Indian-born author Avni Doshi’s debut novel “Burnt Sugar” will be adapted into a film directed by Deepa Mehta
At the beginning, Burnt sugar reads like a love story. And author Avni Doshi even refers to it, except it’s between a mother and daughter, as opposed to lovers. Told from the latter’s perspective, the Booker Prize 2020 shortlisted novel examines Antara’s fractured psyche, who finds herself in a sudden role reversal when she is forced to become a caregiver for her dementia-stricken mother. ‘Alzheimer’s, Tara. Except that Antara has deliberately built a sheltered life with her husband and friends, far removed from the one she left behind when her mother tore her from the cocoon of her home and moved her to an ashram. because she fell in love with her guru.
Doshi’s first novel (published by Harper Collins under the title White cotton girl in India) succeeds because it is relatable; almost all of us have had times of estrangement, young and old, with our parents after all. Some of us may have moved past these differences, learning to be more forgiving as we watch our birth givers and parents enter their twilight; for others, the wounds are too deep for time to heal. In Burnt sugar, Antara’s greatest fear stems from the inherited trauma of eventually becoming her mother. But as the book progresses, she learns to understand the state of mind of the woman who gave birth to her, even coming to terms with the fact that they might not be that different.
Now this intensely layered novel is ready to be adapted into a film, written and directed by Indo-Canadian filmmaker Deepa Mehta, who is renowned for her nuanced portrayal of human emotions as seen in her Elements trilogy. Fire (1996), Earth (1998) and The water (2005), as well as Midnight children (2012) and the most recent Funny boy (2020). “Burnt sugar is often sprinkled with razor-sharp humor and his unexpected take on the old-fashioned relationship left me speechless. It grabbed me from the first sentence and I couldn’t say yes quickly enough when asked to bring the vision to the screen, âsaid the famous director in a first comment on the project. future.