I am happy to share that today I’ve got another Book Roulette post and this time I get to help promote an exciting collection of Short Stories from India. Gita V. Reddy’s compilation, HAPPINESS IS A COLLAGE is a beautiful gathering of stories that express tales both contemporary and historical of Indian culture. Support diverse authors and widen your cultural scope with Reddy’s lovely prose! Keep reading to find out more about this compilation, her past works, and even read from the first story!
Happiness is a Collage by Gita V. Reddy (2018)
Fiction | Short Story Collection
153 Pages (Kindle edition)
Publication Date: August 04, 2018
This collection of fifteen stories leads the reader into a world that is at once Indian and universal. The stories explore love, life, loss, and relationships.
A painter derives inspiration from a long lost love. Every night after going to bed, a woman scours a vast desert for her missing husband. A young woman strides through two worlds. A son experiences the miracle of his father’s immense love. An actor’s wife struggles to keep her husband from slipping into his reel life. And a busy professional tries to factor in pregnancy and motherhood into her hectic life.
Among those traversing this space are a henpecked billionaire, a homeless boy, a middle-aged wife dealing with infidelity, and a seeker finding solace with a lion and a deer.
Happiness is a Collage follows the author’s well-received collection, A Tapestry of Tears.
Read an excerpt from the first story…
I was four when my father was lost to me. I saw him dragged away to the boat, away from the village, away from me. I never forgot the scene. Thick coir ropes, the ones we used to pull in the fishing boats, snaked around his arms and chest. There were many people on the riverbank; my mother was there too, and the summer afternoon was a haze of white heat.
Shouting and cursing filled the air. The noise was a living thing, thrumming, pulsating. Someone hurled a broken oar at my father. It struck him and a red patch spread on the white sleeve of his shirt. The crowd jeered. I flinched but my father did not even glance down at his arm. His eyes were fixed on me. Every time he strained against the biting thick ropes, he jerked towards me and the shout that left his lips and was lost in the coarse noise was my name.
When the silence came, I still heard him calling me.
I have no memories of my mother from before that day. I know I lived with both my parents but I don’t remember my mother at all. All my memories are of my father. I remember fishing with him in the middle of the river, and lying in a hammock from a tree twisted over the water. He would shimmy up tall coconut trees, using a harness looped around his shoulders and another around his ankles, gripping the bark with his bare feet. Nothing has ever tasted as good as the soft, sweet, milky coconut kernel he scooped out and fed me.
We made wooden toys. My father whittled them out of driftwood. Though I did nothing but lean against his shoulder and watch, he insisted I was of great help. “I wouldn’t have known what to do without you,” he would say. I remember the look of concentration on his face and the flash of his quick smile. I remember his hands, the fingers long and deft, but I don’t remember the toys. They are long gone, flung into the big fire my mother made out of my father’s things.
Read the rest of the story here!
Gita V. Reddy is a multi-genre author of over twenty books. Known for her sensitive portrayal of characters and her culturally rich writing, she is always looking to create original work with distinct themes. She is a self-taught writer who is continuously trying to improve her craft.
Gita lives in India with her husband and son. In an earlier life that she voluntarily quit in 2011, she was a bank manager.
A Tapestry of Tears by Gita V. Reddy (2016)
Fiction | Short Story Collection
Publication Date: November 02, 2016
pooled ink Review:
This book is a beautiful collection of short stories. Each weaves a story that vary in era and topic but all of which focus on family, love, and tradition.
Reading these stories has opened my eyes to Indian cultures and I found it fascinating. I absolutely enjoyed reading about each character’s life, their struggles, and their experiences. Each story grows around a particular topic; these included such things as infanticide, old age, marriage, war, self-reflection, grief, and other topics so important to life.
I found the writing to be quite beautiful and with a weight beneath the words. Images were spun and woven so well that I could easily envision these people and these places. Fiction though this book may be, these stories are built from truth and history, and while often this knowledge made me sad it also pulled me into the stories. Reading the paths described throughout this book has not only opened me to them but to look into my own self and find true gratitude for the life I have been given.
Genuinely I recommend this book to you. The stories shared within it are poignant and thought provoking as well as written in lovely prose that will keep you captivated.