Thursday, March 27, 2008

Saradha Published in UK

Hard work pays off for yet another Malaysian author. Just heard the great news from Eric Forbes that Saradha Narayanan, one third of the trio who wrote the collection of stories called Snapshots now has a novel out in the UK.

The Freedom of Choice is published by Melrose Books and came out on March 1st. It is described as :
A fantastically emotional tale of interwoven troubled lives that addresses the social issues of adoption and organ transplant.
And here's the synopsis :
On a wet, gloomy Monday morning in March 2004, Rachel Thomas receives a letter from a private investigator that throws her comfortable, middle-class lifestyle into chaos. She is confronted with a deeply guarded secret from her past. Traumatic events that she has kept buried for fourteen years come back to haunt her and she must now find the courage to make a choice that may disrupt and destroy her marriage. Will she make the right choice?

Set against the backdrop of modern day Kuala Lumpur, the novel moves seamlessly between the past and the present.

The story is told in parallel through the eyes of Rachel Thomas, the young mother, and Rohan Mahendran, the private investigator assigned to find her. It describes how the different races interact with one another and underscores how racial and religious differences influence the choices people make in life.
Our biggest congrats, Saradha!

While we're in celebratory mode, let's also pat young writer Mag Tan (aka Maggie Tan) on the back. Her short story The Gardener appears in the current edition of the Asian literary journal Cha.


A friend pointed out that Melrose books does what's called "commissioned publishing" in which the author bears the cost of having their book published after it has been accepted, while the publisher bears overheads. (So not print-on- demand or "vanity" publishing as the manuscript must pass editorial controls.) This is a very interesting path for Malaysian authors to take, and I'm sure all of us will want to know about Saradha's experiences. I have also invited her to read at Seksan's on April 19th.


Anonymous said...

The blurb reminded me of the blurb for "Vanishing Acts" by Jodi Picoult.

And if this book is anything like that, it'll be great :)

Congrats to Saradha!


Anonymous said...

Oh oh oh

Off topic but

Abigail Breslin is going to play Anna in the movie adaptation of "My Sister's Keeper"!

That's what made me think of Jodi Picoult actually - the mention of organ donation - made me think immediately of "My Sister's Keeper" ... and then long-buried secrets led to "Vanishing Acts" :)


Burhan said...

sounds like a novel i would definitely buy and read, despite being so busy nowadays (it's easter break, after all). will look for it at the local whsmith. i don't think i've ever read a private dick story set in kl.

have never read picoult because the part about adoption and organ donation reminded of an episode from grey's anatomy where izzie stevens...oh, nevermind.

lil ms d said...


Saradha said...

Thanks very much for your kind words, Sharon!And thank you also for inviting me to do a reading at Seksan's on April 19th.I shall try not to panic....

As you rightly pointed out, Melrose does 'Commisioned Publishing' in which the author pays a portion of the cost of publishing the book.However, the manuscript will still need to be submitted and accepted by the publishers before an offer is made. Melrose tells me that on average they publish about 4-5% of manuscripts submitted each year. It then becomes a shared partnership between the author and the publisher and consequently the author enjoys a much better royalty payment than with other methods of publication.
I seriously believe that this is a very viable option for first-time authors trying to break into the very competitive field of getting their works published. There are just too many people writing too many good books out there!! Thank God for readers like you who devour books for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

As for those of you who likened my book to Jodi Picoult's based on the synopsis, I am flattered and delighted. I am a great fan of her books!


bibliobibuli said...

thanks saradha. i'm also v. excited about the possibilities of commissioned publishing and the doors it could open for writers here.

doesn't the decision (see yesterday's post)make you angry though? because it does in a sense affect you.