15 April, 2018

#SpecialFeature :: The Story of a Long-Distance Marriage #ReadingList by Siddhesh Inamdar

*** Special Feature - April 2018 ***

About the Book:
We’ll always have each other to come back to.

Rohan and Ira’s life takes an unexpected turn when Ira decides to leave for New York to study. They’ve been married for only fifteen months, but this is the opportunity of a lifetime, and Rohan is not going to come between his wife and her dream. So, sad but supportive, he stays back in Delhi, where he is on the brink of a promotion at a national daily. After all, his relationship with Ira is strong enough to survive the distance—they are new-age lovers who don’t let marriage come in the way of careers and ambitions.

Rohan prepares for a year without Ira, getting by with a little help from his friends: Yusuf, his on-call confidant who lives in Bangalore; Alisha, a colleague he likes catching up with over tea; and Tanuj, his new role model at work. Life without Ira is going surprisingly well. Until the day, that is, she reveals the real reason she left.

Beautifully written and unflinchingly honest, this is the love story of our times.

Book Links:
Harper Collins * Amazon

The Story of a Long-Distance Marriage Reading List

When an editor and a former student of literature writes a novel, it is difficult not to use literary references. My novel has a number of such references from some of my favourite books. In this post, I want to put together a short reading list based on the references I have used in my book. I hope reading my novel (or just this post) prompts you to pick up these great works (if you haven’t already) that have inspired me and thousands of readers around the world. 

1) The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri
One of my all-time favourite novels – one that I have just finished re-reading after a gap of more than a decade. This is a simply told, powerful story of growing up and coming of age, of finding and making oneself. It is the only novel that has moved me to tears and made me wish I could write like this. Here’s the quote from The Namesake that I have used in my book to talk about the importance of travel and the need to see the world: 

You are still young, free. Do yourself a favour. Before it’s too late, without thinking too much about it ¬ first, pack a pillow and a blanket and see as much of the world as you can. You will not regret it. One day it will be too late.

2) The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
Again an old favourite, whose themes of teenage angst and alienation resonated with me deeply when I first read it in college. As I did, I am sure many readers identify with the protagonist Holden Caulfield’s sense of aimlessness and dislike for everything as he tries to figure himself out. The passage I have quoted from in my book is the one where he talks about the only thing he’d really like to do, and that says a lot about his character: 

I keep picturing all these little kids playing in this field of rye and all. And nobody’s around –except me. What I have to do is catch everybody if they start to go over the cliff. That’s all I’d do all day. I’d just be the catcher in the rye and all. I know it’s crazy, but that’s the only thing I’d really like to be.

3) The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien 
I invoke the friendship between Frodo and Sam – which I think is one of the greatest friendships in all of literature – to describe the friendship between Rohan (the protagonist of my story) and his best friend Yusuf. Sam and Frodo’s bond is a lesson in loyalty, commitment and devotion. And while this is not a quote I have used in the book, it highlights the strength of their friendship and shows why you should count yourself fortunate if you have even one friend who answers to the description of Sam in your life:

Sam: I wonder if we’ll ever be put into songs or tales. I wonder if people will ever say, ‘Let’s hear about Frodo and the Ring.’ And they’ll say, ‘Yes, that’s one of my favourite stories. Frodo was really courageous, wasn’t he, Dad?’ 
Frodo: You’ve left out one of the chief characters – Samwise the Brave. I want to hear more about Sam. Frodo wouldn’t have got far without Sam.

About the Author:
Siddhesh Inamdar is a 30-year-old writer and editor based in Delhi. 
He graduated in English Literature from St Xavier's College, Mumbai, and was a recipient of Mumbai University's gold medal in the subject. He did a master's in English from Delhi University and a postgraduate diploma in journalism from the Asian College of Journalism, Chennai, where also he ranked first in his batch. 
He has worked with the  Hindu as a correspondent based in Pune, with DNA in Mumbai and with Hindustan Times in Delhi. He has been with HarperCollins since 2013 as an editor for non-fiction books. Some of the authors he has worked with include Raghuram Rajan, Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, Devdutt Pattanaik and Aanchal Malhotra.

Contact the Author:

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