Karan Mahajan‘s novel “The Association of Small Bombs” is, put simply, excellent. It’s devastating, sharp and tender. In it, Karan explores the disintegration of the lives of both Hindus and Muslims affected by a bomb blast at Lajpat Market in Delhi in 1996.
Karan and I spoke last Wednesday, the day after the terrorist attacks in Brussels. I couldn’t have imagined there would be another atrocity so soon, such as the suicide bomb in Lahore, Pakistan on Sunday. Like I said on Instagram, I was confused and worried about how to broach this conversation, but I knew it was important to try. Karan’s understanding of the subject is astounding and I think you’ll be very interested about how his experiences growing up in New Delhi informed the novel. You’ll also hear about the extent of his research on the perpetrators of these type of attacks, the affect of pornography on Indian society, and so much more. I am very proud to bring this conversation to air. Thank you for listening and embracing the wide range of issues we talk about on the show.
Karan Mahajan grew up in New Delhi, India. His first novel, Family Planning, was a finalist for the Dylan Thomas Prize and was published in nine countries. A graduate of the Michener Center for Writers and Stanford University, he lives in Austin, Texas. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The New Yorker Online, The Believer, NPR’s All Things Considered, The San Francisco Chronicle, and many more. In the past, Karan has worked as an editor, a consultant on economic and urban planning issues for the New York City government, and as a researcher in Bangalore.