➲ The Blaft Anthology of Tamil Pulp Fiction Read ➺ Author Rakesh Khanna – Dolove.info
It was only natural that I would return to this series A year or so ago, I read the first installment and liked the brainless entertainment it offered The reading is effortless, the lines cheesy, the action non stop and the dialog unintentionally funny Welcome to the world of Indian pulp While Tamil pulp fiction might not represent the entire plethora that India has to offer, it definitely is dynamite You get monsters, broad chested policemen, women with swaying hips and heaving bosoms, murder, magic and mayhem to name a few ingredients in these stories.Contrary to my usual style of writing reviews, I will not go into the details of individual stories, plots or characters The reason is simple enough for they all rest on rather delicate clues which if given away will spoil the fun Personally, I would recommend reading the first volume before getting into this one to get a taste of things to come Oh and if by any chance you do start reading them, leave your logic and reasoning safely locked up If you let them out, they d start screaming and raving at these poor souls Tamil fiction, thrilling to core as usual From my blog this second volume of Blaft s Tamil Pulp Fiction anthology, the editors have chosen to translate full length novels and novellas from a variety of authors, including one from Singapore Whereas a majority of the pieces in the first anthology were detective stories a fact I mentioned in my review , this volume is mainly horror focused.The stories include The Palace of Kottaipuram 1990 by Indra Soundar Rajan The royal family has been haunted by a curse for generations the men all die before they turn 30, and no female children survive for long after their birth The younger prince of the current generation is well educated and does not believe any of this nonsense until his brother is killed by a cobra Now the younger prince s girlfriend has to investigate the origins of the curse and the strange social order surrounding the royal family if she wants to save the man she loves Highway 117 1980 by Jeyaraj Pushpa ThangadoraiThis full length comic book features Karate Kavita, a super strong female hero, who teams up with an archaeologist to uncover the man responsible for stealing the treasures from several temples Hold on a Minute, I m in the Middle of a Murder 1979 by IndumathiInspired by the Exorcist and similar movies, Indumathi s horror novella is a tale of demonic possession and murders by supernatural forces When the doctor and head of a psychiatric institution finds one of his patients has killed his colleague, he is stunned The police take up the investigation, but very odd things begin to happen to everyone even vaguely related to the doctor or his patient The Bungalow by the River 2000 by M K Narayanan A ghost story by a Singaporean Tamil author A woman flees from her alcoholic husband when she learns about the affair that is consuming him Years later, a lawyer contacts their son with the message that the father has died and left the property to him The son wants nothing to do with it, but decides to visit the property with his lawyer before it is sold Strange things start happening when they arrive As they find themselves trapped by a sudden monsoon, will they be able to survive in the house until morning Hello, Good Dead Morning 1986 by Rajesh KumarA detective wakes up to a phone call the police have found a body, and they re not sure if it s a murder or suicide As he investigates, we are introduced to a young woman who has recently become obsessed with blue films i.e pornography To maintain and hide this obsession, she begins to lie to her brother and others, resulting in the murder of one of her brother s employees Sacriledge to Love 2009 by ResakeeA girl is plagued by unwanted suitors and an overprotective brother who violently punishes anyone who falls in love with her Then she falls in love herself, and the former targets of her brother s ire conspire to help the lovers deal with him.Women I applaud the translator for selecting works that depict strong, active female characters again, something that I complained about in my review of the first volume My favorite story was, again, the novel by Indra Sounder Rajan His female protagonist demonstrates courage and intelligence throughout the story in fact, if not for her investigation the source of the curse would have gone unnoticed She is the active one in contrast to her boyfriend s weepy terror Something that bothered me, however, was the way she was frequently over sexualized in descriptions that had no basis in the plot It seemed like the author felt that he had to sprinkle references to her glorious curves or