Saturday, September 30, 2006

Seven 6s are 43

Saat Sakkam Trechalis, Nagarkar's explosive first novel, redefined Marathi literature with its language and the sexual identity it gave voice to. Translated by Shubha Slee, Seven 6s are 43, once again brings alive the magic of Nagarkar's creativity. The wry humour and the irreverent approach rivets the reader's attention to the very last page.

The Times of India

"He sees the funny side of everything: poverty, illness, suffering, death, and of course, intercourse."

Senior Assistant Editor Pankaj Upadhyay,

"I have known Kiran Nagarkar, the author of Cuckold and Ravan and Eddie, for over five years now. I have laughed with him, cried with him, argued endlessly and fought bitterly. But we have remained friends. For me he is the Maharaj Kumar of Cuckold -- kind, cruel, good, bad, honest, untruthful, loyal, fickle, brave, a coward. But beyond all this, he is someone who is constantly questioning and probing, looking for answers, testing inherited wisdom, turning mores and moralities upside down, every now and then, to check their worth. "

The author

Kiran Nagarkar

The translator

Shubha Slee

Publishers: Katha
Cover Painting: Chittrovana Mazumdar
Price: Rs 200
ISBN: 81-87649-74-7

Wednesday, September 27, 2006


"Wouldn't you love to read a story about something which is bigger than the Big Bigger Biggest that you have ever known? Step into the wonderland of magical raindrops and unbelievable kites ..."

The Hindu
(Young World, October 21, 2005)
Magic in the sky

A raindrop, a magical one, changes the course of the day.

Flying kites is fun. But, it can get adventurous too like it did for Seetu. It was just a raindrop — a truly magical one — that changed the course of her day. When Seetu takes her kite out to dry it begins to drift stealthily from her hands. Soon she realises that even without a string she could manoeuvre the kite up the sky. She pretends to tug at a make-believe string and the kite goes higher and higher, and what more, it grows bigger and bigger.

People rush out of their homes to fly their own kites, inspired by the big one, rather the biggest one there ever was — as huge as an aeroplane. And the village bears a festive look — people cheering and jumping joyfully beneath a multi-coloured sky.

The day is done and only Seetu and her brother Kittu are out in the moonlight, still flying the giant-size kite. What would happen if they bring it down? Will the kite still be as big, or become an ordinary one? Perplexed for a while, Seetu decides what to do. She is happy, and believes the kite will be too.

Breathtaking illustrations by Bindia Thapar are sure to keep the reader from putting the book down long after the story is done. The pictures in astounding colours bring the characters and the setting alive.

- Subajayanthi B

The New Indian Express
(School Magazine, September 6, 2006)

Geeta Dharmarajan's The Magic Raindrop is a tale full of childhood fantasies and a yearning to break free. Using a metaphor of a kite, Geeta seems to suggest that all things are best left to their natural habitat.

Seetu and Kittu are siblings who, like many other children, own a colourful kite. With a twist of events, a big fat raindrop falls on the kite, and makes it grow so huge that it appears larger than life. Ultimately, when the kite grows too big to hold on, Seetu lets go off the strings, and it flies away to lands unknown.

The illustrations by Bindia Thapar brings to life the characters, and the multi-coloured kites that kiss the sky. The use of bright and bold shades of reds, blues and greens breathe life into the pages, and you can almost hear the swish of kites fluttering past you.

The last three pages of the book gives you an enlightening view into the traditions of kite flying all around the globe. Kites are not just flown for entertainment, the Thais and the Nepalese send kites up with secret prayers to the gods.

- Sujata Chakrabarti

About the author

About the illustrator
Bindia Thapar
Publishers: Katha
Also available in Hindi
Age Group: 4-7 years
32 pages, size 11 x 8.5
ISBN 81-89020-28-5 [HB]
ISBN 81-89020-27-7 [PB]
ISBN 81-89020-35-8 [Hindi]
Price: Rs150 [HB] [in India and the subcontinent]
Rs 100 [PB]
Rs 80 [Hindi]

"She's a quiet flame, a roaring sea. He's a restless wave, an autumn tree. Set in the Dilli of the 1920s, Mehak and Kripanarayan's love story threatens the seams of family and passion, as Kutumb the wife gropes for the slivers of a broken marriage. Three powerful characters, three distinct voices. Krishna Sobti crafts a perfect wind cup that shields the flickering flames of love and life."

