and lingers long in the mind’
Mail on Sunday
In the twilight years of his life, Janardhanan Pillai wants little more than to pass his days in peace. But on the day a stranger comes knocking, a writer asking questions that Pillai has long avoided answering, he discovers that his peace is merely a mirage, a figment of his imagination sprung from the intense dust and heat of the Indian south. Pillai’s past suddenly looms large and his only hope of laying old ghosts to rest is to tell the story that the writer came in search of – what became of the last hangman of Travancore?
As Pillai commits his life to paper, the men he put to their death come creeping into his consciousness, haunting his dreams and living in the shadows of each day. In the way that so much good literature does, The Last Hangman, transports the reader to another time and place. The India of the mid-twentieth century is deftly captured: the politics, the poverty,...