Author: Damodar Mauzo
Translator(s): Vidya Pai
Publisher: Sahitya Akademi
ISBN/UPC (if available): 8126019182
Karmelin is the moving saga of a young orphaned girl’s trials and tribulations and of her attempt to break free from the shackles of poverty, and as she grows older, to bring up her daughter in a small gossip-ridden village in South Goa with dignity and self-respect.
The novel follows the fortunes of Karmelin, the protagonist who, let down by a drunken wastrel of a husband and pursued by poverty, bravely maps her own destiny. She is eventually compelled to work as a maid in Kuwait to ensure a better future for her family and to repay old debts.
Leading Konkani writer Damodar Mauzo weaves a moving tale of sexual exploitation, machinations within the family, caste conflicts in the Christian community, sexist Arab bosses, and above all, the bitter-sweet triumphs of Karmelin-al set in the metropolitan location of modern day Kuwait and the lush, verdant landscape of Goa.
VIDYA PAI (b 1956), the translator, was a journalist, till she became a full time translator. She bagged her first award in translation at a translation contest in 1993, jointly organized by Katha and the British Council. She has so far translated stories for Katha and Penguin and a novel for the National Book Trust.