Art & CultureArt/Culture/Literature

Book Review : Womb Of Fire Flies by Ambika Barman

‘Womb of Fireflies’, talks about different versions of love. Love from Mother to child, two lovers separated by communities and care of little brother from the elder one.

Questions numerous stereotypical believes. Can mother always love her child more than herself? Isn’t geographical history distorted? Where’s the historical significance of those little islands lost? Britishers named these little islands on the Sundarbans. Who stayed there before invasion? Can you cut your ancestor roots even if you dislocate your identity?

Author Ambika Barman

Authored by Ambika Barman is a book based on social evil, forced girl child marriage in rural places. And, long-term consequences of it. I have been waiting for a book on such theme because I personally believe if we want to see a better change in society, we have to first impart knowledge to build a path towards social and cultural reforms. This is an emotional saga well narrated by the author focusing on a very sensitive subject but important.

The book spins through four main characters mainly Hari and his wife Pranati, Alok and his wife Snehalatha. The first circle of the story which revolves around Hari and Pranati talks about the life in Sundarbans, issues such as child marriages, adolescent pregnancy, premature delivery and many other intriguing life problems of young girls of that period. Pranati’s character is an exemplary which defines the actual situation and mentality of the survivor of this evil. The story carefully unfolds the mentality of a girl child whose labored with responsibilities of being a wife at 9, a mother at 14. A character that can be realized sensually and her pain felt in words. On the other hand, Alok is an unruly child.

Author has cited the lives of people in Sundarbans and narrated it beautifully through this book. As you read the book you understand about the basic norms and practices of child marriage which is unique and clearly shows the real research by the author to bring the story. Author has tried to express the feelings of the people of Sundarbans through her words, their problems, unawareness and lack of communication to the other parts of the country.

Story is visually impactful. Metaphorical language makes it more professional and an interesting book. This book not only portray the lives of couple bonded into child marriage story but also talks about the later effects which is saddening. There’s a transition in the story which connects the character with their past to present. Being a debut book, the concept and the way of crafting the plot and characters is impressive. Sharp narration and splendid storyline make this book a remarkable read.

Early girl child marriage is a violation of child rights especially child brides who suffer the most physically, mentally and emotionally. Because of the imbalance of voice in such unions, many girls are unable to negotiate, discuss or are rather unaware of contraception, resulting in earlier and more frequent pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases, cervical cancer, death during childbirth. Including , higher rates of domestic violence, no educational opportunities, higher risk of infection, teen pregnancy, chronic anemia and lifetime of poverty.

Womb of Fireflies is not just a book rather it’s an effort to reimburse the lives of all those young girls suffering in silence and empowering them. Most importantly to delay and prevent forced marriage, have a voice and be something before someone’s wife and mother.


Review by

Md Akhlaq


Womb Of Fire Flies


Ambika Barman


Invincible Publishers

Price : 199/-
Pages : 161
Rating : ☆☆☆☆4/5

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