Author: Leesa Gazi
Translated by Shabnam Nadiya

9789389648416 | PB | pp. 198 | 2020 | Westland

Hellfire is a captivation story about a family under the rule of a terrifying matriarch. Shabnam is allowed to go out to the market alone by her mother but it is indeed peculiar that she needs permission given she is now forty…

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Leesa Gazi’s Hellfire, translated from Bengali by Shabnam Nadiya, is set over one eventful day when Lovely is allowed by her mother to visit a nearby market alone on her birthday. The twist, however, is that Lovely is not a child who needs adult supervision, but a 40-year-old woman.

“Only Allah ta’ala Himself knew how this impossible had become possible today,” Lovely tells us.

The day goes into unexpected, chilling directions for Lovely and her family, especially mother Farida Khanam and sister Beauty, as Gazi’s compact novel unveils the insidious horrors of patriarchy in a seemingly close-knit family in Bangladesh.

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Leesa Gazi
Translator: Shabnam Nadiya









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About the Author

The author was born in 1894 in Muratipur, a small village out hundred miles north of Calcutta . He attended a local village school, his education would have ended there but for the assistance of a local benefactor whose generosity made it possible for him to attend high school. In 1914 he passed the Matriculation Examination and was admitted to Ripon College, Calcutta, graduating in 1918. He took up teaching as a profession and continued as a teacher for the greater part of his life, except for short intervals as a cattle inspector and a clerk. He died in November 1950. His first publication was a short story which appeared in a Calcutta journal in 1922. From then on he wrote regularly. He has fifty published works to his credit, of which seventeen are novels and twenty are collections of short stories. Pather Panchali was his greatest work, one which brought him fame. It appeared first serially in the journal Vichitra, but was published in book form in 1929.


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