Who Are We
Publishers’ Exchange is your window to ‘Publishing in India’. The exchange welcomes publishers, authors, editors, translators, graphic designers and service providers who work closely with the publishing industry, especially those working with Indian languages, including–but not limited to–Hindi, Marathi, Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Odia, Assamese and Bengali. This is a space for exchanging ideas, rights, resources and networking.
Basking in her intense love,heartily laughing at her jokes, watching her hardships helplessly and keenly observing his beloved mother’s pettiness and magnanimity without any prejudice, a doting son has recounted and recorded his feelings in the form of a series of short stories in Nammamma Andre Nangishta (I like my mother). This hugely popular book has not only won the hearts of kannadigas but also has received coveted distinction and prestigious accolades in literary circles. The book which has already been re-printed over 20 times has attracted school and college students by finding its inclusion into their curriculum. The stories in this book have reached the masses in the form of many theatrical plays as well. This book has become a popular gift for occasions like marriage, house-warming ceremony, and Mothers’ Day.
- Recipient of Kannada Sahitya Academy Award
- Over 20,000 copies sold
- Celebrated gift book for mothers’ day!
Those were the last years of the 15th century. Staking their lives, the strong Portuguese sailors had already discovered the sea route to India. Awe-struck by India’s affluence, they had become instrumental for the commencement of independent pepper trade in Europe. The whole world was praising their adventure. But what was the impact of these historic events on common people? How did the common man suffer in this chess game of religion and politics? This historic novel of about 450 pages tries to answer the above questions through the life of the common man. While on one hand the community of jews is striving to build a life for itself in the city of Lisbon, on the other hand the hither-to poverty-stricken Catholic community is just about trying to find its feet through the pepper trade. In such a situation, what will happen if a Catholic Christian boy and a beautiful Jewish girl fall in love with each other? Will the Indian affluence allow their love to thrive and progress without any hassles? True, India is glowing with immense richness. But is the common man also enjoying that wealth? Or has he drowned himself in religious stupidity? How do these things affect his everyday life? Is it possible for a loving-couple to stay away from politics and lead a simple life? At about the same time, a pair of goldfish swimming in the river Tejo has boarded a ship to reach the river Tungabhadra of India. Can they reach another river? Can the fish that swam in one river adapt to the waters of another river as their own? Hundreds of characters have come alive in this humane narrative woven with many breath-taking scenes. The life’s drama unfolding amidst such events never seems to be different from our contemporary lives.
- Critics consider the book as a landmark in Kannada fiction
- All copies were pre-sold before the book launch
- During the CORONA lockdown, more than 6000 copies have been sold.
Hareesh unfurls the story of ‘race’ and ‘patriarchy’ in Kerala in the fantastic backdrop of North Kuttanad – A land locked-in by water. The characters and the land are born out of water and scarred by it, they are infused with magic and fantasy – he awakens them from the slumber of dull realities into a kaleidoscopic world of mythical intensity. A world, ageless and dark, that entices you with its beauty, the starkness of its raw human passions, and locks you forever in the dark recesses of its myths and legends. The story holds a mirror to the utter depravity with which men objectify women and consume them, and through this process construct their fragile edifices of masculinity. It is indeed ironic that it is the cosmic Seetha, the female protagonist, as much a raped woman as a primal goddess, who spits on the face of Meesa’s mighty masculinity. Through sharply tinged irony, pungent satire and farce, the novel mocks at the certitudes and beliefs that is so central to the pervading patriarchal and racial order. The water-logged land and its story leaves the reader thirsting, looking for leaks and spills that would help anchor the dizzying narrative on more solid grounds.
A multi layered novel, which bears universal testimony to the oft spoken proverb, “Behind every successful man is a woman.” And as ever so often happens, the woman remains in the shadows. Mallika is the story of one such unacknowledged woman, who was the muse to Bhartendu Harishchandra, who is hailed as the father of modern Hindi literature. While there are several books documenting his life, there is only a passing mention to Mallika in them. Based on the scattered references to Mallika found in literature, the renowned Hindi author, Manisha Kulshreshtha, has skillfully woven together facts and imagination to create the unforgettable character of Mallika, who many claim was not only the muse but the actual author of several works credited to Bhartendu Harishchandra.
