Qayenaat is a middle-aged editor and critic who hovers at the edge of the Bangalore art scene. Her old friend and former protégé, Baban Reddy, has become a hugely successful artist on the international stage and his return to Bangalore brings back memories and experiences Qayenaat had carefully repressed. In a swirl of heightened emotion, Qayenaat commits an unforgivable crime and flees to rural India in the hope of avoiding its repercussions. There she forms a relationship with the unlikeliest of men – the local monarch whose palace, like the region, has fallen into disrepair.
The Cosmopolitans is a brilliant novel of ideas and emotions – one that questions the place of art in modern life – and draws a vivid portrait of a woman at odds with the world. Tender and wry in equal measure, and rich in thought and insight, it confirms Anjum Hasan as one of India’s most exciting contemporary writers.
Praise for The Cosmopolitans by Anjum Hasan
‘Anjum Hasan brings an ironic and subtle intelligence to a great novelistic theme.’ Pankaj Mishra
‘Perspicacious, funny and at times profound.’ Amit Chaudhuri
‘Through Qayenaat’s adventures, Hasan amply demonstrates the anxieties of a nation in transition and raises questions which the already so-called developed countries should be asking themselves.’ Asian Review of Books
‘The Cosmopolitans holds surprises and enlightenment in every page.’ Mail Today