by Reshma S. Ruia - £7.99 Black Amber Books (2003)
paperback ISBN 13: 9781901969146 | ISBN 10: 1901969142
A comical and irreverent portrayal of three parallel cultures - British, Indian and British-Indian - with penetrating insights into social mores and conventions.
Kavi Naidu is a great poet in the tradition of Wordsworth and Shelley (Well he thinks so anyway.) Pompous, sentimental and in search of literary fame and romantic glory, he is suddenly catapulted from the sleepy humdrum routine of Delhi, into the heady distractions of London. Urged on by his mother, whose ambition is way out of proportion to her diminutive size, Kavi sets out to win the prestigious Commonwealth Poetry Prize.
As soon as he arrives in London for the competition, Kavi is beset by people who bewilder him: the singular owner of his hotel, some oh-so typical English aristocrats, a red haired Australian girl with a penchant for mini kilts, a Roman Catholic priest, a Tongan poet and many others. And then there is the suave and enigmatic Seth, a distinguished man of letters, India's most celebrated literary gent and Kavi's nemesis for many years: is there a murky secret in Seth's past? Resolutely refusing to see the pitfalls awaiting him, Kavi stumbles from muddle to faux pas to disaster.
Reshma S. Ruia's warm, sly humour and sharp eye for human failings brings Kavi and all those around him vividly to life in this entertaining tale of an innocent abroad.
(Price & availability last checked: May 2018)