Putham House is about a young girl trapped in the suffocating confines of rigid social mores and prejudices. As change sweeps over her small village surrounded by majestic palmyra trees, Lizzy barely clings to the hope that her life too will change for the better while the indolent and overbearing menfolk of her family wallow in their former eminence and do nothing to redeem the sinking fortunes of their once prosperous household. Torn between filial duty and her love for an earnest young man from the palmyra climbing community, Lizzy’s plight is symptomatic of many a thwarted life caught in the cruel grip of prejudice. Her efforts to make do with what little joys she can draw from her straitened circumstances, her largeness of spirit and her resilience are truly unforgettable. Hephzibah Jesudasan’s scrupulous and sensitive portrayal of the palymra climbers, whose lives are as precarious as their perch on the tall swaying palms, makes this book a modern classic.