Located in the northern part of India and abutting borders with China, Afghanistan and Pakistan, Kashmir is an area of great geo-political importance, which has witnessed armed conflicts, several insurgencies and continuedterrorismover the last hundred years. It is one of the most heavily militarized zones in the world today, and is considered one of the most dangerous places on Earth. How did this beautiful region, once famed as the “paradise on earth”, come to this? Kashmirnama by Ashok Kumar Pandey provides answers to this vexing question. It is a comprehensive book on the history of Kashmir, detailing all aspects of the land and its people – historical, social, religious, cultural, political – that have cast their shadow on this region. Exhaustive and factual, the book traces the history of Kashmir starting from the first documented record of the region written 2500 years ago. The author refers to a total of 114 books as he takes the reader through the events right up to 2019 when the special status of Kashmir was changed overnight and a military clampdown was imposed by the Government of India. Reading this book would help one develop a comprehensive understanding of the complex, multi-layered situation that prevails in Kashmir, complete with all its contradictions, external and internal influences and pulls and pressures. The book is written in an engaging and easy-to-read style. A noteworthy feature is that the author has maintained a neutral stance in presenting facts and events as they occurred, taking care to not let his personal views permeate into the text. This factual and objective representation of the “Kashmir issue” makes this book a first choice read for anyone interested in the subject. The book is divided into 18 chapters. Each chapter meticulously cites the references quoted in it; there are 1075 references cited in the book altogether. The 114 books referred to by the author in researching for and writing this book in the course of three and a half years are listed in the Bibliography. The9 Appendices at the end of the book, wherein the author provides the text of all government Agreements, official notifications and documents, whichhavehad any bearing on the state of affairs in Kashmir, makes this book an invaluable reference for all historians and researchers. The book has won critical acclaim, with historians and scholars acknowledging it as a significant account of Kashmir’s past and present. National news service NDTV ranked Kashmirnama amongst the 5 most talked about books in 2018, and CNBC TV included it in its list of the 10 most important books published in2018. The book has been a commercial success as well, topping the bestsellers chart throughout 2018 in the non-fiction category of the quarterly sales rankings done by national daily Dainik Jagran. The author Ashok Kumar Pandey is one of the top-selling non-fiction writers in Hindi, and an expert on Kashmir. He has written 8 books, and has been the recipient of two major awards in the last few years: Pankaj Singh Smruti Samman and Sabyasachi Smruti Samman.
Rabindranath Tagore is 23. His sister-in-law Kadambari Devi is 25. She kills herself. Why does she commit suicide? Her suicide-note, to Rabindranath, which is a long valedictory letter that sums up the tragic story of the ill-fated woman answers this question. Finally we know the secret!
Much water has been muddied where Ayodhya is concerned” In the past three decades, Ayodhya has been the epicentre of heated political and cultural debate, culminating into probably the most important court verdict in the history of modern India. But what was Ayodhya like when the Babri Masjid was still standing? Was the meaning of the Ramayana different? A travelling journalist dips into his memories to take us through a journey of Ayodhya to trace the path of Ram’s exile, to match it to existing geography. Along the way, we meet people and places, all trying to make their own meaning of what the Ramayana and its titular hero mean to them.
[Jasmine Days] When the world goes through an immigrant crisis, it’s also bound to spark writings and literature. Benyamin has been one such author who championed the migrant perspective and stories of the diasporas for Indian readers. By diaspora let’s not disparage the community as being monotheistically Indian. In his world, the diaspora, that inhabits the various nations of the middle east, is one that is mixed with what could be traditionally ‘people of contesting nationalities’. Imagine a Pakistani Sunni, an Iranian Shia and a South Indian household all living in labor camps and low-cost housing, trying to find work and make a living. What is the nature of the next generation of people being born in such mixed communities? In this world, traditional distinctions are alien, communal bond has less nationalistic instincts and becomes truly fraternal. To such a world, in an imaginary city imagined by Benyamin as “THE City”, come the events of the Jasmine Revolution. While the world may be content with writings of the Arab Spring, what were the immigrants’ – the second class citizens, the mixed communities, whose civil liberties in an alien land is not worth – social relevance? This is the plot that emanates from Jasmine days. The book is not an anthropological study, but an invaluable peering into the cross sections of communities that immigrate to foreign lands due to economic or civil hardships, now faced with the sudden onslaught of the Arab Spring. It is not about recounting the Arab Spring that made Jasmine days a valuable read; interestingly Indians don’t usually get to read a novel that is narrated by a Pakistani Girl, whose aspirations to become a musician and for a career as a radio jockey takes a turn when she starts to narrate to a community of the changes being bought by political instability owing to the Arab Spring. In this book, the complexities and the randomness of life as an immigrant is portrayed, distinctions are blended and life in a foreign land later inherited by the next generation is portrayed and a new dimension is revealed. This is not a story of the middle-east, this is not the story of a Pakistani girl, but through such devices we peer into a complex multicultural social ethnographical piece of land that is on the verge of being pulverized by an imminent revolution.
