The Golden Son (Hardcover)
William Morrow, 9780062391452, 408pp.
Publication Date: January 26, 2016
The New York Times and #1 internationally bestselling author of Secret Daughter returns with an unforgettable story of family, responsibility, love, honor, tradition, and identity, in which two childhood friends—a young doctor and a newly married bride—must balance the expectations of their culture and their families with the desires of their own hearts.
The first of his family to go to college, Anil Patel, the golden son, carries the weight of tradition and his family’s expectations when he leaves his tiny Indian village to begin a medical residency in Dallas, Texas, at one of the busiest and most competitive hospitals in America. When his father dies, Anil becomes the de facto head of the Patel household and inherits the mantle of arbiter for all of the village’s disputes. But he is uneasy with the custom, uncertain that he has the wisdom and courage demonstrated by his father and grandfather. His doubts are compounded by the difficulties he discovers in adjusting to a new culture and a new job, challenges that will shake his confidence in himself and his abilities.
Back home in India, Anil’s closest childhood friend, Leena, struggles to adapt to her demanding new husband and relatives. Arranged by her parents, the marriage shatters Leena’s romantic hopes, and eventually forces her to make a desperate choice that will hold drastic repercussions for herself and her family. Though Anil and Leena struggle to come to terms with their identities thousands of miles apart, their lives eventually intersect once more—changing them both and the people they love forever.
Tender and bittersweet, The Golden Son illuminates the ambivalence of people caught between past and present, tradition and modernity, duty and choice; the push and pull of living in two cultures, and the painful decisions we must make to find our true selves.
About the Author
Shilpi Somaya Gowda was born and raised in Toronto, Canada. She holds an MBA from Stanford University, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she was a Morehead-Cain scholar. She lives in California with her husband and children.
Praise For The Golden Son: A Novel…
— Heidi Durrow, New York Times-bestselling author of The Girl Who Fell From the Sky
“THE GOLDEN SON triumphs because of its many pleasures and complications: romantic intrigues, family vendettas, unexpected tragedies and criminal secrets harbored by characters in both India and America. This satisfying immersion in two complicated cultures offers no easy resolutions.”
— Washington Post
“Gowda is a gifted storyteller, bringing together various related story strands into a fully integrated whole.”
— Vancouver Sun
“From a poor village in India to the journey of a boy who escapes to become a brilliant and sensible doctor at a high-tech medical center in Dallas, Shilpi Somaya Gowda’s sweeping love story is meticulous in its detail, heartfelt--and a great read.”
— Samuel Shem, M.D., author of The House of God and At the Heart of the Universe
“Shilpi Somaya Gowda paints an illuminating portrait of a young Indian man who must learn to reconcile his career ambitions in America with the traditional values and expectations of his family in India. Compellingly written, THE GOLDEN SON will stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page. ”
— Vanessa Diffenbaugh, New York Times-bestselling author of The Language of Flowers
“Gowda has the writerly chops when it comes to pace and plot...The novel’s denouement manages to subvert expectations, while still fulfilling the fable’s responsibility to convey a useful, resonant truth.”
— Toronto Star