The Red Book | Granta

  • Published: 01/01/2009
  • ISBN: 9781847080639
  • 129x20mm
  • 304 pages

The Red Book

Meaghan Delahunt

Françoise, an Australian photographer, travels to Bhopal in India, where twenty years earlier a gas leak killed thousands. There she meets Naga, a Tibetan refugee whose family died in the disaster, and Arkay, a Scottish traveller battling addiction who has found solace in Buddhism. As a testament to their time together Françoise assembles photographs from their lives into an album, the Red Book. The photographs tell their stories of love, struggle and transformation – pointing to the people they have been and who they will become.

This colourful account of life in India is a joy ... It's finely wrought and expansive fiction that lingers


There is much rich material here ... [The] story of Francoise's love for Arkay, the monk ... is written with intensity and powerful despair

Kamila Shamsie, Guardian

Blessed with ambition and talent enough to realise it, The Red Book is a model of what a globalised imagination can do

Sunday Herald

The Author

Meaghan Delahunt is the author of The Red Book and In the Blue House, which was longlisted for the 2002 Orange Prize, won the Saltire First Book Prize, a Scottish Arts Council Book of the Year prize and a Commonwealth Prize for Best First Book. She is an award-winning short-story writer and her stories have been widely anthologized and broadcast on BBC Radio 4. She lectures in creative writing at the University of St Andrews. Born in Melbourne, Meaghan Delahunt now lives in Edinburgh.

More about the author →

From the Same Author

To the Island

Meaghan Delahunt

He disappeared. That’s all she really knew.
In search of her father Andreas, whom she has never met, Lena travels with her small son from Australia to Greece. On the island of Naxos she finds him, a wary, tormented man living in self-imposed exile and haunted by what happened to him under the rule of the Colonels in the 1960s. Slowly Lena unlocks the secrets of her father’s past, and in getting to know him begins to understand the dark realities of contemporary Greek history.
To the Island is a book about the impact of larger political events on the lives of ordinary people, and how political and personal betrayals reverberate across generations, beautifully evoking the currents and cross-currents between individuals, within families and in broader society. And in Lena and Andreas’s stories, it shows how difficult it is to confront our personal and collective pasts – and the terrible consequences of being unable to do so.

Meaghan Delahunt on

Essays & Memoir | The Online Edition

Letter from Greece

Meaghan Delahunt

‘The only thing between Greece and total collapse is the Greek family.’