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I have steered clear of reading fiction in last few months. The average fiction books do not stimulate me and there are too many of them out there. So when I saw this novel, supposedly bestseller, from an Irish author, I thought to give it a try. At the end of it, I wondered why it was a bestseller. The story doesn’t really go anywhere, doesn’t make you sad or happy or feel anything at all, except of course relief that it is finally over (thus saving me from adding one more to the ‘unfinished reads’ list). But I did feel something – disgust at the way the author has branded ambitious women. The story has 2 ambitious women, both shown as bitches who do not deserve any kind of happiness. These two women have been shown to be lesser women as compared to the other women in the novel. The other women are better women since they never had any desire to reach at the top of professional ladder, hence had more time to ‘properly’ bring up their children. These women deserve to be happy as they are the ideal women while the ambitious women are to be hated by everyone as they are not fulfilling their ‘duties’ as a woman.

If a woman feels that any woman does not need a man in her life, then that women must be crazy! Isn’t it wonderful to spend all your time and energy in trying to get a man to marry you, elaborately planning your wedding, gossiping about the ‘ambitious’ women, congratulating yourself for bringing up your daughter in a way that her only ambition is to get married? Why wish for a good career, professional advancement, skill development and financial independence because desiring these things automatically makes you a bad wife and a bad mother? If you are serious about your job, then you obviously won’t have time to cook for your children and take care of your husband. Your child will be overweight and your husband will go after a ‘non-ambitious’ woman!

I do not understand what is with this branding? There are so many movies which show the same crap – an ambitious woman must be a bitch. She is always arrogant, snobbish, patronizing and crazy. Either she does not have a family or if she does, they are not happy because of her dedication to her job. I do not remember watching a movie or reading a book that brands men like that. The most disturbing thing about this is that the novel I am talking about it is written by a woman. This author earns her livelihood by writing novels that demean women! This particular novel is described as a “comfort read” by popular media. That is even more disgusting. A story that never moves forward, demeans career-oriented women, revolves around a wedding and showcases that as the ultimate goal of a woman is repulsive beyond words.

Why blame men when women themselves think that their true role in this world is that of only being a wife and mother; the true reason for their birth is to just find a husband, keep him and raise a family. So, the lives of women like Razia Sultan, Laxmi Bai, Indira Gandhi, Kalpana Chawla, Margaret Fuller, Marie Curie, Malala Yousafzai and several other such women have no meaning?

I think we women should learn to look inside us before we blame men for our status in the society; for not respecting us and for not letting us live our lives on our terms. We should first ask this question to ourselves – do I judge women for being ambitious/different/single; do I teach my daughter that all she needs to do is marry right (as if that is a thing); do I beat myself/someone else up for not being a perfect mother/wife; do I despise women who don’t have a care in the world; do I comment on those women who live free from any societal pressures?

Stop blaming others and start with yourself, your friends, your daughter, your sister, your mother. Let’s start with us women – be the change in bringing a revolution.

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Read the review Love No More (Love, It Is!)

Read the review Love, It Is!

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