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Lake Louise, Canada
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  • Location: Calcutta, Venice, Los Angeles

Gun Island

Gun Island

Why a Booktrail?

2000s: Bundook. Gun. A common word, but one which turns Deen Datta’s world upside down.


  • ISBN: 978-1473686656
  • Genre: Fiction, Folklore, Historical

What you need to know before your trail

A dealer of rare books, Deen is used to a quiet life spent indoors, but as his once-solid beliefs begin to shift, he is forced to set out on an extraordinary journey; one that takes him from India to Los Angeles and Venice via a tangled route through the memories and experiences of those he meets along the way. There is Piya, a fellow Bengali-American who sets his journey in motion; Tipu, an entrepreneurial young man who opens Deen’s eyes to the realities of growing up in today’s world; Rafi, with his desperate attempt to help someone in need; and Cinta, an old friend who provides the missing link in the story they are all a part of. It is a journey which will upend everything he thought he knew about himself, about the Bengali legends of his childhood and about the world around him.

Travel Guide

BookTrail around Calcutta, Venice and head to Gun Island

This is a tale of Bengali folklore, a search for the illusive Gun Island and the mysterious surrounding it. This is a place called Bonduk-dwip and one which seems to only exist in fairy tales. It’s an island of snakes and pirates. An island at the centre of a mysterious story and fable involving the iconic figure of Manasa Devi. There is a lot of fantasy and evocative lyrical descriptions of this place. Its other name is  Land of Palm Sugar candy and is part of the legend he goes to explore.

Sundarbans Forest

The forest and tiger reserve heavily featured in the story. Just south of Calcutta.


There’s some lovely scenes set in Venice. The stories and legends discovered in Calcutta are also explored and added to here. The characters spend time in the Cannaregio region, the Jewish ghetto and head to the are where Bangladeshi immigrants in Venice hang out. Deen reconnects with his background here and explores the city, again as an outsider, but with the knowledge that Bengali people have a link here too.

Los Angeles

There are minimal scenes in Los Angeles but the wild fires around the city are referenced and Venice Beach where something important happens.  in the novel





BookTrail Boarding Pass: Gun Island

Destination: Calcutta, Venice, Los Angeles Author/guide: Amitav Ghosh  Departure Time: 2000s

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