Winner of the The Hutch Crossword Award 2005: Indian Language Fiction Translation
(Sunday Magazine, September 18, 2005)
Uniquely Sobti

KRISHNA SOBTI is tough to translate. The celebrated grande dame of Hindi letters is very individual, very stylised, very hard to replicate in another language.

Within her eclectic oeuvre, she has innovated with literary forms and dramatic characters, framed within a broadly humanistic vision.

However Katha, true to its reputation as a pioneering Indian translation house of quality, has risen to the challenge. Sobti's literary craftsmanship surges to the fore in this rendition.

Even in English, the narrative captures the fluid intricacies, the well-wrought turns of phrase that distinguish Hindi, whether within the courtly idiom of the haveli families or the more colloquial bazaar exchanges of 1920s Dilli.

Interpreting the love triangle

Building on the quintessential love triangle, Sobti demonstrates how uniquely a skilled practitioner can interpret it. Recreating the waves of love between Mehak Bano and Kripanarayan, and its impact on the home shores through his wife Kutumb, the writer summons up the troubled waters beneath a seething calm.

Is Mehak a roaring sea under her quiet, beautiful exterior? Is Kripa a restless wave that will answer the call of duty? How will Kutumb avenge the anguish of years caused by a straying husband? Sobti avoids the pitfalls of the conventional by etching three distinctive characters, whose lives course through the novel as surely as the ebbing tides.

The twists and turns in their fates. The social impact of their desires. The creation of outcasts by duty-bound familial hierarchy. The role of the radical individual within the societal framework. The impact of passion within the confines of an arranged marriage, defined by social benefit. These are among the myriad themes lyrically explored on Sobti's pages. Through three distinct narrators, who evoke an unforgettable time, a distinct milieu, a cultured space.

Through a lean, taut structure that serves her plot brilliantly, Sobti transports the reader into the Delhi of generations ago. A city of commingled religions. Of a bustling bazaar where distinctive sweets and namkeens, fine quilts and wedding garments, celebrate everyday creativity. Of a male chauvinistic preserve, encouraging open forays into forbidden turf. Of cloistered women who occasionally bypass shackles, often amidst intense turbulence.

Distinctive dialogue

Sobti's canvas is the human heart. Its shimmering shades and unfathomable depths are captured through social interfaces, layered dialogue and dynamic characters who evolve into new beings as time wields its unyielding whip.

The dialogue is especially distinctive, each oddly couched English phrase optimally capturing a characteristic Hindi expression without appearing unwieldy or misplaced.

And so, wooed by Sobti's authorial authority, we watch each individual voice intersect on the fabric of the whole. We marvel at the engaging web she weaves, shimmering with poetry through discord, illuminating us historically and culturally through crosscurrents.

We remain stunned at the sensitivity with which Sobti handles her male protagonist, allowing Kripa adequate dignity even as he falls from grace — thanks to her humanistic overview.

But then, Sobti fans, who recognise her as an honoured custodian of the best of contemporary Indian literature, are little surprised by the virtues of The Heart Has Its Reasons, even in translation.

For didn't she cast Daar Se Bichchudi with a Punjabi flavour, while engaging with Rajasthani culture through Mitro Marjani? Wasn't she the first Hindi woman litterateur to receive the Sahitya Akademi award? Besides being the recipient of the Katha Chudamani award for a lifetime's literary achievement?

This translation, for which Anand and Swami deserve due credit, ensures Sobti's pre-eminence by reaching out to non-Hindi readers. How else would they recognise the sterling qualities that mark her as a unique writer?

We hope Katha will, over time, translate all her works for our benefit. Besides this one, and Ei Lakdi, which they rendered earlier. Because a taste of Sobti, either in Hindi or in translation, leaves us yearning for more, much more.

- Aditi De
More Reviews
The Tribune

"... Translations are the only way out. Yet, there are few who take the trouble of translating. This brings me to write that recently writer-cum-film maker Reema Anand won the CrossWord award for translating Krishna Sobti’s book, The Heart Has Its Reasons (Katha), jointly translated by Reema Anand and Meenakshi Swami."
- Humra Quraishi
About the Author
About the translators
Reema Anand
Meenakshi Swami
Publishers: Katha
Category: Katha Hindi Library
Cover Concept: Krishna Sobti
Cover Photograph: Allan Langdale
ISBN 81-87649-54-2
Price: Rs 250 (in India and the subcontinent)

Monday, September 25, 2006

Hanuman's Adventures in the Netherworld

"A 600 year old classic retold ..."

