The Weight Loss Club, Devapriya Roy, Rupa, Rs.250.
Set in a middle-class housing colony, this is the story of stay-at-home mum Monalisa, who cannot clean the kitchen counter enough times; Meera, who is bullied constantly by her traditional mother-in-law; college-going Abeer, who isn’t sure how to impress the glamorous Mandy. There are other characters like academic Aparajita, philosopher Ananda, former school secretary Treeza and Oxford-returned Sandhya.
The Infatuations, Javier Marias, Penguin India, Rs.550.
Every day, Maria Dolz stops for breakfast at the same café. And every day she enjoys watching a handsome couple who follow the same routine. Then one day they aren’t there, and she feels obscurely bereft. It is only later, when she comes across a newspaper photograph of the man, lying stabbed in the street, his shirt half off, that she discovers who the couple is. With this book, the author brilliantly re-imagines the murder novel as a metaphysical enquiry, addressing existential questions of life, death, love and morality.
Alarm of silence, Manik Munde, Rupa, Rs.195.
Silence has a definition of its own. It has its own quality and dimension. The realm of silence begins beyond the boundaries of words. The book is a collection of poetry that speaks of the various shades of life. It talks of the mysteries of life and death, triumph and defeat, heaven and hell. With its evocative language and imagery, Manik Munde’s poetry will resonate deeply with readers and leave a lasting impression on their minds.
Edge of all the light, Malathi Ramachandran, Melting Pot, Rs.250.
Can childhood sweethearts grow up and marry and live happily ever after? Tanuj thinks so, but Ahilya does not. She has moved on, and is ready to marry another man and settle into the comfortable life she was exposed to while doing her studies abroad. Unknowingly, their lives tangle and all of a sudden their hopes and dreams are sucked into a dark tunnel of despair. Will there be light on the other side?
This is Where I Am, Karen Campbell, Bloomsbury, Rs.799.
When recently widowed Deborah Maxwell is assigned by the Scottish Refugee Council to act as mentor to Abdi Hassan, a Somali refugee, the two are drawn into an awkward friendship. As Deborah opens Abdi’s eyes to her beloved city Glasgow and its people, he teaches her about the importance of family — and of laying your ghosts to rest. Abdi’s four-year-old daughter, Rebecca, lives in a silence no one can reach. Until one day, she starts talking. And they realise why she had stopped.
For reasons unknown, Manju Jaidka, Cyberwit, Rs.200
This book of poems is an assorted package of emotions. Nature and life experiences also figure in the pages of verse. Nostalgia and grief besides, love and romance too find a place. The author has two novels and a play to her credit.