Every once in a great while, a novel comes along to remind you why you rummage through shelves in the first place. Why you peck like a magpie past the bright glitter of publishers' promises. Why you read...This, you think, is the feeling you had as you read Great Expectations or Sophie's Choice or The Kite Runner. This is why you read fiction at all.
Roy's writing is a joy.
One of India's greatest living authors.
From Sleeping on Jupiter to this book, Roy seems to be bettering her own brilliance. Though the narration is effortless, Roy's research and imagination in recreating a bygone era shines out. This is an excellent, unputdownable book
The book everyone is talking about for the summer
A beautifully written and compelling story of how families fall apart and of what remains in the aftermath . . . [by] . . . a writer of great subtlety and intelligence.
Poetic, elegiac . . . Roy's eye is tender . . . The scope of All the Lives We Never Lived is vast but also personal.
Anuradha Roy blends historical fact and remarkable real-life characters into her tale, which takes freedom, in all its messy complexity, as its theme . . . Amid the atmospheric detailing there are pin-sharp modern resonances with modern India's nationalism and punishing patriarchy.
A writer of great subtlety and intelligence . . . a beautifully written and compelling story of how families fall apart and what remains of the aftermath.
[Roy] writes intelligently and elegantly, whatever the subject matter, be it love, patriarchy or the sweltering landscape.
Taking in the second world war, the fight for Indian independence and occasionally fast-forwarding into the 1990s, All the Lives We Never Lived is ultimately both a work of beautifully realised history and personal narrative. The cover blurb tells us that Roy is 'one of India's greatest living authors'. On this evidence it's hard to disagree.
All the Lives We Never Lived is a moving and beautiful story of loss, of the lives of those beloved to us. What makes this novel so special is the sinuous way Anuradha Roy seamlessly and masterfully shuttles between time, overlaying the past with the present, mystery with knowledge to cumulatively create a brilliant tapestry that is the story
Anuradha Roy should be on every literary Indophile's list. She's such a gorgeous writer of prose, her four novels capture small-town India with all its beauty and contradiction.