The Transposed Heads by Thomas Mann

Thomas Mann subtitled the novella An Indian Legend as the story is based on an old folk tale from India.

Two friends Nanda and Shridaman see the lovely Sita bathing in a local pool and each of them falls in love with her. She marries Shridaman and has a child with him, but she also loves Nanda, so there is a love triangle in operation within the story.

Six months after the wedding, the married couple set off to visit her parents accompanied by Nanda. On the way they stop at a temple to the goddess Kali where Shridaman goes to pray. In a fit of religious fervour, he commits suicide by chopping off his own head. When Nanda finds Shridaman in this state, he is bereft and does the same thing.

The goddess Kali appears to Sita and informs her what to do to bring them both back to life. The title of the book tells you what happens and the ending is traditional though still shocking.

Published by Julian Worker

Julian was born in Leicester, attended school in Yorkshire, and university in Liverpool. He has been to 94 countries and territories and intends to make the 100 when travel is easier. He writes travel books, murder / mysteries and absurd fiction. His sense of humour is distilled from The Marx Brothers, Monty Python, Fawlty Towers, and Midsomer Murders. His latest book is about a Buddhist cat who tries to help his squirrel friend fly further from a children's slide.

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