Kodagu: Background information when reading Tiger Hills

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Tiger Hills

A Novel

by Sarita Mandanna

Tiger Hills
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  • First Published:
    Mar 2011, 480 pages
    Aug 2012, 320 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Norah Piehl

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"Dizzying" and "glorious" are the words Sarita Mandanna first uses to describe the Indian district that is her birthplace and the setting for Tiger Hills. Now known primarily as Kodagu rather than the anglicized name, "Coorg," used in the novel, the district has long been known, as Mandanna notes, as "The Scotland of India" by the many white inhabitants who have come to the area since the early nineteenth century, in large part to profit from its wealth of natural resources.

View of KodaguThe Kodagu District's official website dubs the region "The Land of Coffee, Pepper, Honey, Cardamom, and Oranges." Teak, tea, and rubber have also been cultivated in the area. Tucked between the mountains and the sea, composed of sunny hills and imposing forests, Kodagu is, as Mandanna vividly describes, a land of geographical contrasts and complexities. Even today, its unusual topography has kept the region relatively isolated; six hours by road from Bangalore (the nearest major city), the district has no train ...

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