Douglas & McIntyre
The Silent Raga

Book details:

September 2007
ISBN 978-1-55365-309-7
5 1/2" x 8 1/2"
400 pages
Fiction FIC000000
$32.95 CAD


Douglas & McIntyre

The Silent Raga

In the literary tradition of Rohinton Mistry and Arundhati Roy, this ambitious debut novel is a moving tale of family, tradition, loss and reconciliation.

Meet Janaki and Mallika, two sisters from a middle-class Brahmin family in Madras, I

In the bestselling tradition of Rohinton Mistry and Arundhati Roy, "The Silent Raga" is a story of family, tradition, loss, and reconciliation.

"The Silent Raga" is the moving and ambitious debut novel from Ameen Merchant. Set in Madras, India, it tells the story of two sisters, Janaki and Yamuna, from a middle-class Brahmin family. After the death of their mother in a bus accident, the two sisters must negotiate their changing relationship with their father and their mother's sister, who is threatening to take their mother's place.

Janaki is a musical prodigy, sublimely gifted on the veena, but as she grows toward her eighteenth birthday, she becomes fearful of being entrapped in a marriage arranged for her by her father and her aunt. Eschewing the traditions of her family and her caste, she runs off with a Muslim Bollywood star, whom she marries. Years later Yamuna, now a programs counselor with the United States Information Services, receives a letter from Janaki, who is returning to Madras. In prose that resembles the rhythms and progression of an Indian raga, Ameen Merchant weaves a finely wrought story about family, loss, and reconciliation. He captures in rich detail the world of these Brahmin Indian women, a world restricted by caste and cultural rules but one teeming with colour, music and food, where dreams of Bollywood love and stardom brighten the spirit and relieve the daily grind. It is a story about the traditions that bind us and the sacrifices we must make along the road to our own individual destinies.

Ameen Merchant was born in Bombay and raised in Madras, India. "The Silent Raga" is his first novel. He lives in Vancouver where he program's music for the CBC's satellite Indian music channel. He is currently working on his next book.

About the Author

Ameen  Merchant

Ameen Merchant

Ameen Merchant was born in Bombay and raised in Madras, India. The Silent Raga is his first novel. He lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, where he is ...

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News & Events for The Silent Raga

  • Ameen Merchant Launches The Silent Raga in India Read more >>
  • Merchant in Montreal at the Blue Metropolis Literary Festival Read more >>
  • The Silent Raga Is Being Heard Read more >>
  • Meet first-time novelist Ameen Merchant at the Vancouver International Writer’s Festival Read more >>