Karina Pandya’s book New York Wakes to Culture explores racism like never before!

The newly launched book by Karina Pandya, ‘New York Wakes to Culture’ draws acclaim for its realistic portrayal of the Indian American experience in Racism and Culture in a Journalist’s life

Karina Pandya, Mumbai-based author and poet announced a new book release, New York Wakes to Culture, a heart-wrenching story of racism in America and journalism during the times of pandemic. The book has been released globally and is available globally on Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Flipkart.com, Amazon Kindle, Google Play, Kobo, and iBooks on [08/12/2022]. This book is the second book that she has released after her first book, Touching Void…Surviving a Car Accident that was released on 2nd August 2021.  It was released on the 29th of January in a private book launch.

New York Wakes to Culture is a compelling tale focused on racism, journalism and crime. Filmmaker Amole Gupte claims that it is a fine novel with a truly inclusive point of view of American society through the clear eyes of a young, American Indian girl traversing current culture, crime and cats in New York. The book is available across online and offline bookstores in Mumbai such as Chetna Book store, Kala Ghoda.

This book is significant because racism is one of the major hurdles in American life and Indians face this discrimination while living abroad. However, few books or films highlight this aspect and dwell mostly on the financial and career gains of migration.

Karina Pandya’s novel is an eye-opening and honest read about the situation in New York where the author expertly crafts an emotional and painful dialogue between racism in New York and the culture of the city. It brings to life concrete real-life examples of the 2020 election and analysis and insight into Joe Biden’s approach and Donald Trump’s re-election, Donald Trump’s pandemic blindness and election denial, how there was a political coup regarding the COVID, the vice-presidential elections- Kamala Harris and Mike Pence, how criminal cases were on the rise despite the rise in Corona cases, how the pandemic was majorly affected sports events and the lockdown was affecting international and national events, how the COVID had urged us all to turn to social media to connect with the outer world and about the culture of New York.

The book is filled with sharp, memorable dialogue which advances the plot and also demonstrates the character’s personalities and adds texture to the story. It is ‘ a tale of a girl who is destined to solve a mystery that lurks within her family, to write about a city as a journalist. Jumping from one universe to another and back again, New York Wakes to Culture is a tale of mystery, crime and the current American culture that will make you believe that journalism can never be silenced. It must speak and speak immediately, while the echoes of wonder, the claims of triumph and the signs of horrors are still in the air.

A book which highlights the period of Covid 19 and interesting stories of the US election of Joe Biden’s approach to becoming president and Donald Trump’s election denial and many other interesting stories provide an instant connection that draws any reader towards this novel.

The protagonist, Maira Kapoor finds herself entangled between drafting a report as an intern for The New York Times and simultaneously solving a mystery lurking in her past. The story is told from the first-person point of view of the journalist, Maira Kapoor and also includes perspectives from other journalists who were not only exasperated by COVID but also the assignments that they had been allotted to cover. Hope and optimism are prevalent but it does not ignore the harsh reality of the tragic outcomes.

The book has also received critical reviews from renowned personalities like film director- Amole Gupte, renowned poet and author- Menka Shivdasani and Jeroo Mulla, the Former head of the Department of SCM.

This book is a definite pick-up for travellers to New York or people who are just interested in knowing what the scenario in New York was like during the pandemic. It is a very engaging read and a good reference book to help you get the feel of what the city is like. You will automatically feel like you have been a long-distance traveller.

Before writing the two books, Karina Pandya was known for her work as the founder of Limits Make Things Too Small. It remains yet one of the few independently organised events that were effectively able to present open-mic poetry into a mainstream literary event.


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