A Convergence of Solitudes

By (author): Anita Anand

A story of identity, connection and forgiveness, A Convergence of Solitudes shares the lives of two families across Partition of India, Operation Babylift in Vietnam, and two referendums in Quebec.

Sunil and Hima, teenage lovers, bravely defy taboos in pre-Partition India to come together as their country divides in two. They move across the world to Montreal and raise a family, but Sunil shows symptoms of schizophrenia, shattering their newfound peace. As a teenager, their daughter Rani becomes obsessed with Quebecois supergroup Sensibilité—and, in particular, the band’s charismatic, nationalistic frontman, Serge Giglio—whose music connects Rani to the province’s struggle for cultural freedom. A chance encounter leads Rani to babysit Mélanie, Serge’s adopted daughter from Vietnam, bringing her fleetingly within his inner circle.

Years later, Rani, now a college guidance counselor, discovers that Mélanie has booked an appointment to discuss her future at the school. Unmoved by her father’s staunch patriotism and her British mother’s bourgeois ways, Mélanie is struggling with deep uncertainty about her identity and belonging. As the two women’s lives become more and more intertwined, Rani’s fascination with Mélanie’s father’s music becomes a strange shadow amidst their friendship.

AUTHOR

Anita Anand

ANITA ANAND is an author, translator and language teacher from Montreal. She is the author of Swing in the House and Other Stories, which won the 2015 Concordia University First Book Prize and was shortlisted for the 2016 Relit Award for Fiction and the Montreal Literary Diversity Prize. Her novel, A Convergence of Solitudes, was nominated for the 2022 Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction and the 2023 Forest of Reading Evergreen Award. Her previous translations include Nirliit by Juliana Léveillé-Trudel, which was nominated for the 2018 John Glassco Prize, and Lightness by Fanie Demeule.


Reviews

“A serious and ambitious book that manages to weave together complicated strands of personal and cultural history, A Convergence of Solitudes is both a beautiful and compelling contemporary Canadian novel.” —The Miramichi Reader


“From the seed of a love-match marriage in Partition-era India, people from multiple cultures collide and converge amid the ferment of their new home’s late-20th century nationalist movement. It’s an ambitious act of narrative plate-spinning that Anand pulls off with aplomb. As the title’s echo of Hugh MacLennan hints, A Convergence of Solitudes presents a new way of looking at Quebec.” —Montreal Gazette


“A polyphonic novel that flits in and out of the consciousnesses of a central cast of characters, all of whom are united in a common search for belonging and meaning.” —That Shakespearean Rag


Awards

  • Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction 2022, Short-listed
  • Forest of Reading Evergreen Award 2023, Nominated
  • Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Awards 2022, Nominated
  • Independent Publisher Book Awards for Multicultural Fiction 2023, Winner
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    Details

    Dimensions:

    364 Pages
    7.90in * 5.20in * 1.00in
    440.00gr
    .65lb

    Published:

    May 17, 2022

    Publisher:

    Book*hug Press

    ISBN:

    9781771667449

    Book Subjects:

    FICTION / Cultural Heritage

    Featured In:

    All Books

    Language:

    eng

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