A History of Burning

Janika Oza author


Publisher:Vintage Publishing

Published:4th May '23


Available for immediate dispatch.


'A remarkable debut . . . haunting, symphonic' New York Times

Pirbhai is only thirteen when he is taken across the sea to East Africa on a vague promise of work. He grows up fast, and when he meets fierce, loyal Sonal, they know instantly they are one another's future.

Their family expands and thrives in the orderly, white-washed city of Kampala. But their granddaughters - proud Latika, diligent Mayuri and open-hearted Kiya - come of age in a divided nation. Finally forced to flee the brutality of Idi Amin, the family scatters across the world.

They take with them a favourite rolling pin, a handful of photos, the taste, memory and language of home. They carry their secrets - past and present - too. One of which, when it comes out, will reveal the true cost of what gets left behind.

A History of Burning is a gorgeous family portrait of love, survival, inheritance - and the eternal search for home.

One family's search for a better life, for fans of Half of a Yellow Sun, Homegoing and Pachinko

'Vast and intricate, alight with love and contained fury . . . A book I want to press into readers' hands and discuss for hours' Megha Majumdar, author of A BURNING

A remarkable debut . . . skillfully interrogates sweeping themes of survival, inheritance, immigration, colonialism and racism . . . Oza's narrative traverses almost a century of time, four generations of family, five continents and multiple languages . . . The result is a haunting, symphonic tale that speaks to the nuanced complexities of class and trauma -- S Kirk Walsh * New York Times *
'Captivates from the outset . . . blazes fiercely' * Economist *
In intimate domestic scenes and scenes of societies in turmoil, [Oza] displays a sure-handed ability to write at both small and large scale and to portray with deep sympathy the universal human desire to find "a little place to simply exist, freely, and with dignity." An ambitious family drama skilfully explores the bonds of kinship and the yearning for peace and security * Kirkus (starred review) *
[An] impressive debut * Publisher's Weekly *
This striking epic combines powerful characters of different generations, compelling storytelling,dramatic settings and conflicts, and thoughtful explorations of displacement and belonging, family ties, citizenship, loyalty, loss, and resilience * Booklist (starred review) *
A riveting testament to home, exile, survival, and inheritance -- Lisa Ko, author of THE LEAVERS
As transfixing as a flame -- Rachel Khong, author of GOODBYE, VITAMIN
A History of Burning is that rare epic that manages to retain both its sweep and its intimacy... This is a beautiful book, unflinching yet deeply engaged -- Omar El Akkad, author of AMERICAN WAR
[Oza's] writing reminds people that vulnerability and openness are the only ways we can save each other. A History of Burning is the art we need now -- Megan Giddings, author of LAKEWOOD
An astonishing debut -- Shyam Selvadurai, author of MANSIONS OF THE MOON
Intimate and epic...this book is a triumph -- Shruti Swamy, author of THE ARCHER
Ambitious in scope and dazzlingly executed, A History of Burning is a marvelous debut. A tour de force -- Sharon Bala, author of THE BOAT PEOPLE
[A] highly accomplished debut novel... a multi-stranded, intergenerational, poly-vocal epic that charts the struggles of an Indian family over the course of almost a century * Economist *

ISBN: 9781784744793

Dimensions: 240mm x 162mm x 36mm

Weight: 629g

400 pages