Living in a sunny barsati in south Delhi, Saurav Jha and Devapriya Roy are your average DINK couple, about to acquire a few EMIs and come of age in the modern consumerist world. Only, they don't. They junk the swivel chairs, gain a couple of backpacks and set out on a transformational journey across India. On a very, very tight budget: five hundred rupees a day for bed and board. And the Heat and Dust project begins. Joining the ranks of firang gap-year kids and Israelis fresh out of compulsory army service, they travel across a land in which five thousand years of Indian history seem to jostle side by side. It is, by turns, holy and hectic, thuggish and comic, amoral and endearing. In buses that hurtle through the darkness of the night and the heat of the day, across thousands of miles, in ever new places, the richness of this crowded palette spills over into their lives. From rooms by the hour to strange dinner invitations, from spectacular forts to raging tantrums, this is a youthful account of wanderlust and whimsy, of eccentric choices that unfold into the journey of a lifetime ... and a supreme test of marriage.
About the Author
Devapriya Roy is the author of two novels, The Vague Woman's Handbook (2011) and The Weight Loss Club (2013). She has degrees in literature and performance studies from Presidency College, Calcutta, and Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, where she spent many years in pursuit of a PhD on the Natyashastra. Once upon a time, she was the Keo Karpin girl. Saurav Jha was trained in economics at Presidency College, Calcutta, and Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. He is a commentator on energy and security issues and contributes regularly to varied national and international media. He also runs a popular blog, 'Geek at Large', on Indian defence issues. His first book, The Upside Down Book of Nuclear Power, was published in March 2010, and his next work on the sustainability of economic growth, The Nexus, is scheduled for end 2015.