Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Favorite Books 7

Book Review Md. Jafar Iqbal, Amar Bondhu Rashed, Rashed, My Friend, Yeshim Iqbal, Mircea Eliade, La Nuit Bengali, The Bengal Nights, Maitreyi Devi, Na Hanyate, It Does Not Die
Book: Amar Bondhu Rashed (Translate from Bangla as 'Rashed, My Friend')
Author: Md. Jafar Iqbal (1952 - )

Original Language: Bangla
Year: 1998.
Category: War, fiction

Summary: Rashed is a meverick laddie studying in merely standard class 7 in high school. War broke out and he along with his 3 classmates started co-operating and helping the freedom fighters. Sometimes they risk their lives by carrying ammunitions through checkposts. They made one successful guerrilla operation to free one of the freedom fighters from military custody in hospital. Sometimes he fools rajakars (anti-liberation parasites) with his witty moves. Finally...

Comment: This is a nice book on war. The setup of the story is different as it gives us some messages apart from the obvious ones. This tells us how a war can affect all age groups. Everybody can be part of it, and the courageous ones can take steps further for the welfare of the war. It teaches us to be courageous abandoning the limitations of age. But this has a mixed critique because a child (below age 15) should not take part in active fighting, or porting, or as a messanger according to UN Conventions on the Rights of the Child, article 38, 1989.

Bangla hard-bind is available everywhere in Bangladesh.There is a movie depiction with English subtitle. I have a copy with me.


Book: La Nuit Bengali (Translate from French as 'The Bengal Nights')
Author: Mircea Eliade (Romanian, 1907-1986)

Original Language: Original in Romani and the title was 'Maitreyi'. But the French translation is the most popular.

Year: 1933 in Romani, 1950 in French.
Category: Romance

Summary: Mircea had a visit to India as part of his job in 1930s. During his sojourn, he fell in love with his host's daughter Maitreyi. It eventually ended up in bitter consequences because of crucifixion of Maitreyi's father about this love affair. Because of fear of clash between Oriental philosophy and culture with Western culture, the love could not see the end.

Comment: There is a bollywood movie titled 'Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam' that depicts the initial plot from the book (uncredited).
The love, torments and troubles of both Mircea and Maitreyi was written with extreme affection throughout the book. You might have read a lot of romantic novels, you might have watched a lot of romantic movies, but you might have missed this one. People even say that, they bleed if they touch the book.

This is a fiction based on his sojourn. For example in reality, Mircea went to India to study philosophy, but in the story he depicts himself as a visiting engineer there. Mircea later became a polyglot scholar and a professor of University of Chicago. There is a movie depiction of the novel (Hugh Grant as Mircea).


Book: Na Hanyate (From Sangskrit, translate as 'It Does Not Die')
Author: Maitreyi Devi (Indian, 1914-1990)

Original Language: Bangla
Year: 1974
Category: Romance, Reminiscence, Philosophy

Summary: After a long time of the publication of 'La Nuit Bengali', Maitreyi Devi got the trace of the book and Mircea in 1972. It seemed her love for Mircea didn't die and suddenly after so long it burst into tears. She told us the same story but with a different viewpoint. Also she denied any physical love affair that was described by Mircea in his book. Rather she tried to uphold the love affair with purity of consciousness.

The title was taken from 'Bhagavad Gita', and the actual line is 'Na Hanyate Hanyamane Sarire' that means 'Consciousness is eternal, it is not perished with the destruction of the temporary body'. The books together make an absolute romantic love affair that took place once upon a time on this marvellously romantic world. Due to fantasized physical love affair between herself and Mircea, she first accepted it as a libel. But later she forgave him when she found the torments and she felt his love for her.

There is one wrong information in the book that, Mircea was jailed for pornography. The fact is, Mircea lost his position due to conspiracy against some eroctic contents of one of his novels. He later sued against them and regained his position. He was jailed for his fascist and antisemitic movements, but not for pornography.

A book lying idle on a shelf is wasted ammunition. Like money, books must be kept in constant circulation... A book is not only a friend, it makes friends for you. When you have possessed a book with mind and spirit, you are enriched. But when you pass it on you are enriched threefold.” ― Henry Miller 

Let us buy paper books. Let's enrich our mind and home library.

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