Shweta Bachchan-Nanda’s debut novel, which talks about everyday lives and is set in a Mumbai apartment, will be launched on the eve of her father’s birthday on October 10.
Published by HarperCollins India, “Paradise Towers” is billed as a “quirky, intimate debut that explores the intertwined lives in the building – a forbidden romance, an elopement, the undercurrents of tension in corridor interactions and an explosive Diwali celebration”.
Speaking about how she came to write “Paradise Towers”, Shweta says, “I grew up with my grandfather who was a poet and a writer. Writing and reading was always a very important part of our lives. I’ve been writing a diary ever since I was a little girl, and wrote stories that I never shared with anyone.
“Then, one day I just said, I am going to take this plunge. I started writing a column for a newspaper in Mumbai and it gave me a lot of confidence to go ahead and do this full time, and that’s where ‘Paradise Towers’ comes from.”
In the book, Dinesh opens the door to the Kapoor flat one day to find Lata, the enchantress who works at Mrs Aly Khan’s, carrying a hot case with freshly made gaajar ka halwa.
On the first floor, the inquisitive Mrs Mody wipes the dust off her precious binoculars to spy on the building’s security guard.
The Singhs open the doors of their SUV, their four boys creating a ruckus – they are the newcomers, the outsiders. Through the peephole, the ever-watchful Mrs Ranganekar observes their arrival.
At the Paradise Towers in central Mumbai, everyone has a story to tell or maybe stories to hide.
Filmmaker Karan Johar finds the book “observant, moving, hilarious and exceptionally astute”.
“Paradise Towers” is no slice of life”, it’s an entire loaf, he says, adding Shweta “builds” her debut novel with the ease of a literary veteran.
According to Shreya Punj, Assistant Editor at HarperCollins India, “Paradise Towers” is fresh, insightful and a story that will resonate with everyone.
“I fell in love with the story when I first read it. Now, ‘Paradise Towers’ is ready to meet its readers, and I cannot wait for people to fall in love with this quirky, intimate world Shweta has created,” she says.