Pantera Press acquires world rights for an Onslaught of Light by Natasha Rai post image

Pantera Press acquires world rights for an Onslaught of Light by Natasha Rai

Pantera Press has bought world rights for An Onslaught of Light, a debut novel by Natasha Rai, which was longlisted for the 2017 Richell Prize, 2018 KYD Unpublished Manuscript award and highly commended for the Ultimo Press/Westwords 2020 Prize, will be published by Pantera Press in March 2025.

Set between 1990 and 2024, An Onslaught of Light is a luminous novel about the people we were, the people we are, and the people we could be… if only we’re brave enough to try.

In 1990, Vijay and Indu leave India for Australia, seeking a better life for their family. But the move isn’t easy on anyone. Not gentle Indu who becomes disconnected from her family and her life; nor the ambitious Vijay, who finds himself unmoored in a culture he doesn’t understand. At the centre is Archana, their quiet daughter, for whom a growing understanding of her own queerness grates against the realities of her life.

Years later, Arch lives her ideal solitary, isolated life. When her brother calls to say that Vijay is unwell and needs her help, Arch has no choice but to re-enter the world. Using her pain as a shield from connection, Arch goes about her family duty. But a chance meeting leads to the potential of a new start – if only she is willing to take a risk and let in some light.

Kate Cuthbert, Editorial Director at Pantera Press, says: ‘From the moment I met Arch, I couldn’t help but fall in love with her, all her prickles and hard edges and the soft, desperate heart underneath. Natasha has created characters that will capture you with their story, breaking your heart and then healing it in turn. It’s an honour and a pleasure to publish a piece of debut fiction of this calibre.’

Natasha Rai, an Indian-Australian woman, whose work has appeared in Australia’s first #MeToo anthology, Enough anthology about gender violence, Overland, Verity La, StylusLit and New York based Adelaide magazine, says: ‘Writing a novel is like being on a journey on which you’re not sure of the end or how to get there. Arch Sharma’s strong, clear voice helped me write her story. I was absolutely thrilled when Kate Cuthbert and the Pantera team understood Arch and cared about her as much as I do. I’m excited about my book being out in the world and for readers to love her and cheer for her.’


For further information please contact Connor Parissis: 02 8096 5192 or