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Beautiful Thing: Inside the Secret World of Bombay's Dance Bars Paperback – 4 Aug 2011

3.8 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Kindle Edition
Paperback, 4 Aug 2011
£1.99 £0.01
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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Canongate Books; Main edition (4 Aug. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857861697
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857861696
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 1.8 x 21.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,064,730 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


"Beautiful Thing is a brilliant debut that catapults Sonia Faleiro straight to the top of the premier division of Indian writers of non-fiction . . . Beautiful Thing opens up a hidden world with startling insight and intimacy, and strangely is both a tragic monument to the abused bar girls of Bombay and a celebration of their amazing resilience and spirit." (William Dalrymple, author of Nine Lives)

"Faleiro writes her way into the bloodstream with this mesmeric book, fashioned with heart and enviable acuity. A shocking, funny and memorable ride." (Nikita Lalwani, author of Gifted)

"A rare glimpse into dismissed lives. Sonia Faleiro brings a novelist's eye for detail and a depth of empathy to her work. This is a magnificent book of reportage that is also endowed with all the terror and beauty of art." (Kiran Desai, Booker prize-winning author of The Inheritance of Loss)

". . . With her we hear, we see, we feel and finally know the world behind that door: a world that was unimaginable before Faleiro drew us there, but is unforgettable when the last page is turned, the last beaded curtain drawn to a close." (Gregory David Roberts, author of Shantaram)

"A riveting exposé ... For a book that's so short, Faleiro manages to pack a lot in: pimps, gangsters, transvestites, cops and madams. But its most outstanding quality to my eye is the window it offers on the widespread sexual repression that exists in India today, and the murky middle-class morality that rules it ... The real triumph of Beautiful Thing is how Faleiro dismantles the grand tradition of marriage in India, exposing it for what it is - a form of slavery for a large percentage of women who are bound to their husbands for food and the roofs over their heads, but rarely ever for love." (Observer)

"Throws the doors open on Mumbai's sex trade." (Independent)

"A harrowing and heart-breaking account . . . a tour de force of reportage, whose depth, insight and resonance make it the equal of the best fiction. [Faleiro] has portrayed the tragedy of this world without a shred of sentimentality. In this she has done justice to her characters for whom sentimentality - like romance, love and honesty - are luxuries they can rarely afford." (Sunday Times)

"[Leela's] rich character is sparked to vivid life in a highly coloured work of brilliant literary reportage." (Times)

"A gripping and intimate portrayal of the lives of the women who work in that industry. She manages to evoke shock, rage and laughter...this book is a moving testament to the girls like [Leela]." (Literary Review)

"Saved from doominess by [Faleiro's] striking empathy, sensitivity, and sharp ear." (Independent on Sunday)

Book Description

'A small masterpiece - a sassy, sensitive and deeply moving account of one bar girl's journey spiralling down through the circles of hell that is Bombay's sex industry.' William Dalrymple, author of Nine Lives

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18 customer reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars

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