The Unbearable Lightness of Being Young: A Debut Novel

The following is from The Worlds Within You by Shreya Ramachandran, excerpted with permission from Penguin Random House India.
You can read an e-interview with author Shreya Ramachandran #comingsoon.

Did Sam remember all this? Did she tally my life decisions
and actions like they were marks in a game of Scrabble? How
far back did everyone’s memory go? Did everyone remember
what I remembered? Did I remember correctly?
It’s like it’s settling on me now, dust after a hot desert
storm: how much everyone has felt because of me, which
I selfishly never thought about because I was living through
the moment, instead of looking at it from every angle. How
much do I owe Sam and have owed Sam, and how much do
I still have to pay back? It’s like half of Sam’s world is with
me, moving slowly with my every moment, like the earth and
the moon, sapping Sam’s energy, leaving her hands empty.
‘Are you okay?’ Sam asks.
A multiple-choice question.
‘Yeah. Should we go watch TV?’
‘Can I choose?’ Sam asks.
We leave the kitchen and I see Sam’s shoulders hunch
as she squeezes past the fridge. Mentally, I take my half out
of my hands and put it back with Sam’s half—give her the
whole world back.”

Image courtesy Penguin Random House India

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