Description The Imprisoned Splendor de Stafford Betty:
Kiran is a gifted but self-absorbed college professor who grew up on ritzy Marine Drive in Mumbi. Now working at a leading California university as a professional philosopher, he lives in a sham of a marriage to Lisa, an American, but this comes to an abrupt end on a visit home to India when he dies in a plane crash. As Kiran watches annihilation gallop toward him, and then death - suddenly he discovers he's still very much alive-more alive than ever. But now he must face his karma...He relives the events of his selfish life not as he experienced them, but as his victims did-his students, his fellow workers, above all the women who loved him. Eventually he seeks out Shalini, who committed suicide after he rejected her in favor of her rival, Lisa. Kiran, facing heavy odds, is assigned the task of rescuing Shalini from her self-made hell in the Shadowlands. Will he succeed - and if he does, what then? He cannot stay where he is. He must move ahead into diviner worlds, or "repeat the grade." ...And what about Shalini? Where will her passion for Kiran take her next?
Religious Studies Professor Stafford Betty was born into a Catholic family in Mobile, Alabama, the son of an economics professor teaching at the local Jesuit college. He was naturally attracted to religion from an early age. After a short stint as a U.S. Army engineer officer, he enrolled in a theology program at Fordham University in New York City. For his Ph.D. dissertation he translated from Sanskrit a 16th century Hindu theological text. From there he took a job at California State University in Bakersfield, where he has taught courses on the religions of the world (especially India), death and afterlife, philosophy of religion, and religion in literature for over three decades. He has published six books, most recently The Afterlife Unveiled (2011), and dozens of shorter works on topics as far apart as Neo-Confucian philosophy and whale intelligence. The Imprisoned Splendor is his third novel and will be published by White Crow Books later this year. Careful research into paranormal phenomena has convinced Stafford that spirit worlds and beings are real, and that just such a world awaits us all at death. That conviction is the starting premise of this novel.