Author: Gayatri Sethi
Illustrator: Divya Seshadri
Where do those relegated to the margins find belonging?
In her luminous debut Unbelonging, Gayatri Sethi deftly interweaves verse, memoir, and a bold call to action as she recounts her experience searching for home in the diaspora.
Drawing upon her life story as a Tanzanian-born-Punjabi turned American educator and mother of biracial children, Sethi tells an intimate tale of stepping into her power while confronting misogyny, racism, and empire.
Spanning decades and continents– from Partition to the Black Lives Matter movement, South Africa to Atlanta – Unbelonging tells urgent truths, inspires critical self-reflection, and emboldens its readers to pursue radical forms of justice, compassion, and solidarity.
2022 IPPY Award - Multicultural Fiction - Juv/YA Gold
2022 Next Generation Indie Book Award - BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and/or Persons of Color) Finalist
2022 Purple Dragonfly Award - Young Adult Nonfiction 1st Place, Cultural Diversity (Honorable Mention)
2021 Story Monsters Approved - Young Adult Novel (Ages 13+), Cultural Diversity, First Time Author
Praise for Unbelonging
"In this sweeping ode to her ancestors and the homelands intimately tied to her identity, Gayatri infuses a blended stylistic narrative with symphonious self-reflection and an incisive call to action. Unbelonging is a mesmerizing debut about truth and naming, colonization and kinship, and a poetic meditation on what it means to be human."
— Anjali Enjeti, Author SOUTHBOUND and THE PARTED EARTH
"Unbelonging is a breathtaking, heartfelt, necessary poetry collection. A love letter to the diaspora, Unbelonging embraces readers while challenging them to confront their unspoken privileges. You will leave this book in deep reflection of your own history and identity. You will leave this book closer to your own roots, in touch with your heart and ready to forge a more inclusive future."
—Jasmin Kaur, author of when you ask me where I'm going and if I tell you the truth
”Gayatri Sethi is an exemplar; a fearless poet with the rare insight to grasp the imperative of addressing anti-Blackness to contextualize her own experiences of xenophobia, racism and gender bias on these shores. Listen carefully—her voice is a gift for this moment and beyond.”
—Camille Collins, author of The Exene Chronicles