Congrats to SCBWI-WI member Anuradha Rajurkar, whose debut novel, AMERICAN BETIYA, was chosen as SCBWI’s April book club pick! Don’t miss her Instagram Live chat on April 30 at 11am.
Here’s more from Avery Silverberg at SCBWI headquarters:
Introducing our April book club pick: AMERICAN BETIYA by Anuradha Rajurkar. You may remember this title from last month’s edition of Insight—if you missed our SCBWI Success Story with Anuradha, click here. From winning the SCBWI Emerging Voices Award in 2017 to being an April Equity & Inclusion Book Club pick, AMERICAN BETIYA has a special place in our hearts, and we know you will all love it, too.
There is so much to discuss when it comes to this book— “cultural conflicts, betrayal, the triggering of generational trauma, and the powerful emergence of one’s identity,” as Anuradha says. It’s a good thing we’ll have the chance to chat with Anuradha one-on-one via Instagram Live: Friday, April 30 at 11am PST. Our guest interviewer this month will be YA Fantasy author of Wings of Ebony: J. Elle. We hope to see all of you in the chat, asking questions. And don’t forget to snag a copy of the book in our SCBWI Bookshop.org shop—click here!
I asked Anuradha to share with SCBWI members a few words before we all read AMERICAN BETIYA all together: She says, “Though American Betiya is a work of fiction, its themes are ones I closely relate to as a South Asian American woman born and raised in Evanston. In creating Rani’s world, I learned what can happen when cultures collide in one feverish first love, why we sometimes feel the need to distance ourselves from our cultures, and how the longing to be loved and seen might overshadow our most basic instincts. Writing this book helped me understand how we may uphold our cultural identities despite the stereotypes and emotional violence that come with routinely being seen and treated as “other” — even by the ones we love.
American Betiya is the raw, evocative, swoony, soulful, empowering book of my heart, and I’m thrilled to finally get to share it with you!”