Mumbai

Brewing a novel, one hot sip at a time

Following his passion: Harish Bhat (right) at the launch of his book in Mumbai last week.

Following his passion: Harish Bhat (right) at the launch of his book in Mumbai last week.  

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Harish Bhat talks about his latest book and his love for coffee

Author and chairman of Tata Coffee Ltd. Harish Bhat has launched his first fiction novel. The book was also featured at Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai Litfest last week. Titled An Extreme Love Of Coffee, the novel mirrors the writer’s own feelings about the beverage and takes the reader on a journey of romance and adventure across the globe. It was launched last week at the Starbucks outlet in Horniman Circle, where its story, too, takes off.

Talking of what pushed him to write the novel, Mr. Bhat said that he had been passionate about both cofee and writing for a long time. “This book is a combination of both my passions. It was while sipping coffee at my dining table that the idea for the novel came to me, and I called my publisher.”

Mr. Bhat’s passion for coffee is apparent from the fact that he buys his own coffee beans and brews his own filter coffee using them.

“The publisher asked me to write a few chapters. When I wrote and shared them with the publisher, they liked it. It was then I started writing this novel in right earnest,” he said.

Mr. Bhat, who is also the brand custodian of Tata Sons Ltd., has earlier authored books such as Tatalog: Eight Modern Stories From a Timeless Institution and EKA: Birth Of An Indian Supercomputer. The novel features three central characters — Rahul, Neha and a friendly ghost — and takes the reader from Mumbai to the coffee plantations of Coorg and then the graveyards in Japan.

“Since I work a corporate job, most of the book was written on Sunday mornings. It took me more than eight months to complete the novel but not once did I feel I wouldn’t be able to complete it,” Mr. Bhat said.

Penguin Random House, which has published the novel, has partnered with Starbucks, making copies of the novel available at all its outlets across the country.

Navin Gurnaney, CEO, Starbucks, said, “We are proud of India’s rich coffee heritage and this novel captures that essence beautifully. We are glad to be collaborating with Penguin Random House for the launch of India’s first Coffee Novel.”

Milee Aishwarya, publisher, Ebury Publishing and Vintage Publishing, said, “I was very excited when Harish told me about the idea of writing a coffee novel. At Penguin Random House, we constantly endeavour to push the boundaries.”

Extending his advice to budding writers, Mr. Bhat said, “It is the human emotions which brings life to any writing.”

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Printable version | Dec 8, 2019 4:31:19 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/brewing-a-novel-one-hot-sip-at-a-time/article30010967.ece

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