No matter what, there is no running away from books. There are a lot of classic novels in various languages and even great books have been penned down in Odia, that are still lesser known to people. Which is why we have created this list so that you get to explore the best of Odia literature.
Every book nerd should include the following in your bucket reading list!
Chha Maana Aatha Guntha by Fakir Mohan Senapati
Famously known as the Thomas Hardy of Odisha, Fakir is the pioneer of Odia nationalism and new prose forms in Odia. This particular novel revolves around the usurpation of landless farmers by the land owners. It is the first ever Indian novel talking about the host-parasite relationship between the farmers and land owners.
Paraja by Gopinath Mohanty
This masterpiece which has been translated to around 40 languages is known to define the career of author Gopinath. The novel deals with the life of Sukru Jani, a Paraja tribal, and his family’s inexorable descent. They are the victims of the money-lenders whose clutches are like of a spider’s web. Grab the book to know what happens eventually!
Nila Saila by Surendra Mohanty
This novel has been set between 1727 and 1736 when Ramachandradev, the King of Khurda, was revered by the people of Odisha as Lord Jagannath’s representative. It also gives a truthful account of contemporary Odisha and hence intensely portrays the state’s religious and cultural tradition.
Available on: Odikart.com
Yajnaseni: The Story Of Draupadi by Pratibha Ray
This award winning 1984 novel revolves around the story of Draupadi from the famous epic Mahabharata. The book is so good that it has even been translated to various languages, including English, Hindi, Malayalam, Hungarian and others. In this novel, Pratibha brings out the broader and deeper aspects of Draupadi’s mind that lay submerged in the majestic sweep of the grand Mahabharata.
Amruta Phala by Manoj Das
Referred as the R. K. Narayan of Odisha, Manoj’s Amruta Phala is easily one of the best novels in contemporary Odia literature. It is based on a tale that perfectly blends history, legend, mystery, magic and realism. There are two parallel stories in motion which makes the book an engrossing read!
Prapti by Paramita Satpathy
This collection of ten novellas in Odia is a wonderful fictional writing. Women in different facts and faucet and in many hues are protagonists of these novellas. The magic of imagination and the starkness of reality infuse with each other to mesmerize the readers. The book has even made Paramita win the Sahitya Akademi Award!
Available on: Odikart.com
Some other must reads in Odia novels are Nilatrushna by Pratibha Ray, Akasha ra Ishara by Manoj Das, Raskel by Raj Kishore Pattnaik, Kanakalata by Nanda Kishore Bal, Gharadiha by Nityananda Mohapatra, Amruta ra Santana by Gopinath Mohanty, etc. Almost all these books are available online also on Odikart.com.