A New York Times Notable Book, Amitav Ghosh’s first novel makes a claim on the literary turf held by Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Salman Rushdie. In a vivid, magical story, The Circle of Reason traces the misadventures of Alu, a young master weaver in a small Bengali village who is falsely accused of terrorism. Alu flees his home, traveling through Bombay to Persian Gulf to North Africa with a bird-watching policeman in hot pursuit.
A saga of flight and pursuit, this novel chronicles the adventures of Alu, a young master weaver who is wrongly suspected of being a terrorist. Chased from Bengal to Bombay and on through the Persian Gulf to North Africa by a bird-watching police inspector, Alu encounters along the way a cast of characters as various and as colorful as the epithets with which the author adorns them. The reader is drawn into their lives by incidents tender and outrageousand all compellingly told. Ghosh is as natural a weaver of words as Alu is of cloth, deftly interlacing humor and wisdom to produce a narrative tapestry of surpassing beauty. Very highly recommended. L.M. Lewis, Social Science Dept., Eastern Kentucky Univ., Richmond