‘There were no longer any signs of the house we stayed in, no doorway with its low entrance, no weeping willow or cryptomeria tree from which the caterpillars fell. The ramshackle cottage that housed my earliest friends and shaped my memories lay bare and forgotten. Only the flying termites remained, fluttering below the street lights outside the property.’
In this novella, Daribha Lyndem gently lifts the curtain on the coming of age of a young Khasi woman and the politically charged city of Shillong in which she lives. Like the beloved school game from which it takes its name, the book meanders through ages, lives and places. The interconnected stories build on each other to cover the breadth of a childhood, and move into the precarious awareness of adulthood.
A shining debut, Name Place Animal Thing is an elegant examination of the porous boundaries between the adult world and that of a child’s.
DARIBHA LYNDEM is a writer and civil servant from Shillong. Name Place Animal Thing is her first book. She currently works with the Indian Revenue Service and a Deputy Commissioner of Customs. Daribha now lives with two cats and a husband in Mumbai.