FOR YOUR EARS ONLY

     If satire and sympathy make Raja’s stories memorable, his belles-letters and vignettes in For Your Ears Only, telling us of his kind of disciplinarian wife and inspiring colleagues, his library and his kitchen, are marked by an art of humility and innocent eagerness to share his feeling with others, but invariably passing on only his joys to us and keeping his problems to himself.

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If satire and sympathy make Raja’s stories memorable, his belles-letters and vignettes in For Your Ears Only, telling us of his kind of disciplinarian wife and inspiring colleagues, his library and his kitchen, are marked by an art of humility and innocent eagerness to share his feeling with others, but invariably passing on only his joys to us and keeping his problems to himself.

– (Manoj Das in The Statesman)

P.Raja’s is a versatile pen, which has essayed not only poetry, fiction, biography, criticism, but also translations and the essay. The present title is a collection of his essays written at different times between 1985 and 1997. The essays are woven round the subject of ‘Me and Mine’, as the titles themselves declare: ‘In My Study’, ‘The Story of My books’, ‘They made Me a Writer’, ‘She prays for Me’, ‘I Have Time for You’, ‘My Poems and I’ and so on….The author’s touch is exhilarating.

– (G.B.Sajjan in The Journal of Indian Writing in English)

The essays are autobiographical in tone and spirit. Essays like ‘In My Study’, ‘The Story of My Books’, ‘Visitors to My Library’ and ‘My Inspiring Colleagues’ give us information about how the author struggled in collecting books and building up his home library…His home itself is a library. (This reviewer himself was amazed to see his vast collection of books neatly kept in shelves during his visit to his house in Pondicherry.) He is still adding to his collection. It is indeed an amazing quality which is rarely seen among the educated, especially among the learned academicians.

– (Dr. K.V.Raghupathi in Indian Book chronicle)

P.Raja may be rated among the finest prose essayists in the English Language…In its range of interests, in that personal intimacy with the reader taking him into familiar confidence with that gentle, nearly indiscernible soupcon of irony, for his choice of phrase and felicity of expression, in the evocation of a mood or in dwelling on a sentiment, for that good humoured tongue-in-cheek-iness – for all these you need not turn to Western models. Read Raja.

– (Dr.P.Ramaswamy in Mother India)

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