ISBN 978-93-86600-47-9
376 pp • 2017 • HB • ₹399

‘This compelling narration by Malayatoor Ramakrishnan, one of
the finest storytellers in Malayalam fiction, of the making of a
godman who despite his desire to escape is imprisoned in his
own fame as a seer, has a legendary quality about it. The tale of
his glowing sixth finger, the supposed source of his supernatural
prowess that wins him influential friends from across the society
seems to suggest the gullibility of our people and reflect the
irony of our social condition as well as the paradox of our
political plight. The novelist’s sense of humour turns it into a
fascinatingly searing tragicomic work of fiction that has several
parallels in recent Indian history.’
‘Prema Jayakumar’s excellent translation
captures in full the nuanced pungency of
the original narrative.’
K. SATCHIDANANDAN, Poet and writer

Set in the 1970s and 1980s, this novel traces the story of the young uruli thief, Vedaraman. When the head
constable takes his fingerprints, he realizes that the boy has six fingers on his left hand. Shamed by his
involvement in the theft case and the whispered scandal about him and the maid Kozhukatta Paru who had both
breastfed him and slept with him, Vedaraman leaves home and village. Adrift in the wide world, he meets a
series of well-wishers who not only help him in deepening his knowledge, but also expose him to the realities of
life. He finds that his sixth finger glows by itself and he possesses supernatural powers of predicting future events.
Ministers and businessmen are quick to recognize his yogic qualities. Vedaraman becomes Vedanji and then
Vedan Baba with a godlike aura, and is installed in an ashram. Amidst this fame and glory, Vedan Baba finds
himself a prisoner of a web of machinations. Will he be able to break the shackles and become a free man again?

ISBN 978-93-86600-45-5
208 pp • 2017 • HB • ₹299

‘The scars of war are evident on the soul of this very fine writer,
as they are on the stories... While some of Muttulingam’s stories
are embedded in depressing aftermath of the war, there are
others that rise above the trauma, where Sri Lankan immigrants
fleeing from the war’s ravages manage to live and laugh and
love in a strange land. What catches the reader’s eye is the
compassion at the core of the writing. One slowly discovers the
writer’s vision, and the catholicity inherent in it.
’In fact, this collection could be passed off as focusing on the
plight of immigrants, wherever they come from.’
KEKI N. DARUWALLA, Poet and short story writer

These stories by Appadurai Muttulingam are serious, funny and piercingly honest. Through retelling the stories of
the ordinary, common man in his daily struggles for survival, the characters in these stories force us to take
a second look at ourselves; they force us to consider ourselves in the shoes of folks who face
social, economic and political hardships in their lives.
‘ Appadurai Muttulingam’s writing style reminds one of R.K. Narayan. He uses terse, sinewy sentences and doesn’t
bother the reader with gratuitous language or details. His mission is to narrate a story, and he does it in a
take-it-or-leave-it manner of folk tales, in which logic and superfluous information are sacrificed for the sake of a
delightful read and a universal message.’

ISBN 978-93-86600-49-3
208 pp • 2017 • HB • ₹299

‘The fast pace of life and the ability to absorb internal
contradictions are the qualities of Mumbai that [Gadgil] brings
out starkly in his stories. His tone is apparently sarcastic, and
sometimes even bitingly critical, but it cannot hide the deep
sympathy he has for his characters who are more often than not
the victims of their suffocating circumstances . . .
‘Keerti Ramachandra has displayed exceptional skills in getting
the essence of each story in the English version
along with the tone of the writer.’

From the hundreds of short stories written by Gangadhar Gadgil, this representative collection has fourteen in
English translation. There is fable and fantasy, humour and poignancy, sentiment and cynicism, sharp comment on
society and human behaviour that is tender as well as brutally exploitative. Every character lives and breathes in
Gadgil’s stories whether they struggle in the middle-class chawls, crowded restaurants and streets of suburban
Mumbai, or even on the beach at Mahabalipuram. His language is playful, acerbic, alliterative, sometimes even
poetic, never effusive, always clear and precise. Gadgil’s stories are relevant, long after they were first published in
Marathi, since the changing social structure, the pace of life, the tension in interpersonal relationships and the
consequent angst that he depicts, remain essentially the same.