Books of the Month: March 2016


Tales of the Metric System

Imraan Coovadia


The Hangman’s Journal

Shashi Warrier

ISBN: 9789385755668 | Price: `499

Also available as e-Book: 9789385755675


ISBN: 9789385755804 | Price: `299

Also available as e-Book: 9789385755811

‘With its elegant prose and ruthless determination to lead you to the truth, Tales of the Metric System is about as good a book as you are likely to read on South Africa’s transition from struggle to power.’

Sunday Times

In ten chapters that describe ten days spread over four decades—from 1970 to 2010—this utterly compelling novel gives us a rich and intimate history of South Africa. From a Natal boarding school in the seventies and Soviet spies in London in the eighties to the 1995 Rugby World Cup final in Johannesburg and intrigue in the Union Buildings, the seat of the South African government, Tales of the Metric System shows how events that are seemingly unrelated but in fact interconnected in many different ways send tidal waves through the lives of ordinary and extraordinary South Africans alike.

Playwrights, politicians, philosophers and thieves, all caught in their individual stories, burst from the pages of Tales of the Metric System as it measures modern South Africa’s story in its own remarkable units of imagination.


‘A meditation on nothing less than the human condition itself...a work of understated but awesome power’


For over thirty years, Janardhanan Pillai was the aratchar, the hangman, on call for the prison authorities in the kingdom of Travancore and, after Independence, the states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. After the courts had passed a death sentence, it was left to him to put the condemned man to death, swiftly and clinically. Each time he returned from the gallows, he told himself that it would be the last time. But he went back, a hundred and seventeen times.

Based on Pillai’s life, The Hangman’s Journal takes us into the mind of a man struggling to come to terms with his dharma, his conscience, and his shame. A meditation on life and death and what it means to end a life, this haunting novel is one of the finest works of contemporary Indian fiction.

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ISBN: 9789385755743

Price: `299

Also available as e-Book: 9789385755750


Two under the Indian Sun

A Memoir

Jon and Rumer Godden

‘A charming book, memorable…’

Sunday Times

When World War I began in 1914, sisters Jon and Rumer Godden—aged six and seven respectively—left England to join their parents in Narayangunj, a village in Bengal. There, the sisters led an idyllic life: they put up plays; wrote books; and spent summers in Coonoor, Mussoorie, Kashmir and Darjeeling. And, in a memorable journey, they spent a week on the Hooghly, sailing home from Calcutta via the Sundarbans. It was also in Narayangunj that the idyll soured—just before they left for England in 1919—and the sisters grew apart after a fistfight over the affections of a man.

Written with a child’s candour and wide-eyed sense of wonder, Two under the Indian Sun is not just a remarkable chronicle of a shared childhood, but also a vivid picture of everyday life in India of the early 1900s.

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ISBN: 9789385755040

Price: `350


The Silk Road

A Biography

Jonathan Clements

The Silk Road is not a place, but a journey, a route from the edges of the Mediterranean to the central plains of China, through high mountains and inhospitable deserts.

The Silk Road: A Biography not only offers the reader a chronological outline of the region’s development, but also provides an invaluable introduction to its languages, literature and arts. It takes a comprehensive and illuminating look at the rich history of this dynamic and little-known region, and provides an easy-to-use reference source. Clements pays particular attention to the fascinating historical sites which feature on any visitor’s itinerary and special emphasis is also given to the writings and reactions of travellers through the centuries.

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ISBN: 9789385755859

Price: `399


Growing Older without Feeling Old

On Vitality and Ageing

Rudi Westendorp

Translated by Stephen Lehmann

‘Eminently reasonable. At a time when too much of what is written about the elderly is depressingly downbeat, dwelling only on decline and dementia, Westendorp’s book provides a valuable and cheering alternative.’

Daily Mail

What do longer life spans mean for the way we organise our societies? How can people best prepare themselves for living considerably longer? Does it help to eat less, or to take hormones, vitamins, or minerals? And what can we learn from old people who remain full of vitality, despite illness and infirmity?

Growing Older without Feeling Old is the definitive book on a key issue for the twenty-first century, written by one of the world’s leading experts in geriatric medicine. Combining medical, biological, economic, and sociological insights, Rudi Westendorp explores the causes of the ageing revolution and explains how we can greet it with confidence and enjoy leading longer, healthier, and more productive lives than ever before.

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ISBN: 9789385755903

Price: `599



A History

Rod Phillips

“Rod Phillips has created what will be the standard book on the cultural history of alcohol. A significant contribution.”

— David Fahey, Miami University of Ohio

“An enthralling piece of research that considers the history of alcohol from the ancient world right through to trends in modern regulation and consumption.”

— Jancis Robinson, wine expert and editor of The Oxford Companion to Wine

Whether as wine, beer, or spirits, alcohol has had a constant and often controversial role in social life. In his innovative book on the attitudes toward and consumption of alcohol, Rod Phillips surveys a 9,000-year cultural and economic history, uncovering the tensions between alcoholic drinks as healthy staples of daily diets and as objects of social, political, and religious anxiety. In the urban centers of Europe and America, where it was seen as healthier than untreated water, alcohol gained a foothold as the drink of choice, but it has been regulated by governmental and religious authorities more than any other commodity. As a potential source of social disruption, alcohol created volatile boundaries of acceptable and unacceptable consumption and broke through barriers of class, race, and gender.

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·         We are happy to announce that Speaking Tiger author and publishing advisor, Jerry Pinto, was among the nine recipients of the Yale University's Windham-Campbell Prize. The winners will each receive $150,000 to support their work.

·         Speaking Tiger launches ‘Framed as a Terrorist. My 14 Years Struggle to Prove My Innocence' by Mohammad Aamir Khan with Nandita Haksar. The book was released by Kapil Sibal, followed by a discussion with Nandita Haksar, Feroz Khan Ghazi, Shabnam Hashmi and Mohammad Aamir Khan. Click here

·         Speaking Tiger author Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar was present at the Walking Book Fair in Pakur, Jharkhand; on Sunday, 28-February-2016. He signed copies of his latest book 'The Adivasi Will Not Dance: Stories'. Click here

Media Coverage

                We have received excellent media coverage and reviews on ‘Speaking Tiger’ titles. Click Here to view our latest reviews.




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