"The master magician, Mayil Ravana, hascast a stupendous spell! He’s kidnappedRama and Lakshmana. Now, no one canever find their way to the Lotus Kingdomto rescue the princes.But, wait! There goes Hanuman, the sonof the swishing wind and a trusted friendof the princes, gliding across the bluestsky in search of the nether world. Hedares through crashing waves, fire-sparksand mirror-demons to blow out theslithering flames under the sea. Slip into your invisible diving suits for a splashing,big adventure!"

The New Indian Express
(School Magazine, September 13, 2006)

The book is about Hanuman and his various adventures while rescuing Rama and Lakshmana from the clutches of evil magician, Mayil Ravana. This is a 600-year old story, an offshoot of the epic Ramayana, retold by Madhavi S Mahadevan.

When Ravana sees that he's going to lose the war against Rama and his vanara army, he summons his younger brother, Mayil Ravana, king of Pataala Lanka, and asks for his help. Ravana orders Mayil, who is a master magician, to get rid of Rama and Lakshmana. When the news of the evil magician's plan reaches Rama's camp, Hanuman (the son of Vayu, Lord of the Winds), is given the task of protecting the princes.

Hanuman builds a fortress with his tail. This fortress can only be entered through Hanuman's mouth. The evil magician disguises himself as Dasharatha (Rama's father) and Bharata (Rama's brother). When his plans fail, he disguises himself as Vibhishana and Hanuman allows him to enter. Hanuman realises his mistakes when the real Vibhishana returns, but by then, it is too late. The princes are kidnapped.

To correct his mistake, Hanuman goes into the nether world to rescue Rama and Lakshmana, braving crashing waves, firesparks and mirror demons.

Hanuman encounters many hurdles in his journey. During the course of his journey, Hanuman meets his son Macchavallavan. Being a true warrior, Macchavallavan does not let him inside Pataala Lanka. So, Hanuman has to render him unconscious. He encounters millions of rakshasas but he kills them all.

Inside the fortress, he meets Turatanti, Mayil Ravana's siter, who helps him kill the evil magician.

The writings are simple and interesting enough to hold the interest of readers. Illustrations by Srivi are beautiful and modernistic. The drawings of Hanuman resemble that of a child, probably in order to hold the interest of young readers. The expressive illustrations are the plus point of the book.

- Dilip Kumar Shaw

The author

Madhavai S Mahadevan

The illustrator


Publishers: Katha
Also available in Hindi.
40 pages, size 11 x 8.5
Age group: 5-9 years
ISBN 81-89020-30-7 [HB]
81-89020-29-3 [PB]
81-89020-36-3 [Hindi]
Price: Rs 175 [HB]
Rs 100 [PB]
Rs 95 [Hindi]
Hindi: Rs 150 [HB]
Rs 95 [PB]

Sunday, September 24, 2006

SHANGMIYANG, the tanghkul giant

"A little book about the gentle, BIG giant who sneezed up a storm..."

The Hindu
(Young World, February 17, 2006)
Shanmiyang-the tangkhul giant by Birendra Kumar Bhattacharya is a part of a larger novel called Yaruingam. This is a story about a little boy who loves his grandmother's house and his grandmother who tells him a story every night. The close-up pictures of the grandmother and his face with the black lettering in the background form a lovely picture of warm camaraderie between the old and the young. Shanmiyang may be a giant, but being one with a difference he is as gentle as can be. His breath is healing and forms the main crux of the story.
The art is what constitutes the main appeal. The colours add to the mood and highlight the fine lines of the drawings.
- Paromita Pain
The New Indian Express
(School Magazine, June 28, 2006)
The story of Shangmiyang - The Tangkhul Giant is a very simple and straightforward story of a giant who sneezed up a storm.

Koncheng loves his grandmother's home the most and loves her stories. But his favourite story is about Shangmiyang, the giant. Shangmiyang is a humongous giant in a place called Tangkhul. The descriptions of the giant the author gives are interesting. A group of potters lose their way and are on the giant and don't realise the fact, thinking they are on land. They find a way into the nostril of Shangmiyang (which looked like caves) and start a fire there to work on their pots. The giant finally is irritated by the fire and sneezes a big one. The powerful sneeze blows the potters in different directions. The author in the story form uses the tale to tell why there are so many Tangkhul potters all over the world.

