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Sisters at New Dawn

Nominated | Book Awards 2021 | Writings for Young Adults

Sisters at New Dawn

As if being the new kids isn’t enough, Padma and Kannagi Shankar quickly find that New Dawn High School isn’t exactly a regular school. They have weird subjects like ‘Pot of Gold’ and ‘Maths and Beauty’ and some of their classes are taught by students! But it’s more strange than bad, and the sisters start to enjoy themselves and make new friends – until a discovery in the library and a few unpleasant encounters lead them to question their presence at the school in the first place. With their parents far away, and their Thatha not being the easiest person to talk to, the girls are forced to find solutions of their own – but will they work, or will the bullies win?

Full Title: Sisters at New Dawn

Author: Varsha Seshan
Publisher: Zubaan

Award Category: Writings for Young Adults
About the Book: 

As if being the new kids isn’t enough, Padma and Kannagi Shankar quickly find that New Dawn High School isn’t exactly a regular school. They have weird subjects like ‘Pot of Gold’ and ‘Maths and Beauty’ and some of their classes are taught by students! But it’s more strange than bad, and the sisters start to enjoy themselves and make new friends – until a discovery in the library and a few unpleasant encounters lead them to question their presence at the school in the first place. With their parents far away, and their Thatha not being the easiest person to talk to, the girls are forced to find solutions of their own – but will they work, or will the bullies win?


About the Author: 

Varsha Seshan is a children’s writer, twice shortlisted for the Scholastic Asian Book Award. She has written 15 books for children and facilitates a writers’ club for pre-teens at a school in Pune, where she lives. Additionally, she is a classical dancer with over 25 years of training in Bharatanatyam. Find out more about her at www.varshaseshan.com.


Excerpt: 

three
Loony School

I got into the car and slammed the door.
“How was your day?” asked Thatha.
“Loony,” I said. Thatha chuckled.
“It’s crazy!” I cried, throwing my hands in the air. “Our subjects are called ‘LCA’,
‘MCA’, ‘RLS’… It’s mad!”
“Mm-hmm?” Thatha smiled at the road ahead. Had he registered a word? “What would
you like to eat?” he asked. “Upma or idli?”
I held back a sigh and glanced at Padma in the rear-view mirror. Conversations with
Thatha were often like this. Veering unexpectedly from one place to another, just like the car
when he was driving.
I looked out of the window, feeling cheated. Padma and I, with our Harry Potters and
Malory Towers, had been convinced that boarding school would be the best thing ever, and we
were thrilled with the idea of staying away from home. Midnight feasts, sneaking out,
inseparable friends… My heart longed for all of it. But that was before this first awful day at
New Dawn—late, lost, laughed at.


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