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The Rickshaw Reveries

Nominated | Book Awards 2021 | Creative Writing in English (Fiction & Poetry)

The Rickshaw Reveries

Author: Ipshita Nath
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Award Category: Creative Writing in English (Fiction & Poetry)
About the Book: 

A rickshaw puller's feral lust will lead him to a metamorphosis so bizarre no one will believe him.

A scrap metal collector's life is changed dramatically by a piece of metal.

A local perfumer holds the power of love, lust, death and life in his attars.

A gay man finds himself being drawn to a djinn in the ruins of an old Delhi fort.

A sculptor brings his dead love back to life, but with unexpected results.

With stories that are both terrifying and enticing, The Rickshaw Reveries takes one into the bizarre and fantastic, while exploring Delhi's many subterranean truths. Delinquents, drug peddlers, rickshaw wallas, and Khan Market diplomats – all find themselves at home here. A bold debut collection, this is Delhi at its primal best.

About the Author: 

Ipshita Nath teaches English literature at University of Delhi, and is pursuing her doctoral research with the Department of English, Jamia Millia Islamia. She has an abiding fondness for Victorian literature as well as early twentieth century American works. She is particularly fascinated by the city - Delhi, and constantly explores the different facets of urban spaces by walking, touring, and exploring. She has written and published several research papers, and has given presentations at various national and international conferences.


The sky was overcast, and a light wind had begun raking
up the crumbling earth around the ridge area near
North Campus. Dust blew in people’s faces as they made
their way through the buzzing post-college traffic around
the metro station.
Balram was feeling strangely unwell when he returned
to his spot near the metro station after dropping two
students off at the Gwyer Hall canteen. He wiped the sweat
off his face and snatched the old bottle of water he kept
tucked under the rickshaw seat. The water had little bubbles
in it. He gulped it down thirstily but felt no different after
drinking it. He flung it away and eyed the water vendor
standing some way ahead. Should he buy a glass of cold
water? It would cost him money but he badly needed it.
He strode forward and slapped some coins on the steel
counter of the water cart. He would have two glasses and
no more.

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