OF FIRE: A
Rs 300 Pb 2003
(US, Norwegian & Italian rights sold. All others
the 4th century BC Gautam Nilambar, a final year
student at the Forest University of Shravasti,
chances upon Hari Shankar, a princeling yearning
to be a Buddhist monk. He falls in love with the
beautiful, sharp-witted Champak. And thus begins
a magnificent tale that flows through Time, through
Maghadhan Pataliputra, the Kingdom of Oudh, the
British Raj and into a Time of Independence. This
fiery river of Time flows along the banks of their
lives as they are reborn and recreated, weaving
through the twists and turns, the flows and eddies,
keeping them together and keeping them apart.
The story comes full circle in post-Partition
India when Hari Shankar meets his friend Gautam
in a grotto in the forest of Shravasti, and mourn
the passing of their lives into meaninglessness,
their friends who have left for Pakistan, and
what remains of their country of which they were
once so passionately proud.
in Urdu in 1959, this novel is easily one of the
most discussed in contemporary India and widely
acclaimed a literary landmark.
is a leading writer of Urdu fiction in India.
Her books have been translated into all Indian
languages, and she was awarded the Bharatiya
Jnanpith, India’s highest literary award,
in 1989. She has been a Fellow of the Sahitya
Akademi, and is widely acclaimed for pioneering
novelties of technique in Urdu fiction. She
has travelled widely, and has worked as a
journalist and broadcaster. Her novel, Aag
ka Darya (published in 1959, and transcreated
by the author in English as The
River of Fire) has achieved epic status
in fiction about the subcontinent.
…Hyder has a
place alongside her exact contemporaries,
Milan Kundera and Gabriel Garcia Marquez,
as one of the world’s major living writers.
London Times Literary Supplement
a novel of ideas…it is also filled with
lifelike details from the author’s truly
awesome store of historical information…This
powerful, progressive, full-blooded voice
needs to be heard in many languages
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