sunlight. A book for everyone who likes an interesting story wovern with culture and history.