Of a declining mind trying to make sense of ever-changing world

Fated to do and to die/only to remember/then forget/why try?

Mrs S. Pankajam has always lived two lives: one of ordinary fulfilment in her experiences as a wife to her husband and a mother to her two daughters, and the other a life of desires and sharp observations that only her mind is privy to.

When Mrs Pankajam starts losing her memory, her doctor recommends she keep a diary to maintain a semblance of continuity in life events. At first, she is reluctant. What is so spectacular about her life that warrants its story being recorded, she wonders.

But, as she sets pen to paper, meticulously documenting the revelations that her daughters (well past their teens now) continue to subject her to, the discovery of her husband’s eccentricities and her own guilty admissions to indulgences that may have caused his cardiac arrest, she finds her childhood persistently wrestling with the present as a marked reminder of a past she cannot run away from.

A witty and touching tale about a declining mind trying to make sense of an ever-changing world, Meera Rajagopalan’s finely crafted novel, “The Eminently Forgettable Life of Mrs Pankajam” (Hachette) is one that challenges the reader to confront long-held beliefs and make amends while it is still possible.

Meera Rajagopalan is a writer based in Chennai. She �sunlights’ as a communications consultant for the development sector. Her fiction tends to veer around issues of identity and has appeared in several anthologies, including “Dissent: The Helter Skelter Anthology of New Writing Vol. 6” and “Have a Safe Journey”.

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