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Sunjeev Sahota Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Ours Are the Streets (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Year of the Runaways (2015)Description / Buy at Amazon
China Room (2021)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Spoiled Heart (2024)Description / Buy at Amazon

Sunjeev Sahota is a literary fiction author from the United Kingdom that is best known for his 2021 novel “China Room.”

As one of the leading lights of British literature in the modern era, he was raised in Derbyshire. The author went to Imperial College in London from where he graduated with a bachelor’s in Mathematics. He would then move to Sheffield where he worked in the insurance industry.

It was while he lived in Sheffield that he took the time and started writing on the weekends and in the evenings. He published “Ours Are the Streets” his debut novel in 2011.

The novel is the story of a Muslim boy that is alienated and then radicalized, which resulted in a range of diverse debates on morality, migration, and terror in Britain. The novel would become a critically acclaimed work and “The Times” called it a moral and extraordinary work of real power and intelligence.
Less than two years later, Sunjeev made “Granta Magazine’s” list of Best Young British Novelists. Soon after, he quit his job to become a professional author.

Sahota was eighteen when he read his first novel in Salman Rushdie’s “Midnight’s Children.” This would mark the beginning of his literary journey that resulted in Rushdie the celebrated Indian author endorsing “The Year of the Runaways,” his second novel.

The novel follows the life and times of several young immigrants living in a small house in Sheffield. They struggle to find a sense of home and belonging, even as they seek to forge a new life.

This was the work that got Sunjeev Sahota shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, get nominated for the Dylan Thomas Prize, and win the Southbank Sky Arts and the Encore Awards.

While Sahota writes in a very familiar format, his works are not ordinary. From hidden labor working hard behind the takeaway restaurants in Sheffield, to contemporary India’s social dislocation, to how a radicalized generation responds to the challenges of British society, he pens it all.

He tackles some of the most concerning political and social concerns of our times.

Set in Northern England, these stories would influence the themes of most of his later works.

Even though Sunjeev Sahota does not have any kind of writing degree or creative writing training he is now a teacher of creative writing. This was understandable given that when he first got started, it was all instinctive and organic.

He never stopped to think about structure or form just like many authors yet managed to find much success. However, now that he teaches creative writing students draft and edit their own stories which makes him more aware of the choices he instinctively made in his own prose.

Sunjeev Sahota currently makes his home in Sheffield and shuttles all over the world as he has a huge itinerary of literary work. He is also a writer in residence at Leeds Beckett University and has promoted contemporary British literature while working with British Council.

Sahota also won the EU Prize for literature for which he had been nominated just before Brexit.

Sunjeev Sahota’s novel “The Year of the Runaways” is the story of an unforgettable woman and three young men that combine forces and move from India to England. They are hoping to find a new life and future, which will enable them to support their families too.

They end up at a dilapidated house in Sheffield in a dilapidated house. Former rickshaw driver Tarlochan keeps his mouth shut about his former life in India. Randeep and Avtar are middle-class boys who have to leave as their families slowly crumbled under the weight of terrible economic conditions.

Randeep managed to snag a visa wife and learns that her cupboards are filled with her husband’s clothes in preparation for when immigration officials could come knocking.

The story unfolds over one year in which the destinies of the several characters become intricately entwined. They must depend on each other like never before if they are to break free of a dark past even as they confront the realities of immigrant life.

“China Room” by Sunjeev Sahota is a transfixing novel about two very interesting characters. One wants to free himself from the struggles of life in the Indian diaspora and the other from the expectations of women in Punjab during the 20th century.

In 1929 Punjab, we meet a young bride named Mehar, who is trying to get to know her new husband. Together with her sisters they had been married to three brothers on the same day and at the same ceremony.

They now spend most of their days sequestered far away from their husbands as they live and work in the China room. They are only allowed to come out when summoned by Mai, their domineering mother-in-law.

Strong-willed and curious, Mehar is trying to piece together the secrets Mehar may be hiding. From underneath her veil, she studiously chronicles the voices of the men and their callused hands when she serves them tea.

It is not long before she sees something that may indicate which of the men might be her husband. This information sets in motion a series of events that will put some lives at risk.

As the early stirrings of the Indian independence movement begin to sprout, Mehar needs to check her desires against the danger and reality of her circumstances.

Sunjeev Sahota’s novel Ours Are the Streets is the story of Imtiaz, a lazy and entitled man at best and a psychologically and emotionally abusive man at worst. He has led a life of privilege as his taxi-driving father works hard to provide for the family.

Rebecca, his lovely wife had gotten pregnant very young and is in love with him for an inexplicable reason.

When Imtiaz heads to Pakistan to attend the burial of his father, he gets entangled with a bad crowd. He makes friends with a lazy and selfish man named Aaqui, who spends much of his time reading jihadi propaganda.

Eventually, Aaquil and Imtiaz go under the tutelage of a radical teacher who tells them that their destiny is to become jihadis. In fact, one of their friends dies as a suicide bomber as they watch.

It seems everything is falling apart as Imtiaz becomes a paranoid man who isolates everyone that loves him.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Sunjeev Sahota

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