Meet Akhila: forty-five and single, an income-tax clerk, and a woman who has never been allowed to live her own life - always the daughter, the sister, the aunt, the provider - until the day she gets herself a one-way ticket to the seaside town of Kanyakumari. In the intimate atmosphere of the all-women sleeping car - the 'Ladies Coupe' - Akhila asks the five women the question that has been haunting her all her adult life: can a woman stay single and be happy, or does she need a man to feel complete?
This wonderfully atmospheric, deliciously warm novel takes the reader into the heart of women's lives in contemporary India, revealing how the dilemmas that women face in their relationships with hunsbands, mothers, friends, employers and children are the same world over.
Praise for Ladies Coupe
""Modern India's vivid, sticky beauty is evoled beautifully...Nair's compassion for her characters shines through every carefully chosen word.""
- Sunday Tribune
""Nair's strength lies in bringing alive the everyday thoughts, desires and doubts of these six ordinary women.""
- Times Literary Supplement
""A deeply serious, enjoyably lucid book about real terrors and joys, full of sensual and surprising details.""
- Scotland on Sunday
""Nair conveys her protagonist's dilemmas with a freshness and charm.""
- The Times