FEBRUARY 2022: Vetaal and Vikram is chosen by author Nicholas Jubber as one of the five best books on fairy tale tellers:

DECEMBER 2021: Shadow Craft receives Best Cover Design Book Prize 2021 at the Atta Galatta-Bangalore Literature Festival. 

MAY 2021: “[Shadow Craft] offers an attentive and scrupulous exploration of the ‘cinematic frame’ […and] asserts the visual language assembled by these aesthetic forms of black and white cinema, which the spoken can often not reach.” — Sujith Kumar Parayil in The Book Review –

MARCH 2021:Shadow Craft turns out to be more than a worthy idea: this is an invigorating cinema book that is serious and detailed without being dense or inaccessible.” — Jai Arjun Singh in Biblio: A Review of Books, posted on the blog Jabberwock

MARCH 2021: Falling in Love is Often Easier than Claiming It – Interview in the The New Minute

MARCH 2021: “The novella effortlessly holds its readers till the very last page. It could be easily read in one sitting, but then, there is a longing to go back to it again.” – Diptoroop Banerjee in Reading Room Co.

FEBRUARY 2021:  Writers Respond to Love in Seven Easy Steps:

Gayathri Prabhu’s lyrical new work seeks a language that can bridge the mercurial shifts of inner weather with the natural cycles of season and tide. It explores those places where the arc of personal passion might turn into ‘poetry in yaman’; where the details of an intimate love story — ‘vagaries of mother, shenanigans of cat, shapes of mountains’ – might meld with the monochromatic eloquence of old movies, or the classicism of raga. Fluid, cinematic and gently spare, this contemplation on a very singular love unspools into an ancient song of heartbeat, heartbreak and heartsease.

– Arundhathi Subramaniam, author of twelve books of poetry and prose, winner of the Khushwant Singh Prize, the Raza Award for Poetry, the Zen Women’s Award for Literature, the International Piero Bigongiari Prize in Italy, among others.

“I played truant to read Gayathri Prabhu’s luminous, and poignant new book. I would do it again – push away all other obligatory reading to treat myself to Gayathri’s work. Not sorry at all. Gayathri Prabhu’s novella is a delightfully slow love story unfolding. The spaces between each section begets silences – the silence that pays tribute, the silence that acknowledges brilliance, the silence that is pregnant with thoughts that the book engenders.”

–  Easterine Kire, poet and author, winner of literary accolades such as The Hindu Literary Prize, Free Voice Award by Catalan PEN Barcelona, Governor’s Medal for excellence in Naga Literature, Tata Literature Live! Book of the Year Award. 

“This is a treat, a marvel, an impassioned story to read and re-read. Vivid, irresistible lines, so perfectly cadenced, form a book as layered and flowing and lasting as the finest of poems. Love in Seven Easy Steps evokes the very essence of a relationship, intimately sharing the intense images and deep feelings that love sets pulsing and resonating through time. Gayathri Prabhu has composed nothing less than the By Grand Central Station I Sat Down and Wept the 21st century has been waiting for.”

– Kevin MacNeil, novelist, screenwriter, poet, playwright, lecturer in creative writing at the University of Stirling, Scotland, and winner of Tivoli Europa Giovani Internatinoal Prize Prize.

Love in Seven Easy Steps is many things, but first a remarkable seismograph of the desirous heart(s), one that records – with unflinching attention – its elisions, uncertainties, accelerations and pauses. Form and narrative act together, in every way, as electrocardiograms that chart the meanderings, the arrhythmia, the elusive harmony sought by the subject, the heart which can be noun, adjective, adverb and verb. Gayathri Prabhu reminds us how the minutest details can capture the loving heart’s attention, and be revisited again and again, how the loved one never really becomes the past tense.

– Karthika Nair, poet, author, dance producer/curator, and winner of the Tata Literature Live! Award

Gayathri Prabhu is a literary voice simultaneously quiet and unquiet. This cross-genre narrative is full of heart and intricate detail. A vivid love story.

– Annie Zaidi, author and filmmaker, winner of the Nine Dots Prize, Prakriti Prize for Poetry, BBC International Radio Playwriting Competition, The Hindu Playwright Award.

NOVEMBER 2020: “Shadow Craft pulls us back into the frame of the films and makes us ponder over the affective surface it lays before our eyes, and coaxes us to see them with fresh eyes, as they might have been received in those hopefully immediate years of independence.” — Mohamed Shafeeq Karinkurayil in Asian Movie Pulse.

AUGUST 2020: “a writer with a chiselled out craft and a unique storytelling technique” – Shruthi Dileep in Reading Room Co.

MAY 2020: In Vetaal and Vikram, which is part literary pastiche, part historical biography, she dredges up these ancient tales and winds them around the story of a Victorian explorer who was their most celebrated interpreter. In the process, Prabhu gives us a shimmering cover version that captures the strange magic of the original.” – Nicholas Jubber in Asian Review of Books.

DECEMBER 2019: “Vetaal and Vikram: Riddles of the Undead is exemplary, in my opinion, because it is a retelling of a history of literature, blurring the edges between postmodern writing and the tradition of oral storytelling.” – Michael Varghese in Asiaville News.

