When Nikki takes a creative writing job at her local temple, with visions of emancipating the women of the community she left behind as a self-important teenager, she’s shocked to discover a group of barely literate women who have no interest in her ideals.
Yet to her surprise, the white dupatta of the widow hides more than just their modesty – these are women who have spent their lives in the shadows of fathers, brothers and husbands; being dutiful, raising children and going to temple, but whose inner lives are as rich and fruitful as their untold stories. But as they begin to open up to each other about womanhood, sexuality, and the dark secrets within the community, Nikki realises that the illicit nature of the class may place them all in danger.
East meets west and tradition clashes with modernity in a thought-provoking cross-cultural novel that might make you look again at the women in your life…
About the author
Balli Kaur Jaswal was born in Singapore and has lived all around the world, including Australia, Japan, Russia, the Philippines, Turkey, the US and the UK, where she was a writer in residence at UEA. Her novel, Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows, was inspired by the time she spent in Southall.
She now lives in Singapore.
‘Big-hearted, earthy and funny: turns so many preconceptions upside down. A rattlingly good story’ Deborah Moggach, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
‘Warm and hilariously funny’ Good Housekeeping
‘Charming, hilarious and thoughtful’ The Pool
‘Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows balances darkness and light, social commentary and ecstatic escapism… funny and moving tale of desire and its discontents’ The Economist
‘Sensual, authentic and hilarious, I will never look at an aubergine in the same way again – 5 stars’ The Sun
‘Enlightening and entertaining’ Woman & Home
‘A dark comedy… about empowerment and friendship’ Tatler
‘A page turner… Tackles serious themes with a light and funny touch’ Glamour
‘Funny yet serious, this is a fab book about women, culture and secrets’ Prima
‘By turns erotic, romantic, and mysterious, this tale of women defying patriarchal strictures enchants’ Kirkus Reviews
‘Compulsive, funny and wonderfully original – this novel glows with witty sensuality. I love it ’ Helen Lederer, Losing It
‘Poignant, intelligent yet wickedly funny – a delightful read that reignites one’s belief in the power of sisterhood’ June Sarpong