Author(s): Indra Sinha
Shortlisted for the 2007 Man Booker Prize. 'I used to be human once. So I'm told. I don't remember it myself, but people who knew me when I was small say I walked on two feet just like a human being...' Ever since he can remember, Animal has gone on all fours, the catastrophic result of what happened on That Night when, thanks to an American chemical company, the Apocalypse visited his slum. Now not quite twenty, he leads a hand-to-mouth existence with his dog Jara and a crazy old nun called Ma Franci, and spends his nights fantasising about Nisha, the daughter of a local musician, and wondering what it must be like to get laid. When a young American doctor, Elli Barber, comes to town to open a free clinic for the still suffering townsfolk - only to find herself struggling to convince them that she isn't there to do the dirty work of the 'Kampani' - Animal plunges into a web of intrigues, scams and plots with the unabashed aim of turning events to his own advantage. Compellingly honest, entertaining and entirely without self-pity, Animal's account lights our way into his dark world with flashes of pure joy - from the very first page all the way to the story's explosive ending. Longlisted for the 2007 Man Booker Prize.