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LOVE THE DARK DAYS
Set in India, England, Trinidad and a weekend in St Lucia, with Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott Love the Dark Days (Peepal Tree Press) follows the story of a girl, Poppet, of mixed middle-class Hindu and Elite Muslim parentage from post-independent India to her family's migration to post-colonial Trinidad. Profoundly raw, unflinching, layered, but not without threads of humour and perceived absurdity, Love the Dark Days reassembles the story of a disintegrating Empire.
REVIEWS - LOVE THE DARK DAYS
"I was transported by this gem of a memoir, written over even years by an award-winning, Indian-born journalist, dubbed the "Jon Snow" of Trinidad. Monique Roffey is spot on when she calls it a "blaze of a book." set in her home nation, but also in St Lucia, India and London, it's a multi-layered ac- count of a woman growing to feminist maturity while grappling with the ongoing traumas that result from her turbulent childhood. With many memorable characters, including her formidable grandmother Burrimummy, it also features Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott, who was a mentor of her work.
—Caroline Sanderson - The Bookseller
"Love the Dark Days is a troubled and troubling book, a heady brew that stays with you." – The Observer.
"A beautiful, beautiful book … a wonderful read." – Michael Portillo Times Radio
"A blaze of a book, a Caribbean feminist memoir that examines inherited patriarchal abuse of women and societal norms brought from the Old World to the New. This exquisitely written memoir examines familial love and fateful blood ties while scrutinising, with compassion, a flawed patriarch and magus too, Derek Walcott. Mathur deftly yokes together parallel worlds, colonial India and post-colonial Trinidad. Both worlds are dark, and both worlds hurt women." — Monique Roffey Winner of Costa Book Award 2020
"This brave and inspiring feminist critique of patriarchy and gender oppression has wonderful promise as a biting movie adaptation for the #MeToo era." —Hollywood Reporter.
"A compelling memoir of the binding power of love and the liberating beauty of forgiveness." —Earl Lovelace
"Moving from pre-Independence India to Trinidad and London, we see the growing pains of the author as she decodes her relationships with her glamorous parents, her beautiful piano-playing authoritative grandmother and her two siblings. In a world between poverty and privilege, she is guided by Derek Walcott, and Naipaul is ever-present. Ultimately, she has to find her own voice, her own truth and reconciliation. A window into a world rich in history that few know about. A compelling read."—Shrabani Basu
IRA MATHUR is an Indian-born Trinidadian award-winning multimedia journalist with degrees in Literature, Law and Journalism. She is currently the Trinidad Guardian's longest-running columnist and has freelanced for The Guardian (UK) and the BBC.
In 2021 Mathur was longlisted for the Bath Novel Award for her unpublished novel Touching Dr Simone. Mathur gained diplomas in creative writing at the University of East Anglia/Guardian and The Faber Academy. She launched her debut Love The Dark Days (Peepal Tree Press ) in London in July 2022 at Waterstones in Victoria and The Nehru Centre. The book has had glowing reviews from The Bookseller, Michael Portillo – Times Radio, The Observer, The Hollywood Reporter, Monique Roffey- Costa Book Winner 2020, and Shrabani Basu – author of Victoria and Abdul. Her website www.irasroom.org consists of over 800 columns and multimedia content.