05 October 2019

Saturday Spotlight | You Beneath Your Skin By Damyanti Biswas

In addition to the usual blog posts every Monday and Wednesday about our travel adventures and day-to-day life living aboard a sailboat, I also occasionally post on Saturdays, focusing on things related to writing such as cover reveals, book launches, reviews, interviews with authors etc. So if you're a bit of a book nerd like I am, check in on Saturdays - you never know what might pop up

Today, I'm thrilled to be helping out Damyanti Biswas with the release of You Beneath Your Skin. Not only is this thriller a great read, all author proceeds are being donated to two Indian non-profit organizations - Project WHY which provides educational support to underprivileged children and Stop Acid Attacks which fights acid attacks and supports survivors.

You can find out more about You Beneath Your Skin below.



It’s a dark, smog-choked new Delhi winter. Indian American single mother Anjali Morgan juggles her job as a psychiatrist with caring for her autistic teenage son. She is in a long-standing affair with ambitious police commissioner Jatin Bhatt – an irresistible attraction that could destroy both their lives.

Jatin’s home life is falling apart: his handsome and charming son is not all he appears to be, and his wife has too much on her plate to pay attention to either husband or son. But Jatin refuses to listen to anyone, not even the sister to whom he is deeply attached.

Across the city there is a crime spree: slum women found stuffed in trash bags, faces and bodies disfigured by acid. And as events spiral out of control Anjali is horrifyingly at the centre of it all …

In a sordid world of poverty, misogyny, and political corruption, Jatin must make some hard choices. But what he unearths is only the tip of the iceberg. Together with Anjali he must confront old wounds and uncover long-held secrets before it is too late.

‘What happened to her face?’ The question shot out of Anjali before she could stop herself. Jatin hadn’t warned her about this.

‘Tests show industrial-grade sulphuric acid,’ the doctor said. He lifted the green plastic sheet to just above the chest. The acid had found its way to the woman’s chin, her throat; it flowed down into her chest in mottled pink-brown tracks.

About You Beneath Your Skin

You Beneath Your Skin is a crime novel about the investigation of an acid attack on a woman from Delhi’s upper class, set against the backdrop of crimes against underprivileged women. They are assaulted, disfigured with acid, and murdered.

While the framework is that of a thriller, the novel threads together different narrative strands. The author tackles various social issues: crimes against women and why they occur, the nexus between political corruption, police and big money; the abuse ofthe underprivileged, be it adults or children.

Of these the issue of crimes against women is the strongest—why do men attack women? Why do they gang together? What happens when a woman tries to break the glass ceiling? Can toxic masculinity masquerade as benevolent patriarchy?

Parents would also find this novel fascinating: how do you bring up a good human being in today’s troubled times? How much do you know of your teenager’s life? If you’re the parent of a special child, what challenges do you face and what sort of support can you expect?

It is a whodunnit, but also a whydunnit, because violent crime unravels those affected: the people, the relationships, the very fabric of society, and we get a glimpse of what lies beneath. That’s why the title, You Beneath Your Skin.

The narrative of the book was researched and shaped during the author’s work with Project WHY, and some of the experiences generously shared by acid attack survivors from the non-profit Stop Acid Attacks. To return this debt of gratitude, all author proceeds from the book will go to these two non-profits.

You get your own copy of You Beneath Your Skin outside of India HERE.

In India, it is available from Simon & Schuster HERE

Add it to your Goodreads list HERE

About the Author

Damyanti Biswas lives in Singapore, and works with India's underprivileged children as part of Project WHY, a charity that promotes educational and social enhancement in underprivileged communities. Her short stories have been published in magazines in US, UK, and Asia, and she helps edit the Forge Literary Magazine.

You can connect with Damyanti on her blog and Twitter.

What's on your reading list? Have you read / are you planning to read You Beneath Your Skin?


  1. Excellent book to feature! So happy for Damy.

  2. Would also like to add my congrats to the author - and give extra kudos for her generousity in donating her profits to those two charities. Well played Damyanti, very well played.

  3. I've read the book and posted my review. The title of my review is Fantastic, so you can understand my reaction.

    1. Thank You for taking the time to read & review McKenzie!

  4. I've been a supporter of Project Why since volunteering there in 2008, and I think what Damyanti is doing for this charity and for Stop Acid Attacks is fantastic. She covers some big subjects in You Beneath Your Skin - corruption, acid attacks, autism, family and personal relationships and much more - with immense control. You won't find strings of emotive adjectives; Damyanti's style is clear, concise, precise, and that's very difficult to do. A fantastic debut novel.

    1. Thank You so much, Irene. Pretty sure Project Why appreciates your support.

  5. Sounds great! I already bought it. (zero willpower when it comes to book.)

  6. A book to thrill and support a great cause, a double reason to buy!


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