The book has some very interesting and colourful narrations with very simple narration. The story has no morals but is fun to read, not more than once though.

- Nanditha Suresh.
The author
Eminent Asomiya writer Birendra Kumar Bhattacharya was a poet, a short story writer and a novelist of repute. He wrote twenty novels, sixty short stories, a hundred poems, ten plays and innumerable essays and articles. He has also translated classics from Bengali and English into Assamese. The Story of Shangmiyang, the Tanghkul Giant, is excerpted and retold from his novel, Yaruingam, which fetched him the prestigious Sahitya Akademi award in 1961. He also won the Jnanpith award in 1979.
The illustrator
Suddhasattwa Basu is a renowned illustrator, painter and maker of animation films for television. For The Song of a Scarecrow, a picture book written and illustrated by him, he won the Katha Chitrakala Award 2002 and received an honourable mention at the Bienniel of Illustrations 2003, Bratislava. He has also illustrated Ka: The Story of Garuda for Katha.
Publishers: Katha
32 pages, size 8.25 X 6
Age Group: 4 - 7 years
ISBN 81-89020-37-4
Price: Rs 80 (in India and the subcontinent)

Saturday, September 23, 2006

First Sun Stories

"Sunrise stories ..."

"Interesting stories from the Northeast."

Here is Katha's first collection of folk tales from North East India, lovingly retold and illustrated for children.The story of creation from the Ao people … a Khasi tale of how the peacock’s tail gotits golden spots … the story of the hornbillgirl from the Meitis … the Tejimola legend of Assam …All these and many more in this exciting collection of stories from the Seven Sisters, many of which have never been on page before!
The Hindu
(Young World, October 20, 2006)
Fourteen folktales from the Northeast. And each one of them so different yet so interesting. Some funny, some sad but all sure to keep the reader engaged to the very end.

By far, the funniest is the story from Konyak Naga tribe titled "The Dog's Hat". Why is it that the land of Assam is flat while the land of the Nagas is rocky and mountainous? There is an interesting answer to that in the story "Lichaba: Creator of the Earth". The ever-inspiring wicked stepmother is not left out of these folktales either. So we have the story of "Tejimola" — sad, yes but then justice does prevail as we see in the end. There are also stories that take a humorous look at greed as in "Tseube" and the tragic tale of Nongdangnu and how she escapes her hard life by becoming a hornbill.
- Nimi Kurian
The Writers

T Bijoykumar Singh
Easterine Iralu
Kynpham Sing Nongkynrih
Mamang Dai
Santanu Phukan
Thingnam Anjulika Samom

The Illustrators
Amanda Suutari
Ludmilla Chakrabarty
Neeta Gangopadhya
Nityan Unnikrishnan
Prashanta Kumar Nayak
Sanjay Sundaram
Sonali Biswas
Sujata Singh
Taposhi Ghoshal
Uma Krishnaswamy

Publishers: Katha
88 pages, size 11 x 8.5
Age Group: 7-12 years
ISBN 81-89020-33-1
Price: Rs 295

Katha thanks the North East Writers' Forum for their cooperation.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Walk the rainforest with Niwupah

"An extraordinary trip to a special place, where the sights we see and the sounds we hear, the scents we smell and the creatures we meet, are like nothing we’ve ever imagined! Join Niwupah the Hornbill,on a tour of his rainforest home and find out more about this strange and wonderful bird, too. A beautiful book written especially for children by two practising wildlife specialists. And illustrated with an exacting eye for detail by a wildlife enthusiast. A book to buy and cherish."

The Hindu
(Young World, October 14, 2005)

Threatened Forests

This is a book that's a bit like a tour guide trying to show you all of Jaipur's sights in an afternoon. It's all crammed in and rather hurried but terribly interesting and beautiful to look at.

The book Walk the Rainforest with Niwupah does exactly what the title says — it takes the reader on a quick trip through the rainforest, pointing out the sights and sounds along the way.

Authors Aparajita Datta and Nima Manjrekar, both wildlife specialists, have simplified the complex ecosystem of the rainforest making it easy to understand and fun to read. Aparajita has spent years in the rainforests of the Northeast, studying and helping to conserve its rich wildlife and she has tried to bring these experiences to the book.

Tour guide

A Great Indian Hornbill named Niwupah acts as the tour guide, squawking out facts about dung beetles, Hoolock gibbons, flying squirrels, barbets, woodpeckers and other creatures of the forest.

