Love and Death in the Middle Kingdom

Love and Death in the Middle Kingdom

A sixteenth-century Vijayanagara courtier, Devadatta,  is drawn into a strange and intoxicating, even forbidden, friendship with a Persian traveler and a Portuguese trader. In a society driven by caste-centred norms and pollution taboos, the stealthy love affair between the courtier and the Persian must lead them inevitably into a horrific doom.

Centuries later, the courtier’s diary, is discovered quite by chance in the Indian west coast town of Honavar by a student of history, Sharat, who translates the tale. Along with his female colleague, Nitya, from Delhi University, he sets out on an exciting journey into history through the pages of the diary. What happens thereafter proves to be not only a voyage of self-discovery but also an exploration of some of the meanings and lessons in history, in life.

Nalini Rajan

Nalini Rajan is Dean of Studies and Professor, Asian College of Journalism, Chennai. She has a doctorate in Social Communication from the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium.

Nalini has travelled widely, and held post-doctoral fellowships in the UK (Oxford and Edinburgh) and in the US (New York).

Her first novel, The Pangolin’s Tale, was longlisted for the 2007 Man Asian Literary Prize. Love and Death in the Middle Kingdom is her third work of fiction.