New books on the shelves

Published : May 04, 2023 11:00 IST - 3 MINS READ

A claustrophobic millennial marriage, an 18th-century warrior queen, the history of patriarchy, and much more.

Soft Animal 

Meenakshi Reddy Madhavan

Penguin India 


With deadpan humour and pointed observation of the self-delusions of India’s urban middle class, Meenakshi Reddy Madhavan’s latest novel presents an intimate experience of millennial marriage. In this story set in March 2020, the protagonist Mallika Rao’s claustrophobia is caused as much by the lockdown as by her marriage.


Moms in the Wild 

Nidhi Raichand 

HarperCollins India 


Sneha Talwar is a reporter on an assignment to profile Natasha Babani, environmental activist and mommy-influencer, who has spent the last year cleaning up a polluted lake. But before she can get started, Natasha’s body is found floating in that very lake. A funny story about the competitive world of social media.



Laline Paull 



The protagonist is a spinner dolphin, Ea, who suffers from a type of deafness that means she cannot master the spinning rituals that unite her pod. Laline Paull explores the meaning of belonging and sacrifice within an ocean that, in no longer being the sanctuary it once was, reflects our world.


Warrior Queen of Sivaganga: The Legend of Rani Velu Nachiyar 




When the king of Sivaganga is murdered, his queen consort, Rani Velu Nachiyar, flees to the wilderness but soon emerges from the shadows to put up a fierce fight with her army of guerrilla women fighters. A historical novel set in southern India in the early 18th century.


The Evolution of Pragmatism in India: An Intellectual Biography of B.R. Ambedkar

Scott R. Stroud



A nuanced study of how Bhimrao Ambedkar reimagined John Dewey’s pragmatism. Scott R. Stroud traces Ambedkar’s development in Dewey’s Columbia University classes in 1913-1916 through his final years in 1950s India when he rewrote the story of Buddhism, and also points out the ways that Ambedkar pushed back against Dewey’s paradigm and developed his own approach to challenges in India.


The Patriarchs: How Men Came to Rule

Angela Saini

Fourth Estate


Award-winning science journalist Angela Saini searches for the true roots of what we call patriarchy, uncovering a complex history of how male domination first became embedded in societies and spread across the globe from prehistory into the present.


Caged Tiger: How Too Much Government Is Holding Indians Back

Subhashish Bhadra



Leaders come and go, but institutions stay forever. This book traces the history of modern Indian institutions to understand India’s “faulty institutional design”, identify policies that keep Indians suppressed and explore how each one of us can change them. It is, in short, young India’s guide to becoming smarter about the issues that matter.


Awe: The New Science of Everyday Wonder and How It Can Transform Your Life

Dacher Keltner



In Awe, Dacher Keltner presents a radical investigation into the history, psychology and meaning of this eponymous elusive emotion which allows us to collaborate with others, to open our minds to wonder, and to see the deep patterns of life. Filled with intense, moving, deeply personal stories of awe from people all over the world, this book will help you uncover everyday wonder as a vital force within your life.

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