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Shortlisted for the Shakti Bhatt First Book Prize 2019
Bangladesh, 2028. A biographer begins to document the life of an enigmatic and controversial political luminary - Babu, also known as 'Babu Bangladesh'. In unearthing the story of a man whom many thought was the leader of his generation, he begins to uncover the story of a nation itself.
Buildings acquire consciousness to chart political outcomes, a tree stands defiantly even as marauding troops try to blast it out of existence, tribes of snake and tree worshipers compete for regional supremacy, even as fish-humanoids emerge from the waters ... Flitting between fantasy and reality, manoeuvring through the rainforest swamps of Bangladesh with as much ease as the immigrant colonies of New York, blurring the boundaries between myth, history and truth, Babu Bangladesh! is a work of stunning scope and ambition from the most exciting literary voice to emerge from the Subcontinent in years.
Written from the future, this unique novel recovers a nation's past. Obsessive about truth, drunk on language and life, Numair Choudhury is the Bangladeshi Bolano. - AMITAVA KUMAR
Babu Bangladesh! is an exuberant, genre-defying novel of great ambition, wholly original and deftly compelling as it tells the story of a nation and its troubled history. - TAHMIMA ANAM
Vast in scope, ambition and intelligence - it's a loss to all of us that this is Numair Choudhury's only novel, but how fortunate we are to have it so that we may know his exceptional mind. - KAMILA SHAMSIE
Once in a rare while, a debut novel appears unannounced and hits you on the back of your head like a truncheon and leaves you stunned. - MINT
A tour de force ... Exuberant, extravagant, learned, zany, ingenious, whimsical, irreverent and provocative. - DAILY STAR
A giant, ambitious, shape-shifter of a novel. - OPEN
An extraordinary debut novel that moves seamlessly between myth, history, and reportage. - THE INDIAN EXPRESS
A strange, brilliant work of erudition told in prose that sings and charms. - HUFFPOST
A true gem, a wondrous time capsule to the past, a curious time machine to the future. - DHAKA TRIBUNE
A polyphonous enigma ... One of the most ambitious novels, in any language, to have come out of Bangladesh. - SCROLL.IN
A masterful portrait of a country as well as a fitting epitaph for its gone-too-soon author. - DAWN
A work of genius. - HINDUSTAN TIMES