The One Who Wrote Destiny

Nikesh Shukla

RRP: £14.99

5 April 2018

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9781786492784

RRP: £8.99

5 April 2018

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9781786492791

Mukesh has just moved from Kenya to the drizzly northern town of Keighley. He was expecting fame, fortune, the Rolling Stones and a nice girl, not poverty, loneliness and racism. Still, he might not have found Keith Richards, but he did find the girl.

Neha is dying. Lung cancer, a genetic gift from her mother and an invocation to forge a better relationship with her brother and her widowed father before it’s too late. The problem is, her brother is an unfunny comedian and her idiot father is a first-generation immigrant who moved to Keighley of all places.

Rakesh is grieving. He lost his mother and his sister to the same illness, and his career as a comedian is flat-lining. Sure, his sister would have claimed that it was because he was simply unfunny, but he can’t help feel that there is more to it than that – more to do with who he is and where he comes from rather than the content of his jokes.

Ba has never looked after her two young grandchildren before. After her daughter died, her useless son-in-law dumped them on her doorstep for a month and now she has to try and work out how to bond with two children who are used to England, not to the rhythms of Kenya…


I loved it. It's wise and absorbing and the voices of all the characters are so incredibly distinct. A triumph.
Louise O’Neill, author of 'Almost Love and Asking For It'

Very funny but packs a hell of an emotional punch. It's an intimate epic, spanning continents and decades but rooted in the internal life of its characters.
Nish Kumar, stand-up comedian and actor

A wise and moving novel about family, love and the people we're destined to be.
Stylist, 'April's best new books'

A beautifully written and thought-provoking piece of work, which balances humour, anger and melancholy in a way that is charming and utterly engrossing.
The List

The novel captures the changing faces of racism with memorable vividness.
Sunday Times

Be utterly transported by this wonderfully written tale of family, immigration and family bonds.
Emerald Street