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Geetanjali Shree: Read everything you need to know about the first Indian author to receive the International Booker Prize for her Hindi book

Geetanjali Shree, a Hindi author from Mainpuri in Uttar Pradesh, is the first Indian to be nominated for, much alone win, among the most prestigious literary prize honours.

Shree, the author of three novels and many story collections, is the first Hindi novelist to win the International Booker Prize for her novel, ‘Tomb of Sand,’ also known as ‘Ret Samadhi.’ With this accomplishment, ‘Tomb of Sand’ becomes the first novel in any Indian language to be awarded the renowned International Booker Prize.

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Shree’s work has been translated into various languages, including English, French, German, Serbian, and Korean, and she has earned and been nominated for several honours and fellowships.’Tomb of Sand’ is now one of her first books to be released in the United Kingdom.

Reflecting on becoming the first work of fiction in Hindi to be shortlisted for the Booker Prize, the 64-year-old novelist said it felt fantastic to be a part of that history.

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The judges hailed Shree’s book, which was translated into English by Daisy Rockwell, a painter, writer, and translator, as a “loud and compelling novel,” and it fought with five other titles from around the world for the renowned 50,000 pounds literary prize.

The Novel’s Plot: Tomb of Sand

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The novel is set in northern India and follows an 80-year-old widow who falls into a severe depression following her husband’s death, and then emerges to find a new lease on life. To her family’s dismay, she persists in visiting Pakistan, addressing the unsolved anguish of her adolescent Partition memories while re-evaluating what it means to be a mother, a daughter, a woman, and a feminist.

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