swelling breasts in order to make the rest of the novel palatable Despite this random over sexualization, I really enjoyed her character and the rest of the novel The better of the two volumesI enjoyed this second volume of the series much than the first one Whereas Volume 1 attempted to give a wide variety of short pieces some of which were mediocre , Volume 2 is much substantial I appreciated the full length novels and novellas, which give the reader a much better picture of each writer s style This volume also demonstrates some of the variety available in the Tamil pulp fiction world From comics to Exorcist style horror stories, I enjoyed these peeks into other areas outside of the detective story The inclusion of a work by a Singaporean Tamil writer was also brilliant, as it emphasizes the importance of the non Indian Tamil population Once again, Blaft has created a unique and brilliant collection, and I m hungry for I hope to see a third volume soon, and maybe some other novels by Indra Soundar Rajan This was a reward for a kickstarter although maybe not from that particular website for volume three as was volume one, but there s no sign of it yet I m still not convinced kickstarters crowd funding, that is are actually viable or sustainable, but that s an argument for another day Anyway, in India and in this case, the Tamil speaking parts of it, such as Tamil Nadu penny dreadfuls of a sort still exist They are printed on extremely cheap paper and sold at newsstands or by boys at traffic lights Authors who specialise in these Tamil pulp novels have bibliographies numbering in the high double figures, and some even in the high triple figures and one author in this anthology, Rajesh Kumar, has written around 1500 While holding down day jobs To be fair, they re not long novels and, if the ones in this anthology are any indication, pretty badly written, with an over reliance on clich , very little description and plots that are so pacey they frequently contradict themselves The plots are mostly thrillers with real or faked supernatural elements The opener, and the longest in the anthology, The Palace of Kottaipuram , features a second son from a tiny princedom in which the heirs are cursed to die before they reach their thirtieth birthday When his older brother dies, making him the heir, his girlfriend he met her at college is determined to find the truth behind the curse and so thwart it It s all very, well, pulp, and probably the best story in the book I m glad I read the book, and I ll read the third one too, of course but it s like watching Bollywood films they might be terrible, but they re entertaining and fun and different to what I normally read watch. Fiction South Asia Studies Selected And Translated From The Tamil By Pritham Chakravarthy Edited By Rakesh Khanna The Follow Up To S Successful First Collection Featuring Stories By Indra Soundar Rajan, Medhavi, Jeyaraj, Pushpa Thangadorai, Rajesh Kumar, Indumathi, MKNarayanan, And Resakee A Young Woman S Fascination With Blue Films Leads To A Bizarre Murder A Bloodline Of Debauched Maharajas Falls Prey To An Evil Curse A Beautiful Girl Uses Karate To Retrieve A Stolen Idol Seven Thrilling Tales From Seven Indian And Singaporean Masters Of Action, Suspense, And HorrorContents The Palace Of Kottaipuram By Indra Soundar RajanHighway By Jeyaraj Pushpa ThangadoraiThe Hidden Hoard In The Cryptic Chamber By MedhaviHold On A Minute, I M In The Middle Of A Murder By IndumathiThe Bungalow By The River By MK NarayananHello, Dead Morning By Rajesh KumarSacrilege To Love By Resakee I read most of the book except 2 stories The stories in this volume were a little less interesting than the previous anthology But the first one was really good. Complete time pass Read it when you need to be entertained without having to expend much thought. Just finished reading the first novella, The Palace of Kottaipuram this is so entertaining Thoroughly enjoyable fare, when you just need to escape from the dreariness of life and serious reading Highly recommended for those who love this genre I loved the first set of stories I pretty much right away bought this book I loved this set of stories too Though this collection has way horror stories which I personally love and less of a mixed bag than the first anthology I enjoyed the stories, even though some of them were fairly predictable, this was an enjoyable read. You may like to go thru my review written for TPF Vol I The stories of TPL Vol II are or less in line with those in Vol I in terms of substance A few brilliant ones but mostly crap meant to titillate the lowest denominator.However if you are game for road side fiction and don t mind leaving all the logic and reasoning aside, then go for it.