The Tutor of History

Manjushree Thapa, Penguin, 2001, pbk, x, 442 p, ISBN : 0141007745, $22.00 (Includes free airmail shipping)

The Tutor of History/Manjushree Thapa

"The first major novel in English to emerge from Nepal, The Tutor of History is a portrait of a society in change that is ultimately a story of idealism, alienation and love. The events of the novel unfold against the backdrop of a campaign for parliamentary elections in the bustling roadside town of Khaireni Tar. As its heart the book is about four main characters: Rishi Parajuli, a lonely, under-employed bachelor and disillusioned communist who gives private tuitions in history; Giridhar Adhikari, the chairman of the People’s Party’s district committee, who suffers from a serious alcohol addiction; Om Gurung, a large-hearted and guileless former British Gurkha; and a reclusive young widow, Binita Dahal, who runs a small tea shop and is careful not to demand of life more than the meagre pleasures it brings her. As the election campaign reaches its peak, the crises in their lives mount, and they must choose not only for Nepal, but also for their own individual futures.

Written with rare insight into the politics of a nation and of human relationships, The Tutor of History marks the arrival of a significant new voice from the subcontinent."

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