Contents: Introduction: setting the table. Individual Portions: 1. On leavened bread/Salman Rushdie. 2. My first buffet lunch/Busybee. 3. Past times: first tastes that lasted forever/Vir Sanghvi. 4. Gustad's chicken/Rohinton Mistry. 5. Eating meat/M.K. Gandhi. 6. Everything you ever wanted to know about Feni but were too drunk to ask/Frank Simoes. 7. Flesh in the valley/Sudha Koul. 8. The remains of the feast/Githa Hariharan. 9. Banquet Nationalism/Mukul Kesavan. 10. The outsider's Thali/E.M. Forster. 11. Trotter laws/I. Allan Sealy. 12. English soup/Geoffrey C. Ward and Diane R. Ward. 13. Jelly/Saadat Hasan Manto. 14. Chutnification/Salman Rushdie. 15. Tibetan dinner/Amitav Ghosh. Food and the senses: 16. Baby food/Raj Kamal Jha. 17. Cooking women/Anuradha Roy. 18. Charms of life/Busybee. 19. Initiation/Radhika Jha. 20. Shrikhand/Ruchir Joshi. 21. Bread for the sweeper/Mulk Raj Anand. 22. Black-collar workers/Suketu Mehta. 23. Mahesh/Sarat Chandra Chatterjee. 24. French leave/Purabi Basu. 25. Guest is God/Abdul Bismillah. 26. Everybody loves a good drought/P. Sainath. Masala mix: 27. Bhelpuri: it's all about texture/Vir Sanghvi. 28. The anger of aubergines/Bulbul Sharma. 29. The great mango yatra/David Davidar. 30. The secrets of spices/Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni. 31. Just desserts/I. Allan Sealy. Deprivation: 32. Apu's trials/Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyaya. 33. Fasting/R.K. Narayan. 34. The diet/Manjula Padmanabhan. 35. Leftovers/Anjana Appachana. 36. Salt/Mahasweta Devi. Across the seven seas: 37. Mrs. Sen's/Jhumpa Lahiri. 38. Mr. Biswas Rebels/V.S. Naipaul. 39. Shopping for more/Anita Desai. 40. A Barisal winter/Chitrita Banerji. 41. The man who couldn't stop eating/Atul Gawande. Notes on contributors.
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. New Delhi, Penguin Books, 2004, vi, 299 p., ISBN 0-67-005768-1.
"Pirouetting between laughter and tears, Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi's technicolour debut tells the story of four extraordinary lives. Of Anuradha Gandharva, gifted with astonishing beauty and magical songs; of her husband, Vardhmaan, struggling with secret losses; of Nandini, a deviously alluring artist, with a penchant for panthers and walking on water; and of Shloka, the Gandharvas' delicate, disturbingly silent child.
As their fates unravel in an old villa in 1920s' India, they learn to navigate the ever-changing landscape of love, and in doing so encounter a host of eccentrics: Mr. Bunkusdaas, the father of Bollywood cinema; Stella Dimm, 'England's first ever Tit girl'; Libya Dass, rarely seen out of her porcelain bathtub; and Percival Worthington, the aristocratically limp son of the governor of Bombay, on whom Nandini rashly sets her sights.
The Last Song of Dusk is a tale of exquisite friendships, immense sacrifices and dangerous desires. Told with tenderness and with dazzling wit, it will haunt you long after you have turned the final page." (jacket)