The author is Dr Kusum Ansal, who has written a number of short stories and novels.
The book is a travelogue, in the format of a coffee-table type with lots of fotos. She, with her Builder-husband and friends travelled to Mexico, Peru, Brazil, Argentina and Chile in 2004. Her writing is essentially touristic impressions of Amazon, Machu Pichu, Foz de Iguassu Falls, Rio de Janeiro and the museums and heritage of the places she has visited. She says "she was compelled to write about since the experience had touched the very cords of her heart"
As an acclaimed writer, Kusum can be expected to touch upon the literature of the region. Poems of Pablo Neruda, Paulo Coelho and Gabriela Mistral and writings of Octavio Paz ( The Labyrinth of Solitude) " have made an imposing impact on my life"- she says.
There are references to Evita Peron, Paulo Coelho, Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo.
The launching event was held on 5 May with the Ambassadors of Chile and Argentina and the cda of Peru on the stage. The chief guest was Pavan Varma, the Director General of Indian Council for Cultural Relations and one of my favorite authors and thinkers.
The readers of this blogsite would wonder why did i take ten days to write, after attending the launching event on 5 May. I got a copy of the book through a friend only yesterday. I did not think it was worthwhile to spend 3200 Rupees in buying this book, whose contents are like the palm of my hands for me.
The photographs could have been better and the author could have written more about the culture and people (rather than buildings, churches and and musuems -which are mere imitations of the European ones...), which make Latin America unique. Hope she would visit Bahia, Venezuela and other fascinating places next time.
The book is a welcome addition on Latin America. It will stimulate the interest of the new jet-set Indians who have started getting attracted by the exotic and exciting Latin America. Indians are getting to know the Latin American people, culture, music and dance besides business opportunities. Spanish has replaced French as the most popular foreign language in India.