The Saga of Dharmapuri is one of the great works of modern Indian literature. (…) Set against Vijayan’s heroic and scatological Candide — originally written in Malayalam and finely translated into English by the author — the timidity of our own English talent for political satire is embarrassingly laid bare. For this is dangerous stuff, and cut close to the bone. (…) Fiercest of all is Vijayan’s Voltairean recoil from Indian cringing to power.