Why We Love Trouble with Magic

I’ve loved Asha’s writing from the nineties, when I first read a manuscript she sent to the publishing house I was working with. So any new manuscript from Asha is cause for rejoicing. This story was one in a collection that she sent us. We were looking for stories for our hOle books at that time, so Sayoni and I did a little jig of joy. Trouble with Magic has all the elements that make Asha one of my favourite writers: wacky characters, an unusual story and excellent writing. It’s such a rare pleasure to read a writer who knows her craft as well as Asha does. Her affection for her characters informs her stories and pulls the reader into the whimsical world they inhabit.

Priyankar Gupta’s illustrations are great fun. What’s most satisfying about working with Priyankar is that he’s very meticulous. HIs characters and his images are always exactly what the book demands!


I have been a huge fan of Asha’s work, and I really think her books need to be known far more than they are, in India and internationally. So it was a matter of great joy to publish this book.

One of the many things Asha does particularly well is create wonderful aunts (I am well endowed in the aunt department, so I appreciate good aunts). Malu is no exception, and her mad ideas and general dreaminess make her great fun.

Priyankar’s illustrations are precise and detailed, and somehow act as a counterpoint to Malu and Veena’s general blunderings. His creation of the character of Malu is completely spot on.

I think Asha’s many fans will love this book, and hopefully, it will win her many more.



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