Can you find yourself after you have lost that special someone? A disillusioned and heartbroken Anusha finds herself in the small world of WeDonate.com. Struggling to cope with her feelings and the job of raising money for charity, she reluctantly searches for a worthwhile cause to support. For Ananth, who has been on the opposite side, no life is less worthy, no cause too small to support. Behind them are teams for whom going to extraordinary lengths to save lives is more than a full-time occupation. In front of them is the virtual world of social media-watching, interacting, judging, making choices, and sometimes, saving lives. From the virtual to the real, their lives and that of their families, entangle in a way that moving together is the only solution. They can’t escape each other. In this world of complicated relationships, should love be such a difficult ride?
If one can disentangle a weaver bird’s nest, one will find a golden needle that can sew and mend anything, but there’s a small condition: not a single thread must break in the process. Since no one has met the challenge successfully yet, the needle remains elusive. Perhaps the secret lies in building the nest with people as threads, perhaps in the harmony of all men. Banamali Chaudhury is a revenue collector or mouzadar of the British Raj in a small town dominated by Bodo people. A tall, handsome, aspiring brown sahib swearing by the British Crown, the philandering pseudo-royal would have women brought to his haveli in a palanquin to quench his lust. One day, he sets his eyes upon a beautiful girl of lower caste and wishes to marry her. But unknowingly, he ends up marrying a plain looking but well-educated girl, Santipriya. Realising his mistake, Banamali searches for the other girl and marries her too. Mistreatment and depression make Santipriya age quickly, but she gives birth to a pair of male twins, Chandranath and Priyanath.
He chops human corpses for the salvation of their souls. He is the bridge between a man’s life and after-life yet a repulsive figure himself, disowned by the community only until the need for him arises. He is Ao Thampa, member of a small tribe called Monpa tucked away in the sub-Himalayan wilderness of the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. The Monpas, largely unknown to the rest of the world – much like the world to them – carry along their pristine lifestyle and the same social ethos and taboos that they have been living with for centuries. Despite their strong spiritual attachment to the tenets of Tibetan Buddhism, they still persist with their primordial shamanic social norms – few of which may seem bizarre to an outsider. Dargye Norbu, a wretched person in a lice-infested robe smeared with blood, pus of dead bodies and excreta of his daughter, is often seen in the evenings on the streets of Dirang Village in an inebriated state, cursing and abusing the villagers, and dragging himself towards his secluded hut located on the confluence of two rivers away from the village. To him he does not need a human society, but the people of the society need him because after death, it is only Dargye who can dissect their bodies and throw the hundred and eight pieces into the river as per the funeral customs of the Monpa.
Rightfully hailed as one of the greatest literary works in the history of Marathi publishing, ‘YAYATI’, is an intriguing philosophical portrayal of human life as it flows from attachment to detachment. Yayati, a hedonistic man who has been refused to be breast-fed by his mother in the fear that it’ll spoil her physical beauty, and experiencing the crippling power of death when his father Nahusha dies untimely. Yayati goes on a self-destructive spree for eighteen long years wherein he unabashedly indulges in every immoral activity possible. His craving for a different woman destroys his relationship with Devayani and even Sharmishtha. Unable to bear the pathetic degradation of his daughter’s marriage, Sage Shukracharya curses Yayati to a thousand years of old age! Jolted with the thought of losing his virility, Yayati pleads with his young son Puru to exchange their youth with him. Khandekar’s novel makes strong commentary on topics like the sanctity of marriage, fidelity, loyalty, adultery, hedonism, lack of responsibility, and such other myriad emotional feelings.
