Thursday, 14 June 2018

The first readers: what they thought

All the Lives We Never Lived was published on 15th May 2018 in India and 30th May 2015 in the UK


“. . . moving and brilliant . . . In the way that only fiction can do, Anuradha Roy’s thoughtful, eloquent and beautifully wrought novel allows us to feel the pulse of human actors whose lives and choices constitute an alternative to political history, yet prove that the personal is also the political” Supriya Chaudhuri, Biblio

"a writer of great subtlety and intelligence...a beautifully written and compelling story of how families fall apart and of what remains in the aftermath"
Kamila Shamsie, Guardian

"An extraordinary writer with many gifts"
Tishani Doshi, Hindu

"This questioning and subtle book, which ranges through freedom, nationalism and ecology, but is really a meditation on history itself. ... The scope of All the Lives We Never Lived is vast but also personal, both in temporal and geographical terms. It manages to retain a closely observed and restrained tone without omitting all of the outside factors that shape a person"
Sean Hewitt, Irish Times

"Taking in the second world war, the fight for Indian independence and occasionally fast-forwarding into the 1990s, All the Lives We Never Lived is ultimately both a work of beautifully realised history and personal narrative. The cover blurb tells us that Roy is ‘one of India’s greatest living authors’. On this evidence it’s hard to disagree"
David Patrikarakos in Spectator

"a novel that comes but rarely in our day and age...global in its appeal and yet Indian at its heart, there is never a dull moment ... a once-in-a-lifetime novel"
Saket Suman, Business Standard/ IANS

"Haunting, elegiac... with elements of the fantastical yet believable sense of magic realism that permeates the finest Indian literature from Salman Rushdie through to Vikram Chandra"
John Walshe, Sunday Business Post

"Affecting tale of flawed characters and the constraints they struggle against - and amid the atmospheric historical detailing, there are pin-sharp modern resonances with modern India's nationalism and punishing patriarchy"
Siobhan Murphy, The Times

"A devastating story of love and loss...a brilliant book about human relationships, and a particular time in the history of India woven together in a book of blinding perception and compassion for the human condition"
Jennifer Crocker, Cape Times

"From Sleeping on Jupiter to this book, Roy seems to be bettering her own brilliance. Though the narration is effortless, Roy’s research and imagination in recreating a bygone era shines out. This is an excellent, unputdownable book"
Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar, Hindu

"Roy’s writing is full of nuance – there is nothing didactic about the way she tackles the grand themes that pit the personal against the political . . . complex characters are conveyed in simple prose. She shows the tragic fallout of the decisions they make while not detracting from their humanity"
Salil Tripathi in South China Morning Post

"This novel has Roy’s trademark features that have won her previous books critical acclaim and commercial success: lyrical lucid prose, fully realized characters, a flawed female protagonist, sensuous evocation of a bygone era, a quiet examination of the myriad fissures of India.... from its arresting opening, the narrative sweeps you along"
Manreet Sodhi Someshwar, The Punch

"reinvents the idea and act of freedom during the colonial struggle for independence"
Jessica Xalcxo, ShethePeople

"[A] wistful tale of wartime collateral damage, both continental and intimate in scale"
Anthony Cummins, Daily Mail

"Anuradha Roy has crafted the perfect novel on one woman’s search for freedom... [she] is a novelist at the peak of her prowess, and in this novel there is little she does wrong"
Devapriya Roy in Open

"A love letter to writing and storytelling, set in the landscape of personal memory and public, political history" Sana Goyal, Scroll

"a brilliantly crafted novel ... that piques the reader's interest with every turn of the page" Pooja Salvi, DNA

Selected interviews
Talking Books with Gavin Esler at the Hay Festival 2018
telecast on BBC World 16th and 17th June 2108
Front Row with John Wilson, BBC Radio Four; podcast downloads available
Interview with Manreet Sodhi Someshwar in Punch 2018
Interview with Jessica Xalcxo in ShethePeople
Interview with Amrita Dutta in Indian Express
Interview with Mini Kapoor in the Hindu
Interview with Sana Goyal in Scroll








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