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Review #37: Dear Mrs Naidu

28 October 2015
Posted in: Books, Media | No Comments

52 reviews of 2015What does a studious little 12-year-old have in common with a well-known freedom fighter and the first woman governor of an Indian state? Little, it seems, apart from their name—Sarojini. But as young Sarojini starts writing letters to the long dead late, let’s just say ‘historical’, Sarojini Naidu, we find that this is a fairly well-matched pair. Read this hilarious and inspiring story to find out what happens when children stand up for their rights.

Through her letters, Sarojini alternately regales and informs us of what happens when she discovers the Right to Education Act. From using it to try to get a seat at [her best friend] Amir’s posh school, to demanding that Ambedkar Government School [where she goes] itself be fixed, she finds that having rights and getting them are very different things. Simultaneously reading a biography of Sarojini Naidu, the younger Sarojini finds inspiration from the older Sarojini’s life, which gives her the courage to ask for what she should have.

Read the full review



Week #50: Slightly Burnt in the media

15 December 2014
Posted in: Books, Media, Writing | 5 Comments

52 weeks of reading and writing
Slightly BurntSlightly Burnt has been getting more media attention than any of my earlier books. Truth be told, this is mostly because it happens to address issues that are being talked about around the country right now. It’s also thanks to the definite strides young adult literature has been making in India over the years, with publishers and authors stepping out of their comfort zones. (Off topic: The five best YA novels I’ve read in 2014.)

Back to Slightly Burnt, the reviews are mostly positive, though not everyone likes everything. That said, the reviews I value most are those that come from the target audience. A (satisfied) young reader wrote to me today, saying:

The book… shows us something that is thought of as abnormal in a way that is very relatable…. My favourite character is Vikram. This is because his personality is a lot like mine…. I can also relate to Komal, because I also like to cook. So if I think about it, it shows us how to relate to people, no matter what they are.

color_danceProfessional reviewers are (usually) paid to read and have an opinion on your book, which can end up somewhat messy at times. Which is why I’m flattered, and frankly delighted, to have more or less managed to please most people. Some of the reviews are on personal blogs and again, much appreciate that readers have taken the trouble. Here are some reviews that appeared in the media and in blogs:

A couple of excerpts have appeared as well:

An interview was published here:

If you have anything to say about Slightly Burnt, drop me a mail or add it to the comments.



Satin reviewed by Ink Scrawl

28 December 2011
Posted in: Books, Media, Writing | No Comments

Satin’s world is a world very like ours in many ways and yet unlike ours. The world is full of technology and Dhar clearly channels her inner geek when she details the technological marvels of this world: the ‘Infonet’, computers, touchscreen tablets, the comm handsets and especially the wonderful machinery and technology that Yavi, Fahe, and Keas encounter in their quest.
(Read the rest at Ink Scrawl)

Mandar Talvekar reviews Satin: A Stitch in Time on his blog Ink Scrawl in great detail and depth.



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