- Facebook: thebookofbandati
Emilie Anand was born in France in 1982. She moved to India for work in 2006, a place where she never thought she would stay. In 2014 she got married to a very nice South Indian man and their son was born the same year in Mumbai.
Bringing up a kid when parents come from very different cultures can pose some challenges. For instance, where will he/her sleep? In the parents' bed like Indians do or in his/her own room like French do? How will eat - all day long and hand-fed or at regular timings and by himself? Emilie and her husband had to find their own balance...
In the meantime, there were discussions to be had with their child. Why can't he meet his grand-parents whenever he wants? Why does he have to speak French? That's when they realized that there was no material to engage a conversation with him. In 2020, as a challenge with a friend, Emilie started writing and illustrating (just to explain visually her thought process). As things moved on, and she understood she won't get help of an editor/publisher to help her see if the writing and drawing was okay, she ended up doing it all herself (even though she had never held a pen before!). Bandati* was born, to the greatest pleasure of Emilie's son!
*Bandati is a mix of "bandar" and "haathee" which mean monkey and elephant in Hindi.