Negative Space

Short Stories; Fiction

I am married. But I don’t have a child clinging to me. Does that make me childfree or childless?

The absence of something of such great significance can’t be described by a simple word like vacant. The absence is actually the removal of the object and something else, something intangible, from the observer himself.

The stories in this book feature people of Indian origin living in India, the United States and Singapore. Each story explores a challenge or dilemma that is both particular and universal. A wife who is unexpectedly pregnant. A woman who finally understands the nuances of her aunt’s conservative views. Loss of a cherished friendship. Reclaiming long-forgotten dreams. A young woman’s inner monologue regarding an “arranged date.” Stories that create the ethos and illuminate the rich tapestry of multicultural Singapore society.

Each story draws an unforgettable portrait of the woman next door. With insight and luminous prose, Ranjani Rao has created characters that are unique while also being universal.

Readers looking for authentic narratives will not want to miss this book.

Get your copy here:

Story Artisan Press | Paperback & Ebook | 114 pages | ISBN: 978-981-14-3042-8 | March 08, 2019


Negative spaces is a collection of melancholic short stories, each involving recollections triggered by change - a diagnosis, a death or even a new year resolution. Through these reminiscences we are made to realise that even if we wholeheartedly believe in the choices that we make, we might still have regrets about the dreams and people that we leave behind. The author skillfully touches upon what would otherwise be heavy topics while keeping the stories short and easy to read.

Arun Aditya

Sensitively written stories of women protagonists dealing with important aspects of their lives, that have somehow become less important to them. This sense of loss - of an identity, a relationship, a person - is beautifully reclaimed in the end. Uplifting.

Hari Mohan Paruvu (author of four books, most recently ‘This Way is Easier, Dad!’)

Read to get a sneak peek view into the intricacies of the human mind filled with emotions.

Priyanka Gontla

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