As Arundhati Nag, actor, read out excerpts after unwrapping the first copy, the gathering that was sprinkled with stardust heard her with rapt attention. Her theatric voice resounded as she gave wings to Allen’s words. Launching the book as part of the Bengaluru habba festivities was a fitting tribute to ‘Bangalore’s boy’ as Arundhati Nag referred to Allen.
Prakash Belawadi, actor and journalist, enlivened the audience with anecdotes about Allen. An old friend of Allen, Belawadi spoke about the world of journalism then and now, and how Allen’s words would remain indelible footprints.
It was heartwarming to see Allen’s friends and fans crowding around the book sales counter, each coming out clutching a fresh copy of the Sentinel House. Actor, writer, and playwright Girish Karnad was also seen leafing through the first few pages of the book while Yasmeen Premji, director of the Azim Premji Foundation, had her book autographed by Sandhya Mendonca.
With such distinguished guests as Mr. Subroto Bagchi, the co-founder of Mindtree, former IT secretary Mr. Vivek Kulkarni, the ubiquitous fashion guru of Bangalore, Prasad Bidappa, Mr. Prem Koshy of Koshys, the evening was a splendid one, as good as the book that was being launched.