What the Body Remembers – Shauna Singh Baldwin
Out of the rich culture of India and the brutal drama of the 1947 Partition comes this lush and eloquent debut novel about two women married to the same man.
Roop is a young girl whose mother has died and whose father is deep in debt.
So she is elated to learn she is to become the second wife of a wealthy Sikh landowner in a union beneficial to both. For Sardaji’s first wife, Satya, has failed to bear him children.
Roop believes that she and Satya, still very much in residence, will be friends. But the relationship between the older and younger woman is far more complex. And, as India lurches toward independence, Sardarji struggles to find his place amidst the drastic changes.
The Malhotra Bride – Sundari Venkatraman
Sunita Rishi’s just turned twenty, having completed her graduation. She wants to fly free as a bird, explore career options and travel the world. Does she have a choice when Mamma & Pappa insist on arranging her marriage? Born in a rich business family steeped in tradition, Sunita has a tough job on her hands. Can she stop the tide?
Tall, dark and handsome, Akshay Malhotra is the catch of the decade. The only son of Billionaire Raj Malhotra, he’s in a strange fix. His father’s keen that Akshay meets Sunita with marriage in mind. He’s too close to his parents to say ‘no’ for the preliminary meeting. And then he comes face-to-face with Sunita….
Will Sunita be falling from the frying pan into the fire when she agrees to become The Malhotra Bride?
The Home and the World – Rabindranath Tagore
Set on a Bengali noble’s estate in 1908, this is both a love story and a novel of political awakening.
The central character, Bimala, is torn between the duties owed to her husband, Nikhil, and the demands made on her by the radical leader, Sandip. Her attempts to resolve the irreconcilable pressures of the home and the world reflect the conflict in India itself, and the tragic outcome foreshadows the unrest that accompanied Partition in 1947.
Gently Falls the Bakula – Sudha Murty
Shrimati and Shrikant are neighbours and star students of their school in the small north Karnataka town of Hubli. It leaves no one in surprise when they come first and second respectively in the final Board exams.
Soon Shrikant discovers he is strangely attracted to Shrimati, a plain-looking yet charming person, who always does better than him in the exams. Shrimati too falls in love with the amiable and handsome Shrikant and the two get married. Shrikant joins an IT company and starts rapidly climbing the corporate ladder. He works relentlessly and reaches the pinnacle of his industry, while Shrimati abandons her academic aspirations and becomes his uncomplaining shadow, silently fulfilling her duties as a corporate leader’s wife. But one day, while talking to an old professor, she starts examining what she has done with her life and realizes it is dismally empty . . .
Gently Falls the Bakula is the story of a marriage that loses its way as ambition and self-interest take their toll.
Chanakya’s Chant – Ashwin Sanghi
The year is 340 BC. A hunted, haunted Brahmin youth vows revenge for the gruesome murder of his beloved father. Cold, calculating, cruel and armed with a complete absence of accepted morals, he becomes the most powerful political strategist in Bharat and succeeds in uniting a ragged country against the invasion of the army of that demigod, Alexander the Great. Pitting the weak edges of both forces against each other, he pulls off a wicked and astonishing victory and succeeds in installing Chandragupta on the throne of the mighty Mauryan empire.
History knows him as the brilliant strategist Chanakya. Satisfied—and a little bored—by his success as a kingmaker, through the simple summoning of his gifted mind, he recedes into the shadows to write his Arthashastra, the ‘science of wealth’. But history, which exults in repeating itself, revives Chanakya two and a half millennia later, in the avatar of Gangasagar Mishra, a Brahmin teacher in smalltown India who becomes puppeteer to a host of ambitious individuals—including a certain slumchild who grows up into a beautiful and powerful woman.
Modern India happens to be just as riven as ancient Bharat by class hatred, corruption and divisive politics and this landscape is Gangasagar’s feasting ground. Can this wily pandit—who preys on greed, venality and sexual deviance—bring about another miracle of a united India? Will Chanakya’s chant work again? Ashwin Sanghi, the bestselling author of The Rozabal Line, brings you yet another historical spinechiller.