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Mary Anne Mohanraj

Born: 1971 in Colombo, Sri Lanka
Pen Name: None

Connection to Illinois: Mohanraj lives in Oak Park.

Biography: Mary Anne Mohanraj is author of Bodies in Motion (HarperCollins) and fourteen other titles. Bodies in Motion was a finalist for the Asian American Book Awards, a USA Today Notable Book, and has been translated into six languages. She's received a Locus Award, a CFW Breaking Barriers Award, an Illinois Arts Council Fellowship, and more. Mohanraj is Clinical Associate Professor of fiction and literature at the University of Illinois at Chicago, serves as Executive Director of DesiLit (, and directs the Kriti Festival of Art and Literature ( She founded and served for ten issues as editor-in-chief of Jaggery, a South Asian literary journal ( She serves on the board of her local garden club she loves incorporating garden harvests into her recipes and was recently elected to the Oak Park library board. Mohanraj was born in Sri Lanka in 1971, and moved to America at the age of 2. When she was young, her family would go back often to visit grandparents and other relatives, until the war intervened. Since peace returned, Mohanraj has started travelling back to Sri Lanka more often for research and pleasure. She's currently working on a video game, Sigiriya, based on 5th century Sri Lanka, in partnership with the company, Rad Magpie, and is developing a food tour and writing retreat to be held on the island. When she's not cooking, Mohanraj is writing science fiction and superhero stories; recent books include The Stars Change (Sri Lankans in space), and stories for George R.R. Martin's Wild Cards anthology


Primary Literary Genre(s): Non-Fiction; Romance; Science Fiction

Primary Audience(s): Adult readers


Selected Titles

A feast of Serendib :
ISBN: 1645432750 OCLC: 1139518255

"We come together with other Sri Lankans homelander and diaspora, Sinhalese and Tamil, Buddhist and Hindu and Christian and Muslim over delicious shared meals. Sri Lanka has been a multi-ethnic society for over two thousand years, with neighbors of different ethnicities, languages, religions, living side by side. We try to teach our children to be welcoming to all, to share our unique cultural traditions. That is part of what it means to be Sri Lankan, what it has always meant. Dark roasted curry powder, a fine attention to the balance of salty-sour-sweet, wholesome red rice and toasted curry leaves, plenty of coconut milk and chili heat. These are the flavors of Sri Lanka, a South Asian island at the crossroads of centuries of migration and trade. Can we choose the good parts of our culture to cherish, and leave the darker aspects behind? I hope so. I hope food can help provide a pathway there. Come together at our table, sharing milk rice and pol sambol, paruppu and crab curry. Linger over the chai just one more cup. Eat, drink, and share joy. In A Feast of Serendib, novelist and post-colonial academic Mary Anne Mohanraj introduces her mother s cooking and her own American adaptations, providing an introduction to Sri Lankan American cooking that is straightforward enough for a beginner, yet nuanced enough to capture the unique flavors of Sri Lankan cooking."--Back cover.

A taste of Serendib :
ISBN: 1590211006 OCLC: 63268722

Lethe Press, Maple Shade, N.J. : ©2003.

Aqua erotica /
ISBN: 0609806564 OCLC: 44944127

Three Rivers Press, New York : ©2000.

"18 stories for a steamy bath"--Cover.

Bodies in motion :
ISBN: 006078119X OCLC: 76819576

Harper Perennial, New York : 2006, ©2005.

Kathryn in the city
ISBN: 9781101216569 OCLC: 773612238

Gotham Books, New York : ©2003.

Kathryn in the City follows you, as Kathryn, from a small Indiana town to San Francisco, where you decide whether to pursue a relationship with a sexy post-doctoral student, have a dalliance with a lesbian stripper, or shag your gay roommate's boyfriend, to name just a few of the possible fantasies you can choose from along your narrative journey. But always beware of the perils of big-city life that might leave you imprisoned in a dark dungeon with nary a Prince Charming in sight.

Perennial: A Garden Romance
ISBN: 1590216407 OCLC: 1032579153

Silence and the word /
ISBN: 159021014X OCLC: 895863125

"A new collection drawing from the many areas of Mary Anne Mohanraj's work, Silence and the word includes everything from enticing erotica to Sri Lankan-American immigrant tales, from romantic poetry to provocative essays."--Page [4] of cover.

The classics professor /
ISBN: 1592400310 OCLC: 52040243

Gotham Books, New York : 2003.

The stars change /
ISBN: 1613901178 OCLC: 1123219644

"The Stars Change: an erotic science fiction novel-in-stories. On a South Asian-settled university planet, tensions are rising, and as they reach the brink of interstellar war, life (and sex) continues. Humans, aliens, and modified humans gather at the University of All Worlds in search of knowledge ... and self-knowledge ... but the first bomb has fallen and the fate of this multicultural, multispecies mecca is in question. Some people will seek solace in physical contact, some will look for spiritual answers, while others will find their strength in community, family, and love. Some will rush home to make love to their wife. Or wives. Or husbands. Or indeterminate gender human and/or alien partners. Others will be forced to decide where they stand -- what is worth fighting for, or maybe even worth dying for."--Page 4 of cover.

Torn shapes of desire :
ISBN: 1885876033 OCLC: 36755400

Intangible Assets Manufacturing, Philadelphia : ©1996.

Wet :
ISBN: 0609808974 OCLC: 49512250

Three Rivers Press, New York : ©2002.