Anyone who has reacted with horror to the recent brutal rape in India that inspired mass protests, or, rather, anyone period, should check out C.Y. Gopinath’s brilliant satirical novel The Book of Answers.
I had the great pleasure of working as Gopi’s agent as he first conceived of and then wrote this book, and while his incredible prose was why I took him on to be my first client, and the way The Book of Answers came together into a incredible novel is why it ended up being published and nominated for awards, I don’t know that I fully appreciated until now the extent to which Gopi is also blessed with incredible prescience as well.
The Book of Answers about a man, Patros, who comes into possession of one of the most coveted items in the world, a book that contains all the answers to all of mankind’s problems. Patros wants nothing to do with it. He ditches it at a junk shop, only to see an Indian politician use the book for his own nefarious gain. Patros has to decide whether he’s going to turn a blind eye to the world’s problems or regain his youthful idealism, an idealism that hinges on women’s rights and standing up to atrocities like the one that has recently galvanized protestors.
This is a novel of right now, I think it’s a book that people will return to read in the future, and I can’t recommend it highly enough.
Add it on Goodreads or buy it here.
Looks interesting. I guess I'll have to read it to find out why he's prescient 🙂
Thank you so much, Nathan, for this completely unexpected accolade. The Book of Answers is set to be launched all over Thailand by the end of January, so it does seem like it has a little life in it yet. I am working on two other books — but by far the most interesting is the third. After a number of American readers wrote to me that The Book of Answers reminded them of contemporary American politics, I am attempting something I doubt any writer would have been foolish enough to try — recasting the entire story in an American context. It is turning out to be a riveting and thrilling exercise. Patros is now Daniel Hoyt, a resident of Astoria, Queens. The story is changing in wonderful and subtle ways — and the book is being reborn as The Book of Hoyt. Maybe this time some US publisher will find it of interest.
And — I had no idea I was your first client!!
Collin Piprell says
Here's my own review of Gopi''s book from July 2011:
https://www.collinpiprell.com/the-book-of-answers/. Excellent book.
I agree Nathan, the collective trauma of something like this sends me searching too.
BTW – Thanks for your blog, as an unpublished romance author I return to it regularly…just so much good stuff here.
Melanie Schulz says
I was just thinking about that the other day- looking back at which novels were the perfect spokesmen for past eras and wondering which novels are the perfect ones for ours.