A romance of ancient India, set during the semi-mythical era of the Kama Sumtra, when Greek “Yavanas” lived out eastern fantasies in an exotic, dangerous land of fragmented kingdoms and wild jungles. Aranyani, a young courtesan from the mountains, falls in love with a tribal hunter. Their adventurous journey from Pataliputra to Kashmir evokes myths and legends of India’s earliest empires.
Set in north India, Circa 78A.D., this is the story of Aranyani – “a girl as beautiful as a sunrise” and her lover, Vanu – a “brave hunter who stalks the deer at daybreak”….There are epigrams from the Kamasutra and the Rig Veda, and a million references to the food and drink, places and practices of the time. Yet, surprisingly, it doesn’t feel like a history lesson…There are princes partaking in licentious pagan ceremonies, sacrificial white stallions being devoured by tigers, owlets and civet cats and detailed descriptions of Indian wilderness.. And – most subversively of all – in Kashmir, there is an aged ‘Yavana’, a man from the Mediterranean, who had studied the Buddha’s dharma. A beloved herbalist with a reputation of performing miracles, he cures Aranyani of a strange, consuming fever. His name was Isa.