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Small Days and Nights

Nominated | Book Awards 2021 |

Small Days and Nights

A shattering study of disaffection and belonging .

Full Title: Small Days and Nights

Author: Tishani Doshi
Publisher: 

Award Category: 
About the Book: 

'A shattering study of disaffection and belonging . This is a concise novel of staggering depth .Disturbing, deep and utterly extraordinary' Bidisha, Observer

An Irish Times Book of the Year 2019

Escaping her failing marriage, Grace has returned to Pondicherry to cremate her mother. Once there, she finds herself heir to an unexpected inheritance. First, there is the strange pink house, blue-shuttered, out on a spit of the wild beach, haunted by the rattle of fishermen in their catamarans. And then there is the sister she never knew she had: Lucia, who has spent her life in a residential facility.

Soon Grace sets up a new and precarious life in this lush, melancholy wilderness, with Lucia, the village housekeeper Mallika, the drily witty Auntie Kavitha and an ever-multiplying litter of puppies. Here in Paramankeni, with its vacant bus stops colonised by flying foxes, its temples and step-wells shielded by canopies of teak and tamarind, where every dusk the fishermen line the beach smoking and mending their nets, Grace feels that she has come to the very end of the world. But Grace's attempts to play house prove first a struggle, then a strain, as she discovers the chaos, tenderness, fury and bewilderment of life with Lucia.

Luminous, funny, surprising and heartbreaking, Small Days and Nights is the story of a woman caught in a moment of transformation, and the sacrifices we make to forge lives that have meaning.


Excerpt: 

'A shattering study of disaffection and belonging . This is a concise novel of staggering depth .Disturbing, deep and utterly extraordinary' Bidisha, Observer

An Irish Times Book of the Year 2019

Escaping her failing marriage, Grace has returned to Pondicherry to cremate her mother. Once there, she finds herself heir to an unexpected inheritance. First, there is the strange pink house, blue-shuttered, out on a spit of the wild beach, haunted by the rattle of fishermen in their catamarans. And then there is the sister she never knew she had: Lucia, who has spent her life in a residential facility.


Review: 

With a simple background setting of a beach side in Chennai ( Madras) the writer takes us through unforgettable and touching daily routine, along with inner wranglings of the protagonist. Born to Indian and a Italian parents, she has to grapple with issues of not really belonging to either culture, and the discovery of a sister who was kept a secret from her. Reading this transported me utterly and completely into the story, every chapter new yet familiar. I didn't want it to end


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