New Release

Padma Venkatraman’s next novel, THE BRIDGE HOME, is scheduled for 2019 release from Nancy Paulsen Books. Stay posted! And in the meantime, enjoy her other award-winning novels: A TIME TO DANCE (Starred Reviews in Kirkus, Booklist, VOYA, SLJ and BCCB); ISLAND’S END (Starred Reviews in Kirkus, Booklist, PW and SLJ); and CLIMBING THE STAIRS (Starred Reviews in Booklist, PW, and VOYA).

Praise for A TIME TO DANCE

“Flowing free verse…A beautiful integration of art, religion, compassion and connection.” * Starred Review, Kirkus  

“In Venkatraman’s delectably scented, sensual world, lyrically told through verse and through Veda, life is illuminated as a beautiful celebration of doing what comes naturally, as best as one is able..” * Starred Review, Booklist  

“The descriptions of contemporary India are beautiful and Venkatraman weaves images so divine that you can see the statues of Shiva, hear the ankle bells in the bharatanatyam dance, and smell the acrid scent of burnt rubber from the accident. Told in verse, this story is magnificently strong as Veda’s determination dances off the page and into the reader’s heart.” * Starred Review, VOYA

“This exceptional novel… is sure to appeal…”  * Starred Review, SLJ                                         

“Heart- achingly hopeful and beautifully written, this story will remain with readers long after the final line of verse.” * Starred Review, BCCB

“Sure to go on my favorites list… This book will definitely dance its way through your heart as it did mine.” * Denver Post

” a powerful depiction”   * Chicago Tribune  

“…dazzles and delights…beautifully written…” * Providence Journal  

“…loved this book…” * Newsday

“…powerful images and motifs of sound…”   * Horn Book


Venkatraman makes a memorable debut with this lushly evoked novel set in India during World War II…More than a feisty Cinderella story …this novel vivifies a unique era and culture as it movingly expresses how love and hope can blossom even under the most dismal of circumstances…
* Starred review, Publishers Weekly

Venkatraman paints an intricate and convincing backdrop of a conservative Brahmin home in a time of change…
* Starred review, Booklist

“With a delightfully strong female protagonist who struggles between tradition and the values she holds dear, this novel will capture the imaginations of many readers…”
*Starred Review, VOYA

Climbing the Stairs… is a passionate story…In the novel, books serve as a saving grace…The central theme of the novel, violence and nonviolence, will appeal to an international audience…
* India Currents

After reading this fine, often heart-breaking novel, I noticed that it’s for “young adults”. Well, I’m a ‘youngish adult,’ and I loved it.
* The Providence Journal

Praise for ISLAND’S END

“[Venkatraman] … succeeds spectacularly… Uido is a remarkable heroine … as infused with spirituality as this novel is, there is also heart-stopping action … the larger issues of modernity versus tradition offer much to think about… an intricate yet wholly accessible story”
* Starred Review, Booklist
“a lovely novel… offering an enticing blend of mystic tradition and imaginative speculation, Venkatraman movingly expresses a primitive tribe’s connection to nature and their struggle to find safety in the 21st century”
* Starred Review, PW
“Vividly written and expertly paced … a moving story that will stay with readers long after the end”
* Starred Review, SLJ
“consistenly engrosses… refreshingly hopeful and beautifully written”
* Starred Review, Kirkus

Awards and Honors for A TIME TO DANCE
*Starred review, BCCB * Starred Review, Booklist, * Starred Review, Kirkus, * Starred Review, SLJ * Starred Review, VOYA,
*ALA Notable *ALA/YALSA BBYA *Booklist Editor’s Choice Best Books *Booklist Top 10 art bk *CCBC Choices *Crystal Kite Finalist *CSML Best Books *Eliot Rosewater (IN) masterlist *IBBY Outstanding bk ypd *IRA Notable (NBGS) *Julia Ward Howe Boston Authors Club honor bk *Kirkus Best Books *New York Public Library Top 25 *New York City Reads (#NYC365) *Nutmeg Award (CT) masterlist *Rebecca Caudill (IL) masterlist *Red dot award (Singapore)*Sequoyah (OK) masterlist *Sanoc/SABA finalist

Awards and Honors for CLIMBING THE STAIRS:
Winner, BAC Julia Ward Howe award; Winner, ASTAL RI Book of the Year award; NYPL Best Book; ALA BBYA; ALA/Ameila Bloomer List Selection; Booksense Notable; Booklist Editor’s Choice, BBYA; CCBC Choice; NCSS/CBC Notable; Bank Street College of Education Best Book; Booklinks Best New Book; Pennsylvania School Library Association Top-40; CLN Top 25; Shortlisted for ME, UT, SC and NJ state awards; Shortlisted for Reading Across Rhode Island; Shortlisted for Cybil awards; Capitol Choice; Starred Review, VOYA; Starred Review, Booklist; Starred Review Publishers Weekly.

Awards and Honors for ISLAND’S END
Winner, SANOC International South Asia Book Award; Winner, Paterson Prize; ALA BBYA; ALA/Amelia Bloomer List Selection; Kirkus Best Book of the year; Booklist Editor’s Choice Best Book for Young Adults; CCBC Best Book; Finalist for the Crystal Kite award and BAC Julia Ward Howe award; Starred Review, Kirkus; Starred Review, Booklist; Starred Review, School Library Journal; Starred review, Publishers Weekly.

Meet Padma Venkatraman

Padma Venkatraman is the author of three award-winning, critically acclaimed novels: A TIME TO DANCE, ISLAND’S END and CLIMBING THE STAIRS. All three were released to three or more starred reviews (accruing a total of 12 starred reviews), and all three were ALA/Yalsa Best Books, Booklist Editor’s Choices, and CCBC choices, in addition to winning several other awards (Paterson Prize, Sanoc/SABA, BAC Julia Ward Howe award, ASTAL RI Book of the year etc.) and multiple honors (ALA Notable, Kirkus Best Book, Booklist Best Book, New York Public Library Best Book, Bank Street College of Education Best Book, and so on).

Padma Venkatraman is an American and lives in Rhode Island, USA, with her family. She has participated on panels at Harvard and other universities; was an invited guest at book festivals such as the international PEN World Voices Festival; has provided commencement speeches at schools and keynote addresses at numerous conferences, including at the Caribbean Beach Pen Literary Festival in Trinidad, where she was the chief guest. Her work has been featured nationally and internationally on TV and radio.

Padma Venkatraman turned to writing after obtaining a doctorate in oceanography at the College of William and Mary and conducting post-doctoral research in Environmental Engineering at Johns Hopkins University.