Snowfed Waters

Snowfed Waters

Jane Wilson-Howarth






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(Paperback | ISBN 9789386338211 | 296 pages | February 2017)


Deserted by her husband and forced out of her job as a schoolteacher, Sonia Swayne flees the sullen climes of Cambridge, England, to work for a charity which trains teachers in the plains of Nepal. She ends up on the green, exotic island of Rajapur in the middle of the Karnali river. Armed only with an amulet and a mantra, and vague stories of an ancestor who lived in Kanpur and died during the Revolt of 1857, she finds herself among people and in a culture very different from her own.

Guliya Tharu, Sonia’s host in Nepal, is forever befuddled by her jumpy guest; Guliya’s young daughter Moti spoils her with ‘bad tea’ in the mornings and takes her on an epic pilgrimage to a holy shrine; while the handsome and courteous Rekraj, a colleague, acts as her local guardian, and protects Sonia from spicy food and his lecherous cousins. Nursing a low self-esteem and umpteen anxieties about her new surroundings, Sonia gingerly navigates the peculiar yet charming customs, the spirituality and the spontaneity of her hosts. As Sonia’s bonds with her newfound family grow, and she falls in love with the countryside, she gains new perspectives, which allows her to fully embrace not only her own flawed self but also the people around her.

A fictional sequel to the acclaimed memoir A Glimpse of Eternal Snows, Snowfed Waters is a moving story of two cultures, false assumptions and of the gradual dawning of self-awareness.


Click here to read an excerpt from the book.


‘The author’s chief strength lies in her observation of Nepali culture—she is careful to avoid a patronising “them and us” perspective. Couple her sensitive approach with a dramatically unfolding plot and breezy, easy style, and readers clamouring for more since the release of her first Nepal book, A Glimpse of Eternal Snows, are bound to be satisfied.’
—Saumya Balsari, author of Summer of Blue and The Cambridge Curry

Snowfed Waters is a great read. It is an engaging love story; at times a fast-moving thriller; a thoughtful account of cultures that are baffling to one another; and a vividly detailed and observant travel book—all in one.’
—Victor Watson, author of the Paradise Barn Quartet

‘Her great skill is to have taken a place she knows intimately and to have re-populated it with a cast of characters who leap from the pages into your memory. This book is far more than “travel literature”, it is a heartfelt examination of what it means to be an outsider—either as an individual or an entire nation. An enthralling and absorbing read.’
—Tim Hooper (Customer review on

‘Written in controlled prose, Jane-Wilson Howrath’s Snowfed Waters, the novel where Sonia Swayne’s sojurn in Nepal is brought to life, is a remarkable example of culturespeak, the trajectories showing along familiar and the untrodden routes.
—Assam Tribune

'... Snowfed Waters is a fictional sequel to an acclaimed memoir A Glimpse of Eternal Snow... but the novel stands its ground on its own. A tale of courage and compassion; unlearning the past and embracing the future is magnificently woven that keeps you hooked throughout!' —The Tribune

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About the author

Jane Wilson-Howarth

Jane Wilson-Howarth is a medical doctor and a zoologist by training, and lectures and writes on international health and staying healthy while travelling. She tweets travel health tips as @longdropdoc. Jane has worked on child survival and maternal health projects in various parts of Asia for eleven years. Six of those years were in Nepal […]

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