Author/singer-songwriter and “booktrack” innovator Tanuja Desai Hidier was recently named the recipient of the 2015 South Asia Book Award for her novel “Bombay Blues.” The award-winning sequel to “Born Confused,” crossover/adult novel “Bombay Blues” sees heroine Dimple Lala journey from New York to India.
Set against the backdrop of Mumbai’s contemporary indie music and arts scene, “Bombay Blues” continues to explore everything this diasporic generation faces today with a heady mix of uncertainty and determination, despair and inspiration, haunting loss and revelatory love… as the metropolis of her motherland becomes Dimple’s challenging muse and partner on a journey into the unmapped — and unexpected, said a press release.
Tanuja Desai Hidier is an author/singer-songwriter born and raised in the USA and now based in London. Her first novel,Born Confused – the first-ever South Asian American coming of age novel, was named an American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults and became a landmark work. USA Today commended it as “compelling and witty, gives voice to a new generation of Americans, a rare and daring portrayal.” In starred reviews, Publishers Weekly praised it as “absorbing and intoxicating, sure to leave a lasting impression,” and Kirkus Reviews called it “a breathtaking experience.”
Set in the context of New York City’s bhangra/underground club scene during the summer aspiring photographer Dimple Lala turns seventeen (and a summer of South Asian subculture’s rise into and intersect with the USA mainstream), Born Confused — hailed by Entertainment Weekly and Rolling Stone as one of the best YA novels of all time (on lists including such classics as To Kill a Mockingbird, The Catcher in the Rye, and Little Women) — gave voice to a new multicultural generation. Bombay Blues—the sequel, but also standalone novel—sees heroine Dimple Lala journey from NYC to India. Tanuja has also innovated the ‘booktrack’. The music video for “Heptanesia” from her album Bombay Spleen (original songs based on Bombay Blues) is currently airing on MTV Indies in India. Read more about Tanuja on her website.
Hidier grew up in Wilbraham, Mass., and moved to New York City after attending Brown University. During her NYC years, the Indian American author worked jobs as a copy editor, magazine writer/editor, interned at the Paris Review, was a hostess at a Tex Mex restaurant, worked as a secretary in the Whitney Museum’s Film & Video Department, and wrote and directed the award-winning short film “The Test.” Hidier is also the recipient of the James Jones First Novel Fellowship, and the London Writers/Waterstones Award. Her short stories have been included in numerous anthologies.