Book of the Month – October 2018

Hay Festival October Book of the Month

Tishani Doshi's Girls Are Coming Out of the Woods

Girls are coming out of the woods,
wrapped in cloaks and hoods,
carrying iron bars and candles
and a multitude of scars, collected
on acres of premature grass and city
buses, in temples and bars...

Girls Are Coming Out Of The Woods is an unflinching collection of poems that weave between topics from violence against women to time and memory. Tishani Doshi's third full collection in English blends visceral power with artistic elegance, re-imagining form as it sifts through detail and emotion.

"It's very much a collection for this moment in history, but one that will endure long past it" – Kamila Shamsie, The Guardian (Best Summer Books 2018).
Buy the book

Watch again on Hay Player

Further reading...

Tishani Doshi reads from Girls Are Coming Out of the Woods

Girls Are Coming Out of the Woods review (The Hindu, September 2017)

William Dalrymple on what he’s learnt from Tishani Doshi (Vogue India, August 2018)

About the author

Poet, writer, and dancer Tishani Doshi was born in Madras, India, to Welsh and Gujarati parents. Her first book of poetry, Countries of the Body (2006), won a Forward Prize for Best First Collection. Her subsequent collections include Everything Begins Elsewhere (2013) and Dolce Marcescenza (Sweet Decay). Doshi’s first novel, The Pleasure Seekers (2010), was shortlisted for the Hindu Best Fiction Award and has been translated into several languages. She is also the author of Fountainville: New Stories from the Mabinogion (2013), a retelling of the Mabinogion myth, as well as two books about place and home, Madras Then Chennai Now (2013) and The Adulterous Citizen (2015). Her honors and awards include an Eric Gregory Award and an All-India Poetry Prize. She lives in Tamil Nadu, India. Girls Are Coming Out of the Woods is her fourth collection.

Tishani Doshi
Tishani Doshi on stage at Hay Festival

About Hay Festival's Book of the Month

Hay Festival's Book of the Month is our monthly recommendation of a title we've loved and think holds added resonance today. While many recommendations celebrate the new, this is a chance to celebrate great works of fiction, non-fiction and poetry – new and old – that reaches through time to touch the present.

Throughout the month, we'll share interesting links and articles relating to our selection on social media using #HayBookOfTheMonth and invite you all to get involved with your questions and comments.

Over on Hay Player, a special playlist of talks to view online offer additional perspectives on the books from some of the greatest writers and thinkers around the world.

If you'd like to recommend a book for consideration, please email

Happy reading!