5 Beach Worthy Reads by South Asian Authors

What makes a book beach worthy? For me a summer holiday read is something lighthearted, not too long, that leaves you with a feel-good ending. I’m all for deep reads and never-ending books, but sometimes I just crave something lighter. With that in mind, here are 5 beach worthy reads by South Asian authors to add to your book list for summer 2019.

The Windfall by Diksha Basu

The Chopras have a replica of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel painted in their foyer, the Jhas have a custom sofa inlaid with Swarovski crystals, which is incredibly uncomfortable, but imported from Japan! The Windfall by Diksha Basu, is a sort of comedy of errors staged around the fathers in each of these families trying to one-up each other with their extravagant purchases and expenses. 

The story follows a middle-class family from East Dehli who have recently come into a large amount of money thanks to major business deal, and are now moving to the swanky suburb of Gurgaon. We get to see the community and familial atmosphere of a housing complex in the heart of the capital city, and get a glimpse at how India’s 1% live on the outskirts of the chaos.

Love Hate & Other Filters

This is a powerful read, and a really fun one. I thoroughly enjoyed how Samira Ahmed managed to balance all of the complexities of teenage life and love with the story of possible terrorist, without making the whole book about Maya’s religion. This was one the best portrayals of a modern Muslim family I’ve ever read. [Check out my full review here]

Paradise Towers

Paradise Towers is super easy, light-hearted read. It’s pretty short (172 pages), and felt almost novella like, rather than a full fledged novel. It’s Shweta Bachchan-Nanda’s debut novel, and for a first time author she does alright. It’s not an epic read, but kind of filmy and fun – making it perfect for the beach.

The whole story revolves around life in an apartment “colony”, which I think is a pretty unique to metro cities in India experience. There are characters from all across India and every stereotype you can imagine in this read. The Singh’s are loud and noisy, the Bengali family is very studios and eats lots of fish, and the Khan’s have lots of kids. but beyond the stereotypes there are lots of laughs.

The Widows of Malabar Hill

It is the story of four women who’s lives get  tangled up with each other following a gruesome murder. Perveen Mistry, Bombay’s first female solicitor, and the three widows of wealthy industrialist Omar Farid who lived on Malabar Hill. A classic who done it that will keep you guessing till the end! Honestly, I had no idea who the killer could be till the very end – I kept changing my mind. [Check out my full review here]

The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters

The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters is such a good read! Following up on the success of Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows was not an easy feat, but Balli Jaswal delivers. This is a totally different, but equally engaging story. Based on three sisters visiting India to fulfill their mother’s last wish of having her ashes spread ‘back home’, the book is a heartwarming and honest portrayal of the dynamics of sisterhood. If you are desi and have a sister (or 3 like me), you’ll see yourself in this story.

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