Arund­hati Roy to pub­lish sec­ond novel 20 years on

Malta Independent - - ENTERTAINMENT -

Booker Prize-win­ning author Arund­hati Roy is to pub­lish her sec­ond novel - 20 years af­ter her best­seller The God of Small Things came out.

The Min­istry of Ut­most Hap­pi­ness will be pub­lished in June 2017.

“I am glad to re­port that the mad souls (even the wicked ones) in The Min­istry of Ut­most Hap­pi­ness have found a way into the world,” Roy said.

She has writ­ten a wide range of non-fic­tion but this will be her first work of long-form fic­tion since her de­but.

“Only Arund­hati could have writ­ten this novel,” Roy’s lit­er­ary agent David God­win said, de­scrib­ing it as “ut­terly orig­i­nal”.

He added: “It has been 20 years in the mak­ing. And well worth the wait.”

Si­mon Prosser and Meru Gokhale of pub­lish­ers Hamish Hamil­ton and Pen­guin said in a state­ment: “To pub­lish this book is both a plea­sure and an hon­our.

“What an in­cred­i­ble book it is on mul­ti­ple lev­els; one of the finest we have read in re­cent times.

“The writ­ing is ex­traor­di­nary, and so too are the char­ac­ters brought to life with such gen­eros­ity and em­pa­thy, in language of the ut­most fresh­ness, joy­fully re­mind­ing us that words are alive too, that they can wake us up and lend us new ways of see­ing, feel­ing, hear­ing, en­gag­ing.

“It makes the novel new - in the orig­i­nal mean­ing of novel.”

The 54-year-old, who won the Booker Prize in 1997, is one of In­dia’s best-known au­thors.

She faced ar­rest for sedi­tion for chal­leng­ing In­dia’s right to rule over the dis­puted Kash­mir re­gion in 2010.

She is also known for crit­i­cis­ing West­ern multi­na­tion­als and the ex­cesses of cap­i­tal­ism.

Roy re­cently fea­tured on the cover of Elle mag­a­zine, say­ing she wanted to break the myth of the typ­i­cal In­dian beauty.

“I’m a black woman. Most of us are. Ninety per­cent of us are. This ob­ses­sion that In­di­ans have with white skin and straight hair makes me sick,” she told the mag­a­zine.

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