Book Lists

Editor’s Picks: Best books to read this summer

Editor’s Picks is our monthly, curated list of best books to read. I scout far and wide, scanning publishing house catalogues across fiction categories...
Book Lists
Essays

Marxism and literature: A brief roundup

What is Marxism? What is marxist literature? What is the shape Marxism has taken in India? We searched the length and breadth of India...
Book Reviews

A global fiction in Kunal Basu’s The Japanese Wife

A man dreams of his previous birth where he designed the gorgeous Taj Mahal, a foreign architect called upon just to create that symbol...
Book Reviews

A guide to feminism by Sindhu Rajasekaran

Smashing the Patriarchy does what a guide to feminism should do; push you to question your own beliefs, your ideologies, and trace how critical...
Book Reviews

The Hungry Tide by Amitav Ghosh

The Hungry Tide by Amitav Ghosh is a treat for someone who loves history and literature. The Hungry Tide travels in the past and...
Book Reviews
Folktales

Magic and Lore in this graphic novel: Sharanya Manivannan’s Incantations over Water

Sharanya Manivannan’s Incantations over Water: A graphic novel that submerges into the deep blue oceans of diasporic longing and folklore. Meet Ila – a...
Book Reviews

A must read children’s book: My Grandmother’s Masterpiece

We have all grown up with certain ideas about our grandmothers. But, how many of us have actually imagined her in a role different...
Book Reviews

“Read JNU, even if you disagree with it…”

Purple Pencil Project’s Amritesh Mukherjee caught up with Makarand Paranjpe at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2022, to talk about his latest, JNU. Excerpts. Please...
Book Reviews

What are the lesser known monuments of India? This book tells us

A Saint, A folktale and other stories: Lesser known monuments of India, by Rana Safvi, is a collection 19 articles, each on a different...
Book Reviews

A review of the Hindi book that got shortlisted for the International Booker Prize 2022

Tomb of Sand (or Ret Samadhi) is a Hindi book written by Geetanjali Shree and translated to English by Daisy Rockwell. It is the...
Book Reviews

Five Novellas About Women By Indira Goswami is a must read collection of feminist fiction

Indira Goswami, is an Indian Assamese artist. She writes short stories and novels set in different locales of India, which give her readers a...
Q & A

Simran Dhir: ‘I love that Delhi has a deep, visible history’

Edited Excerpts from an interview with author Simran Dhir. “And as for Delhi, the city continues to blossom with bouquets of bright bougainvillea, champa...
Q & A

Amit Majmudar: “India has produced three great epics: Ramayana, Mahabharata, and its own Independence struggle. “

Amit Majmudar is a novelist, poet, translator, essayist, and diagnostic nuclear radiologist. His works include Godsong: A Verse Translation of the Bhagavad-Gita, with Commentary (Knopf/Penguin Random...
Book Reviews

Sparrows played a role in the Dandi March. Find out how

April 6th is the anniversary of the end of the Salt March or the Dandi March, one of the most peaceful protest movements in...
Book Reviews

The geography of our lives in Puttu, a Malayalam novel by Vinoy Thomas

Puttu (Termite Colony or Anthill) is Malayalam novel by Vinoy Thomas, his second after Karikkottakari. Puttu narrates the story of the people in a...
Q & A

Kynpham Sing Nongkynrih: Funeral Nights took 12 years to complete

How is it to participate in the Jaipur Literature Festival? What do you think is the value of literature festivals in our times, and...
Book Lists
Book Reviews

Here are two books to read for women’s day

If you are looking for books to read for women’s day, we have two recommendations. Neha Kirpal reviews Impetuous Women by Shikhandin and Women...
Q & A

AJ Thomas interview: I read recreationally now, not for education

Prakruti Maniar interviewed A.J. Thomas, one of the most prolific literateurs of our time. His work with poetry, translation, and editing, spanning 40 years,...
Q & A

“Kohinoor is just a stone. There are priceless murties I’m more worried about”

Purple Pencil Project’s Amritesh Mukherjee spoke to S. Vijay Kumar, the author or The Idol Thief, which goes deep into the underbelly to unravel...
Q & A

Arunava Sinha: “Every untranslated book is a gap that needs to be filled”

Arunava Sinha, winner of the Vani Foundation Distinguished Translator Award at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2022, spoke to us about being a translation practionery,...
Q & A

“I have two hobbies, reading and writing,” Mamta Kalia

Mamta Kalia, who is one of the speakers at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2022, spoke to Prakruti Maniar about Hindi Literature, observing the trends...
Q & A

