Mountain Tales (Hardback)

Love and Loss in the Municipality of Castaway Belongings

Saumya Roy

A city struggling with the cost of its appetites. A rubbish mountain eighteen stories high. And the people who call it home.

'Roy has a journalist's unflinching eye, a poet's talent for detail, and a radical sense of empathy ... a stunning achievement.'
- Kiran Desai, Booker Prize-winning author of The Inheritance of Loss

'If you read one book about India, read this one.'
- Geeta Anand, Pulitzer Prize-winner and author of The Cure

All of Mumbai's memories and castaway possessions come to die at the Deonar garbage mountains. And among these vast, teetering piles of discarded things - medical waste, rotten food, old clothes, broken glass and twisted metal - a small, forgotten community lives and works.

Scouring the dump for whatever can be resold or recycled, waste pickers also mark the familiar milestones of babies born, love found, illnesses suffered and recovered from. Like a mirror image, their stories are shaped by the influx of unwanted things from the world outside.

But now, as Deonar's toxic halo becomes undeniable, a change is coming. And as officials try to close it, the lives that the pickers have built on the Mountain seem more fragile than ever.

Publication date: 08/07/2021

£16.99

ISBN: 9781788165365

Imprint: Profile Books

Subject: Current Affairs, Politics & Economics

Mountain Tales (Ebook)

Love and Loss in the Municipality of Castaway Belongings

Saumya Roy

A city struggling with the cost of its appetites. A rubbish mountain eighteen stories high. And the people who call it home.

'Roy has a journalist's unflinching eye, a poet's talent for detail, and a radical sense of empathy ... a stunning achievement.'
- Kiran Desai, Booker Prize-winning author of The Inheritance of Loss

'If you read one book about India, read this one.'
- Geeta Anand, Pulitzer Prize-winner and author of The Cure

All of Mumbai's memories and castaway possessions come to die at the Deonar garbage mountains. And among these vast, teetering piles of discarded things - medical waste, rotten food, old clothes, broken glass and twisted metal - a small, forgotten community lives and works.

Scouring the dump for whatever can be resold or recycled, waste pickers also mark the familiar milestones of babies born, love found, illnesses suffered and recovered from. Like a mirror image, their stories are shaped by the influx of unwanted things from the world outside.

But now, as Deonar's toxic halo becomes undeniable, a change is coming. And as officials try to close it, the lives that the pickers have built on the Mountain seem more fragile than ever.

Publication date: 08/07/2021

£12.99

ISBN: 9781782837107

ISBN 10 / ASIN: B08LQZ8TPQ

Imprint: Profile Books

Subject: Current Affairs, Politics & Economics

Reviews for Mountain Tales

'It is rare that a book is a deeply moving love story with unforgettable characters while also illuminating a country and a culture. Saumya Roy's book is a riveting love story set in the harrowing world of life as a trash picker on Mumbai's garbage mountain. Read it for a most delicious story, read it to understand India, read it to know what it is like to grow up in extreme poverty in the shadow of enormous wealth. If you read one book about India, read this one.'

Geeta Anand, Pulitzer Prize-winner and author of The Cure 

'A terrific and thrilling book about people who are trapped in the gravitational force of a garbage mountain in Mumbai. Delightful and powerful.'

 Manu Joseph, author of Serious Men

'Roy has a journalist's unflinching eye, a poet's talent for detail, and a radical sense of empathy that illuminates this account of the people who live on the Deonar garbage mountains. Urgent as a thriller, yet lingering in its unforgettable portraits of life, love and death, Mountain Tales deserves every accolade. A stunning achievement.'

Kiran Desai, Booker Prize-winning author of The Inheritance of Loss 

'Saumya Roy's gorgeous Mountain Tales is a remarkable feat of immersive reporting and story-telling, a deeply-felt exploration of ideas, and a gripping chronicle of the fates of the garbage-pickers of Mumbai; Roy immerses you so deeply in her characters' lives and physical environment that at times I felt I was experiencing them myself. I loved this book.'

Suzy Hansen, author of Notes on a Foreign Country 

'Gorgeous and heartbreaking ... Roy succeeds in humanizing her subjects while emphasizing the role that consumer culture plays in their degradation. ... Readers of Behind the Beautiful Forevers will be drawn to this harrowing portrait.'

 Publishers Weekly

Saumya Roy

Saumya Roy

Saumya Roy is a journalist and activist based in Mumbai. In 2010, she co-founded Vandana Foundation to support the livelihoods of Mumbai's poorest micro-entrepreneurs; through this she met the community who depend on Deonar. Her writing has appeared in Forbes India Magazine, wsj.com and Bloomberg News among others, and she has contributed a chapter to Dharavi: The Cities Within (HarperCollins, 2013), an anthology of essays on Asia's largest slum.

Related news