Harry Potter’s Hogwarts is a magical place. But it’s an unreal one: it does not exist. Hugh and Colleen Gantzer have discovered magical places in India that are real and accessible.
What is the origin of the fear that a monster lies beneath the surface of the high, blue, lake of Pangong Tso? Who was the Englishman who carved out his own kingdom in the Himalayas? What gourmet dish was created by a ruler to feed his famished subjects? What is the epic tale of the white shrine where the weapons of a martial saint are revered?
This is not a travelogue, or a guide book, or even a retelling of ancient folklore. It is, however, a little bit of all three. It is a conversation with two well informed people who have travelled, and questioned, and analysed. They are convinced that every legend, every custom has grown out of a hard core of fact, a historical event whose impact was so great that it was branded into the racial memory of the community. It then became encased in multiple layers of myth.
In The Alluring North, while describing their experiences in their gently evocative style, Hugh and Colleen Gantzer also uncover many fascinating gems of other, enduring, realities that glitter within our ‘intriguing India’.