Lawrence Durrell and His Fictional World, by A. K. Chaturvedi, New Delhi: Adhyayan Publishers and Distributers, ISBN: 978-81-8435-197-2, 2009, Rs. 425/-, Pages-142. Reviewed by Shaleen Kumar Singh

The book Lawrence Durrell and His Fictional World is although a work of critical nature, it is worth reading to a common interest reader because it offers an opportunity to know of a writer who was away from the dazzling light of renown, yet his contribution and work is considerable and even laudable.  A. K. Chaturvedi is one of the young and genuine teachers of English literature who know their obligations towards the future progeny of literature. By serious and genuine work, he has carved out a niche in the Parnassus. As an ideal researcher, he has always been exploring new milestones by introducing the genuine and establish their preserve among the academia.

The mission of Chaturvedi in writing the book becomes clear when we read his statement:  “Public adoration is not a test of the greatness of a writer. A great writer may die in obscurity and his genuine may remain unknown even to his contemporaries. On the other hand, a second rate writer may occupy a place of distinction among his contemporaries and enjoy immense popularity among readers.” (Preface, XI) Chaturvedi follows Shakespeare’s poetical statement that at first frightens us, when he says: ‘Since brass, nor stone, nor earth, nor boundless sea/ but sad mortality o’ersways their power’ but on the other hand, he infuses vigour by saying: “Oh! None unless this miracle have might/ that in blacking, my love may still shine bright”. Acknowledging the duties of an ideal critic, Chaturvedi has evaluated the vision and art of Lawrence Durrell and has observed the literary contribution of the writer to the literature. Divided into five chapters, the author has examined the literary works of Durrell in socio-cultural, political and economic aspects. Chiefly the author has worked out all the other major trends of Lawrence Durrell and established him as a keen observer of the realities of politics, culture and society.

The book is beneficial to scholars and students and deserves the library. The attractive cover, printing quality and meticulous typesetting makes the book worth buying and preserving and for which Adhyayan Publisher and its proprietor Mr. H. C. Yadav deserves appreciation.

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