Media coverage – Winner of the Miles Franklin Literary Award 2023

The Guardian (25 July 2023): Shankari Chandran wins 2023 Miles Franklin award for Chai Time at Cinnamon Gardens

The Sydney Morning Herald (25 July 2023): ‘Trojan horse’ novel tackling colonisation and war wins Miles Franklin

ABC News (25 July 2023): Shankari Chandran wins Miles Franklin Literary Award for ‘Trojan horse’ novel that explores the national identities of Sri Lanka and Australia

SBS (26 July 2023): Sri Lankan Tamil wins prestigious literary award

The Australian Podcast (26 July 2023): Miles Franklin award winner Shankari Chandran (Podcast)

The Monthly Podcast (2 August 2023): The Miles Franklin Winner Who Nearly Gave up Writing

IndianLink (2 August 2023): Words with Shankari Chandran: Chai Time chatter

The Guardian (4 August 2023): First Dog on the Moon: Books

Confluence (4 August 2023): Shankari Chandran speaks to Sharon Rundle in an exclusive interview for Confluence.

NSW Government (8 August 2023): From Create NSW Fellowship to Miles Franklin Award: In conversation with Shankari Chandran

The eBook has arrived – today Amazon and iTunes, tomorrow the world….

I’m absolutely delighted the eBook is here.

Thank you again for supporting this book, in both formats.

You can buy Song of the Sun God on these sites:



















(Yes, I had given up hope of it ever being released in this format)

NSW Writers’ Centre Grant

Thank you so much to the NSW Writers’ Centre and Create NSW for this grant – it has given me the support I need to progress my research for The Phantom Limb. I’m hugely grateful. It will make all the difference.

AWARD ANNOUNCEMENT – Fairway National Literary Award, Shortlisted

I’m so exited to announce that I’ve been short-listed for the Fairway National Literary Award (2017). The Fairway Galle Literary Festival is very kindly including me in their line up in January 2018. I’ll be in Galle from 24th January to 28th January and looking forward to meeting people.

xx Shankari

Review – Charming Language

I am thrilled about this review by Dr Lara Cain Gray. I’ve read and loved her reviews for years. She’s reviewed The Barrier and I am utterly blown away. Thank you so much Dr Gray.

Did I marry my father?

Recently an old uni friend (Friend M) and I went bush walking in the Blue Mountains. The last time we tried this was in 1994 and it ended badly, so I don’t know what we were thinking. In an attempt to distract me from the physical pain of sustained exercise, Friend M put one of her observations about the human condition out there for discussion.  
Friend M thinks that her male friends have ended up with partners who have the opposite personalities to their mothers; and her female friends are with partners who are like their fathers.
As Friend M hauled me up endless stone stairs (and I wondered what the hell Blaxland, Wentworth and Lawson were thinking), she suggested we develop these observations into a theory. 
I realise that this theory is based on observations of ourselves and her group of friends and relatives; so the field of research is narrower than it should be. And as longitudinal studies go (this one is only about twenty years old) it’s too short to yield credible conclusions (yes I know it has far deeper credibility issues).
Nor is it an original or new theory; apparently Freud and Jung developed something far more insightful on the matter. 
But when I reached the point in our leisurely 4 hour bush walk that I was ready to cry or waste the time of the NSW search and rescue services, Friend M cleverly suggested that we test the theory against all of our friends, colleagues and acquaintances once more. We encountered a few couples who undermined the theory and so we excluded them from our research pool. As this was not a funded study, we figured we should be allowed to use any wacky methodology we liked, including excluding evidence we didn’t like. 
It’s not a profound theory and there are many examples that disprove it. But take for example my Husband’s mother, my Mother-in-Law. She is a joyous, sociable lady who faces the world with unassailable optimism and enthusiasm. On the other hand, I am too happy with my own company; and I often feel uncomfortable in new social situations, sometimes even in familiar ones.  Whilst my Mother-in-Law fearlessly expects the best from life, I am more anxiously braced for the worst. I have drafted contingency plans and cumbersome but still legally binding documents to deal with all manner of emergency situations. At family weddings, I have wondered what would happen if a terrorist attack took place, killing all of my heirs and their heirs and their heirs. (In such an event, my original Millennium Falcon has been bequeathed to my best friend K, who I know will treasure it as much as I do.) My Mother-in-Law is a lot more fun to be with at family weddings. 
And take for example, my father and my Husband. Both are principled men who love exploring, studying esoteric subjects and watching Bond movies. They have both had responsibility thrust upon them but they handle it with fortitude and an endearing sense of humour.
In our assessment conducted over the life-threatening terrain of the Blue Mountains, our sample set supported the theory. Our male friends did seem to be with partners who were very different from their mothers  – not that there was anything wrong with their mothers. And our female friends seemed to be with partners who were very similar to their fathers – not that their fathers were all necessarily shining paragons of humanity. It was just interesting to see a strong pattern emerging.
Is this only the case with me and my friends (and our faulty research) or are you the same – is your partner like one of your parents or the opposite?  Are you like your mother-in-law or different? Do you think men seek partners who are not like their mothers and women seek partners who are like their fathers? Or is this one Dr Phil-esque generalisation too many?

Termite Control – a long term relationship

Hi guys,

In the tradition of the great Hindu epics such as the Mahabharata and the Ramayana, the Termite Tales are continuing.

Here is my latest chapter for Rentokil:

I hope you like it. Wishing you a termite-free school holiday,

xx Shanks

Termites – we are surrounded


This is my latest instalment for Rentokil about our troubles and travels with termites:

Hope you like it,


The Super Termite – yes, it’s really called that

Did I mention we have termites? I have been blogging about the experience for Rentokil – here is part 2 of our travels with termites, I hope you like it.

Pests and pestilence

Hi there, we recently found out we have a termite infestation (cue massive panic attack). Rentokil is thankfully taking care of the problem for us soon and they have asked me blog about our experience. It’s the beginning of a lifelong pest control partnership given our neighbourhood.

Here is my first instalment, I hope you like it: