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Brand new: Narcopolis by Jeet Tayil

More info to follow- but here's a headsup to the book:

Take a meander into an opium den.... Mumbai, 1970's.

Shuklaji Street, in Old Bombay. In Rashid's opium room the air is thick and potent. A beautiful young woman leans to hold a long-stemmed pipe over a flame, her hair falling across her dark eyes. Around her, men sprawl and mutter in the gloom, each one drifting with his own tide. Here, people say that you introduce only your worst enemy to opium.

Outside, stray dogs lope in packs. Street vendors hustle. Hookers call for custom through the bars of their cages as their pimps slouch in doorways in the half-light. There is an underworld whisper of a new terror: the Pathar Maar, the stone killer, whose victims are the nameless, invisible poor. There are too many of them to count in this broken city.

Narcopolis is a rich, chaotic, hallucinatory dream of a novel that captures the Bombay of the 1970s in all its compelling squalor. With a cast of pimps, pushers, poets, gangsters and eunuchs, it is a journey into a sprawling underworld written in electric and utterly original prose.

To buy:

See reviews:

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  • Mariam

    The book was interesting, though not my favourite style. It was great to see new faces and that they were willing to get involved and discuss. Many different opinions on the book made the discussion quite vivid. Good mango juice at the venue, too!

    June 11, 2012

  • Ranju

    Hi everyone! Thanks for a wonderful time, did not plan to stay so long, good sign. Enjoyed the lively discussion on a very thought provoking book, which I had not read! but enjoyed hearing you all. Started reading it last night,kindly lent to me, like the play with language so far and look forward to the talk given by the author Jeet Thayil in July. See you all soon I hope x

    June 10, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Thanks to everyone for making my first meetup an enjoyable experience. I was so curious about the discussion that I ended up finding this interesting piece of info and just had to share it!

    "According to A Sirajudeen, author of Transgenders-Social and Legal Dilemmas, hijras have been acknowledged in Hinduism for thousands of years. Ancient texts assert that some people are born third gendered as a matter of natural biology. The third sex traditionally enjoyed privileged position in Indian society. Matters took a different turn under the British who declared hijras a ‘criminal tribe’ under Criminal Tribes Act 1871;” their behaviour was considered opposed to “public decency”. It mandated their compulsory registration and strict monitoring. It was undone in 1952 but unfortunately, the stigma continues even today."

    June 10, 2012

  • Ashish G.

    This was my first book club meet up I have ever attended. I enjoyed the discussions, the perspectives and enjoyed meeting the people- it was a really friendly group of people and I am looking forward to going to some others that are coming up.
    The book got a 3.4 on 5 from the group- and I have to say it was a very intriguing book one that got a whole range of responses. Perfect choice for a different take and a lively discussion.

    June 10, 2012

  • Joanna J.

    Another really interesting discussion - still confused about who killed Rumi, though!

    June 10, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    I had a wonderful time, it was my first, the atmosphere is charged, and alive and vibrant, I loved being with you, perhaps a write myself one day very soon, enjoyed the mint tea and the lovely company of you all, though I had not read the Nacrapolis, :) but I look forward to meeting you all again soon, thanks for the book recommendations, and it was great being with you all, cheers

    June 9, 2012

  • Sharmila

    Hi Ranju and Sadiq, Do come along - I'm sure there will be some interesting debate! ;-)

    June 8, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    no, not read it myself too, but would be nice to hear what everyone thinks about it and meet other book lovers,.... cheers

    June 8, 2012

  • Ranju

    Has everyone read the book already? Just wondering, as I would like to come along, but have not read it yet?

    June 7, 2012

  • Sharmila

    We got a location! The Souk Bazaar (not to be confused with the Medina) for tea and sheesha. Think this book deserves a little atmosphere...

    June 6, 2012

  • Peter L.

    Sharmila, why not book it at the Heights, St George Hotel, Langham Place as per recent meet ups (you need to ring them to reserve a space) and then take it from there on the day. Regards Peter

    June 5, 2012

  • Sharmila

    Hi everyone, I'm trying to find a nice venue - but a lot of the places want a minimum spend on 15 quid per head. Are people thinking they might want to eat at that time - or no? Please let me know if you would be happy to spend this. If not - I'll keep searching!! ;-)

    June 2, 2012

  • Anu

    This might be of interest to people! Jeet Thayil is a poet, songwriter and guitarist. He reads from the novel and is then discusses it.

    May 16, 2012

  • Joanna J.

    Read a review of this a few weeks back - good choice!

    April 24, 2012

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