A State of Freedom by Neil Mukherjee

A State of Freedom

Neil Mukherjee

Set in contemporary India, these stories give the reader a real sense of how life plays out for the poorest members of society. Though visiting deprived communities caused my moral compass to twitch, I couldn't tear my eyes away. Moving and fascinating in equal measure; some readers may find scenes depicting cruelty to animals upsetting.

Extract

Something Soni had said suddenly appears, like a light she didn't know existed around a corner: 'Your life is in bits and pieces - a little bit here, a little bit there. One year in Dumri, another year somewhere else, then another year yet somewhere else again ....' Milly disagrees silently, vociferously. Her life is not fragmented. To her, it has unity and coherence. She gives it those qualities. How can movement from one place to another break you? Are you a terracotta doll, easily broken in transit? But she can no longer give Soni the answer, which has occurred to her so many years later.

Parallels
  • The Death of Vishnu by Manil Suri
  • The Year of the Runaways by Sunjeev Sahota
  • Slumdog Millionaire - the film
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Violence