15 Books to Look Forward to in 2020/2021 from Kitaab
Kitaab celebrates its 15th anniversary in 2020. What started as a literary blog in 2005 has now grown to a credible indie publishing house, connecting Asian writers with global readers.
To mark this milestone in the journey of Kitaab’s life, we are announcing 15 titles that we are very excited about–they will be launched this year and next year. A few of them have just been released, and some will be released at the virtual Singapore Writers’ Festival this year.
- Dreams in Moonless Night by Hussain Ul Haque (Eng. translation by Syed Sarwar Hussain)
This much-appreciated multilayered novel spans the traumatic years of the aftermath of Indian Independence to the current apocalyptical state of affairs. It tells the story of Ismael Merchant who even after losing his whole family in a communal carnage represents the intrinsic Indian passion for love and brotherhood.
This title will be virtually launched at the Singapore Writers Festival 2020.
“Sometimes,” said Sternmeyer, “I get into that gym and I just sweat.” And then he shone his successful face at them. Everything about Sternmeyer was successful—the titanium watch, the oiled trekking shoes, the clear tan skin; everything shouted—I have never lost!
“What does he want with the likes of us?” Willet wondered.
“He’s bored,” was Hudson’s explanation. “You get these people with trust funds, and they’ve got all the stuff.”
Sternmeyer, then, was bored of stuff. Incredibly to Willet, he was bored of his condo-with-a-pool and his Italian clothes and his German car. He wanted experience.
The day before, sitting on plastic stools drawn up to a noodle cart, Hudson had waved his chopsticks at the fragility and squalor of the small border settlement—the semi-naked children heedless in the mud, the haze of flies worrying at the fish heads and banana skins rotting in the open drains, the pats of buffalo dung hardening in the road, and waiting in the gathering clouds, the tropical rain that would whisper down all night, making more red mud that would have dried into red dust by late afternoon. He said, “To him all this is exotic.” Read more
Brightways loved his pickup. It was the kind of doting, paternal love you’d extend to a large dog. A bull mastiff, perhaps, of shuddering weight, who barked at your enemies, understood nothing and trusted you implicitly. So it was with the pickup. Brightways loved the way the engine started the first time, with a jolt like the detonation of a small bomb under the bonnet. He loved the steady vibration of the cab, the deep three-litre, diesel-consuming growl.
Also, driving it made him feel more Thai. For two years now he had been collecting such feelings and marshalling them as evidence he presented to himself: he could live here. His flat was one such proof, his girlfriend Ning another. And now the pickup. In the cab’s elevated height, on Bangkok’s choked and dusty roads, among the other pickups and thundering lorries, the weaving motorcycles and buses groaning with human freight, Brightways felt that he belonged and in fact, was surviving.
It hadn’t always been thisway. He’d spent six months travelling on the buses himself and had frayed at the edges, taken apart by Asian entropy. The hindering crowds, diseased street dogs, splattering overhead drains, odours of rotting vegetation wafting up from black-water canals. He’d bought the pickup to escape from all of it. Read more