Colaba, the southernmost tip of Mumbai—a bustling locality with the Gateway of India, the famous Taj Mahal Hotel, and Colaba Causeway, a shopper’s paradise—is the city’s most iconic neighbourhood. But barely 200 years ago, it was a rocky, jackal-infested island, separated from the rest of the great metropolis by a temperamental creek.
In this compelling biography, Shabnam Minwalla, journalist, author and long-time resident of the area, tells the tale of the unexpected forces that reshaped land and sea; and allowed this remote corner of Bombay-Mumbai to evolve into one of its liveliest, quirkiest neighbourhoods. Trying to figure out the exact area limits, she unravels accounts of colonial rivalries and dowry negotiations, and of shrewd industrialists who transformed the doomed island into the centre of trade during the cotton boom of the 1860s. She navigates the sometimes charming, sometimes seedy streets to track the area’s evolution from a retreat for British soldiers and sailors to a coveted residential area for the English and Indians alike. She digs into her childhood memories to introduce us to the eccentric Parsis of Cusrow Baug, the warm yet persistent shopkeepers and hawkers of the Causeway, the industrious Sindhis who pioneered co-operative housing societies, the colourful musicians, theatre artists and writers who frequented her corner of Colaba, and the Arabs who come there every year to witness the city’s monsoons. And in a moving section, she records how the neighbourhood rose like a phoenix from the ashes after the 26/11 terrorist attack.
Combining a remarkable flair for storytelling with sound journalistic groundwork, and drawing upon three generations of family memory, Shabnam paints an intimate and dynamic portrait of a great and fabled neighbourhood.
Eleven-year-old Nimmi Daruwala does not like her last name at all; but loves inventing utterly unusual words. Her best friend Sophia is now part of mean girl Alisha Dubash’s Evil Threevils, and the new drama teacher Miss Aatmaja has branded her the Troublemaker of Grade 6! But she finds unlikely friends by her side in the class nerds Diya and Kavya and the mysterious new student from America, Kabir. Join Nimmi as she gets into all sorts of adventures that will leave you guffawing+chortling=gaffortling.
Nimmi’s Spectabulous Schooldays: Will Grade 6 be as spectacular+fabulous=spectabulous as Nimmi thinks it will be?
Nimmi’s Dreadtastic Detective Days: Time for Nimmi to have a dreadful+fantastic=dreadtastic adventure as she learns to cook and solves a very mysterious mystery!
Nimmi’s Bizuper Birthday: A bizarre+super=bizuper twelfth birthday awaits Nimmi!
Nimmi Daruwala is back to school after a week of absence, thanks to some awful green-coloured jelly she ate, and it’s time for a dreadful+fantastic=dreadtastic adventure! While Nimmi was away, Principal Bakshi had two new ideas: beanbags for each class, and Cookaroo, a cooking competition in the school. But the beanbags in Nimmi’s class have burst and no one knows who did it; and Nimmi can only just about boil an egg. To top it all, Ms Atmaja is as ghastly as ever; and Sophia is now part of mean girl Alisha Dubash’s Evil Threevils. But Nimmi finds unlikely friends by her side in the class nerds Diya and Kavya;and a cooking partner in the mysterious new student from America, Kabir.
Will Nimmi and Kabir be able to present a decent dish at Cookaroo? And more importantly, will Nimmi be able to fulfil her ambition of becoming a detective and crack the case of the burst beanbag? Full of twists and turns Nimmi’s Dreadtastic Detective Days is so funny that it will have you guffawing+chortling=gaffortling
Eleven-year-old Nimmi Daruwala does not like her last name at all, nor Sumit, her chief tormentor and general pie-faced classmate. But she loves drama, Miss Tanvi, her drama teacher—and, most of all, inventing utterly unusual words. On the first day of Grade 6, Nimmi wakes up thinking it is going to be a spectacular+fabulous=spectabulous year. But starting with an ill-fitting skort, nothing goes right for her. Sumit is suddenly on the same school bus as her. Her best friend Sophia is talking in a strange singsong accent and is friendly with mean girl Alisha Dubash. And Nimmi’s favourite drama teacher has taken the year off. In her place there is the dull, pale-eyed Miss Aatmaja, who brands Nimmi the Troublemaker of Grade 6!
With jumping rubber spiders, tumbling candy coloured school furniture, a principal with one too many bright ideas, and a birthday party where almost everything goes wrong, Nimmi’s Spectabulous Schooldays is hilarious and dramatic and a story every schoolchild will relate to.