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Book Of Shadows

Book Of Shadows

Namita Gokhale
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The avengers of my vanity have broken me, humbled me with these small depredations of skin and bone and tissue, leaving me less than I was.’ Scarred by her lover’s suicide and an acid attack that has left her permanently disfigured, Rachita Tiwari has sought refuge in a remote house in the Himalayan foothills. In this rambling house, built by a foolhardy missionary over a hundred years ago, she lives alone”save for the company of the ancient and mysterious manservant, Lohaniju”painting and repainting her nails a bright red, careful not to look into mirrors. As she retreats into herself, battling for her sanity and fearful of a world she no longer trusts, a different dimension claims her and the tremendous history of the house is played out before her. There is the vain fool, Captain Wolcott, and his tragically sensuous mistress, Dona Rosa, -of the wandering heart’; the doomed lovers Marcus and Munro, disciples of Aleister Crowley, infamous dabbler in black magic; Father Benedictus, -seeker of knowledge’, at peace with himself and his God; and the all-knowing, sage crows. With and above them all is the resident ghost of the house, solitary and sad, at times merely an observer as the fantastical destinies unfold around him, and at times unable to remain detached. After a century of silence something compels him to speak”words that the injured woman now inhabiting the house will hear; words that will give her back to herself. Part ghost story, part erotic romance, The Book of Shadows is an ambitious book that investigates the nature of reality, love and faith. It is a work of startling originality by one of India’s most daring and talented writers. -Our kind is not nourished by the sun: it is the moon which gives us sustenance. We wax and wane with the moon, except when harnessed by a human energy, when the pull of the tides loses its grip. As dawn broke over the mountains, lighting up the still white presences of the snows, I fled to my refuge, my fated spot. This night of passion, my first, had initiated me into the sorrows of mankind; the unfaith, the terrible and tenuous link of love.

Imprint: India Penguin

Published: May/2001

ISBN: 9780140282115

Length : 240 Pages

MRP : ₹299.00

Book Of Shadows

Namita Gokhale

The avengers of my vanity have broken me, humbled me with these small depredations of skin and bone and tissue, leaving me less than I was.’ Scarred by her lover’s suicide and an acid attack that has left her permanently disfigured, Rachita Tiwari has sought refuge in a remote house in the Himalayan foothills. In this rambling house, built by a foolhardy missionary over a hundred years ago, she lives alone”save for the company of the ancient and mysterious manservant, Lohaniju”painting and repainting her nails a bright red, careful not to look into mirrors. As she retreats into herself, battling for her sanity and fearful of a world she no longer trusts, a different dimension claims her and the tremendous history of the house is played out before her. There is the vain fool, Captain Wolcott, and his tragically sensuous mistress, Dona Rosa, -of the wandering heart’; the doomed lovers Marcus and Munro, disciples of Aleister Crowley, infamous dabbler in black magic; Father Benedictus, -seeker of knowledge’, at peace with himself and his God; and the all-knowing, sage crows. With and above them all is the resident ghost of the house, solitary and sad, at times merely an observer as the fantastical destinies unfold around him, and at times unable to remain detached. After a century of silence something compels him to speak”words that the injured woman now inhabiting the house will hear; words that will give her back to herself. Part ghost story, part erotic romance, The Book of Shadows is an ambitious book that investigates the nature of reality, love and faith. It is a work of startling originality by one of India’s most daring and talented writers. -Our kind is not nourished by the sun: it is the moon which gives us sustenance. We wax and wane with the moon, except when harnessed by a human energy, when the pull of the tides loses its grip. As dawn broke over the mountains, lighting up the still white presences of the snows, I fled to my refuge, my fated spot. This night of passion, my first, had initiated me into the sorrows of mankind; the unfaith, the terrible and tenuous link of love.

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Namita Gokhale

Namita Gokhale is a multi-faceted Indian novelist and publisher, and the author of Paro: Dreams of Passion (1984), Gods, Graves and Grandmother (1994), A Himalayan Love Story (1996), The Book of Shadows (1999), The Book of Shiva (2001) and Shakuntala: The Play of Memory (2005), all published by Penguin India. In her forthcoming anthology In Search of Sita, she re-examines the figure of Sita in both mythic and modern contexts.

The Puffin Mahabharata is her first book for young readers.

Suddhasattwa Basu is a painter, illustrator and animation film-maker, who studied at the College of Art, Calcutta. He is one of India's foremost illustrators of children's books. Among the books he has illustrated and designed are Khushwant Singh's Nature Watch, Ruskin Bond's To Live in Magic and V. Sulaiman's The Homecoming. He has also authored and illustrated a children's book The Song of a Scarecrow (Katha), for which he received the Chitrakatha Award 2003 for best children's book illustrations. He lives in Delhi and works under the banner of his company Raikhik Films.

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