The cover of Arundhati Roy’s new novel The Ministry of Utmost Happiness is out, and it is as stunning as that of her first novel. It has been designed by David Eldridge, who also designed the cover of The God of Small Things. The cover is a vertical picture of a decaying white marble grave with a withered rose placed right below the book title.
The photo has been taken by Delhi writer-blogger and photojournalist Mayank Austen Soofi.
Soofi says he was commissioned by Roy to take pictures around Delhi for the cover in October 2016 when the book was announced. “She was very clear about what she wanted. She was looking for a stone surface. I took photos as per her instructions,” he says. The photo was selected by Roy from about a hundred (taken over months) that Soofi sent her.
While the cover of The God of Small Things had a water surface with lotus leaves and flowers, the second book has a stone slab. “This one is very different and yet it has the same sense of elusiveness as the first one. You won’t tire of looking at these covers,” says Soofi.
“I’ve done the cover photo for the woman who wrote The God of Small Things,” he says, clearly thrilled. “I was very nervous since she is my favourite living author.” A sentiment, we are sure, a lot of people share with Soofi.
Arundhati Roy’s new novel The Ministry of Utmost Happiness is one of the most-anticipated books of 2017. It comes 20 years after Roy’s Booker Prize winning debut The God of Small Things (1997).
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