Hema Macherla


If you loved Indian author Hema Macherla’s Breeze from The River Manjeera, you will love this, her second novel. Hema is a born story-teller who creates a plot and characters that keep you turning pages. The story starts when young Anjali escapes the funeral pyre, and with the help of her friend Saleem, makes an outrageously bold bid for freedom. Their plan goes horribly wrong but Anjali meets other ‘fallen women’ and together they try to free themselves from their fates. The background is India as Ghandi takes the stage, with Saleem becoming involved with the freedom fighters. The narrative is told alternatively by Anjali and Saleem.

An inspiration… this book has touched a chord among women not only from India but from the West and Europe.
The Hindu

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About this book

Set in Gandhi’s volatile India, the story opens with Anjali, aged eighteen, about to be burnt alive on her husband’s funeral pyre – the conventional widow’s fate.

After a dramatic escape, things go badly wrong and she embarks on an extraordinary, often terrifying, journey 
of discovery.

Saleem, Anjali’s childhood friend, is entwined in her destiny. As he searches for her, he is caught up in the violence surrounding India’s struggle for freedom.

At the heart of this fast-moving narrative is the love of two men for one woman.

About the author

Hema Macherla was born in the rural village of Atmakur, Andhrapradesh, India. She has published 25 short stories and a number of articles in Indian magazines. She lives with her husband in London and has two grown up children.

ISBN: 978-0-9559618-6-1
Published: March 2011


“Dramatically pitched and packed with incident from the start when its teenage heroine, Anjali, is held in captivity to be burned on her husband’s funeral pyre.”
— Tom Adair, The Scotsman

“Compelling, charming and utterly convincing from the very first page. Hema Macherla is a writer to watch.”
— Lesley Horton, crime writer

“A stunning novel about irrational traditions and conflicts, and the courage to overcome all odds. A must read for all.”
— Smita Singh, Chairperson VAANI, Asian Writers and Artists

“Plenty of twists and turns to keep the reader hooked.”
— Maggie Hamand, novelist

“Blue Eyes is a novel about courage, about following your heart and being true to yourself when everything is set against you. It’s evocative, thought-provoking and enriched with unforgettable characters.”
— Pam McIlroy, blogger

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