In a slim volume, the celebrated Indian novelist asks questions about the role of literature in confronting the greatest challenge of our times: climate change.
I was sixteen when I read one of the most important novels of the 20th century. It was, as I am sure you’ve guessed, War With the Newts; the story of humanity’s discovery and exploitation of a species of large, intelligent marine newts.
Spoiler: It ends badly. The newts are bred, sold and massed into underwater labour corps – a source of huge new wealth and reclaimed land – until they get political and decide that, actually, they’d rather sink most of the planet’s landmass into shallow bays and littoral strips, which newts themselves will populate.