First Light in Colonelpura

Colonelpura

First Light in Colonelpura
1994
Penguin
Fiction

(Brief Summary)

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Reviews

“In a style reminiscent of Attia Hosain , the author takes the reader on a trip into the semi-feudal past as she depicts the minor and major social distinctions which permeate the life of the town.”

Ranjana Kaul, ‘Fey Charm’ , The Economic Times

“(Sic) this account of growing up in U.P mofussil town in the 50’s and the 60’s, told through a series of introspected  stories about two families: the Hindu Pandits and the Anglo-Indian Johns and Butlers, has the same elegiac note of time passing, and values and social mores changing-not necessarily for the better.” . . . “She has humour and a sharp eye and there is no romantic nostalgia for old times in her stories-people lust and lie , indulge in false pride and pretty greed, scandalmonger and cheat-but she seems to suggest that as “the old order changeth, giving place to new”, the sharing and caring between people and communities, the small change of human relationship, seems to be disappearing with it.”

Laila Tyabji, New Metaphors for the Novel, The Book Review

“Kak traverses the paths that detail personal histories that merge with the history of a mofussil U.P town. The heart of the matter is the great changes that face new, independent , urbanized India, changes that shape the lives of the residents of Colonelpura.”

Anjana Sharma, Snapshots of bygone days, The Hindu

“Manju Kak’s prose is excellent, (even though she insists of using the word ‘gay’ in its primal sense).”

Keki N Daruwalla, Telling it like it is, The Sunday Observer

“The novel set in the sixties and early seventies in a small north Indian town, explores familiar terrain: of progress gnawing away at an older, leisurely way of life.”

Manohar Shetty, A tale of two families, The Times of India

“The (sic) book seeks to bring to life a small town “in the sleepy backwater in the U.P heartland”. In a series of powerful vignettes”

Aloknanda Banerjea, Local  Colour, The Statesman

“She (Kak) has humour and a sharp eye and there is no romantic nostalgia for old times in her stories—people lust and lie, indulge in false pride and petty greed, scandalmonger and cheat -but she seems to suggest that, as `the old order changeth, giving place to new’ , the sharing and caring between people and communities, the small change of human relationships, seems to be disappearing with it.”

Laila Tyabji, New metaphors for the Novel, The Book Review, Volume XVIII Number II, 1994

“ This book gives a glimpse into a way of life, times and people of a mofussil town through the eyes of a schoolgoing girl”

P. Sarat, Lost Innocence , Sunday Mail, 13 November 1994