In FAINT PROMISE OF RAIN, Anjali Mitter Duva takes us to India in 544. When a daughter, Adhira, is born to a family of Hindu temple dancers, her father puts faith in tradition: he insists Adhira “marry” the temple deity and give herself to a wealthy patron. But after one awful evening, Adhira rebels. Filled with the flavors of the Indian desert, this is the story of a family caught between art, duty, and fear. Shortlisted for the Saroyan International Prize for Fiction and the Chaucer Award for Historical Fiction.
In THEY: A BIBLICAL TALE OF SECRET GENDERS, Janet Mason reinterprets characters from the Bible. Tamar lives with her pet camel in the desert, happily childless. But her twin sister, Tabitha, becomes pregnant. The two women plot to trick the patriarch Judah into believing that the baby is his. Then Tabitha gives birth to twins, who are both intersex. As Auntie Tamar gets involved in the children’s lives, the story’s sly humor sheds light on our own often-complex identities.