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Legends of Khasak Paperback – August 1, 1994


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books India (August 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 014015647X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140156478
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 5.1 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,405,047 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Language Notes

Text: English (translation)

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By lilac on August 16, 2002
Format: Paperback
Ever asked, without batting an eyelid, I would say that the best work in Malayalam Literature is O V Vijayan's `The Legends of Khasak'. The novel first published in 1969 and the subsequent editions came throughout the years. Through Khasak, Vijayan was not writing a novel, rather he was creating a new literary language which was till that time unknown to many Malayale readers. Still, in Malayalam literary field, critics find it's difficult to replace the novel with another piece of work. It took 19 years for Vijayan to complete the novel. What made it unique, as said by Vijayan himself, the novel took the energy from its own soil. He was not merely telling a story. He took the characters out of their commonness and wrapped them with his magical literary sense. The novel goes through a whirlpool of fantasy, myths and history. One could find stories, sub stories and the harmonization of nature, birth, death and rebirth.
Khasak is a rousing song. A journey to the lost ecosystem. A must read novel
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Sreekumar Pisharath on September 29, 2000
Format: Paperback
I read the malayalam version of this book "Khasakkinte Ithihasam" 5 years ago .Reading this book gave me a nostalgic experience because the backdrop of this novel is quite near to the place where I belong in the Palakkad disrict of Kerala,India. During one of my vacations I travelled to "Thasrak$QAll the images depicted by Vijayan in the novel is still alive in the village.It was so real.From the moment I alighted the bus at the Koomankavu I felt as if Ravi is walking along with me.He lead me to the outhouse where he lived,the village school and the mosque of "allapichamollakka".The soothing experience of the novel laced with the flavour of my native village always makes me feel good.All the vijayan's novels narrates the story of pilgrimages.Ravi in "legends of Khasak",Kunjunni in the "infinity of grace" and Chandran in "generations"all these characters are pilgrims.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 9, 1998
Format: Paperback
"Khasak" burst upon the Kerala, S. India literary scene in 1958 or so, with an effect similar to that of "Midnight's Children" on Indian-English writing. It showed the way to an introspective, impressionistic, modernistic style as compared to the sweetly romantic styles that had hitherto predominated. Set in Malabar, which has a reputation for being mysterious and magical, this book retains its freshness and its beautifully wrought characters remain true to life today--the book has weathered 40 years quite well. A new Collected Edition of Mr. Vijayan's works, including the new "Infinity of Grace" is due out in Feb. 98 in a Penguin India edition. He has also just written a sweeping family saga, "Generations", but it is yet to be translated. Rajeev Srinivasan
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 19, 1997
Format: Paperback
Vijayan is a highly acclaimed author in India but unfortunately, not as well known as Vikram Seth or Salman Rushdie are to the western world. Frankly I am surprised to find the book here.

Set in pre-independent India, this is a story of a small village in Kerala (south India). A short novel, exceptionally well written that brings out the flavour of India. If Vikram Seth's `Suitable Boy' has shaken your faith in good writing, then this novel will prove an antedote.

India's diverse culture makes it very difficult to define `Indian-ness', more so, to the western audience. It is not merely in the erotic art of kamasutra, in the hot spicyness of our cuisine and in the million hues of our fabrics.

`Legends of Khasak' does not have the pyrotechnics of `Midnight's Children'. It is a very simply told tale of love, lust and betrayals embedded in the regularity of everyday life. The lifestyle in different parts of India are so different that this book is bound to present many surprising elements to most Indians.

If the intent to read an Indian author is to understand that part of the world, then this book is one of the very best.
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