A courageous and timely novel, Tears of Mehndi explores the rich, complex and often heartbreaking lives of a tight-knit community in Vancouver’s Little India. Through the perspectives of several women whose lives intertwine over a generation, Raminder Sidhu deftly exposes the shrouded violence within the Indo-Canadian community, a difficult and often dissembled subject. Sidhu’s characters are women caught between two cultures, struggling to understand the traditions they are obliged to follow while still embracing and often welcoming the fundamentally different values of the West. Through the perspectives of several women whose lives intertwine over a generation, Raminder Sidhu deftly exposes the shrouded violence within Canada’s South Asian community, a difficult and often dissembled subject. Sidhu’s characters are women caught between two cultures, struggling to understand the traditions they are obliged to follow while still embracing and often welcoming the fundamentally different values of the West. “Tears of Mehndi” captures the family struggles of South Asians in British Columbia, and tells the stories of women caught between tradition and western culture. Sidhu was born and raised in Mackenzie, BC.


Shyam Selvadurai, the Canada Council Writer-in-Residence at Green College for 2012 was born in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He came to Canada with his family at the age of nineteen, and has a BFA from York University in Toronto. Funny Boy, his first novel, was published to immediate acclaim in 1994, was a national bestseller, and won the Books in Canada First Novel Award, the Lambda Literary Award, and was named a Notable Book by the American Library Association. Cinnamon Gardens, his second novel, was shortlisted for the prestigious Trillium Award and has been published in the US, UK, India, and Europe. Selvadurai is also the author of an acclaimed novel for young adults, Swimming in the Monsoon Sea, which was shortlisted for the Governor General’s Literary Award. Shyam will be reading from two of his novels and discussing his work as a diasporic writer. This reading is part of the ongoing Green College Principal’s lecture series, “Thinking at the Edge of Reason: Interdisciplinarity in Action.”

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