The writer Easterine Kire has often mentioned, during interviews with Indian journalists, that the national media tend to sensationalize and exoticise the Northeast. She believes, quite rightly, that this ought to stop. And yet, when she writes about her home state of Nagaland, one can’t help looking at it as a place of mystery and wonder when compared to the prosaic world we inhabit alongside.
When The River Sleeps is steeped in Naga myth and legend, documenting the conflicts that arise when an alien ideology is introduced to an indigenous culture. At the heart of the story is a lonely hunter named Vilie, a protagonist who, like Ulysses, ventures forth into action and adventure, leaving us breathless in his wake. Vilie is in search of a river of his dreams; one he hopes to catch while “it is sleeping.” In the river lies a powerful ‘heart-stone’ with the ability to make anyone who claims it extremely powerful. Naturally, getting it is no easy task.
Taking on the guise of a folk tale, Kire’s work also manages to become a powerful social novel, documenting the lives and times of an area that is so much a part of India, yet understood by few who live outside its borders.
-- When the River Sleeps, Easterine Kire, Zubaan, Rs 295
Photos: Salman Khan returns from Jodhpur to Mumbai
15 'peach' perfect photos of Priyanka Chopra at People's Choice Awards 2017
Photos: 10 times 'Sultan' Salman Khan wrestled with the law
62 going on 16: These photos of Rekha prove she is 'forever young'
Photos: Parineeti Chopra's night out with friends in Bandra