Early on in this collection of the bizarre, the strange and the impossible, we are introduced to a character called Sir Henry Mandifer, a man who, having made pots of money as a writer, had ‘taken to spiritualism’ and was at the top of his game. On his way to investigate another intriguing piece of […]
“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.” But what of yesterday? Or today? A stroll through the two gardens closest to my heart.
Putting together a guidebook to Indian kids’ books is no child’s play.
As any writer of memoir – whether fictional or autobiographical, or a mix of both – knows, it is a fine line between remembrance and nostalgia, and there is an almost irresistible urge to muse upon the nature of memory itself. Supriya Dravid’s novel, written in the form of a confessional memoir, is in part […]
Imagine Cinderella where the princess is a dowdy middle-aged governess and her fairy godmother a ditzy strawberry-blonde showgirl. Miss Pettigrew lives for a Day is as delicious, delightful, as naughty but nice as a silver platter of petit fours. This forgotten gem from the 1930s was rediscovered and reissued by the wonderful Persephone publishers in […]
How to Patronise Kids and Infantilise Adults all at Once
Why cats can’t taste sweet, and whether raisins taste like maggots – for the Himal special issue on food, feasts and famines.
On Arundhati Roy’s novel The God of Small Things
An essay commissioned for a volume entitled Bologna – Fifty Years of Children’s Books From Around the World (Bononoia University Press, March 2013) to celebrate the fiftieth year of the Bologna Children’s Bookfair.
Ruminating about the early days of motherhood and the challenges of keeping a new baby well-fed.