From a new-age feminist manifesto to a Man Booker longlisted novel, here are some books by women authors that are all the buzz…
The Windfall by Diksha Basu
This chuckle-worthy look at the idiosyncrasies of Delhi’s moneyed set acutely lays bare the desperation to ‘fit in’ in modern India. The Jhas are a middle-aged couple whose lives are completely changed when they suddenly come into a large fortune. Moving from their cramped East Delhi housing colony to the glitzier Gurgaon (where houses have guards and swimming pools), they now have to manage to keep up with the Joneses with their foray into a status-obsessed environment. Mayhem ensues!
Bitch Doctrine by Laurie Penny
“Toxic masculinity is killing the world.” That’s the starting point of this polemical novel with a grave nod to the recent American presidential elections. With the tagline of ‘Essays for Dissenting Adults’, the noted feminist writer takes on everything from gender to identity in this collection of essays that were written in the three years leading up to the US elections. Known for her fearlessness, she wears her trademark of “bitch” unapologetically. Expect wicked wit with plenty of bite.
Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie
A favourite on the Man Booker longlist, unfortunately this well-crafted novel didn’t make it to the final shortlist. But that doesn’t in any way deter its importance or timeliness as it retells Sophocles’ Antigone set in contemporary London, with a tragedy that encircles the lives of a Muslim brother-sister family, the newly appointed British Muslim home secretary and his son who is the thread between the two. A must-read for the times we live in!
Party Girls Die In Pearls by Plum Sykes
The third novel by US Vogue’s contributing editor is full of fashionable women and foul murder. The murdered corpse of one of Oxford University’s It girls get amateur sleuth and college fresher Ursula Flowerbutton nosing around for answers with her new bestie Nancy Feingold, a gardening tools heiress. This leads them into a world of ambition and greed that traverses black-tie affairs to secret societies, confronting the victim’s former bitter boyfriends. The bigger mystery, of course, is how the author managed to get Anna Wintour to provide a blurb for the back cover!
By Farhad J. Dadyburjor, Mumbai