The Folded Earth, 2011 Longlist
Anuradha Roy has worked as a publisher and journalist and is now editor at Permanent Black, an independent press in New Delhi. She was the winner of the Picador-Outlook Non-fiction Prize in 2004. Her first novel An Atlas of Impossible Longing (2008) was shortlisted for the Crossword Award and has been translated into thirteen languages.
The Folded Earth is set in a remote town in the Himalaya, Maya tries to put behind her a time of great sorrow. By day she teaches in a school and at night she types up drafts of a magnum opus by her landlord, a relic of princely India known to all as Diwan Sahib. Her bond with this eccentric, and her friendship with a peasant girl, Charu, give her the sense that she might be able to forge a new existence away from the devastation of her past. As Maya finds out, no place is remote enough or small enough. The world she has come to love, where people are connected with nature, is endangered by the town’s new administration. The impending elections are hijacked by powerful outsiders who divide people and threaten the future of her school. Charu begins to behave strangely, and soon Maya understands that a new boy in the neighbourhood may be responsible. When Diwan Sahib’s nephew arrives to set up his trekking company on their estate, she is drawn to him despite herself, and finally she is forced to confront bitter and terrible truths.
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