Maya Ramaswamy's artwork — colourfully detailed pictures of animals, insects and plants — really lifts the book from just one full of information to a real walk through a glorious place full of life and energy.

This 32-page tour ends with a quick message on the threats facing the forest and the need for conservation. Though it doesn't really give one an idea of the urgency of the issues facing the survival of the forests, Walk the Rainforest is a good introduction to the world of wildlife.

- Shalini Umachandran

The authors

Aparajita Datta
Nima Manjrekar

The Illustrator

Maya Ramaswamy

: Katha
36 pages, size 10 x 8
Age Group: 7 - 12 years
ISBN 81-89020-15-3 [HB]
ISBN 81-89020-16-1 [PB]
Price:Rs 150 [HB]
Rs 95 [PB]

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The Man from Chinnamasta

"Through a powerful portraiture of disquiet, suffering and shocked conscience, this novel delineates the horror and cruelty of animal sacrifice. Goswami startles the reader out of habitual indifference to this issue with her sensitive explications of various aspects of the Kamakhya myth.
Indira Goswami, who also writes under the pen name of Mamoni Raisom Goswami, is an Asomiya writer par excellence who was conferred India's highest literary honour, the Jnanpith Award, in 2000."
"While dealing with a sensitive subject like animal sacrifice, (Indira Goswami) entirely depends on reason, thoughtful analysis, and concurrence of the scriptures." - Dr Prafulla Kotoky.
Katha takes great pleasure in inviting you to the launch of its latest release, "The Man from Chinnamasta," by Jnanpith Award Winner Indira Goswami
Apeejay Pvt Ltd.'s Oxford Bookstore,
Statesman House,
Connaught Place,
14B, Barakamba Road,
New Delhi
6.30 PM on Friday, the 22nd September, 2006.
Shri K Jayakumar, Secretary of the Department of Culture will launch the book and preside over the function, which includes an interactive session with the author following the launch. Meenakshi Thakur will be presenting excerpts from the book.
We're looking forward to having you with us.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

(Metroplus, The Hindu, 13 September 2006)
A place for book lovers

Katha, a non-profit organisation working in the field of storytelling since 1988, and a well-known publishing house, has started a reading room for book lovers. The Reading Room is located at No. 8, First Main Road (above The Ark), Karpagam Gardens, Adyar. Here, you will find titles for adults and children, displayed well, which makes browsing and buying books of your choice convenient. Book lovers can also avail of a special offer till November 30 — for purchases made above Rs. 500 you can get a book free. Besides, exclusive research-oriented books by other publishers on topics such as gender, global peace and economy will also be offered on discount. There are special rates for orders from schools and colleges.

There's a wide range to choose from — The Katha Prize Stories Volume 1 to 13 (prize winning short story collections from across India), translations of short stories and novellas from legendary writers in Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada, Hindi, Urdu, Bangla, Asomiya and Telugu. Some of the writers whose works are featured include Pudumaipittan, La Sa Ra, Su Ra, Paul Zacharia, Krishna Sobti, Alka Sarogi, Joginder Paul and Suchitra Bhattacharya.

The highlight of the collection is books for children that are beautifully illustrated. There are little known folk tales from the North East as well as stories that have an urban background. For details call (o44) 4211 4326.
So what're you waiting for? Drop in!

Monday, September 11, 2006

Blog Camps!

India's first Blog Unconference came to a gala end on September 10th. It was organized on a national scale, with bloggers pouring in from practically every corner of the country for 2 days. Bloggers from New Delhi, Mumbai and Calcutta had come in, just for this. And it was every bit the melting-pot of ideas it had promised to be.
We had bloggers talking about regional blogging - blogging in the Indian languages, a very pertinent topic, and one that, as a part of an organization involved with translations, especially interested me. A Bangla blogger might write 'Paper rat' on her blog, for example, and I, a reader, might think that she wanted to talk about Rats and Paper. But she might have wished to talk about 'Paaper Raat' - a Night of Sin! A problem that occurs because we use a Romanized script, instead of our own language.
Then there were bloggers like Amit Aggarwal and Rajesh Setty, Robert Scoble and Sharad Haksar, each of whom had their own stories to tell, about blogs and how it changed their lives. All in all, a very interesting affair.
- Pavithra Srinivasan

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

"From the window of my room I see amazing things ..."

