Darkmotherland (Hardcover)

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An epic tale of love and political violence set in earthquake-ravaged Darkmotherland, a dystopian reimagining of Nepal, from the Whiting Award–winning author of Arresting God in Kathmandu

In Darkmotherland, Nepali writer Samrat Upadhyay has created a novel of infinite embrace—filled with lovers and widows, dictators and dissidents, paupers, fundamentalists, and a genderqueer power player with her eyes on the throne.

At the heart of the novel are two intertwining narratives: one of Kranti, a revolutionary’s daughter, who marries into a plutocratic dynasty and becomes ensnared in the family’s politics. And then there is the tale of Darkmotherland’s new dictator, and his mistress, Rozy, who undergoes radical body-changes and grows into a figure of immense power.

Upadhyay’s novel is a romp through the vast space of a globalized universe where personal ambitions are inextricably tied to political fortunes, where individual identities are shaped by family pressures and social reins, and where the East connects to and collides with the West in brilliant and unsettling ways.

About the Author

Samrat Upadhyay was born and raised in Nepal. He is author of the novels The City Son, The Guru of Love (a New York Times Notable Book), and Buddha’s Orphans, as well as the story collections Mad Country, The Royal Ghosts, and Arresting God in Kathmandu. His work has received the Whiting Award and the Asian American Literary Award and been shortlisted for the PEN Open Book Award and the Aspen  Words Literary Prize. He has written for The New York Times and has appeared on BBC Radio and National Public Radio. Upadhyay teaches in the creative writing program at Indiana University.

Praise For…

Praise for Samrat Upadhyay

“There is a deceptive simplicity to all of these stories, just as there is a deceptive simplicity to Katmandu, whose appearance of traditional piety is . . . a mask behind which all manner of complications flourish . . . Upadhyay’s stories bring us into contact with a world that is somehow both very far away and very familiar.”
New York Times

“Fearless . . . There’s an eerie element of black magic… that evokes the domestic horror novels of Shirley Jackson. This superb book stages an intensely powerful showdown.”
—The Wall Street Journal
“Upadhyay . . . illuminates the shadow corners of his characters’ psyches, as well as the complex social and political realities of life in Nepal, with equal grace.”
“Upadhyay’s characters linger. They are captured with such concise, illuminating precision that one begins to feel that they might just be real.”
The Christian Science Monitor

Product Details
ISBN: 9781641294720
ISBN-10: 1641294728
Publisher: Soho Press
Publication Date: January 7th, 2025
Pages: 768
Language: English