The dense impenetrable jungles of north-east Sri Lanka.
Hot, dank and given to unleashing unsuspecting savage violence.
Inhabited by wildlife and home to a new species – The Tamil Tiger. To hunt the latter, in pursuit roam a band of hard fighting men from the Indian Special Forces.
The Beckoning Isle is a powerful tale of two men of war – the young and devoted Captain Hariharan of the Indian Special Forces and the thinking battle-hardened LTTE commander Silvam. Their destinies are inextricably linked, as their paths often cross from India to Sri Lanka, hurling them each time towards a bloody confrontation.
A web of enigmatic politics, raw human emotions and unflinching faith in one’s cause make this book unputdownable.
Publisher: Wisdom Tree (2017)
Praise for the book
The Beckoning Isle is the story of the degeneration of a society and the vicious politics of retribution. But it is also a tale of two men, on opposite sides of the battle, united only by the fatalism of their ideologies. Abhay Sapru offers a unique perspective of the Sri Lankan War in an engaging, page-turning account of the clash between the Indian Peace Keeping Force and the LTTE, with voices from both sides of what will go down as one of history’s great tragedies.
– Shashi Tharoor
The Beckoning Isle is a masterpiece in realistic settings of Sri Lanka during the days of the IPKF. Though it follows the travails of an Indian Special Forces Assault troop crisscrossing the path of an LTTE colonel, it takes you through a bit of history and the whole gambit of politics, intrigue, conflict, human behaviour and the tribulations that surrounded the war between the IPKF and the LTTE. The style of the author who himself was part of the IPKF is excellent and the lucid narration will keep you engrossed to the last word.
– Lt Gen (Retd) Prakash Katoch
Abhay Sapru’s second book on war from a combat soldier’s perspective is the real McCoy. It catches you by the scruff of your neck and doesn’t let go till the end. A chapter of the Indian Army’s ill-fated adventure into Sri Lanka, fought in dense jungles, against a cornered comrade turned enemy, you can smell the fetid smell of the jungle, mixed with the smell of death, fear, courage and strangely, respect for an enemy who was fighting for its very survival. Only a combat soldier could have written this!
– Pralhad Kakkar