A hard-hitting, forceful autobiography of the author Anand Yadav, ‘ZOMBI’ is much more than a literary narrative showcasing the hardships faced by a boy growing up in the hinterlands. This Sahitya Akademi-winning piece of literature manages to mirror the terrible adversities faced by young boys and girls belonging from poor, rural households who not only have to battle poverty and hunger, but also a lot of social discrimination, casteism, and ridicule. Growing up in the clutches of abject poverty witnessing horrific domestic abuse and callous treatment of young children, along with blatant disregard from teachers at school and open discrimination from the society at large, every day till Anand realises his dream of completing his Matriculation is a ‘zombi’ (rural Marathi word for wrestle/struggle) with life.
It is quite remarkable that in her very first volume, Serpents Under my Veil, Asiya Zahoor sounds like an accomplished poet with reams of poems behind her. From Medusa to Yusuf and Zulekha she cherrypicks what she wants from Greek or West Asian myth, and moulds it to her heart’s desire. As helicopters ‘fan civilizations on her head’ she flies with her verse, and most poems are stamped with her spontaneity. Her imagery is striking, for instance Zulekha holds the moon as a mirror, what a wonderful image. Her very first poem in the book reminds me of Imtiaz Dharker.
It is time to rediscover the rich and unexplored tradition of female heroism through the female mythical figures. We will find that although the archetypal patterns of male and female heroism are quite similar, they differ profoundly in detail and meaning according to gender. Without this understanding the journey in search of our internal identity is a lonely one, with no direction or purpose, muffled into silence. It often ends with the feelings that there must be something very wrong in ourselves. The first part of this book explains to the general reader the need for myths and the roles that heroes and heroines play and how their characters differ versus the individual who still clings to collective behaviour. The reader is encouraged to see the process of individuation that takes place in her role as “heroine”, or indeed where she may be stuck on her journey to find the ‘Self’. The second part of the book then goes on to examine some of the famous characters from our myths and the roles they play. If we are able to discern for ourselves what works for us in our lives today, we may see that we need to discard a behaviour that no longer serves us. We can then gift a new path to the generations of tomorrow, and help to free both them and us for a better future.
Mantra kavaatam teriste Mahabharatam mana charitre, 2020, Kalluri Bhaskaram, 816 pages, Rs. 550, ISBN 978-81-943246-1-4 The Mahabharat is our primordial epic, celebrating heroic violence and the glory of combat. Bhaskaram’s book is a fascinating deconstruction of the epic, analysing the various incidents and characters and placing them in a historical perspective. It positions the several characters and their transformations and actions in the context of their times and challenges the reader to critically explore the themes of glory, wrath, homecoming and fate. Kalluri Bhaskaram is a prominent commentator, journalist and translator.
Nirjana Vaaradhi, Kondapalli Koteswaramma, 192 pp, Rs. 150. A searing memoir of a political life that took the Telugu literary world by storm. Well-known as the widow of Kondapalli Seetharamaiah (KS), founder of the Maoist movement in Andhra Pradesh, Koteswaramma’s life spans a tumultuous century of the Independence movement, the Communist insurrection and the Naxalite movement in Andhra Pradesh. A dedicated worker for the Communist Party, she went underground in the difficult years of the late forties, living a secret life, running from safe house to safe house. Throughout, it was the support and companionship of her husband, Seetharamaiah, that gave her strength. Everything changed when he deserted her. Refusing to be cowed down, Koteswaramma rebuilt her life step by painful step. She educated herself, took up a job, raised her grandchildren, wrote poetry and prose and established herself as a thinking person in her own right. This moving memoir is a testimony of her courage and tenacity in the face of overwhelming odds, as well as her understanding of the frailties of human beings and political institutions. That women in India often face incredible suffering is known. That they can fight back and emerge winners is exemplified in Koteswaramma’s life. The book has been translated into English, Kannada and Tamil. Koteswaramma was born in 1918 and died in 2018.
Publishers' Exchange at Frankfurt Book fair
Authors and Books
Mullappoo Niramulla Pakalukal
The Hour Past Midnight