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The Book of Dhaka: A City in Short Fiction

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Dhaka is the world’s tenth largest city with a population of more than 18 million people. We will bring ten unique short stories from this overwhelming, vibrant, capital city to English-reading audiences in the next installation of our popular "Reading the City" series. Dhaka is the capital city of Bangladesh, which emerged as a nation state in 1971 after a violent struggl Dhaka is the world’s tenth largest city with a population of more than 18 million people. We will bring ten unique short stories from this overwhelming, vibrant, capital city to English-reading audiences in the next installation of our popular "Reading the City" series. Dhaka is the capital city of Bangladesh, which emerged as a nation state in 1971 after a violent struggle for independence from West Pakistan. Bangladesh and Dhaka have a very complex political and social history and an incredibly rich and varied cultural inheritance. Comma are very excited to bring a host of short stories in translation to a new audience.


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Dhaka is the world’s tenth largest city with a population of more than 18 million people. We will bring ten unique short stories from this overwhelming, vibrant, capital city to English-reading audiences in the next installation of our popular "Reading the City" series. Dhaka is the capital city of Bangladesh, which emerged as a nation state in 1971 after a violent struggl Dhaka is the world’s tenth largest city with a population of more than 18 million people. We will bring ten unique short stories from this overwhelming, vibrant, capital city to English-reading audiences in the next installation of our popular "Reading the City" series. Dhaka is the capital city of Bangladesh, which emerged as a nation state in 1971 after a violent struggle for independence from West Pakistan. Bangladesh and Dhaka have a very complex political and social history and an incredibly rich and varied cultural inheritance. Comma are very excited to bring a host of short stories in translation to a new audience.

52 review for The Book of Dhaka: A City in Short Fiction

  1. 4 out of 5

    Eloise Mcallister

    Best ones were 'The Weapon' and 'The Princess and The Father'. Looking forward to reading the Book of Tokyo now. Best ones were 'The Weapon' and 'The Princess and The Father'. Looking forward to reading the Book of Tokyo now.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Mohammad Shafiqul Islam

    Very happy to be one of the translators of The Book of Dhaka: A City in Short Fiction, which is an important book, featuring the capital city of Bangladesh, Dhaka, its history, liberation war of 1971, different kind of people living in the city, their everyday life, and so forth. Reading the book, one can develop a clear idea of the city that has progressed through lots of events and junctures. It's a must read! Very happy to be one of the translators of The Book of Dhaka: A City in Short Fiction, which is an important book, featuring the capital city of Bangladesh, Dhaka, its history, liberation war of 1971, different kind of people living in the city, their everyday life, and so forth. Reading the book, one can develop a clear idea of the city that has progressed through lots of events and junctures. It's a must read!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Farhat

    Short stories are always a great way to get back into reading if you're going through a reading slump. I remember picking this up during one such phase when I was absolutely unable to commit to any book fully. I got two copies of this book. The first one was purchased at the Dhaka Lit Fest in 2017 and the second one was given to me as a gift from my boss the very next year. The Book of Dhaka has ten unique stories, originally written in Bangla by some of the most prominent literary figures in Ban Short stories are always a great way to get back into reading if you're going through a reading slump. I remember picking this up during one such phase when I was absolutely unable to commit to any book fully. I got two copies of this book. The first one was purchased at the Dhaka Lit Fest in 2017 and the second one was given to me as a gift from my boss the very next year. The Book of Dhaka has ten unique stories, originally written in Bangla by some of the most prominent literary figures in Bangla literature. The book contains the translated versions of these stories for the international audiences. Dhaka's complicated social and political history, its struggle for independence and the varied cultural influences it possesses are all highlighted through these short stories. Most of the stories are about relatable Dhakaites, surviving and existing in the most ordinary circumstances. The protagonists range from slum dwellers to rich kids, from gangsters to a masseuse and from film stars to freedom fighters. The often neglected and little respected Rickshaw pullers of Dhaka are always there, carrying the characters to their destinations, across the cultural backdrop that hovers between folk traditions and high art. There is a severe lack of translated texts of contemporary Bangla writers so this was a book that was long overdue. I'd recommend this book to anyone who found their home in a city.

