There is a Kashmir that tourists know about: the one with houseboats, carpets, the one called the Paradise on Earth. There is another Kashmir the world knows through the newspapers, that of militants, a place embroiled in the Indo-Pak border conflict. Madhuri Vijay’s debut novel is a “fictional” attempt to know Kashmir from  both extremes—the latter more than the former—through the lense of a woman visiting here for the first time.

With the exception of Eileen Chang to whom she is often compared, few writers have become as synonymous with Shanghai as Wang Anyi. Although born in Nanjing, Wang was brought to Shanghai at the age of one by her mother, noted writer and Shanghai native Ru Zhijuan, and her quest to know the city over the years in spite of its protean elusiveness (as well as Wang’s intermittent absences) has become something of an elegiac obsession for the celebrated author.

Racial and gender divides in contemporary Britain are cross-examined in this intelligent courtroom thriller by Kia Abdullah. The case under consideration concerns Jodie Wolfe, a 16-year old girl who is facially disfigured by neurofibromatosis. She claims she has been raped by a group of four classmates. The fact that she is white, and the accused are Muslim and of Pakistani and Bangladeshi origin, adds racial conflict to an already incendiary legal battle.