Arunachal Pradesh, a veritable treasure house of nature, tucked away in the northeastern tip of India, invites you to relax in its picturesque hills and valleys encircled on three sides by Bhutan, China and Myanmar. Come to Arunachal Pradesh to relive nature in its full splendour. Go on an Arunachal Pradesh tour through books and enjoy these stories and histories of the salubrious climate and meet its simple and hospitable people.
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Title: Invictus: The Jungle that Made Me
Author: Nidhie Sharma
Publisher: Pan Publishers
Blurb: One treacherous jungle. A gripping story of resilience. Tawang, 10,000 feet above sea level and home to a remote Indian military base at the Indo-China border, is abuzz. Six army children – the oldest, thirteen, the youngest, six – have been missing since daybreak in the surrounding jungles. With inclement weather, thick cloud cover, swollen streams raging downwards and lurking predators, the six are facing their hardest test yet. As the daunting jungle slowly unravels its plans, the children must find a way out before sundown. Set against the harsh and inhospitable terrain of Arunachal Pradesh, Invictus is a compelling first-person account of survival against all odds.
Price: Rs. 284 || Pages: 224
Title: The Inheritance of Words: Writings from Arunachal Pradesh
Author: Mamang Dai
Publisher: Zubaan Publishers
Blurb: A first of its kind, this book brings together the writings of women from Arunachal Pradesh in Northeast India. Home to many different tribes and scores of languages and dialects, once known as a ‘frontier’ state, Arunachal Pradesh began to see a major change after it opened up to tourism and once the Indian State introduced Hindi as its official language. In this volume, Mamang Dai, one of Arunachal’s best-known writers, brings together new and established voices on subjects as varied as identity, home, belonging, language, Shamanism, folk culture, orality and more. Much of what has been handed down orally, through festivals, epic narratives, and the performance of rituals by Shamans and rhapsodists, revered as guardians of collective and tribal memory, is captured here in the words of young poets and writers, as well as artists and illustrators, as they trace their heritage, listen to stories and render them in newer forms of expression.
Price: Rs. 470 || Pages: 198
Title: The Place Where the Rivers Meet
Author: Yumlam Tana
Publisher: Leadtsart Publishing
Blurb: “Revenge is a dish best served cold.” Who would understand this better than the ancestors of the Nyishi tribe of Arunachal Pradesh who lived in a vicious circle of revenge?
A slave falls in love with the favourite wife of his old master. A pair of hornbills courts each other and seeks a nesting place on a tree deep inside the canopies of a tropical forest. A shaman who has been bested in love by a village bumpkin let loses a bloodbath out of spite for his rival in love. A young man taking advantage of the development process with the coming of the Hariangs (non-tribals) wants to embrace modern life after availing of any good educational opportunities. Their lives get intertwined in the version of the story narrated by one of them; where the quotidian and bizarre, natural and supernatural are blended together in this surreal and cautionary tale of love, longing and existential angst under the changed circumstances of the tribe’s history.
Price: Rs. 212 || Pages: 216
Title: Once Upon A Time In College
Author: Gumlat Maio
Publisher: Notion Press
Blurb: Between handling cadavers with bare hands, pestering female batch mates as an unknown caller, only to be caught red-handed and to be delivered tongue-lashings by seniors, and a hostel littered with human bones, Gaam, a first-year medical student who has never ventured out of northeastern India before, develops a crush for a north Indian girl; only to be thwarted in his efforts by his flirty room-mate. He meets the first love of his life – Sonam, an insecure, unpredictable Darjeeling girl – only to add to his confusion, leading to a breakup, with no explanation from Sonam. Gaam’s life is forever bombarded with confusing advice from a busy senior and a roommate on how to handle girls.
Will Sonam ever disclose the reason for the breakup?
Will Gaam ever learn how to handle women?
Irreverent and humorous, Once Upon a Time in College is replete with Gaam and his friends’ stupid, unforeseen misadventures.
