What sets the extraordinary tone for Mistress is its structure….The inclusion of Kathakali in the novel is much more than an exotic add-on. Its admission of how characters have varying shades of grey, of the past’s impact on the present, is vital to the storyline.

Mistress is a mature take on the compulsions of adultery and art. It sets up and resolves questions not through one grand meta narrative, but through little narratives. Each tale compounds the force of the one before it.

Opening up the rich world of Kathakali to English literature, Mistress achieves something rare in Indian writing. It proposes a natural assimilation of our artistic heritage in new fiction.


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