Download The Heart is a Shifting Sea: Love and Marriage in Mumbai Audiobook

The Heart is a Shifting Sea: Love and Marriage in Mumbai Audiobook, by Elizabeth Flock Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Elizabeth Flock Narrator: Sunil Malhotra, Nicol Zanzarella Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2018 ISBN: 9780062799470
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In the vein of Behind the Beautiful Forevers, an intimate, deeply reported and revelatory examination of love, marriage, and the state of modern India—as witnessed through the lives of three very different couples in today’s Mumbai.

In twenty-first-century India, tradition is colliding with Western culture, a clash that touches the lives of everyday Indians from the wealthiest to the poorest. While ethnicity, class, and religion are influencing the nation’s development, so too are pop culture and technology—an uneasy fusion whose impact is most evident in the institution of marriage.

The Heart Is a Shifting Sea introduces three couples whose relationships illuminate these sweeping cultural shifts in dramatic ways: Veer and Maya, a forward-thinking professional couple whose union is tested by Maya’s desire for independence; Shahzad and Sabeena, whose desperation for a child becomes entwined with the changing face of Islam; and Ashok and Parvati, whose arranged marriage, made possible by an online matchmaker, blossoms into true love. Though these three middle-class couples are at different stages in their lives and come from diverse religious backgrounds, their stories build on one another to present a layered, nuanced, and fascinating mosaic of the universal challenges, possibilities, and promise of matrimony in its present state.

Elizabeth Flock has observed the evolving state of India from inside Mumbai, its largest metropolis. She spent close to a decade getting to know these couples—listening to their stories and living in their homes, where she was privy to countless moments of marital joy, inevitable frustration, dramatic upheaval, and whispered confessions and secrets. The result is a phenomenal feat of reportage that is both an enthralling portrait of a nation in the midst of transition and an unforgettable look at the universal mysteries of love and marriage that connect us all.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Elizabeth Flock has invented a new way of telling a love story. It’s part journalism, part true fable, and it takes you deep inside a country…I couldn’t stop reading it.”

    Pamela Druckerman, New York Times bestselling author

  • “The Heart Is a Shifting Sea is an intimate look at life in India, yet its intricately reported, novelistic portraits of marriage will resonate regardless of where you live. This book will keep you up reading deep into the night; it will make you ignore your loved ones, shirk your responsibilities. It is that good.”

    Peggy Orenstein, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Flock approaches the histories, hopes, dreams, and disappointments of her middle- and upper-middle-class couples as a reporter, not a storyteller, and the book is better for it, steering clear of caricature and sentiment, and letting each of her subjects emerge in the details of his or her own circumstances.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “Because Flock goes deep, rather than broad, in exploring the various customs of marriage and parenthood in India, she makes readers feel as though they are peering through a window into these couples’ lives…[A] beautifully rendered, intricate, and human exploration of love and marriage in Mumbai.”

    Library Journal

  • “These three marriages, without the Bollywood polish, offer an unforgettable look at both the risks and rewards of real-life romance.”


  • “Absorbing…An eye-opening exploration of how tradition and star-studded dreams shape love in modern India.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Easily the most intimate account of India that I’ve read, and of value to anybody that believes in love and marriage.”

    Suketu Mehta, author of Maximum City

  • “Remarkable…Deeply reported, elegantly written, and profoundly transporting…A provocative and exciting meditation.”

    Katie Roiphe, author of The Violet Hour

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About the Author

Elizabeth Flock is a former journalist who reported for Time and People magazines and worked as an on-air correspondent for CBS before becoming a full-time writer. She is the author of several books, including the New York Times bestseller Me & Emma, a Book Sense Notable Title and Highlight Pick of the Year.

About the Narrators

Sunil Malhotra is an actor and voice artist. His film credits include Dude, Where’s the Party?, Call Center, 24, ER, Cold Case, and The West Wing. On stage, he has performed on Broadway and at East West Players. He has also worked as a writer, producer, and director, and his audiobook narrations have won three AudioFile Earphones Awards.

Nicol Zanzarella is an Earphones Award–winning audiobook narrator and a theater and television actress. She has appeared in productions of Richard III, Romeo and Juliet, The Winter’s Tale, Cousin Bette, Danny and the Deep Blue Sea, and many others.