McCormick, Patricia. 2006. Sold.
In Patricia McCormick’s verse novel SOLD the reader is introduced to a young woman, Lakshmi a thirteen year old girl sold by her stepfather into prostitution. Told only that she will be moving to the city to live with a new “auntie” and a uncle-husband, Lakshmi is at first fooled into thinking a glamorous life awaits her. True, she’ll be working as a maid. But she’s heard that cities have such luxuries as tvs and cars, etc. But the reality of her new life and lifestyle soon becomes much too terrifying to deal with. Numbing her emotion, she goes through the motion of living day after day in a brothel where if she doesn’t perform she will be beaten, starved, or thrown out on the streets. The only hope in her life is the friendship she makes with the other destitue prostitutes and their children. Set in India, SOLD is a powerful story of hope and despair.
Sold is Patricia McCormick’s third novel, and it is her first to be nominated for a National Book Award. Her previous books include Cut (2000) and My Brother’s Keeper (2005).