Friday, February 05, 2021

Along With The Sun - Book Review

A unique anthology of short stories from the 'Karisal' or 'Black Soil' region of Tamil Nadu.

Edited by Ki. Rajanarayanan, one of the most acclaimed and influential writers in Tamil, these stories tell, with genuine affection and concern, of the lives of people living against the backdrop of the black soil land. Here the rain plays hide-and-seek, sometimes oppressing them with drought, sometimes with floods; caste and religion still form a large part of the social order; cattle and moneylenders decide the fate of populations; and local gods are a very real presence.

Written by celebrated contemporary Tamil authors in a range of literary styles, these are stories that will resonate universally long after they are read.

About the Authors

Ki. Rajanarayanan (b. 1922) is an acclaimed writer and folklorist. He started writing in the late 1950s. With his firm conviction that the spoken language was the correct language to use while writing, he was a pioneer in the introduction of dialect in his works. He has over thirty books to his credit, the most recent being the novel Andarandap Pakshi (The Andaranda Bird). In 1991, he was honoured with the Sahitya Akademi Award for Gopalapurathu Makkal (The People of Gopalapuram), a novel about a community of Telugu-speaking people who had migrated to Tamil Nadu. He was also the recipient of the Ilakkiya Chinthanai Award in 1979, as well as a Literary Achievement Special Award from the Toronto-based Tamil Literary Garden in 2016. From 1998 to 2002, he was a member of the General Council and Advisory Board of the Sahitya Akademi. As a member of the Communist Party of India, he was twice imprisoned in the late 1940s and early 1950s, for his support for and participation in peasant rebellions. To mark his sixtieth birthday celebrations in 1982, he embarked on the publication of this anthology, Karisal Kadaikal. He lives in Puducherry.

Padma Narayanan (b. 1935) is a short-story writer and the translator of numerous works of literary fiction from Tamil to English, including a collection of stories by the noted writer Imayam (forthcoming), Aadhavan's I, Ramaseshan (2008), La. Sa. Ramamritham's Apeetha (2014), Indira Parthasarathy's Poison Roots (2014), Ramamritham's The Stone Laughs and Atonement (2005), and two collections of short stories by Appadurai Muttulingam (2009 and 2017). Her work has appeared in Agni (Boston), Words Without Borders, and elsewhere. Her translation of Dilip Kumar's 'The Story of a Clerk', published in Caravan in 2012, inspired a celebrated movie adaptation, Nasir (2020). She has also translated several books from English into Tamil, and has written and spoken on the subject of translation. She lives in New Delhi.

One of the things that I really admire about my country is its diversity. There are innumerable cultures to delve into, numerous languages to communicate, and a variety of people with whom one can interact. These bring out a wide plethora of stories which have unique regional fragrances in them. Take for instance my latest read, ‘Along With The Sun’, which is laced with beautiful tales of Tamil Nadu’s black soil.

One assurance that I can provide you is that this book will keep you hooked. There are multiple stories, each exploring a different theme, written by a different writer. As such, the writing style and plots are unique in itself. No two stories are alike, but they do have a beautiful similarity in backdrop that binds them together – the black soil region of Tamil Nadu.

The stories revolve around subjects like broken dreams (‘Along With The Sun’), devotion (‘A Fierce Love For One’s Soil’), politics (‘Helpless’), rituals (‘Gruel For Rain’), and so on. The tales are well laid out, and do touch the inner chords of one’s heart. Special credit should be given to Ki. Rajanarayanan for the flawless editing and Padma Narayanan for the brilliant translation. The cover too is beautiful, reflecting the plethora of stories that can be found in its pages.

Though there is a ‘Glossary and Notes’ section towards the end, I felt an index of regional words with their meanings/ descriptions with the exact page number would have helped. Often, when I came across a regional word that I was not acquainted with (and there were several of them), I had to browse through ‘Glossary and Notes’ to comprehend it. Mention of exact page number where that word was defined would have been more helpful.

Nevertheless, I do recommend this book, not only to those who would like to connect with the regional flavors of the beautiful Tamil Nadu, but also to all those book lovers who are in search of good stories. Do give it a try and let me know what you think about it.

Title: Along With The Sun
Editor: Ki. Rajanarayanan
Translator: Padma Narayanan 
Publisher: Harper Perennial India
Publication Year: 2020
Language: English
Binding: Paperback
No. of Pages: 314
Price: INR 399
My Rating: 4/5


  1. Get yourself the best fitness tracker in India so Get yourself the best fitness band
    just in 2000. Buy the best fitness tracker. best fitness band under 2000

  2. Apply for freelance musicians jobs in India, freelance singing jobs, freelance make and female acting jobs, freelance stylist jobs, freelance PRO jobs. freelance model

  3. Buy your one month anniversary gift and make your partner overwhelmed. Shop unique gifts for anniversaries, gifts for new moms, gifts for grandma and grandpa from the best store.unique gifts for dad

  4. Watch trending videos going viral in india. Also watch some funny and amazing youtube videos, memes and some additional indian news. upcoming web series hindi

  5. Looking for the special quotes in hindi like good morning quotes, friendship, life inspirational, good night, attitude, love quotes in hindi. motivational stories in hindi

  6. VSDC Video Editor Crack is a feature-rich application for editing video and audio files. Its easy-to-use interface allows you to use it and have access to your tools.
    Reaper Crack License Key
    Clip Studio Paint Crack
    Proshow Gold Crack Registration Key Latest

  7. AVG PC TuneUp 2021 Crack is an incredible programming device for both fledgling and experienced PC clients hoping to make their upkeep schedules simpler.
    Icecream Video Editor Crack
    VocalSynth 2 Crack
    Movavi Video Editor Crack

  8. iMazing Crack Mac is a non-created utility for DigiDNA. Alternatively, you can permit clients to put together their data and drives with complete organization and exactness
    Connectify Hotspot Crack
    Winthruster Crack
    Cyberlink Powerdirector Crack

  9. Miroslav Philharmonik 2 For MacOS is a finished workstation that joins two unbelievable arrangements of Miroslav tests – the symphony and the ensemble – in addition to a virtual machine work.
    Portrait Pro Studio Body Crack
    Cockos Reaper Crack
    Photoshop Crack

  10. wow!!! Your Blog is very Good and interesting glad to read such an informative post. Keep it up friend. Also check out my work, Website Link Below.

  11. Buy the fitness wearable tracker in India and track your heart rate monitor, calories burned all in one fitness device. best fitness tracker in india

  12. Hello sir,
    this is very informational blogs can you suggest me Best Solo Microwave Oven in India
    thank you

  13. Looking for the best convection microwave oven in India with buyers guide and customers
    review. best microwave convection oven

  14. Full IDM Tools Free Latest Reviews & Details Soft Links Version Here

  15. Software PC Tools Latest (Full Version)A Platform for solution about PC Software Like Windows, Mac Apps, Android apks, asking for license key

  16. Unlock the World of Technology with SoftwareFilesClub – Your Ultimate Destination for All Things Software

  17. All Soft Crack Tool & Mac Latest Version Free Download Here

  18. Unlock the Power of Technology with – Your Ultimate Guide to PC Software and Latest Tech Trends!