Book Review of Sheela Tomy’s Valli by Shilpa Nataraj

Green Entanglements of Land and Lore

  • Shilpa Nataraj Christ University
Keywords: Ecology, Ecofeminism, Ecofiction, Place, Indian Literature in English


Valli is a debut novel by Sheela Tomy, published in Malayalam in 2019 and translated to English by Jayashree Kalathil in 2022. For this novel, Sheela Tomy was awarded the Cherukad Award for Malayalam Literature in 2020. As rightly put in the dedication page, "For forests ravaged by fires For people rendered voiceless For Languages without scripts", this story is multiscalar. It resonates with Arundathi Roy's famous rendition of one of her works, "To the Unconsoled." Valli is a story of a land and its people whose essence lures outsiders and ignites a revolution of minds. Set in the hilly region called 'Wayanad' in the South Indian state of Kerala, the story brings out place-specificity as one of the key features in accentuating the historical, socio-political, cultural and environmental disparity and justice through the characters' lives which spans across three generations.


Download data is not yet available.

Author Biography

Shilpa Nataraj, Christ University

Shilpa Nataraj, is a research scholar at Christ (Deemed to be University), Bengaluru. She has majored in English and Cultural Studies and worked for few years as Assistant Professor at St. Joseph’s College, Bengaluru. Having taught courses on critical theory, cultural studies and world literature her areas of research interest include spatial literary studies and ecocriticism.

Through her doctoral work, she is exploring the urban ecologies in Indian literary representations using a place-based approach. This will foster new ways of examining texts, places, and spaces by contributing to the praxis of ecological coherence and sustainable futures in literary representations. Through her doctoral work she aims to uncover certain images and patterns distinct to realistic urban fiction. She aspires to contribute to field of higher education through quality research work and teaching.


1. Tomy, Sheela. "Valli." Harper Perennial, India. 2022. Print.
2. Wyse, Lowel. "Ecospatiality." University of Iowa Press, Iowa City. 2021. Ebook.
How to Cite
Nataraj, S. “Book Review of Sheela Tomy’s Valli by Shilpa Nataraj”. Contemporary Literary Review India, Vol. 10, no. 2, May 2023, pp. 253-9,
Book Review