Publishing News [National]

Upendra Rana is the first Indian SEO book writer, who has been honoured with “The Human Excellency” award. He has written eight books so far. A digital marketer, book writer and an entrepreneur, his book Techniques of SEO- 2015 is the highest selling technical books in SEO field last year.

V C Thomas, publishing and rights consultant, V C books and Manasi Subrahmaniam of Penguin Random House India have been selected for the prestigious Zev Birger Jerusalem Book Fair Fellowship 2017. Thomas is the first recipient from Malayalam publishing for this fellowship.

SAGE Publishing has released Masood Khalini’s Whispers of Wars: An Afghan Freedom Fighter’s Account of the Soviet Invasion. Launch of the book in New Delhi was flanked by a host of eminent guests comprising Shakti Sinha, president, Nehru Memorial Museum & Library as moderator alongside IP Khosla, member secretary, Indian Council for South Asian Co-operation and former Indian ambassador to Afghanistan; Dr Vishal Chandra, research fellow, Institute for Defense Study and Analyses and among other dignitaries.

In Whispers of Wars, author Masood Khalini narrates his first-hand account of Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. In the summer of 1986, he was barely 30 and he kept a diary while travelling through northern Afghanistan. That record has yielded this elegiac book on the Afghan people in the midst of their war of resistance against the then Soviet Union. But Whispers of War is a memoir, not a diary of self. It is a group portrait of the Afghan nation and its diverse, resilient culture in a season of extreme pressure. Masood’s journey in the book unfolds with conversations and eyewitness encountered with farmers, refugees, horsemen, villagers, and commanders.

“I encountered the pain of war through extraordinary voices—children lost to random gunfire, volunteer fighters suffering from wounds that cannot be treated properly and many such agonies,” said Masood, recalling the anguish that still lingers in his mind. Whispers of War offers an additional corrective, step by step, day by day as the book’s journey carries the humane heart of Afghanistan, to its suffering, beauty, poetry, and aspirations for peace. Masood, son of the famous Persian poet laureate Ustad Khalilullah Khalili, had reportedly spent five years in India and studied at Kirori Mal College of Delhi University in the seventies.

Children’s literature festival Bookaroo has won the International Excellence Award in the Literary Festivals category at the London Book Fair 2017. Launched in 2008, it is organised in different Indian cities, inviting speakers from various countries to speak to children to encourage them to read more. The festival also runs an outreach programme called Bookaroo in the City.

Chikankari is one of the finest traditional embroideries of India, a symbol of Lucknawi culture and elegant courts of the nawabs of Awadh. Chikankari appeared in Lucknow in the late 18th century and its exquisite aesthetic and craftsmanship has sustained the tradition to this day, through changing patronage and market trends.

Chikankari: A Lucknawi Tradition, authored by Paola Manfredi and published by Niyogi Books was officially launched at New Delhi in the presence of activist, author and Indian handicrafts curator Jaya Jaitly; along with fashion designer and film producer Meera Ali and renowned filmmaker, fashion designer, poet and artist Muzaffar Ali.

This beautifully illustrated book showcases unknown gems from personal and public collections, and brings to life the history of this unique craft tradition. The various chapters describe the mysterious origins of the craft, the range of costumes, the inspirations behind it motifs, the time-honored elaborate production process, and the bewildering array of stitches that raised this craft to a truly exceptional art form.