The Booker longlisted author of Gifted on Indian comics, shaping emotion through writing, and reading with a lazy eye.
What was your favourite book as a child and why?
The Borrowers. It mixed reality and fantasy so closely, and the characters’ struggle for autonomy is similar to being a child in an adult world. All that delicious hoarding, and the painful ending when the Ratcatcher smokes the Borrowers out of their home – you didn’t need to understand Holocaust metaphors to know that something horrific was going on.
I also was a great fan of the Amar Chitra Katha series of Indian comics, in which epics like the Mahabarata became pictorial wonders – featuring Sadhus who meditated in dense forests for decades at a time, and chariot-riding Gods and Goddesses in constant dialogue with mortal counterparts. Luscious stuff.