Westland acquires Saharu Nusaiba Kannanari’s first novel, “An Hour and a Half Chronicle”, an English

New Delhi, December 16 (IANS): At the foot of the Western Ghats, the village of Vaiga is facing the worst storm it has seen in decades: incessant rain, fallen trees, flooded river, major power outage… But another more insidious storm is brewing under the facade of provincial life. It begins as a rumor of an illicit affair, a rumor that leads Saud and his children to Vaiga in search of Burhan. The rumor soon takes on a life of its own, graced with frantic WhatsApp messages, with everyone turning into guardians of morality even as they savor the itchy details of the alleged affair.

In the ensuing chaos, fueled by petty grievances and wild speculation, Vaiga erupts into violence as a mob takes to the streets, barking for blood.

Tensely written and grippingly pictured, Saharu Nusaiba Kannanari’s “An Hour and a Half Chronicle” is a gripping and disturbing read about violence and complicity.

Commenting on the acquisition, Kannanari said, “As I wrote this novel set in a close-knit, WhatsApp-obsessed village in Kerala, I might have thought of Don Delillo’s premonition that as technology advances in scope and complexity, fear becomes more primitive. He concludes the prologue of his 1991 masterpiece “Mao II” with another prediction: the future belongs to the crowds. Perhaps I have placed the two statements in dialogue to evoke this rather violent look at contemporary India. debut, and I am glad the book has its best friends in Karthika, Ajitha, Minakshi and others in Westland”.

Karthika VK, Publisher, Westland Books, said, “There is something urgent and edgy about this brilliantly conceived debut novel. Every scene unfolds so vividly and on so many layers that it is like reading, hearing and watch, all at the same time.”

Ajitha GS, editor, Context, said, “Saharu’s novel is something of a rarity – a wholly original entry into English-language fiction in India. The novel transports the reader almost viscerally to the village of Vaiga, where events pile up rapidly until they become frightening end.I read it breathlessly, in one go.

Saharu Nusaiba Kannanari lives in a small town called Areekode, near Calicut, Kerala. She completed her BA from Aligarh Muslim University and MA from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. This is her first novel.

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