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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3 July 2013

Reading list, July week one.

I've been reading SO MUCH lately, that I thought I really should get it all down somewhere, make notes and tell myself how much I love a certain book. See, while the Kindle is great, fantastic, life changing, I can't put down a book I've loved half way through, gaze at its cover adoringly, run my finger up the spine, all the weird kinky things people who love books more than other people do to their books. Buying physical books however makes you face the problem of waiting to have it. Downloads are instant. I love instant. Priscilla, Queen of the Maggi.

So, here's what's kept me up and curled in armchairs over the past two weeks.

The Madness Underneath & The Name Of The Star by Maureen Johnson, who you have probably come across if you looked at the cool Cover Flip project.  Kind of like Buffy meets Ghostbusters, an American girl goes to school in London, "sees" things, and joins a young team of cops fighting supernatural crime. I can't say much more without giving it away, but HURRAH Maureen. *claps*

(Buy here.)

The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer which is basically this year's Gone Girl. No kidding, everyone is reading it and recommending it to other people, so let me add my voice to the fray. It begins and you think, "Oh I've read this story" (two examples: The Secret History and Special Topics In Calamity Physics) because the Interestings are a group of young, precocious teens at a camp for precocious teens, but then it's so much more epic as it spans their lives from 15 to 55, disease and deaths, 70s and 80s and 90s and noughties, and honestly, it's quite a deep and intense exploration of people and love and lives.   (Buy here)

Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers is the ultimate, ULTIMATE book for anyone who adored Mean Girls. See, there's a popular girl, except thanks to one fateful evening, she's no longer popular and her friends--the A group--are cruel and nobody likes her because she too used to be powerful and cruel. Read it to revist just how sucky high school was for some of us. (Here's an old post about me, class seven, eight, nine and hating it all.)

(Buy here.)

The Ocean At The End Of The Lane by Neil Gaiman which I probably shouldn't even mention because I've never read Gaiman before, but it was so good, I immediately went online and ordered the first volume of Sandman. I love writers who convert me to their way of things.  I loved it because it was so spooky and surreal, a child's nightmare, the faraway laugh of a little boy in your dreams and you wake up and it's still haunting you, the imaginings that are still so close to those of us who haven't let go of our childhood brains completely, dark pressing in on you, imaginary friends who were so real and yet so not, it's all there in this book, so maybe don't read all alone at night in a big house whose sounds you aren't yet familiar with. (An aside: do you suppose Neil Gaiman ever got teased for his last name?)

(Buy here)

Sisterland by Curtis Sittenfeld continues my relationship with an author I've loved since her truly terrific debut, Prep. All of Sittenfeld's characters are a bit alike, reserved ladies with not too much emotion, but I like that each reserved lady has her own way of quiet rebellion. On the other hand, I'm also a bit like, "CURTIS! WRITE AN ACTIVE VOICE HEROINE!" Sisterland is about twins with ESP and how one denies it and the other uses it regularly and a sort of soft back-and-forth in time story about siblings and family.

(Buy here.)

Currently reading, but already fathoms deep in love with A.S King's Please Ignore Vera Dietz. King is like John Green with a cigarette and a raspy whiskey voice. Spot on, spot-fuckin'-on. (Buy here.)

As you can see it has been a very girly-YA month for me. I'm feeling drawn towards adolescent narratives at the moment. The stuff lined up on my Kindle for the rest of the month is going into an entirely new set of genres though: short stories, dystopian novels about poets and non-fiction books about the mouth. Interesting. I'll keep you posted.

What are you reading?


  1. Love the list! I think I read Prep after reading about it on your blog, have to try Sisterland now!

  2. I must pick up Sisterland - thanks for the recommendation!

    Also, never read Gaiman before? Sacrilege, my dear! Glad you're remedying that ;)

  3. Just finished reading The Butterfly Generation by Palash Krishna Mehrotra.

  4. Here's my review on The Butterfly Generation.

  5. Sisterland does seem interesting..
    I love Books.. so it's good to go through your list..
    I have just finished reading MAXIMUM CITY by Suketu Mehta.. its a good read

  6. just read Asura, it changes a lot of perceptions


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