PRETI TANEJA

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PRAISE FOR 'AFTERMATH'

Aftermath is a major landmark in British narrative non-fiction. It’s a beautiful and profoundly important account of creative writing teaching as a radical act of trust and interrogation of power; its anti-racist and abolitionist stance makes it a vitally important as well as deeply moving book to read now in these dismal days for the British political project. It is fearless in the way it shows its agonised workings as it unfolds into a complex map of grief.’ Max Porter

 

‘Astonishing. Radical, beautiful, broken, intimate. A surge. A yearning. A tribute. An indictment. You won't read another book like this ever. Taneja's attempt to wrestle with so much, with radical empathy, survivor's guilt, politics – is a masterclass in literary brilliance.’ Nikesh Shukla

 

‘It takes a rare talent to respond to a shattering act of violence by reassembling the pieces in a way that refuses easy explanations or platitudes, but is illuminating, daring, world-expanding. Essential, in the truest sense of the word.’ Daniel Trilling

 

‘This is a remarkable book: generous, searching, insightful and searingly intelligent as it draws out the complex relationship between writing and terror, language and the unspeakable, trauma and event.’ Olivia Sudjic

 

Aftermath is a book that’s almost impossible to categorise: it sits in a tradition of bereavement literature; it sits with poetry. There is no fake moralising in its pages, just Taneja patiently walking us through the wreckage of unimaginable grief, noticing everything, lifting up the rubble, she makes us question everything we know and hold fast – a courageous and brilliant book.’ Mona Arshi

 

‘A study, a song, a calling – Taneja’s work offers a crucial and radical account of control, conviction, complicity and trauma.’ Eley Williams

 

Aftermath is not just a personal reckoning with tragedy, it’s a piercing inquiry into the ways criminality is perceived, and yet what Taneja does so skilfully is carefully unpack the complex systems violence emerges from. This is an inspired book fortified with acute contemplation and courage, a book born out of a love for the world and the people in it.’ Anthony Anaxagorou

 

‘Aftermath is one of the most profound, urgent and thought-provoking books I've read in years. Taneja makes of the already capacious creative non-fiction form one that is all her own, and which enquires, with devastating and poetic precision, into the connections between language, violence, structural racism, the purposes of reading and writing fiction, and so much more. She invites the reader to share in her enquiry to narrate the unnarratable, and, through doing so, to locate a genuinely radical form of hope.’ Clare Fisher

 

‘In this stunning book, light bleeds into darkness. An astute indictment of our carceral system and the violence it perpetuates, it is also a compassionate meditation on our interconnected lives. Taneja blurs the lines between literary genres so that the divisions between ‘us’ and ‘them’ also blur. She invites us to grieve and yet still be angry enough to demand change – to ask deep structural questions and to imagine new possibilities for justice. I was challenged, inspired and grateful for every word.’ Tessa McWatt

 

‘This searing abolitionist work sees, and refuses, other prisons too – of narrative-for-hire, racial shame, the trauma industrial complex, cause and effect. It tries to convince no one of nothing, to confess nothing to no one. Instead it breaks sentences and pages open, makes language rush into you (you are an estuary, the dam is gone). Its shape is unmappable. It lives on as a drumming in your head.’ Maria Tumarkin

 

‘A tremendous feat of scholarship, of historical interlacing, of contemporary criticism, of literary examination, of ethical clarity and personal interrogation and, most indelibly, of grieving.’ Gina Apostol

Aftermath is a book of extraordinary heart and intellectual force that probes the power of trauma and interrogates the ideologically inflected meanings of terrorism. Its achievement lies in its generosity and intimacy, and, crucially, in how it shows the way traumatic rupture can occur amid the less visible but equally pernicious forces of systemic violence. - Arin Keeble, LA Review of Books

PRAISE FOR 'WE THAT ARE YOUNG'

 

‘Revelatory. Urgent and irresistible. … One of the most exquisite and original novels of the year.’ (The Sunday Times)

 

We that are young is like nothing else. Its daring is outrageous.’ (Literary Review)

 

‘Urgent and exhilarating… We that are young cuts rage with poetry and produces a memorable national epic.’ (The TLS)

 

‘Brilliant… finely crafted… Taneja has given us that rarest of beasts: a page-turner that is also unabashedly political.’  (The Guardian)

 

‘A remarkable picture of contemporary India… Taneja’s sensuous writing brings women’s predicaments to life – [and issues] a chilling warning.’  (The Irish Times)

 

‘Taneja’s novel is … a dazzlingly original reading of [King Lear] and a full novel in its own right. A masterpiece.’  (The Spectator)

 

‘Fearlessly carves a territory of its own…a work of epic scope and depth.’                                                   (Publisher’s Weekly – STARRED REVIEW)

 

‘Issues of gender and generation spearhead the conflict in British-born Taneja’s impressive first work of fiction… Engaging, relevant, and very dark.’

(Kirkus Reviews – STARRED REVEIW)  

 

“Taneja’s stunning debut brims with familial jealousy, sexual tension, political turmoil, and shocking violence.”

(Library Journal - STARRED REVIEW)

 

‘A novel on the grand scale but not grandiose: wide in its cultural reference, profound in its resonance, lofty in moral judgement… We that are young is as remarkable to the ear as it is revelatory to the soul.’ (Desmond Elliott Prize)

 

We that are young is a powerful, engrossing chronicle of family and politics in contemporary India, perfectly constructed, magnificently written by a novelist with a silver ear and a golden voice.’ (Jim Crace)

 

'The absolute mastery of Taneja's narrative style and the precision of her language is unforgettable.' (LA Review of Books)

 

We That Are Young is a richly compelling and vividly peopled novel. Preti Taneja’s confidence and skill is majestic.”  (Sarah Perry)

 

‘Utterly absorbing, vital and ambitious.’ (Irenosen Okojie)

 

‘Intense, detailed and engrossing… a call to arms for social change.’  (The Asian Review of Books)

 

‘In a brilliant, sharp adaptation, Preti Taneja shows her profound understanding not just of Shakespeare and India, but of human nature itself. Heartbreaking. A poetic tour de force.’ (Vishal Bhardwaj)

 

‘With We that are young Preti Taneja has written an enthralling, brave, and very important book.’  (Maureen Freely)

 

We that are young… paints a picture of India we won’t easily forget. An instant classic.’  (The Times of India)

 

‘Taneja maintains layers in her writing that overreach the simple fantasies to which we are accustomed …. A shining achievement.’

(The White Review)