Saturday, December 17, 2016

Subcontinental drift by Murray Laurence




Book Name         - Subcontinental drift 
Author                  - Murray Laurence
Publisher              - Aleph Books (Rupa Publications)
Number of Pages -228
Publishing Year   - 2016
Edition                  - Paperback
Price                     - 399
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Rating : 3.5


My Review

From Australia to India; Murray Laurence was apparently subjected to an unexpected, unprecedented experiments of patience. A new lesson of being unpunctual and unsystematic enlightened his brains. A different carefree world welcomed him. His trips to India in 1970s and 1980s were accentuated with the transformations he witnessed. He travelled in ramshackled buses, unreliable trains and unreasonable auto rickshaws. The first half is dedicated to his Indian trips in 1970s. The second half is his foray into the lives of the third world countries. China, Vietnam, Jakarta; author share his observations which were common in every third world country including India. Author put forth several geopolitical issues especially in Pakistan and Srilanka.The third half is his trip back to India in the 21st century. Author observes that other than the change in the mode of transport, the life in India was more or less the same. 

Through the quirky rendition, author hooks the readers to the book. Author finds humour in everything that happens around him. Be it the fraudster who made him pay hotel bills, or meal ticket seller or delegates who accompanied him, everyone seems to exploit him but he tries to find humour in all these. A peculiar trait that I observed in the narration is that the author is critical about practically everything in the third world countries. The book is an account of overall experiences of the author during his travelling endeavours.
I received this book as a complimentary copy in exchange for a honest review from the publisher 

About the author

Murray Laurence is an Australian travel writer whose first overseas trip, to Indonesia, sparked a lifelong interest in Asia. His early journeys in India and subsequent writing, reveal a traveler who is curious and open to any experience, a writer who is funny and sharp and a country that is at once fascinating, baffling and unique. Laurence studied Asian politics and history at university; his further education was acquired on the road. He taught briefly in Australia, England and France before becoming involved in Australia’s international education sector in marketing, management and business development roles. He was one of the industry’s first marketers, taking Australian education throughout Asia and beyond and travelled often to India in this capacity. More recently he has worked as a consultant and teacher in a management college in Kathmandu. Murray Laurence’s articles have been published in newspapers and magazines and in two collections, High Times in the Middle of Nowhere and Accidentally in Transit, where several of the stories in Subcontinental Drift previously appeared. He lives in Sydney with his wife Maureen, a willing participant in those early Indian journeys. They have two adult sons, Daniel and Andrei.