Author(s): Shauna Singh Baldwin
The Selector of Souls begins with a scene that is terrifying, harrowing and yet strangely tender: we're in the mid ranges of the Himalayas as a young woman gives birth to her third child with the help of her mother, Damini. The birth brings no joy, just a horrible accounting, and the act that follows - the huge sacrifice made by Damini out of love of her daughter - haunts the novel. In Shauna Singh Baldwin's enthralling novel, two fascinating, strong-willed women must deal with the relentless logic forced upon them by survival: Damini, a Hindu midwife, and Anu, who flees an abusive marriage for the sanctuary of the Catholic church. When Sister Anu comes to Damini's home village to open a clinic, their paths cross, and each are certain they are doing what's best for women. What do health, justice, education and equality mean for women when India is marching toward prosperity, growth and becoming a nuclear power? If the baby girls and women around them are to survive, Damini and Anu must find creative ways to break with tradition and help this community change from within.
Shauna Singh Baldwin was born in Montreal, grew up in India, and lives in the US. She is the author of two bestselling novels and two short story collections.The Tiger Claw, her second novel, was a finalist for the Giller Prize in 2004 and a Canadian bestseller. Her first, What The Body Remembers, sold over 60,000 copies in Canada and was longlisted for the Orange Prize and was awarded the Commonwealth Writer's Prize for Best Book in the Canada/Caribbean region. It has been translated into 14 languages. Her short stories have won literary awards in the United States, Canada, and India. www.ShaunaSinghBaldwin.com