About FOOTPRINTS IN THE BAJRA (Cedar Books, New Delhi); By Nabina Das

"Fittingly for a poet, Nabina’s novel also has a strong lyrical core. 'Footprints in the Bajra' takes the homely image of the millet field as its central metaphor. ... But the novel is less a thriller about guerrilla action than a subtly colored character study of a fascinating group of individuals who intersect at various points in their lives ..." -- DEBRA CASTILLO, author, editor and distinguished professor (Cornell University, April 17, 2010).

Footprints in the Bajra is a serious book that moves at a smart uncontrived pace. It voices deep concerns about how and why the deprived and the marginalized in certain parts of our country join the Maoist ranks; how they adopt desperate and often terrible measures to wrench justice and to make their voices heard... a confident debut novel, a good read, which will leave you with plenty to mull over. -- PRITI AISOLA, author (See Paris for Me, Penguin-India, 2009) in DANSE MACABRE XXXIV.

In her debut novel, Nabina Das writes about an India where social divides stand taller than multistoried shopping malls. Footprints in the Bajra, inspired by what she saw while touring the interiors of Bihar as part of a travelling theatre group, inquires into why the Maoists have an influence over a large section of Indian society. Das talked to Uttara Choudhury in New York about her book, and its protagonist Muskaan -- DAILY NEWS AND ANALYSIS, Mumbai, March 28, 2010.


"The interspersion of references from both the West and India do not clash. Shakespeare and Lazarus as reference points are brought in with ease, as also Valmiki and Goddess Chhinnamasta, and nothing jars ... The language is poetic and creates visual images of beauty and ugliness side by side." -- ABHA IYENGAR, poet (Yearnings: Serene Woods, 2010) and fiction writer in MUSE INDIA, May-Jun 2010

Shwetank Dubey says Nabina Das ably recreates the milieu of Maoist-infested regions of India -- Nabina Das has chosen the first person account of narrating a story from the main characters of the novel, Nora the sheherwali (urban dweller), Muskaan the rebel, Suryakant Sahay the crafty clandestine planner and Avadhut the frontrunner of all the operations... the book deals with something that no urban resident is bound to know on his own — the life and times of people living in Maoist infested areas and why do they give in to the temptation provided by the Red Brigade. -- PIONEER newspaper, April 25, 2010.
'"If you misrepresent them, they'll abduct and kill you," says Muskaan, our hostess'... goes the first line with which Nabina Das settles everything about her novel -- style, subject and pace... Excellent plotline. Wonderful detail. A beautifully crafted book. -- Karunamay Sinha; THE STATESMAN, Sunday supplement "8th Day", May 16, 2010.

"This is bitter-sweet, if a rather longish tale of a modern-day Maoist revolution and the seeds of destruction and betrayal that lie embedded in it." -- Business World, May 17, 2010

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Ritu Lalit's blog post: We Are Like This Only

Here's this month's blogger friend's writeup from Ritu Lalit. She is a prolific writer and blogs at http://www.phoenixritu.com/. From poetry to parenting to social issues and storytelling, Ritu has style and depth. This article can be found at http://www.phoenixritu.com/2008/12/20/we-are-like-this-only/

I started reading Ritu first from her dazzling humorous comments and then went on to sample her articles that span over diverse subjects. She reads, writes, runs a family and gives her friends, real or virtual, all the feedback and support they need. What else can be more important?

Here's an excerpt: "Once upon a time, somewhere in Rural India lived a family. The Head of the Family had four wives and lots and lots of children. The girls were of course a total loss so for the interest of the story, the HOF had two sons, who were called Ram and Lakhan. The rurals are not too original. I can point out a whole lot of farming families that have sons named Ram, Lakshman, Bharat and Shatrughan or variations thereof. Of course if they have more sons, the Pandava names are roped in and once in a while a dark coloured chap is named Krishna or Gopala. However, I digress."


Phoenixritu said...

Am truly honoured Nabina

fleuve-souterrain said...

Ritz, the pleasure is mine...
This is very interesting and I do remember once you read a blog post of mine and told me about this post you had written... and our interests met instantly!