DECEMBER 2019: “[Vetaal and Vikram]…stories that talk about love, lust, adultery and has a very liberal view about same-sex relationships…a fresh way of presenting folklore” – Anamika Nandekar in Sakaal Times:

NOVEMBER 2019: To Write Means to be Vulnerable’ — Interview by Archana Pai Kulkarni in She The People:

JANUARY 2019: ‘Love Letters to My Younger Self’ – Interview and feature in The Hindu by Sweta Akundi:

JANUARY 2019: Received  the RK Narayan Award from the Booksellers and Publishers Association of South India at the Chennai Book Fair 2019.



REVIEWS of If I Had to Tell It Again

Scroll: “This deeply personal and unconventional memoir about depression, loss and abuse reinvents the form….[it] shows us how many such stories must be out there and need to see the light of day.” – Apoorva Sripathi:

The Wire: “If I Had to Tell it Again is a beautifully written, highly wrought and deeply emotional book. It is a daring and brave challenge to our preconceptions both about writing and about depression” – Madhavi Menon:

First Post: “The book had me wincing, frequently. I had to put it away twice before I could go back to it and yet, I cannot recommend it enough. It is perhaps exactly why I would recommend it. It needs to be read.” – Krupa Ge:

Indian Journal of Medical Ethics (IJME):  “If I had to tell it again pushes its reader to ask fundamental questions about parenting, how mentally ill individuals relate to each other and to the larger world, and the human ability to hurt, nurture, love and forgive.” – Rohini Shukla:

Scroll: “Gayathri Prabhu’s memoir of unconventional grieving in the wake of an alcoholic parent’s demise is a book unlike any other we have seen in India.” – Urvashi Bahuguna:

Research and Humanities in Medical Education: “This book is a must-read for all, irrespective of profession and age group” – Trveen Dhillon:

The News Minute:  “The tone and manner of writing is very threadbare and light but each word is heavy with emotion.” Sandeep Narayanan:

Indian Express: “[the memoir]shatters this silence [about families] with an intimate examination of the relationship between the author and her late father […] for this reason alone, this book deserves to be read” – Ram Sarangan: Shelf life: Dark Days

The Shrinking Couch: “I would recommend reading it to borrow courage” – Nivida Chandra:

Deccan Chronicle and Asian Age:” I did not want to sound like a martyr, a victim, or a warrior ”

Arundhathi Subramaniam, Poet: [a] book I particularly enjoyed for its mix of candour, poise and urgency in a fiercely loving portrait of a parent.”:

Easterine Kire, author: “This book is so incisive, she writes it so beautifully that one should take it only in small doses.”

Synapsis: A Health Humanities Journal: “…unique in the literary landscape of India for the range of themes it encompasses and its sheer formal inventiveness in the form of a one-act play embedded at the heart of the text” – Amala Poli:

REVIEWS of The Untitled

The Wire: “Here at last is an Indian historical novel that resists the temptation to be intimate with the monumental, using instead the lives of obscure (and imaginary) characters to tell the story of Tipu Sultan’s Mysore.” – Prashant Keshavmurthy :

Huffington Post: “Gayathri Prabhu’s prose is supple and sublime. Her excellent command over the language and thorough research shine through the book. She evokes the details of the past with such brilliance that the era comes alive in your imagination.” – Yash Raj Goswami:

The Hindu: ” The Untitled is a book that harks back to the novels of the 20th century, an era when literary enterprises comfortably contained orphans, fortune-seeking travellers, spies, political intrigue, love and betrayal, all jostling for space in a single narrative. Gayathri Prabhu stitches these elements together with a politics that is sympathetic, as the title obliquely conveys, to those whom typical histories would leave out.” – Thomas Manuel.:

Simplicity: “unputdownable” and “an entirely new approach to the [Tipu Sultan] story and it shows the mutifacted Tipu at close quarters.” – Rajesh Govindarajulu:

BLOG REVIEWS of If I Had to Tell It Again

Harini Calmur: “What surprised me most was the honesty with which Prabhu can talk about issues, most people won’t be talking about.”

Mithila Reviews Books: “one of the best books I have read this year”

The Bookish Bulletin: “Gayathri Prabhu takes language where it hesitates to go”

Stuti Ashok Gupta: “Every word, every sentence of this book is extremely literary, you pick up from anywhere and you’d feel like you are reading a poem”:

Dusky Moonlight: “a series of life-events narrated to make the readers understand the importance of sharing, talking, lending a helping hand, and believing” :

Times of Gee: “Read this book to learn strength and patience ; to understand that it’s important to acknowledge and accept ; and learn how to fail” :

Reviewing Shelf: Flowing over the page, unbidden, unstoppable, like a river in motion”

Privy Tirfles: “This book is the guiding light that will help you sail through the most difficult phases with its sheer radiance.” :

Monica Kamath: “It is a slice of  life which will resonate with millions of readers.

The Book Collector 32: “Being a first born to a volatile father I could easily identify with many situations”:

The Ink Spiller: “A father-daughter relationship will always have more love than words but here the words nor the love was enough to mend it” :

Vidya Thakkar: “This book teaches you to get through the pain with some beautifully described situations.”

Sunanda Pati:  “Here was an account that sought closure and exploration in the same breath”:


Sid Book Reviewer, author interview: “Writing gives form, makes everything bearable” :


kiran-cover     by Kiran Joan

Memoir_ReviewAM_2 by Ashvini Menon


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