The Mysterious Bookshop

Pradeep Sebastian - The Book Hunters of Katpadi

Bravo to Pradeep Sebastian on his highly engaging debut as a knowledgeable and gifted author of bibliomysteries, his grasp of the niceties and nuances of this fascinating world of book madness matched by a natural gift for narrative and telling a great story. The Book Hunters of Katpadi, I have no doubt, will earn an enthusiastic following of like-minded readers; I, for one, can't wait for the next one.' - Nicholas A. Basbanes, author of A Gentle Madness: Bibliophiles, Bibliomanes, and the Eternal Passion for Books.

This debut novel is a masterful exposition on literary culture and a must-read for bibliomaniacs. With The Book Hunters of Katpadi, Pradeep Sebastian has created an intricate, interesting and intelligent narrative that belongs on every book collector's shelf.' - Zac O'Yeah, author of The Majestic Trilogy.

Neelambari Adigal and her young associate, Kayal, together run Biblio, a one-of-a-kind store of rare books in Chennai, specializing in modern Indian first editions. The lives of these passionate book women revolve around curious browsers, eccentric book collectors, private-press printers and the occasional thrill of unexpected discoveries of the antiquarian kind.

On a book-collecting trip to Ooty, Kayal stumbles upon an incendiary manuscript, long thought to be a myth, purportedly authored by explorer and translator Sir Richard Francis Burton. Almost simultaneously, a cache of priceless editions that looks like it could be from the 300-year-old library of one of the greatest book collectors the world has ever known, turns up at the bookshop. When it falls upon the two women to authenticate their finds, Neela and Kayal discover, quite suddenly, that their lives are more full of bibliographic intrigue than they could ever have imagined.

India's first-ever bibliography, The Book Hunters of Katpadi is the book every lover of the written word has been waiting for. In the tradition of the greatest in the genre, it holds within its pages adventure, action, suspense - and the sheer thrill of close encounters with prized print-on-paper.

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