Vikram Seth was once a graduate student in economics at Stanford

That was in the heyday of the game theory years at that school.  Then he became a famous author.  And now:

But an author like Seth who commands million dollar advances and who took eight years to write the voluminous A Suitable Boy, works on his own terms. He does not share his manuscripts with anyone until he is ready and will not be bullied by publishers, having once said, not entirely in jest, it was his job to get the money out of publishers and it was the publishers’ job to get the book out of him.

Penguin Random House has in turned asked for its $1.7 million advance back, as they are still awaiting his delivery of a sequel A Suitable Girl.  The story is here, and for the pointer I thank Yogesh.  Seth never finished his doctorate at Stanford but A Suitable Boy is one of my favorite modern novels.


What are your other favorite modern novels?

A Suitable Boy is my favorite novel period.

I love Indian English; the fact that a popular press article will use the word "demarche", and expect its readers to comprehend, is wonderful.

I'd be one of those English newspaper reading Indians with demarche comfortably lodged in my passive vocabulary, but before visiting the US I'd have been somewhat hazy on the meaning of 'egregious.' IOW it goes both ways - it's not like the relevant facts about which words are obscure are all culture independent. Lots of words have very different usage frequencies in different countries.

I am disgusted at the white privilege exhibited here.

This is a black on white crime.

Has game theory fallen out of favor?

Pure theory has fallen out of favor.

*A suitable Boy* is my favorite soap opera.

Vikram Seth also wrote the excellent verse novel "The Golden Gate" which should be more widely read, I think.


What is the relevance of his PhD status to your enjoyment of his book?

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