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Updated: October 6, 2010 14:41 IST

Penguin India bags rights for Kiran Desai’s new novel, Pamuk

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Penguin India has acquired the sub-continental rights for Man Booker Prize winner Kiran Desai's forthcoming novel, 'The loneliness of Sonia and Sunny'.
The Hindu
Penguin India has acquired the sub-continental rights for Man Booker Prize winner Kiran Desai's forthcoming novel, 'The loneliness of Sonia and Sunny'.

Ravi Singh, editor-in-chief and publisher of Penguin India, said, "Being chosen to publish Orhan Pamuk is easily among the biggest moments in Penguin India’s history. Also it is a thrill and a privilege to publish a writer of Kiran’s astonishing skill..."

Penguin India has acquired the subcontinent rights for two of the most eagerly sought after authors in the literary world — Booker Prize winner Kiran Desai’s new novel “The Loneliness of Sonia and Sunny” and Nobel Prize winner Orhan Pamuk’s next three works including his new novel “A Strangeness in My Mind“.

Desai became the youngest woman to win the Man Booker Prize when her second novel “The Inheritance of Loss” (Penguin India) won the coveted literary prize in 2006. “The Inheritance of Loss” went on to become an international bestseller, and has sold an astounding 190,000 copies in India alone.

“The Loneliness of Sonia and Sunny” promises to be bigger and even more compelling. Bought on the basis of a brilliant four page synopsis, the rights to publish the novel have been hotly contested by all the leading publishers of the world. The novel will be published in 2012.

The publishing house has also acquired the subcontinent rights to publish three books by Pamuk, the celebrated writer of “My Name is Red”, “Snow”, “Istanbul” and “The Museum of Innocence” who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2006.

Pamuk writes in Turkish and is regarded as one of the greatest contemporary writers. Penguin India has represented Orhan Pamuk for over a decade now through their publishing partnership with Faber & Faber, who publish him in translation; but this is the very first time that his books will actually be published by an Indian publisher.

According to Ravi Singh, editor-in-chief and publisher of Penguin India, “Being chosen to publish Orhan Pamuk is easily among the biggest moments in Penguin India’s history. Also it is a thrill and a privilege to publish a writer of Kiran’s astonishing skill, capable of both intimacy and insight.”

The first Pamuk book will be a collection of essays, “The Naive and the Sentimental Novelist’, based on a series of lectures he delivered at Harvard University. His early novel “Silent House” will be available in English translation for first time when it is published in 2012.

Pamuk’s new novel “A Strangeness in My Mind” promises to be an entrancing and unparalleled work of fiction that is of profound relevance to today’s times, the publishers said. Set in the late 1990s, it is the story of Mevlut, an Istanbul street vendor who goes out every night to sell his ‘boza’, a traditional Turkish beverage, and, by day, hunts for possible jobs to pay off his debts. The title of the book refers to the effects of a light drug Mevlut secretly adds to the ‘boza’ he sells to make it more popular, and that, in desperate times, he consumes himself.

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