Kismuth Books

‘Kismuth’ means destiny. Books in this series are about loss, reflection, and joy. There are so many ways to talk about this series, how it came into shape, why I write it, and what it means to me. But it’s not for me to do that, now, not here, in this public space.

What’s the big idea? I hope to write in a way that slows us down, gives us a centering moment to pause and reflect. I’d love to do that well and when there is resonance, it’s working. Kismuth aims to give shape to these quiet moments of poise, in which we notice, perhaps with calm, perhaps with awe. We’re in an era of so much noise. I’d like to write something that ‘adds lightness, when you add it to the world,’ as IK had said, once, about my works. I like this idea.

A disclaimer. It’s easy to pontificate, and even easier to fall into the trap of making self-helpy prescriptive opinionized eBooks, but I want to leave these here as an offer for you, to think about things, to listen better, to seek new inputs widely before you get too far along in life and too rigid or overly esoteric. It’s just that. An invitation. To seek, to shift, and to begin to understand: we don’t know what we don’t know, after all. Kismuth, I hope, will take you on a journey.

-Dipika


Memoirs by Dipika Kohli

 

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To read more about each book in detail, click the arrow next to the title. For each one, you’ll get to know a bit more about the book, and you’ll see a ‘Read more’ link to that book’s page on this site, too. They’re all in the shop.


Into the Quiet (2024)

Quiet places: something that I have been writing about, almost unconsciously, for 20 years. But when the editor of a magazine I’d written a column for in the past accepted my pitch to pick it back up again, I realized what a two-year break from writing for others in magazines or through books has allowed me ample time to explore. Quiet spaces. Quiet places. Literally: the solitude of the pandemic meant sitting quietly alone for many, many days, often without speaking to people, as only a few spoke some English.


End of the Rainbow (2020)


Five months passed. I was in Da Lat, hoping to lay low and keep waiting there until the ‘end of the pandemic.’ But it wasn’t going to happen for who-knew-how-much-longer.


 

Breakfast in Cambodia (2016)


On the road for a year and instead of going back, parking. In Phnom Penh.This book was launched 2016 in Phnom Penh to a small set of people in a live reading in a courtyard, and became a discussion point for many who, like the author, were looking for a routine and sense of comfort from that, in the otherwise flux and shift of life in a new land.


Kanishka (2015)


Sometimes, there is no ‘why.’This book is the heart of the Kismuth series. It chronicles the feelings and emotions of what took place in 1985 when an airplane whose name was ‘Kanishka’ was destroyed by a terrorist bomb, taking the lives of all on board including many children. A 10-year-old on board was the best friend of the author, who had gone to Amritsar to seek some answer to her lifelong question, ‘Why?’.


The Dive (2012)


At times, love is… letting go. What do you do if the baby growing within your body, loved and nourished to your best ability, has a genetic defect? This is the true story of a mother-to-be’s very painful decision. It was recognized on the website of a birthing facility in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, as a suggested reading piece, and also listed at A Heartbreaking Choice, a website for parents-to-be making anguishing, complicated choices.


 

The Elopement (2012)


The Elopement (2012). How much is too much to trade for a promise of love?  This is the story that is one many young people ask. ‘How much is too much to trade for a promise of love?’