Archana Mirajkar: Marathi literature, the craft of writing, and more

Archana Mirajkar is a communication specialist, author, and translator from Marathi to English. Her original play ‘Hello, Kon?’ was critically acclaimed. Her latest book,...
Q & A

Aditi Maheshwari-Goyal: Great curation, not sponsorship, makes a great literature festival

Prakruti Maniar speaks to Aditi Maheshwari-Goyal, who heads the Department of Copyrights and Translation at Vani Prakashan and is the Managing Trustee at Vani...
Events
News

Jaipur Literature Festival 2022: What to look forward to

After what seems like a lifetime, on-ground literature festivals are making a slow and cautious comeback. The Jaipir Literature Festival 2022, produced by Teamwork...
Book Reviews

Sometimes Mama, Sometimes Papa

Written By Nandini Nayar, Illustrated by Upamanyu Bhattacharyya Right from the time of birth, the life of a child situates around two most important...
Essays

Where do words go when people stop speaking them?

A few months ago, barely weeks into lockdown, I was having chai with my grandparents in the morning while they regaled me with anecdotes...
Book Reviews

Why you should read Gods and Ends by Lindsay Pereira

Lindsay Pereira presents an intimate portrait of a community of Roman Catholics, their relationship with each other, and with God in his book Gods...
Essays

How to organize your book shelf, and Apps you can use to do so

Are you confused about how to organize your book shelf? Even though library science has been refined over hundreds of years, personal libraries continue...
Book Reviews

Revisiting 1984 with Two and a Half Rivers by Anirudh Kala

When the slain Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s son remarked ‘when a big tree falls, the earth shakes’ in wake of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots,...
Book Lists

Books about India for children and young adults

This list of books about India for children and young adults has been created with inputs from Mansi Shetty, Founder, What Are You Reading...
Book Lists

Indian Satirical Writing: An ongoing list

Looking for a good laugh? Purple Pencil Project has put together an ongoing list of Indian satirical writing from the length and breadth of...
Q & A

In Conversation With: Urvashi Butalia

Prakruti Maniar speaks to Urvashi Butalia, Founder of Zubaan Books, over email about the strategies and considerations involved in managing an independent press, the...
Essays

Chaotic women and male gaze in Salman Rushdie’s The Enchantress of Florence

The Enchantress of Florence, published in 2008, is Salman Rushdie’s most researched novel. It includes Indian, Persian, and Florentine history at large. In the...
Book Reviews

Mythographic Wisdom in Amruta Patil’s Aranyaka

Aranyaka is a mythographic tale re-written through a feminist lens, weaving pre-Vedic concepts with lessons gathered from Aranya. What place does a large woman...
Essays
News
Translations

Translations: The Talk of Publishing Town

Translation is a key political tool anywhere we go; but have the last few years of being in the spotlight changed things for the...
Book Reviews

Best miss this Dance to retain your Spirit

Sanjai Velayudhan’s Dance of Spirits opens with the promise of a culturally rich book but quickly dives into a sexist narrative, leaving the reader...
Q & A

Meeting the man who brought Oonga to life, twice

If human lives are the price we’re paying for development, it may not be worth it: Devashish Makhija, writer of the Young Adult novel,...
Folktales
Q & A

Folklore, folk music, and the rhythm of Rajasthan

Interview with Nitin Harsh, founder of Rhythm of Rajasthan, a group that works to coral folk musicians from across Rajasthan and give them a...
Book Reviews

One Love and the many lives of Osip B

C.P. Surendran’s One love and the many lives of Osip B is a work of dystopian fiction that captures the chaos of individual memory...
Book Reviews

The emotional cost of war in A Passage North

Anuk Arudpragasam’s A Passage North is an attempt to come to terms with a long war that destroys generations before it ends, leaving behind...
Book Reviews

Unequal rhythm in Vikram Seth’s An Equal Music

Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent, Victor Hugo is credited to have said. Reading An...
Resources
For Writers

What is it called?: The Living Room Edition

What is it called? is part of our Resources For Writers, where we help you build your descriptive vocabulary, one word at a time....
Q & A

In Conversation With: Rita Kothari

Rita Kothari is a translation theorist, translator, and writer, and a pioneer of bringing the spotlight to Gujarati and Sindhi stories through her work. Purple Pencil Project...
Q & A

In Conversation with: Prarthana Banikya, founder, The Little Journal of Northeast India

Prarthana Banikya speaks to Purple Pencil Project about the magazine inspired by the eight states– Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura– of...
Book Reviews

A hidden gem of Partition Literature

Sunlight on a Broken Column by Attia Hosain is a must-read for fans of Manto, Chughtai, and Partition Literature I discovered Partition literature long...