Anees Salim

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Anees Salim is an Indian author known for his books like Vanity Bagh, The Blind Lady's Descendants and the Small Town Sea. He is from the town of Varkala, and now lives in Kochi, Kerala. He won the Sahitya Akademi Award for The Blind Lady's Descendants in 2018, becoming only the fourth Malayalee in history to win the award for an English work.[1] Some of his columns have appeared in newspaper The Indian Express.[2]

Life and career[edit]

Anees Salim was born in Varkala, a small town in Kerala, in 1970. In an interview to The Hindu, Salim says he inherited his love for words from his father who used to work in West Asia.[3] Salim is the Creative Director for FCB Ulka, the multi-national advertising firm, and lives in Kochi. Despite his background in PR and advertising, Salim makes a point of avoiding promotional tours and speaking at literary festivals.[3]

In an interview to the Earthen Lamp Journal,[4] Salim talks about how his first two novels were rejected by publishers. It was his third book, Tales from a Vending Machine, that helped his career as a writer take off. Sold to a publisher within a week, it renewed interest in his other works and, as Salim says, "fetched me four book deals."[5][6]

Awards and honours[edit]

  • 2013 - The Hindu Literary Prize for Vanity Bagh.[7][8][9] The prize was announced by novelist Jim grace in the valedictory function of the Hindu Lit for Life festival held in Chennai during 12–14 January 2014.
  • 2015 - Crossword Book Award in Indian Fiction for The Blind Lady’s Descendants[10]
  • 2017 - Bangalore Atta Galatta Literature Book Festival's Best Fiction (English) for The Small Town Sea[11]
  • 2017 - The Hindu Prize shortlist for the Small Town Sea[12]
  • 2017 - Tata Literature Live! Book of the Year Award (Fiction) shortlist for the Small Town Sea[13]
  • 2018 - Sahitya Akademi Award (English category), for The Blind Lady's Descendants[14]


  • The Vicks Mango Tree (2012)
  • Tales From A Vending Machine (2013)
  • Vanity Bagh (2013)
  • The Blind Lady’s Descendants (2014)
  • The Small-Town Sea (2017)


  1. ^ "Kerala: Akademi Award raises readers' expectations, says Anees Salim". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
  2. ^ "Anees Salim". The Indian Express. 17 December 2017. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
  3. ^ a b Balakrishnan, Suneetha (15 November 2012). "Living with words". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
  4. ^ "Earthen Lamp Journal". Archived from the original on 10 September 2018. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
  5. ^ Balakrishnan, Suneetha. "Living with Words". The Hindu. Retrieved 2 March 2013.
  6. ^ Preetha T S (27 September 2012). "Kochi writer hits the Inglish jackpot". Times of India. Retrieved 9 November 2013.
  7. ^ "The Shortlist for The Hindu Best Fiction Prize Declared". Current Books. 9 November 2013. Archived from the original on 9 November 2013. Retrieved 9 November 2013.
  8. ^ Staff writer (9 November 2013). "The Hindu Prize 2013 Shortlist". The Hindu. Retrieved 9 November 2013.
  9. ^ Staff writer (14 January 2014). "Anees Salim bags The Hindu Prize for Best Fiction 2013". The Hindu. Retrieved 14 January 2014.
  10. ^ Zafar Anjum (29 April 2015). "India: Raymond Crossword Book Award 2014 winners announced". Retrieved 29 April 2015.
  11. ^ Reporter, Staff (21 October 2017). "Atta Galatta-Bangalore Literature Festival Book Prize 2017 announced". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 26 November 2017.
  12. ^ "The Hindu Prize 2017 shortlist is out". The Hindu. Special Correspondent. 28 October 2017. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 26 November 2017.CS1 maint: others (link)
  13. ^ "Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai LitFest announces shortlists for five coveted Book Awards via @tatacompanies". Archived from the original on 1 December 2017. Retrieved 26 November 2017.
  14. ^ Narayanan, Kiran (7 December 2018). "Kerala: Akademi Award raises readers' expectations, says Anees Salim". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 16 December 2018.

External links[edit]