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photo of Shastri Akella

Shastri Akella

writer & educator with a love for storytelling; author of "The Sea Elephants"

photo of Shastri Akella
"The Sea Elephants" books
"The Sea Elephants" books


Shastri Akella's debut novel "The Sea Elephants" has been published by Flatiron Books (USA, Canada) and Penguin (India). He was a writing resident at the Fine Arts Works Center (2021) and the Oak Springs Garden Foundation (2023). He's winner of 2022 FracturedLit Flash Fiction Contest and the 2023 Best Microfiction Contest. His writing has appeared in Guernica, Fairy Tale Review, CRAFT, The Masters Review, Electric Literature, World Literature Review, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. He earned an MFA in Creative Writing and PhD. in Comparative Literature at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He's an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Michigan State University. Contact him for readings and book signings at your bookstore, college or library.

Books & Publications


The Sea Elephants

Shagun knows he will never be the kind of son his father demands. After the sudden deaths of his beloved twin sisters, Shagun flees his own guilt, his mother’s grief, and his father’s violent disapproval by enrolling at an all-boys boarding school. But he doesn’t find true belonging until he encounters a traveling theater troupe performing the Hindu myths of his childhood.

The Sea Elephants Book

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