My latest book is The One Who Swam With The Fishes.

"A mesmerizing account of the well-known story of Matsyagandha ... and her transformation from fisherman’s daughter to Satyavati, Santanu’s royal consort and the Mother/Progenitor of the Kuru clan." - Hindustan Times

"Themes of fate, morality and power overlay a subtle and essential feminism to make this lyrical book a must-read. If this is Madhavan’s first book in the Girls from the Mahabharata series, there is much to look forward to in the months to come." - Open Magazine

"A gleeful dollop of Blytonian magic ... Reddy Madhavan is also able to tackle some fairly sensitive subjects such as identity, the love of and karmic ties with parents, adoption, the first sexual encounter, loneliness, and my favourite, feminist rage." - Scroll

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18 July 2016

Newsletter: eM's Quick Guide To Being Stylish In Jaipur

Two weeks ago, I was in the city courtesy of my friend Shrayana, who was going on work ANYWAY, and asked me to come along. (This came out as my newsletter also two weeks ago, so subscribe if you'd like more up-to-date thingies) Those of you who know me well enough also know that I always say "yes" when the question is "do you want to go out of town this weekend?" Jaipur and I have an old history however--being the Delhi relatives on my NRI cousins' pit stop, I've done Jaipur and Agra more times than I can count. Post those years, there's the lit fest, which I attend with regularity, so I was pretty sure the Pink City would hold no surprises. However! What I had not taken into account was the fact that during the lit fest we do lit fest-y things, which are nice enough, but not quite representative. This time, armed with lists and recommendations, we ate at a new fancy place for every meal, swanned about gorgeous boutiques and took several photos for Instagram. (Well, only me, as Shrayana seems to have a deep distrust for most smart phone apps.)

Looking up at the Anokhi museum roof + showing off my dress (fabric was a present + had it made)

Here are my Jaipur picks real quick:

The view from 1135 with rolling storm clouds
Where to eat:  ** 1135, at the top of Amer Fort. Gorgeous location, only if you're going off season time during lunch, you WILL be the only patrons. However, the laal maas was excellent. ** Jaipur Modern, a cute little organic cafe set into a fancy store that sells designers that make raggedy looking cotton clothes that are nevertheless extremely well fitting and expensive. The cafe had a whole quinoa menu, which S ordered off of, but I inherently distrust Food Of The Weeks, so I got a tandoori shawarma which was--alas--just a plain old kathi roll. Good coffee though! ** Anokhi Cafe, which you already probably know about, but which is very nice and deserves a mention nevertheless.

Where to drink:
**Steam at the Rambagh Palace is inside a literal TRAIN and this made me very happy. Unfortunately I was feeling slightly under the weather so could not linger for very long, but I loved it. A TRAIN. I like bars---as I told S later--that have special theme-y things, more props if they're actually built INSIDE a replica of the theme. This may not be very adult, but drinking is adult, so I feel like that makes up for it. ** Bar Palladio at Narain Niwas is a revelation, it's all blue walls and pretty lights. The wait staff stuck us in a brightly lit back room at first, but we made a fuss and so they grumpily moved us to the front and after we ordered a bottle of (excellent) wine, they were positively cheerful.
Bar Palladio. Super trendy & run by an Italian so great food
Lovely place. Very Wes Anderson. **

Where to shop: I did not do much shopping, except for a gorgeous  maxi dress from Cottons, but S bought herself a shift maxi dress (Rasa) and a chiffon sari (Rukhmani). Since we also had a running gag that we were two old British ladies called Lavender (her) and Marigold (me), she also bought me and herself two pairs of lovely soft sleeping shorts from Anokhi, in each other's colours.

And one last word on Jaipur before I move on, compared to drinking in Delhi (I'm looking at you Perch and Piano Man!) it was positively cheap. 

Song of the week: Since I was thinking so much of old Wes and Darjeeling Limited, here's Typewriter Tip Tip Tip Tip from the OST.   Zindagi ki har kahani likhta hai.

Interesting links:  **Arundhati Roy talks to Elle about gymming and other things.** Everyone is all BIRA BEER, which is very hipster but also everyone is drinking it so less hipster and here's a story about how they have more demand than they can handle.** Related. Also WHYYY IS THIS HAPPENINGGG TO MEEEE **
"Hitler's favourite Maggi" and other Indian restaurant food trends. ** Comics illustrating people who are awkward around babies.**

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