May 30, 2024:

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Chrysalis

Chrysalis

Chrysalis

Genre-blending stories of transformation and belonging that centre women of colour and explore queerness, family, and community.

A couple in a crumbling marriage faces divine intervention. A woman dies in her dreams again and again until she finds salvation in an unexpected source. A teenage misfit discovers a darkness lurking just beyond the borders of her suburban home. The stories in Chrysalis, Anuja Varghese’s debut collection, are by turns poignant and chilling, blurring the lines between the monstrous and the mundane.

Poetic, sensual, and surreal, Varghese’s stories delve into complex intersections of family, community, sexuality, and cultural expectation through an unapologetically feminist lens. Drawing on folklore, fairy tale, and magical realism, they take aim at the ways in which racialized women are robbed of power and revel in the strange and dangerous journeys they undertake to reclaim it.

Where to find

Iron Dog Books

About the author

Anuja Varghese

Anuja Varghese

Anuja Varghese is a QWOC Pushcart-nominated writer whose work appears in Hobart, The Malahat Review, The Fiddlehead, Plenitude Magazine, Southern Humanities Review, So to Speak Journal, Flock Literary Journal, and Corvid Queen: A Journal of Feminist Fairy Tales, among others. Her work has been recognized in the PRISM International Short Fiction Contest, the Pigeon Pages Fiction Contest, and the Alice Munro Festival Short Story Competition. She writes literary fiction, speculative fiction, and erotica/romance – and combinations of all three – where women of colour get leading roles. In 2022, Anuja has work included in When Other People Saw Us, They Saw the Dead, an anthology of BIPOC gothic horror from Haunt Press, and Queer Little Nightmares, an anthology of queer monster stories from Arsenal Pulp Press. Her debut short story collection titled Chrysalis, exploring South Asian diaspora experience through a feminist, speculative lens, will be released in spring 2023 with House of Anansi. Anuja Varghese is a QWOC Pushcart-nominated writer whose work appears in Hobart, The Malahat Review, The Fiddlehead, Plenitude Magazine, Southern Humanities Review, So to Speak Journal, Flock Literary Journal, and Corvid Queen: A Journal of Feminist Fairy Tales, among others. Her work has been recognized in the PRISM International Short Fiction Contest, the Pigeon Pages Fiction Contest, and the Alice Munro Festival Short Story Competition. She writes literary fiction, speculative fiction, and erotica/romance – and combinations of all three – where women of colour get leading roles. In 2022, Anuja has work included in When Other People Saw Us, They Saw the Dead, an anthology of BIPOC gothic horror from Haunt Press, and Queer Little Nightmares, an anthology of queer monster stories from Arsenal Pulp Press. Her debut short story collection titled Chrysalis, exploring South Asian diaspora experience through a feminist, speculative lens, will be released in spring 2023 with House of Anansi. Anuja lives in Hamilton, Ontario with her partner, two cats, and two kids.

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