A bonanza for
Jane Austen fans
Reviewed by Chakoo
For common audiences across the
world, there are a great number of cinematic adaptations, spin-offs
and theatrical performances of Austen’s work and life
A Companion to Jane Austen Ed Claudia L. Johnson and Clara Tuite.
Wiley-Blackwell, U.K. Pages 537. Price not mentioned.
Henry James once famously complained that the public's enthusiasm for Jane Austen was being “abetted by a body of publishers, editors and illustrators who find their dear, our dear, everybody's dear, Jane, so infinitely to their material purpose." James, actually, acknowledged that Jane Austen would not be so “saleable if we had
not more or less … lost our hearts to her." To be sure, her reputation in the literary world continues to rise. No longer considered as a mere comic entertainer, she is widely recognised as the pre-eminent novelist and a major figure in world literature. Her fictional worlds provide a fertile testing ground for new theories of philosophy of language and methodologies.
A man forever on the margins
Reviewed by Aruti Nayar
Poet of the Revolution:The Memoirs and Poems of Lal Singh
Translated by Nirupama DuttPenguin/Viking.
Pages 167. Rs 399
at the slight, self-effacing man, no one could guess that he was bursting with revolutionary fervour or was willing to stake all for a cause. If anything that defined him was the shrinking self-consciousness and a deep sadness lurking in his eyes that told its own multiple tales of oppression. One remembers a warm May evening in Punjab Kala Bhavan, a few months before his death in 2007, when Lal Singh Dil had read out his poetry and Parnab, a Bengali photographer, poet and activist enacted vignettes from writer-activist Mahashweta Devi’s works. Dil may not have displayed any revolutionary fervour, fire and brimstone but his poetry did. After all, he had articulated the double burden of caste and class when he wrote: “For us, trees do not bear fruits, for us, flowers do not bloom, for us, there is no spring, for us, there is no revolution.”
Leadership, conflict zone and emotional chaos
Reviewed by Balwinder Kaur
Bal Thackeray & The Rise Of The Shiv
By Vaibhav Purandare
Lotus Roli. Pages 263. Rs 350.
On November 17, last year, Bal Thackeray the firebrand chief of the Shiv Sena passed away; bringing Mumbai to a standstill.
By Amitabha Ray
Niyogi Books. Pages 165. Rs 250
Woken up on his day off by a red city alert, Amitabha Ray is prepared for immediate evacuation. Even the subsequent downgrade to yellow means relocation. Extreme caution is dictated at the lower white city and only at a green city can he relax.
The Sari Shop Widow
By Shobhan Bantwal
Fingerprint Pages 364.Rs 250
again life has dealt Anjali Kapadia a cruel blow crushing her hopes and dreams. The 37-year-old widow spent a decade turning her family's sari shop in New Jersey into a noteworthy luxury boutique.
Love, longing, memories & desires
The Tattooed Fakir
By Biman Nath
Pan Books. Pages 270.
the past is an art; imagining something that existed somewhere during sometime, putting two-and-two together on the basis of astute research and coming up with a story that is not only credible but also gripping, is more than just art. It is a rare gift and author Biman Nath has made the most of it in his second novel The Tattooed Fakir.
Light on reformer's life
Rammmohun Roy: A Critical Bibliography
By Amiya P. Sen.
Penguin Books India. Pages xii+211. Rs 450
earlier biographies were based on anecdotes and hearsay gathered from friends and co-workers (27-48). The author in this critical book tries to make us aware that critical work is useful for it removes obscurity in the scattered material (ix-x). The average reader will be happier in handling the present epitomised shorter work.