Palpasa Cafe

Author: Unknown / Labels: , , , , , ,

“Palpasa Café” 

Writer: Narayan Wagle 


Original (Nepali), 

Translation (English and Korean) 

Genre (s): Novel 

Publisher: Nepalaya (Kathmandu) 

Publisher: Random House, India. 

Price: Rs. 199, 

First Year of Publication: 2005 

ISBN: 978-9937802109 

Palpasa Cafe by Narayan Wagle.

Nepali literature is yet to be explored, while excavating the Nepalese and Gorkha writings, one can find writers equal to the stature of Murakami, Mo Yan, Marquez and Pahmukh. Nepali literature can compete at any level; the only things required are exploration by the readers’ and usher of love, time and interest towards Nepali literature. Let Nepali Literature bloom in the garden of world literature.

“Palpasa Café” is a novel by Nepali author Narayan Wagle. The story is weaved beautifully with the Nepalese Civil War that lasted for 10 years in Nepal starting from the year 1996 to 2006. It was an armed battle between Nepali armed forces and Maoist forces with an aim of overthrowing the monarchial rule. Palpasa Café is an outcome of the decade long uprisings that portrays the anguish of Nepal during the war era.

The story mostly revolves around two characters, Drishya, a painter by profession and Palpasa. But each and every day happenings of turmoil Nepal has been beautifully wickered. The novel starts in a narrative metafictional way hearkening the readers on a voyage not travelled, after which the protagonist (Drishya) amidst the inception of chaos and disorder (Murder of Monarch) in the country gets arrested alongwith many innocent faces.

I believe Art is above existence, sameway the writer has really placed the level of Art to the metaphsyic level. Art is exposed in each and every echelon; a painter’s spacious mind obsessed with art is portrayed from the starting chapter which starts in Goa, India. The protagonist (painter) falls in love with Palpasa (A homecoming amateur film maker). Narayan Wagle is often referred as formalist for his usage of form over content but still Wagle has beautifully crafted the intricacies of the demography with the life lived the various characters in the novel.

The novel has feminist expression as most of the voices are accentuated by female characters like Phulan, Hajur Ama (Grandmother), Palpasa, Jemina, Christina etc. The dominancy of the opposite counterparts stays veiled even at the narratives.

Wagle who is also known for his thoroughness of detail and poetic imageries through the presence of his protagonist Drishya has briefly pictorised the canvas of agitated era with adroit caress. 
Palpasa Café  as the name itself label aspects like Love, Despair and Art gets more intense and tragic as it reaches its end. Drishya, while returning back towards home from his native country side accidentally he happens to meet Palpasa, as she dies in a lethal trap; Drishya gets arrested unexpectedly from his gallery leaving his assistant Phulan (readers’) all alone. 

With this, I take my hands off and leave you thirsty. Quench your thirst, springs are not far-off.

About the Book:

The book has been a best-seller in Nepal, creating a sales record for a Nepali book of 25,000 copies in the first year. It was Wagle's first book. Since its release, the book has received many honours including the highly prestigious literary award in Nepal, the Madan Puraskar. The book has also been translated into English and Korean language.

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