A Disobedient Girl

“She loved fine things and had no doubt that she deserved them…”

As dawn breaks over a Southern coastal town in Sri Lanka, Biso, a desperate young mother, flees from her murderous husband, taking her children with her to find refuge and a better life in the hill country. In an upper-class home in the capital city of Colombo, Latha, a five year old, is brought in as a companion and lifelong servant to a girl her own age though, in her heart, Latha knows she was born for finer things, like the rose-smelling Lux soap she steals, the glasses of fresh lime juice that she helps herself to and the brand new shoes she begs for.

As Biso and Latha journey toward their separate fates, struggling to hold on to their independence, each will make a choice to betray the people they love, changing the course of their lives forever.

A Disobedient Girl is a compelling map of womanhood, its desires and loyalties, set against the backdrop of beautiful, politically turbulent, Sri Lanka.

Published in July, 2009, in the US and Canada by Atria Books, a division of Simon & Schuster. Also published in the Netherlands by Mistral, and forthcoming in the UK and territories from Viking, in Italy from Piemme, in Israel from Matar Publishing, in Taiwan from Marco Polo Press and in Brazil from Nova Fronteira.

The Disobedient Girl
A thrilling debut: Ru Freeman has given us a wonderfully bold and determined protagonist in a richly drawn, complex, fascinating story. I loved it.— Lynn Freed, author of The Servants' Quarters.