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Western Lane: Longlisted For The Booker Prize 2023

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Western Lane: Longlisted For The Booker Prize 2023 by Chetna Maroo

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  • Booker Prize 2023 Longlist
  • Booker Prize 2023 Shortlist

By Chetna Maroo

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A beautiful and moving first novel about grief, sisterhood and a teenage girl’s struggle to transcend herself.

Eleven-year-old Gopi has been playing squash since she was old enough to hold a racket. When her mother dies, her father enlists her in a quietly brutal training regimen, and the game becomes her world. Slowly, she grows apart from her sisters. Her life is reduced to the sport, guided by its rhythms: the serve, the volley, the drive, the shot and its echo.

But on the court, she is not alone. She is with her pa. She is with Ged, a thirteen-year-old boy with his own formidable talent. She is with the players who have come before her. She is in awe.

An indelible coming-of-age story, Chetna Maroo’s first novel captures the ordinary and annihilates it with beauty. Western Lane is a valentine to innocence, to the closeness of sisterhood, to the strange ways we come to know ourselves and each other.

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