Return to India

New Book: Return to India

I am working on Book Number 2, which will hopefully be out later this summer.  It is a memoir called, “Return to India.”  It will be published by Rain Tree (how I love that name), which Rupa calls “its new premium hardcover imprint” here

You can view my title in the Raintree catalogue here

The reason I put up this post was a note from a friend– okay, my husband– this morning that said, “Good timing of the book.”  He was responding to an article in the New York Times about immigrants.

I can say it here because hardly anyone sees this site.  My grand ambition with this book is to open the floodgates of reverse migration.  People write books for the same reason they start companies or join politics: to effect change.  I may not effect change on any grand scale, but I can dream, can’t I? My blousy dream, the reason I wrote ‘Return to India,’ is to cause million of Indians who are currently living abroad to return to India and become contributing residents.  There, I’ve said it and blown it into the wind.  A fluttering butterfly’s wing causing a tsunami millions of miles away.

The book will hopefully be published in August.  Rupa has rights for the Indian subcontinent only.


  1. Shobaji, I just finished reading Monsoon Diary and thoroughly enjoyed the vivid depictions of people, places and food.

    I will try to get a copy of your new book from India.


  2. Is your new book available in Australia? Just purchased my own copy of “Monsoon Diary” which I had previously borrowed from the local library.


  3. Hi Shoba, I read your Return to India (K@Wharton article) with great interest and I look forward to the book. The only suggestions I have are:
    1. Your K@W article seemed to focus, principally, on the theme of “economic/opportunistic” reasons to stay in the USA and “family/social” reasons to return home. (The family/social is a biggie but I’m using it as a catch all: old parents, kids cultural/social development, family ‘feelings’, the whole lot.)
    2. People may want to return for other reasons: (a) tired of waiting, now 8-10 years, for green card; (b) have large family businesses or have been running India-based business from the US and it’s time to get back; (c) better job – yes, it’s possible; (d) “sanyas” argument – to start or join NGO and devote life to service; (e) religion: “we are great bhaktas of Guru XYZ, and cannot ignore his clarion call”. I would sure hope that your book addresses these points; (f) ABCD/xBCD kids themselves want to now explore the “property” that India has become … and many others.
    3. Do we really need to wax eloquent or make value judgements on others? Is it really “unnatural” for that gutka-chewing-cowherd Bihari to develop (sincerely and honestly) a taste for wine; “unnatural” merely because there are no vineyards in Bihar? (Would you say the same about an Indian villagers who, upon moving to an Indian city, switch from dhoti-langoti to a suit, because his little hamlet didn’t have a Savile Row? And would this not be doublethink when you pride yourself on your ability to switch between a sari and a pantsuit? Not a personal affront, mind you; you look lovely in either.)
    4. Can we move beyond the “viscerals” (we are all aware of the sights and smells and sounds and bells …); precious book pages are meant for your precious (new) ideas. Give us what we want Shoba!

    In any event, looking forward to the book.



  4. Shoba,

    Who is publishing this in the U.S? We have been considering returning to India for the past couple of years, but haven’t been able to take the plunge. Perhaps reading your book will help us get over the hump! Look forward to it.


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