Tokyo Cancelled by Rana Dasgupta

Tokyo Cancelled

Rana Dasgupta

A modern Arabian nights told by travellers stranded at an airport. Effectively short stories set in the modern world. Familiar settings but with a fantastic (literally) edge. Since the teller is different each time you never know what is coming next and even the linking sections hint at a climax in the tellers’ world.

Extract

When Bernard awoke it was just light; and he felt strangled.

New shoots had grown entirely around him in the night, and he could not move. They grew around his neck and legs; they enfolded his upper body, pinning his arms to his sides. By this time there was sprouting from Fareed a mass of creepers and flower that enchanted people in all the adjacent enclosures with their glorious scent.

'Fareed!' Bernard whispered anxiously. 'Help me! I have been trapped by the plant. It has grown around me. I have to cut the roots. Break them. Help me!'

He tried to wake Fareed but the old man was delirious and could not take any notice.

Parallels
  • The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer
  • Arabian Nights
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Explicit sexual content