Mistress

A Novel

Anita Nair

St. Martin's Griffin

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When travel writer Christopher Stewart arrives at a riverside resort in Kerala, India to meet Koman, Radha's uncle and a famous dancer, he enters a world of masks and repressed emotions. From their first meeting, both Radha and her uncle are drawn to the enigmatic young man with his cello and his incessant questions about the past. The triangle quickly excludes Shyam, Radha’s husband, who can only watch helplessly as she embraces Chris with a passion that he has never been able to draw from her. Also playing the role of observer-participant is Koman; his life story, as it unfolds, captures all the nuances and contradictions of the relationships being made—and unmade—in front of his eyes.
 
Booklist calls Mistress "Tempestuously exotic, Nair's intricately woven multicultural and multigenerational saga pulsates with passion and desire."

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Book Excerpts

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  BOOK 1Kandaalethrayum kowthukamundithine, pandu
Kandilla jnan evam vidham kettumilla

How beautiful it is to look at, never
have I seen or heard of anything like it

—Nalacharitam [First Day]
Unnayi WarrierSringaaramLove. Let us begin with sringaaram.Do we know other words for it?Or do we know it by the widening of the eye, the arching of eyebrows, the softness of the mouth that curves, by that swelling of breath from each nerve-end wanting to cup a contour?We have words for this flooding that can sweep away all other thoughts.

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Reviews

Praise for Mistress

"Tempestuously exotic, Nair's intricately woven multicultural and multigenerational saga pulsates with passion and desire."
--Booklist
 
"This intricately plotted novel by Nair (Ladies Coupé), her third to be published in the United States, blends myth, history, and human emotion into a mixture as sweet as the nectar of the jackfruit and as tangled as human behavior . . . Highly recommended."
--Library Journal, starred review
 
Praise for Ladies Coupé
“Nair is a powerful writer, who through this tender story shows great understanding and compassion for women and for the choices and regrets they cannot avoid.”
--Booklist

"Nair's strength lies in bringing alive the everyday thoughts, desires and doubts of these six ordinary women."
--Times Literary Supplement
 
“ . . . quietly powerful . . .”
--Kirkus Reviews
 
“A sensitive exploration of the tension of self-actualization vs. familial responsibility in a society with traditional values, this novel . . .will surely resonate with readers everywhere.”
--Library Journal
 
“Nair is a powerful writer. . .  she has created what must be one of the most important feminist novels to come out of South Asia.”
--Daily Telegraph (UK)

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About the Author

Anita Nair

ANITA NAIR lives in Bangalore, India. Her books have been published in several languages around the world.

Anita Nair

David Ignaszewski
Anita Nair

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Available Formats and Book Details

Mistress
A Novel
Anita Nair

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
St. Martin's Press
St. Martin's Griffin
August 2006
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781429998710
ISBN10: 1429998717
432 pages
$7.99

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
St. Martin's Press
St. Martin's Griffin
August 2006
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780312349479
ISBN10: 0312349475
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 432 pages
$22.99
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