What Does a Literary Publicist Want You to Read in 2024? Archana Upadhyay Gives Us Her List

Confused as to what you should be reading in 2024? We asked Literary Publicist Archana Updhyay to suggest some must reads for the coming year. Here’s what she told us.

by Shreeparna Khaitan and Surbhi Anand
Bapu’s Curries takes us through a journey of a Marwadi household, weddings in the family and their culinary tales and stories about these recipes. It is inspired by the culinary genius of a Marwadi, who is professionally a lawyer, has travelled the world extensively and is passionate about cooking and experimenting in the kitchen. It is his passion for the delicateness of ingredients that has culminated into inexplicably amazing and mouthwatering plates of food – food and recipes that his daughter Shreeparna Khaitan and her friend Surbhi Anand want to showcase to the world.
This beautiful book takes the readers to the combinations hitherto unheard of, unique cooking concepts along with some family heirloom recipes and a handful of authentic Marwadi recipes.

By Pervin Saket
The set of four inspiring, easy-to-read and vividly illustrated titles include:
·       Adaptability with Arunima Sinha
Discover adaptability with Arunima Sinha, a national volleyball player who suffered major injuries and lost one leg in a scuffle with some thieves. She realigned her goals and became the world’s first female amputee to climb the highest peaks.
·       Resilience with Bhakti Sharma
Discover resilience with Bhakti Sharma, an open water swimmer who became the youngest and first Asian to swim in the Antarctic Ocean.
·       Transformation with Chandro and Prakashi Tomar
Discover transformation with Chandro and Prakashi Tomar, sharpshooting champions from rural India who first fired a pistol in their 60s.  
·       Trust with PT Usha
Discover trust with PT Usha, a record-breaking athlete who honed her skill by working closely with her coach.

By Ruchira Gupta
A propulsive social justice adventure by renowned activist and award-winning documentarian Ruchira Gupta, I Kick and I Fly is an inspiring, hopeful story of triumph about a girl in Bihar, India, who escapes being sold into the sex trade when a local hostel owner helps her to understand the value of her body through kung fu.

OUT OF SRILANKA: Tamil, Sinhala and English Poetry from Sri Lanka and its Diasporas
By Vidyan Ravinthiran, Seni Seneviratne,  Shash Trevett
This first ever anthology of Sri Lankan and diasporic poetry features over a hundred poets writing in English, or translated from Tamil and Sinhala. 
This anthology brings to light a long-neglected national literature, and reshapes our understanding of migrational poetics and the poetics of atrocity. Poets long out of print also find space in this anthology. Poems in traditional and open forms, concrete poems, spoken word poems, and experimental post-lyric hybrids of poetry and prose, appear with an introduction to Sri Lanka’s history. The anthology brings together poems about love, art, nature. This anthology affirms the imperative to remember, whether this relates to folk practices suppressed by colonisers, or more recent events erased from the record by Sinhalese nationalists.

Bear with Me, Amma: Memoirs of M.T. Vasudevan Nair
By Gita Krishnankutty, M.T. Vasudevan Nair
The memoirs as well as the stories in this volume were chosen by MT himself. Bear With Me, Amma pays homage to his childhood, his craft and most importantly, his Amma, whose restful presence they beautifully and poignantly capture.
MT grew up in the village of Kudallur in Kerala and his writings constantly evoke the landscape of the years he spent there. Many of the characters in his stories are based on people who lived in this region and the stories themselves often retell incidents that happened there.

The Journey to Adi Kailash
M.K. Ramachandran, translated by Sheela S. Menon
Bestselling author M.K. Ramachandran is well-known for his unique travelogues. Not only does he beautifully recount his journey but he also delves into history and culture, tying in various threads to show the reader the many elements that make India what it is.
The Journey to Adi Kailash is no different. While detailing his trek to one of the most revered mountains of India, Ramachandran includes interpretations of our history, culture, traditions, the Puranas and the Upanishads, as well as contributions by great sadhus, sages and rishis. He weaves in interesting stories―of how the Asuras came to India, the ancient technology of turning metal to gold, the ninety-five-year-old woman who is well-versed in the 144 courses of Kriya Yoga, the yogi who acquires the power to fly into the sky…

THE MAHABHARATA: Mewari Miniature Paintings (1680–1698) by Allah Baksh
by Alok Bhalla & Chandra Prakash Deval
Allah Baksh’s magnificent miniature paintings of Vyasa’s great epic, the Mahabharata, were commissioned by Udaipur’s Maharana Jai Singh, and painted between 1680 and 1698. The selection of nearly 2000 paintings, published in four volumes, are from a folio of more than 4000 extant works illuminating the Mahabharata.
These radiant miniatures, which follow almost every story in every chapter of the Mahabharata, have no precedent in India’s art tradition. The emphasis in these paintings is not on heroic posturing and spiritual pride, but on the pain that the earth and its creatures endure when human beings tragically fail to fulfil their dharma. The images in the paintings are symbolically charged, their colours are clear and luminous, their lines are restrained and precise. Allah Baksh’s art of visionary thoughtfulness deserves an honoured place in the great library of Indian scriptures and their visual interpretations.

Pick these books from any Kunzum store or WhatsApp +91.8800200280 to order. Buy the book(s) and the coffee’s on us.

About the Author:
Archana Upadhyay is a Literary Publicist at Atika Gupta PR & Communications. She handles marketing promotion for Penguin India, Niyogi Books, Children’s publisher ADIDEV Press, and a portfolio of independent authors as well as translators.

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