  4. 5 out of 5

    World Literature Today

    "The diversity of the stories’ socioeconomic settings reflects the city’s, and the interactions between Dhaka residents from differing social classes make for particularly entertaining stories. This is on display in Shaheen Akhtar’s “Home,” translated by Arifa Ghani Rahman, in which protagonist Bindubula is beckoned by demanding wealthy clients to provide her services as a traditional masseuse. She traverses Dhaka by three-wheeled van and rickshaw, rubbing mashed lentils and other traditional be "The diversity of the stories’ socioeconomic settings reflects the city’s, and the interactions between Dhaka residents from differing social classes make for particularly entertaining stories. This is on display in Shaheen Akhtar’s “Home,” translated by Arifa Ghani Rahman, in which protagonist Bindubula is beckoned by demanding wealthy clients to provide her services as a traditional masseuse. She traverses Dhaka by three-wheeled van and rickshaw, rubbing mashed lentils and other traditional beauty cocktails into backs and necks to make a meager living. The story ends with a revelation steeped in twentieth-century Bangladeshi history, which permeates many of the ten stories in the book." - David Shook This book was reviewed in the March/April 2017 issue of World Literature Today magazine. Read the full review by visiting our website: https://www.worldliteraturetoday.org/...

  5. 5 out of 5

    Anne Goodwin

    My favourite, “The Weapon” by Syed Manzoorul Islam and translated by Arunava Sinha, was about the battle between good and evil in a character named after a foodstuff he’d never tasted (although I quibbled with the translation of Ponir as cottage cheese, when it’s more like feta). I loved the voice, with a playfully meddling anonymous narrator, a post-modern touch which, in less skilled hands, I might have found irritating. It also had a surprising, but perfectly foreshadowed, ambiguous ending. F My favourite, “The Weapon” by Syed Manzoorul Islam and translated by Arunava Sinha, was about the battle between good and evil in a character named after a foodstuff he’d never tasted (although I quibbled with the translation of Ponir as cottage cheese, when it’s more like feta). I loved the voice, with a playfully meddling anonymous narrator, a post-modern touch which, in less skilled hands, I might have found irritating. It also had a surprising, but perfectly foreshadowed, ambiguous ending. Full review http://annegoodwin.weebly.com/annecdo...

  6. 5 out of 5

    Sharaba Tahsin

  7. 4 out of 5

    Lucy O’Toole

  8. 4 out of 5

    sarah

  9. 4 out of 5

    Lolita

  10. 4 out of 5

    Lups

  11. 5 out of 5

    Armaan Choudhury

  12. 4 out of 5

    Dan Cohen

  13. 5 out of 5

    Made

  14. 5 out of 5

    James Farren

  15. 5 out of 5

    Seung-Hee Jeon

  16. 4 out of 5

    Tommie

  17. 5 out of 5

    Shailesh D’Souza

  18. 4 out of 5

    Samia Alamgir

  19. 4 out of 5

    Hanna

  20. 4 out of 5

    AngryGlitterWitch

  21. 4 out of 5

    Becca

  22. 4 out of 5

    Danielle Kosky

  23. 4 out of 5

    Ming

  24. 5 out of 5

    Tamara Haque

  25. 4 out of 5

    rachy

  26. 5 out of 5

    Anna Stepanova

  27. 4 out of 5

    Nazia

  28. 5 out of 5

    Ahsan

  29. 4 out of 5

    Kookie

  30. 4 out of 5

    Tammi

  31. 5 out of 5

    Nursheila Muez

  32. 4 out of 5

    Tara

  33. 5 out of 5

    Diana

  34. 5 out of 5

    Dani S

  35. 5 out of 5

    loser

  36. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

  37. 5 out of 5

    Imdadul

  38. 4 out of 5

    Manasa R

  39. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

  40. 5 out of 5

    Laura

  41. 4 out of 5

    Nigma Subhani

  42. 4 out of 5

    Shawon Sarkar

  43. 4 out of 5

    Sam Spencer

  44. 4 out of 5

    Monami

  45. 4 out of 5

    Rifat Islam

  46. 5 out of 5

    Farasha

  47. 5 out of 5

    Md. Hanifuzzaman

  48. 5 out of 5

    Kannita Biswas

  49. 4 out of 5

    Sara Gottfredsen

  50. 4 out of 5

    Ida

  51. 4 out of 5

    Ishq

  52. 5 out of 5

    Ashraful Islam Tushar

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