|About the Book|
About the AuthorSwarnalatha Rangarajan is Associate Professor of English, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Madras, India. Her interest in fiction was kindled by a course in advanced fiction writing that she took at HarvardMoreAbout the AuthorSwarnalatha Rangarajan is Associate Professor of English, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Madras, India. Her interest in fiction was kindled by a course in advanced fiction writing that she took at Harvard University as a Fulbright scholar. Her short fiction has been featured in Zubaans 21 under 40,Penguins First Proof, South Asian Review, India Currents,and Asia Writes. She is passionate about the environment and is the founding editor of the academic journal, The Indian Journal of Ecocriticism. Final Instructions is her first novel.About the the BookSwarnalatha Rangarajans Final Instructions is a challenging but rewarding read. It is hard to classify as it seems on one level to be a fictional story about the Bhopal disaster and its consequences on the lives of several people. It is also about the effects of this accident and its long-range implications for Indian culture, the subcontinent and the earth. The author uses this story to investigate several other stories and the lives of people who are intertwined in India by setting up a research project to look for a fabled flower-plant with miraculous qualities for healing humans and the earth. As with India, the story is a microcosm of our contemporary world with all of the main characters, actors, organizations and values we are familiar with. It does not shrink from imaginative speculation, and strong conflicting emotions, complex relationships and uncertain outcomes. Set in the future, the story is a good portrayal of our contemporary world, riddled with both conflicts, but also great promises. She manages to interweave both the mythic archetypal figures in Indian literature and lore, with contemporary nuanced and subtle characters we want to know more about.