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mid-day at JLF: Author Kanishk Tharoor on his new book, famous dad and more

On day two of the Jaipur Literature Festival, writer Kanishk Tharoor floored the audience by speaking about his new book 'Swimmer Among the Stars' and how it's like to be son of the famous Shashi Tharoor

Beginning the session with reading out excerpts from one of the short stories in his new book Swimmer Among the Stars, the New York-based author seemed to be able to keep the audience hooked. "I started writing when I was eight. The story I wrote was called Sir Kanishk and the magic lamp. You can imagine what the plot was," laughed Tharoor who also said his family was responsible for him being a voracious reader. “My father is a writer; my mother was a professor of literature. We grew up with a lot of books. My twin brother is a journalist, my wife is a poet,” shared Tharoor, who was born in Singapore and grew up in Geneva and later, New York.

Pic/Twitter
Kanishk Tharoor. Pic/Twitter

The collection of short stories is inspired by various events in Tharoor’s life and his imagination too. The title story focuses on language extinction while another one is a fictional account of the United Nations holding a meeting in space. “This one was inspired by the true life incident where the government of Libya held a parliament meeting in a ship in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea,” Tharoor said. When asked about being the son of someone as popular as his father, he said, “I find it very important that my work comes into its own especially in India because my dad is very popular there.”

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