There is no clarification in the preface about the ‘experimental’ nature of this autobiography; there is instead a brief account of the unhappy circumstances in which this book came to be written. At the age of 60, says Mr. Abbas, it struck him at the instigation of a friend that he had led an interesting life, and that ‘many more people would be interested to read about politics, literature and films.’ Knowing Mr. Abbas’s facility with the pen, I doubt if the task appeared to him as a long, difficult or intimidating one. Delay came unexpectedly. Illnesses—first an eye operation and then a cerebral stroke—cut short the venture, but quite heroically Abbas struggled through to set down his story. For that one can only commend the author.Certainly Mr. Abbas has had a varied, accomplished career, as a journalist, novelist, film producer and director, and a privileged member of what I would call the ‘Nehru generation’, Abbas had his moments of glory.
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