Book Launch: How biryani chokes a history book

What do biryani, wrestling, Russel Market and children have in common? A fantastic ride through 1920s in Bangalore! My new short story ‘The Biryani Choke’ is a rollicking tumble set around the opening of the Russell Market in Shivajinagar of the 1920s.

The story is being published in an anthology by INTACH Bangalore appropriately called Eleven Stops to the Present: Stories of Bengaluru. If you don’t know, INTACH Bangalore are folks who are known to conduct terribly entertaining heritage walks in the city. The anthology is the brainchild of Meera Iyer (who wrote Discovering Bengaluru: History. Neighbourhoods. Walks, a must-have book if you like discovering history by foot) who has also written a story in it. Other amazing writers in it include: Aditi De, Anirudh Kanisetti, Anitha Murthy, Edgar Demello, Meera Iyer, Menaka Raman, Nagaraj Vastarey, Sandhya Rao, Shruthi Rao, and of course Zac O’Yeah.

Upcoming anthology by INTACH

Eleven short stories for children, by eleven awesome writers who take you on a journey through Bengaluru and Bangalore, from about 2000 years ago to the 1980s

Releases soon!

The book is an ambitious idea to introduce the city’s history to children through fiction stories set in different periods of Bangalore (or Bengaluru, that’s also history now). When Meera asked me to write a story, I knew the place in Bangalore I wanted to write about. I had already been there….

Through fictional history, I wanted to revisit a walk I did with Ashwani and Prasad – both fellow heritage and nature enthusiasts. On a sleepy Sunday, many years ago, we three sauntered through the bylanes of Shivajinagar (See the blog I wrote about this walk). Spoke to folks who lived in old, leaky houses; visited a wrestling akhara that fed its audience biryani; wandered through a theatre that is now long demolished and loitered in corners cupping a sulaimani tea. The Biryani Choke, is an ode to that day of my life, that beautiful memory that I have tucked away to trudge through hot, humid, sad days.

“It looks beautiful from outside, but it’s hard to live here. Everything is always breaking down, especially when it rains”

The wonderful walk has already given me inspiration for Anantya Tantrist Series. Read the blog about my walk here.

I’ll soon add the link to buy this wonderful book. If you’re in Bangalore and adore it like I do, consider buying it to pass on the love of history to your children.