Price: Rs. 297 || Pages: 354
Title: Dear Bohemian Man
Author: Subi Taba
Publisher: Notion Press
Blurb: The author writes to her readers:
‘We humans are all words. We long to have conversations. Tell stories about ourselves. Many memories creep up inside our hearts during our silent days and nights. My poems are the small stories I want to tell you. I have written them down so that you remember my words. These are actually talks I had done in your absence enveloped in my loneliness. And you must be somewhere, travelling, sitting or thinking; but if you have a moment, just stop by and read this. Because I wrote this for you. And this book is incomplete without you reading it.’
Price: Rs. 150 || Pages: 90
Title: Marriage in Tribal Societies: Cultural Dynamics and Social Realities
Author: Tamo Mibang, M.C. Behera
Publisher: Bookwell Publications
Blurb: The papers included in this volume have discussed the marriage system of various ethnic communities of Arunachal Pradesh from a cultural perspective. The book will come in handy among social scientists in general.
Price: Rs. 750 || Pages: 343
Title: Land of the Dawn-Lit Mountains
Author: Antonia Bolingbroke-Kent
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Blurb: A mountainous state clinging to the far north-eastern corner of India, Arunachal Pradesh – meaning ‘land of the dawn-lit mountains’ – has remained uniquely isolated. Steeped in myth and mystery, not since pith-helmeted explorers went in search of the fabled Falls of the Brahmaputra has an outsider dared to traverse it.
Antonia Bolingbroke-Kent sets out to chronicle this forgotten corner of Asia. Travelling some 2,000 miles she encounters shamans, lamas, hunters, opium farmers, fantastic tribal festivals and little-known stories from the Second World War. In the process, she discovers a world and a way of living that are on the cusp of changing forever.
Price: Rs. 497 || Pages: 384
Title: Call of the Blue Hills
Author: Chandra Bardoloi
Publisher: NBT India
Blurb: Formerly known as the NEFA, Arunachal Pradesh is one of the most beautiful and least known states of Northeast India. Giving us a ringside view, this unique memoir, based on the author’s over three decades of service in the state, takes us through the different stages that led to the birth of the state as present-day Arunachal Pradesh, many towns and villages, the diverse tribes, their culture and daily life, the developmental phases and paths to modernization and the gradual urbanization.
Written in an easy and personal style, the book is an interesting chapter in the history of Arunachal Pradesh. Chandra Bardoloi had his early education at Golaghat, Assam. Later he completed his graduation at St Anthony’s College, Shillong. Bardoloi joined the NEFA administrative services, now known as Arunachal Pradesh Civil Services, in 1965 as Base Superintendent and served in various capacities. Towards the end of his career, he was nominated to the IAS, and retired from service in 2002.
Price: Rs. 130 || Pages: 164
Title: History of Arunachal Pradesh
Author: M. L. Bose
Publisher: Concept Publishing Co.
Blurb: History of Arunachal Pradesh is the revised and enlarged updated title British Policy in the North East Frontier Agency published in 1979. The book is a prescribed textbook in Degree Honours and P.G courses of Arunachal University and also in other Universities of North East India.
Price: Rs. 499 || Pages: –
Title: Arunachal: Peoples, Arts and Adornment in India’s Eastern Himalayas
Author: Peter van Ham
Publisher: Niyogi Books
Blurb: India’s easternmost state of Arunachal Pradesh, moulded out of the mountainous regions of Assam, is incomparable to any other place in the world due to its ethnic diversity and beautiful and varied natural landscapes. Unexplored rainforest, home to over a hundred different indigenous tribes, farmers whose culture and way of life are largely influenced by Buddhism, both from Tibet and Burma. Ancient traditions including polygamy, the family and its place within tribal culture, honour, conflict and animal sacrifice, and headhunting have all survived here. As the first book to explore this area Arunachal: peoples, arts and adornment in India’s Eastern Himalayas is the result of 10 years of travel and meticulous recording of the people, geography, history, society and culture; beautifully illuminated by wonderful photography, it tells the incredible story of an ancient and magical part of India that until now, has remained largely hidden from the world outside.
Price: Rs. 2006 || Pages: 236
This list of books is curated by Amritesh Mukherjee for Purple Pencil Project’s Instagram.