That Black Widow spider always reminds me of Susanna, my lifelong friend and neighbour . . . As I was never her husband, I have survived to tell this story. Since his childhood, Arun has secretly been in love with Susanna, his dangerously alluring neighbour, who becomes his friend despite the wide difference in their ages. But Susanna has a weakness for falling in love with the wrong men. Over the years, Arun watches as Susanna becomes notorious as the merry widow who flits from one marriage to another, leaving behind a trail of dead husbands. It is only a matter of time before he too begins to wonder if there is any truth to the slanderous gossip surrounding the woman he is in love with. In this gripping new novella of love and death, Bond revisits his previously published short story of the same name, included here in an appendix. This edition also features the screenplay Saat Khoon Maaf, based on this novella and written by award-winning film-maker Vishal Bhardwaj and Matthew Robbins.
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Ruskin Bond wrote his first novel, The Room on the Roof, when he was seventeen. Since then he has written several novellas, short stories, essays and poems, all of which have established him as one of the best chroniclers of contemporary India. He was awarded the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1993 and the Padma Shri in 1999.
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