Body Betrayed Beauty

Body Betrayed Beauty
(A Young Mother's Courageous Journey with Cancer
Author: Neha Ganju Tanna
Author: Neha Ganju Tanna
Paperback : 146 pages
ISBN-10 : 938624568X
ISBN-13 : 978-9386245687
Publisher : Sterling Publishers
Pages: 146
Binding: Softcover

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Book Review by Sunanda Vashisht
Body betrays beauty, a memoir written by a young mother, Neha Ganju Tanna, about her journey with cancer was released at Florida International University on January 4th, 2020. The event also announced the setting up of ‘Holding Hands Foundation, Inc’ a nonprofit organization, inspired by Neha, in order to bring awareness to those who suffer with pain with serious illnesses like cancer. The mission of the organization is NEHA “Never Endure Hurt Alone”.

33-year-old Neha Ganju Tanna was diagnosed with terminal kidney cancer in 2015. An engineer by profession, and an artiste by temperament, the diagnosis came as a bolt from blue for Neha and her family. Neha took charge of her treatment and her life post diagnosis, living her life with courage, conviction and tremendous amount of fortitude. Unknown to her family she had started penning notes for her daughter, born in 2013, sharing her views on life, family, spirituality and her own personal journey. After Neha succumbed to cancer on October 23, 2016, her family stumbled on these memoirs and decided to publish it in the form of a book. After two years of intense efforts, the book, “Body betrayed beauty- A young mother’s journey with Cancer” was released in Miami.

Speaking on the occasion, Neha’s father, Deepak Ganju said “Neha refused to let her diagnosis define her. This book, a compilation of her writing, is her legacy and an eternal message of courage in the times of adversity”. The book was released by three eminent members of the Indian American Community in the United States. Dr. Sanjay Razdan- a renowned Urologist in Florida, Dr. Avatar Krishan Ganjoo, Professor of Pathology in University of Miami and Arun Koul – a business leader and a committed activist of Kashmiri Pandit cause released the book. Dr. Razdan, barely able to control his emotion recounted the time when Neha and her family consulted him on about the treatment plan. Dr. Ganjoo, referencing Hindu scriptures said, Neha’s soul continues to live and will never leave us. Arun Koul, remembered the times when Neha, an accomplished theater artiste, would put up Kashmiri plays in order to educate the wider community about the Kashmiri culture and literature.

Neha’s former boss at Fannie Mae, Sara--- gave a vivid account of Neha as a professional, working under her and a woman engineer in a male dominated world. She spoke about how Neha single handedly bust all stereotypes about women engineers and was always at the forefront of problem solving. Dheeraj Bakaya, a community activist and a friend of Neha spoke about Neha as a passionate community activist for Kashmiri Pandit cause who worked 24/7 to meet all her commitments and never slacked once she had made up her mind. Laced with bitter sweet humor, Dheeraj shared anecdotes of his interaction with Neha. This was followed by a panel discussion on the book and the author. The panel discussion featured Anjali Zutshi, a lawyer and Neha’s cousin who had worked on the manuscript of the book, Charles Caramacal, Neha’s College friend, and Dr. Nihar Ganju, a doctor and Neha’s brother. The panel, moderated by Sunanda Vashisht, a writer and a political commentator focused on book’s message and why it was important to ensure books like these reach the wider audience.

The last speaker of the afternoon, Dr.Chander Shaykher, Neha’s uncle and a well-known cardiologist spoke about his personal experience of being both Neha’s ‘Doctor on speed-dial’ and her loving uncle. Both roles equally difficult but nevertheless taught him much about life and its purpose. He announced the setting up of Holding Hands foundation by Neha’s family and said if there is one thing, we can learn from Neha’s life it is- Never leave anyone alone in their times of sorrow and pain. He appealed to the audience to support the foundation with an open heart.

The entire event was deftly moderated by Kartikeya Tanna, a lawyer and Neha’s husband. He lauded the role of Neha’s mother Chandra Ganju who worked very hard to ensure this book sees the light of the day. The most special part of the event however was a short message that Neha’s six-year-old daughter, Aariyana Tanna read. She summarized the message of the book when she said about her mother “You will never ever be forgotten by anyone”

For more information about Holding Hands Foundation, please visit

More information at Desh Videsh

About the Author
Neha Ganju Tanna was about to turn thirty-three when she first ended up in the emergency room. It wasn’t long before the doctors gave her a tragic diagnosis: she had stage 4 kidney cancer. She fit absolutely none of the common demographics for this illness, but she had it all the same.

One moment, Neha Ganju Tanna was a happy new mother to a beautiful baby girl. The next, she was a terminal cancer patient.

So many people would have given up all hope, but Neha wasn’t like most people. Instead, she poured her insight, wisdom, wit, and warmth into this new memoir. Along the way, she laid out important advice for her daughter when she reached different stages of her own life. Neha accepted that she would not get the chance to see her beautiful Aariyana grow up and become a mother herself, but she remained determined to guide her daughter through the difficulties ahead.

This poignant look at one woman’s life shows Neha’s strong spirit and her endless compassion for others. Some entries reflect her inner thoughts and desires; others are written for her family and friends. At the end of her life, Neha came to important revelations about the nature of family, love, and spirituality and was determined to share them with the ones she loved.

Neha refused to let her diagnosis define her. Body Betrayed Beauty is a compilation of her writings near the end of her life. Through her insight and advice, Neha left an important legacy for the ones she left behind.

Much of Neha’s memoir is directed to her daughter. She describes cherished memories with her new baby girl and offers her insight into all the challenges of growing up. Neha also shares the everyday challenges of being a cancer patient and the need to raise awareness of the insidious disease. Finally, she delves into her own ideas about the nature of God, family, and identity. Each new page reveals a fascinating new facet of an amazing woman—and a new lens through which to view our own lives.
Dear Deepak ji, How do I buy the copy of " Body Betrayed Beauty" Please send the link. regards Neelam Wali
Added By Neelam Wali
Book "Body Betrayed Beauty" is available at Or Please send your mailing address at: We will be glad to mail to you.
Added By Chandra Ganju