Book : Night of Happiness
Author : Tabish Khair
Pages : 100
Genre : Fiction
Publisher : PanMacmillan India
Synopsis : Pragmatic entrepreneur Anil Mehrotra has set up his thriving business empire with the help of his lieutenant, Ahmed, an older man who is different in more ways than one. Quiet and undemanding, Ahmed talks in aphorisms, bothers no one, and always gets the job done. But when one stormy night, Mehrotra discovers an aspect to Ahmed that defies all reason, he is forced to find out more about his trusted aide.
As layers and layers of Ahmed’s history are peeled off, Mehrotra finds himself confronting some deeply unsettling questions. Does Ahmed really have a wife? Does he keep her imprisoned in their flat? Is Ahmed deranged, or is he just making desperate sense of the horrors that afflicted him in the past?
By turns poetic, chilling and heartbreaking, Night of Happiness is an unforgettable novel set in a world without tolerance.
My Review : Thank you PanMacmillan India for sending a review copy of this wonderful book.
Consisting of just around 100 pages, this book definitely makes you yearn for more of Tabish’s writing.
Set around the 1990-2000’s the book centers around Mr. Mehrotra,a business royale and the mystery and suspense surrounding hia long term aid Ahmed, who is his right hand in business.
The plot is so intriguing till the very end that you will not want to put the book down. The story is exceptionally well developed and the suspense build-up is commendable. The story is quite different from the ones that we come across nowadays.
I was personally very impressed and attracted by the character of Ahmed,which is rather a complicated one according to my perception. I re-read every other major scenes that included him because the character was made to feel so real.
Anil Mehrotra’s character could’ve been better organized with a bit of trivia of his family. I felt that his back story lacked a little and the author could’ve done justice to him,being the protagonist.
The “gazaar ka halwa” scene and the “graveyard” scene will be my most favorite scenes ever written in a book and for these I gave the book and extra star.
My Rating : 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟/5
About the author : Born and educated in Gaya, a small town in Bihar, TABISH KHAIR is the author of various acclaimed works, including the novels, The Bus Stopped, Filming: A Love Story, The Thing About Thugs, How to Fight Islamist Terror from the Missionary Position and Jihadi Jane (available as Just Another Jihadi Jane outside India), the poetry collections, Where Parallel Lines Meet and Man of Glass and the studies, Babu Fictions and The Gothic, Post colonialism and Otherness and The New Xenophobia. Khair is currently an associate professor at Aarhus University, Denmark and a Lever Hulme guest professor at the School of English, Leeds University, UK. He has won the All India Poetry Prize. His novels have been shortlisted for major prizes, including the Man Asian Literary Prize and the Encore Award and translated into several languages.