Leaves zooms into the colour and magic of nature. A delightful book from the Colombian illustrators Enrique Lara Robayo and Luis Fernando Garcia Guayara, winners of the Encouragement Prize in the 12th Noma Concours for Picture Book Illustrations.

A book that can be read and enjoyed by everyone, from the very young to the very old!

The Hindu
(Young World, Agust 26, 2005)

"Leaves zooms into the colour and magic of nature."

Publishers: Katha
Available in both Hardback and Paperback Editions.
Text and Illustrations: Enrique Lara and Luis Garcia.
Age Group: 5 years +
ISBN 81-89020-07-02 [PB]
ISBN 81-87649-88-7 [HB]
Price: Rs 100. (India and the subcontinent)

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Ismat: Her Life, Her Times

India Today
(April 3, 2000)


Writer of short stories and novels, essayist and playwright – Ismat Chughtai is one of the best and most colourful personalities in modern Urdu literature. A rebel with a fiercely individualistic way of thinking, replacing idealism in fiction with reality, her writings are not mere figments of imagination, but reflections of what she had herself experienced and perceived.

Ismat oberved with a burning curiosity the way of life around her, especially the young women who led a suffocting existence confined within their homes, observing strict purdah. She writes about how supression led to complexes in gender identity and made one stray into illicit relationships, even homosexuality.

This volume attempts to present different aspects of this vibrant, forceful, multi-faceted personality – what she thought of herself and what her critics and contemporary authors thought of her. Accompanied by her letters, extracts from her autobiography and other works, warm and informative, articles by well-known writers like Manto, Qurratulain Hyder,Faiz and Krishen Chander amongst others, snippets from her interviews, a comprehensive chronology a detailed family tree tracing the writer’s antecedents back to Chengez Khan, and a potpourri of interesting mementos from her life, this book promises to be an absorbing and compulsive read for scholars and laymen alike.

Reviews and Commentary

This is a fun and imaginative book. As a concept it’s wonderful-literary criticism, biography and autobiography, with lots of photos, box items and memorabilia – a real guide book to Ismat Chughtai, one of Urdu’s great modern writers and script/story writer of a bevy of Hindi films, particularly the moving Balraj Sahani starrer about Partition, Garam Hawa.

To recreate her times Katha’s editors have brought together all her “set” at a period when being a writer was truly exciting, when it mattered, when, and many of them were, of course, communists, and thought they could change society. The contributors read like a who’s who of mdoern Urdu writing- there’s Faiz Ahmad Faiz, Sadat Hasan Manto, Krishan Chander and Qurratulain Hyder Commenting on Ismat.

- Gillian Wright

The Telegraph
(December 12, 1999)

And for the first time in English a book – Ismat: Her life, her times – puts a writer’s career and preoccupation in perspective. Laced with anecdotes, it is primarily a collection of essays by the writer herself and by fellow authors and critics. The book helps us see Chugtai’s life and work in its context and tradition; the life she led and the culture she hailed from.

- Avijit Ghosh

The Hindu
(May 21,2000)

Ismat: Her Life, Her Times is a tribute to Ismat Apa. First in a series of Katha’s Approaches. To Literature in Translation, it attempts to put a writer’s entire body of work in its correct socio-cultural, political and historical perspective. Edited by Sukrita Paul Kumar and Sadique, this volume contains extracts from Ismat’s ouvre, family photogrphs and memorabilia.

- Rakhshanda Jalal

The Express Magazine
(April 9, 2000)

Sadly, in this haze of cultural laments another trend is overlooked. The last decade has witnessed a phenomenal growth in the translation industry, making works of repute available to an over swelling readership. Probing a lazy obsession with celebrityhood is beyond the scope of this review, but books like Ismat offer a welcome counterpoint to literary pessimism.

The first of a series planned in Katha’s Approaches to Literature in Translation series, aimed at putting India’s non-English literary heritage in perspective.

- Mini Kapoor

The Hindustan Times
(June 4, 2000)

The overall impression of the books is positive and encouraging. Urdu died because it could not provide a living for even its master writers like Ghalib, Majaaz and `Firaq.’

Perhaps the retelling of Ismat in English will help keep her – and thus something in Urdu – alive in some small and obsecure way, Here’s hoping.

- Akhilesh Mittal

Edited by Sukrita Paul Kumar & Sadique
Price: Rs 395
Binding Type: Paper Back

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