The Magnificent Ruins

Coming Soon


By Nayantara Roy

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$38.00 CAD

When Lila returns to India from the United States after inheriting an ancestral home, she must confront a culture that has always been a part of her, her mother from whom she has been estranged for a decade, and her family (grandmother, aunts, uncles, and cousins) who all still live in the house. These family members resent her sudden inheritance of this humongous home, a stunning display of the status and culture of the zamindars, India's ruling class that was so firmly shaped by British colonial rule.

As Lila navigates romantic entanglements and her family’s deep mistrust, a legacy of violence in the family can no longer be ignored. In the aftermath of her cousin Biddy's wedding, an uncle is dead, and her grandmother unwillingly reveals her own secrets. With a lawsuit against Lila gathering steam and a police investigation triggered, Lila must finally reckon with her inherited custom of sweeping everything under the rug to preserve appearances.

With an unforgettable house at its heart, a violent past erupting into the present, a problematic romance, and a compelling and conflicted heroine, this novel is an utterly addictive read.


  • The Magnificent Ruins gripped me from the first page and moved me to tears on the last. A wise, beautiful and haunting story about difficult mothers and daughters, the complications of family life, and redefining the meaning of home, this novel will stay close to my heart for a long, long time to come.”
    Thrity Umrigar, bestselling author of Honor and The Museum of Failures
  • “As gorgeous as it is wise, Roy's voice soars and whispers with uncanny insight and wit, transporting us across continents, charting not only the distance between Calcutta and New York, but the stranger more mysterious abyss between childhood and adulthood, between family and home, between daughter and mother, and perhaps between life as we want it to be and life as it is--messy, complicated, beautiful, and sad. A page-turning, heart-rending family epic, this is a wickedly smart novel with an incredible generosity for characters and readers, and one that that eschews easy villains and easy answers and asks - how do we love one another across the entangled loyalties of geography and time? The answer will surely enlarge your life, and keep you reading long into the night. Quite simply one of the best novels I've ever read about what it means to call two places home.”
    Sunil Yapa, author of Your Heart Is a Muscle the Size of a Fist

On Sale
Nov 12, 2024
Page Count
448 pages
Algonquin Books

Nayantara Roy

About the Author

Nayantara Roy is a television executive at STARZ/ Lionsgate, where she oversees the acquisition and creative development of original scripted television series. Prior to STARZ, she worked at Endeavor Content series (Normal People, Nine Perfect Strangers) and at AGBO, Joe and Anthony Russo’s television studio. In 2018, Tara won the Rick Demarinis Short Story Prize for her short story, 8C. Originally from India, she is a 2020 alumni of the CAPE (Coalition of Asian Pacific Executives in Entertainment) Leaders Program and at STARZ, is a jury member of the STARZ #TakeTheLead director’s program, which is designed to create more directing opportunities for women and people of color. Her plays have been performed internationally, including at Prithvi Theater in Mumbai, India and Contact Theater, Manchester, UK. She lives in Silverlake, Los Angeles.

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