Jana Bibi's Excellent Fortune (English, Paperback, Woodman Betsey)
A charming, engaging, and utterly delightful novel set in a hill station in India
In the first of a charming series, we meet Jana Bibi, who has inherited her grandfather’s house in a quaint hill station in India.
Casting aside the conventions of her upper-crust upbringing, Janet (Jana) Laird moves with her chatty parrot, Mr. Ganguly, and her loyal housekeeper, Mary, to Hamara Nagar, a town where the local merchants are philosophers, the chief of police is a bully, and a bagpipe-playing Gurkha keeps wild monkeys at bay. Settling in, Jana meets the town’s colorful local characters who gather at the Why Not? tea shop—the contemplative darzi who struggles with his business and family; a kindly shopkeeper whose shop is bursting at the seams with objects of unknown provenance; a newspaper editor who burns the midnight oil at his printing press; a tyrannical head of police who rules with an iron hand; and a young man with a golden voice, who wants to be a singer in the movies.
When word gets out that a new government dam will flood the little hill station, forcing everyone to move and start over, Jana is enlisted to save the community. Will Hamara Nagar survive? With some luck and Mr. Ganguly the fortune-telling parrot, the townspeople may have fate on their side.
About The Author
Betsy Woodman spent ten childhood years in India. After graduating from Smith College, Betsy Woodman did African studies at the University of Zambia, and got a Master’s degree in Anthropology from Brandeis. She has contributed non-fiction pieces and several hundred book reviews to various publications, and was a writer and editor for the award-winning documentary series Experiencing War, produced for the Library of Congress and aired on Public Radio International.She has taught languages, programmed computers, fact-checked history books, done survey research, and directed a Scottish music ensemble. Nowadays, when she not dreaming up scrapes for Jana Bibi and her friends, she works on her Baroque recorder technique and Hindi vocabulary.
She lives in her native New Hampshire.
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