Cars, brides and a hall full of enthusiastic kids — that pretty much summed up the launch of Nandini Bajpai’s new book here in the city recently. Published and launched by Scholastic Nova, Scholastic India’s new initiative towards the young-adult segment,’ Red Turban, White Horse’ seemed to send the audience, mainly made up of young teens from several city schools, into a tizzy.
Questions flew in thick and fast, including requests for advice about writing novels (‘The best cure for writer’s block is a deadline!’), questions about favourite books (‘Hunger Games’ got louder cheer than the Harry Potter series) and inspirational characters. Nandini and the guest for the day, city wedding planner Vidya Singh, discussed the book, its characters and why cars were such an important theme.
“After the loss of her mother, the protagonist Mini Kapoor, is taken to lots of auto shows by her dad. So she knows more about cars at 17 than about planning a wedding!” said Nandini in response to a question by one of the kids. While some of the car references flew over the heads of the girls, the boys in the audience caught on fairly quickly — right after James Bond and his car preferences were mentioned.
The book tells us about the protagonist’s attempt at organising an Indian wedding in Boston.
And going with the theme of the book, there was also a contest for the ‘Most Innovative Bridal dress’, one that was won by a young girl with a wedding dress made entirely out of paper. As the event wound down, the author found herself at the mercy of the several enthusiastic kids wanting her autograph - so much so that this reporter had to steal her away for a short chat. Looks like there will be more ‘extra-curricular’ reading in schools this week.