Please Share Your Book Reviews With Me

25 01 2012

90% of the books I’ve read have been suggestions from friends. Only 10% are because someone in the papers said its good or the cover looked nice or thats all I could afford at that point of time. As you can see I rely heavily on reviews from friends.

I would like to widen this circle and get fresh opinions on all kinds of books. So if you happen to stumble upon my tiny little blog it would be great if you could share a review or two on some of the wonderful books you have read. I’m game for fiction, history, thrillers, mysteries, autobiographies….just about anything. Now romance novels are not really my thing but hey, I don’t mind trying those out too if you strongly recommend them.
And if you don’t mind, I’ll put your reviews on my blog with your name. Sharing only increases joy!

Or if you like, just leave a comment on what I’ve been writing. If you like what you read feel free to follow the blog. I’m not that regular at writing so you don’t have to worry about being bombarded with tons of e-mails.

And finally, if you’ve reached this far on this post, tell me what’s the last book you read?

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So Much To Read Such Little Time

24 01 2012

I have recently got back into my habit of reading. Time just went by raising 2 kids, there was hardly any scope to pick up a book without one scream or another making you put it right back down. I still managed to read a few (very few actually) page by page, even line by line. While feeding the little one, playing with the older one or putting both to bed. But they’re a bit older now, mind you, the screaming continues. So my reading has increased drastically because now, I put the book down only after I finish a page or even a chapter.

I am now devouring books like crazy. Like I just got off the Survivor islands, having had no proper food for months!
Most of the books I’ve been reading have been latest releases, new authors and new stories. I have gone back to a few classics as well and some I’ve already read before. The constant tussle is between choosing to read a new book over a classic or something you’ve read twice (if I’ve read it more than 2 times there’s no confusion). If I choose a classic/already read book, I feel like I am wasting my time and should be reading the new books. But something tells me its not about how many books I’ve read but how many books I’ve enjoyed, no matter how many times. But somehow the new ones always win.

Maybe the solution is to read 2 books at a time. One old and one new, keep everyone happy. There are just way to many books in this world and no, I’m certainly not complaining.





The Immortals Of Meluha by Amish Tripathi

23 01 2012

Rating: 2.5/5, dont expect too much & you might like it

Genre: Thriller, Fictional Mythology

For All You Know, Bruce Willis Might Be A God
I’m actually reading ‘The Secret Of The Nagas’ at the moment but I cant write about that without talking about The Immortals Of Meluha(the prequel to the Nagas) first. The only reason I’m reading Nagas is because of the ‘what happens next’ syndrome. That doesn’t say much about Meluha though.

There was a clear divide about Meluha, either people loved it or just didn’t like it. I didn’t get it at all I’m afraid. I somehow didn’t get the feel of reading about an era long long ago, it felt like a thriller set in the 70s maybe. Amish has tried to equate certain practices and terms from those days to things as they happen today, and that just doesn’t click. It takes away the charm of things ancient. And somehow the way Shiva is portrayed, made me feel more like I was reading a book on ‘Die Hard’ with Bruce Willis playing Shiva. I am not a religious person so I’m not talking about reverence and godly references but there’s got to be some feel of mythology or historical times, which I never got in the whole book.

The only way to enjoy the book is to set aside the fact that there is some connection to Shiva or it is set in some date BC. Just imagine the hero to be, well just another hero. Unfortunately thats not what Amish might have aimed for. Nonetheless I’m giving Nagas a shot with that in mind and I already find it quite alright. Should be a quick read like Meluha, I don’t expect it to make me think too much or delve upon it for even a minute after I’m done reading.

I do love the cover though, full marks to the cover illustrator!

You can also check out the review of the second book of the trilogy:

The Secret Of The NagasThe Secret Of The Nagas





Freedom From The Known by J.Krishnamurti

18 01 2012

Rating: 4/5, mix of simple & complex life teachings

Genre: Spiritual, Philisophy

A Great Way To Enrich Your Life For Rs.20 Only
When I just started the book, about 30 pages through, I was impressed by the thoughts in it right away. It is a very different and interesting approach to the questions almost all of us ask at one point or another regarding our very existence and the search for peace of mind. The manner in which Krishnamurthi expresses his thoughts is completely different from the way ‘regular’ gurus talk about spiritual things. Its down to earth and straight forward, although sometimes curt too. What I think I like best about it so far is something he has repeated in the first 30 pages already. As per my interpretation he seems to be saying that if you’re happy the way you are, materialistic, selfish, etc and do not feel the need to change yourself…its your choice, do not change. But if there’s something else you’re looking for, find it.

An easy and interesting read to begin with but it does get quite complex further on. Thankfully it was not a book I was dying to get to the end of, I could leave it in the middle pick it up again, do whatever I want. Also, no one could spoil the fun and tell me what happens in the end. The book is a journey of self realisation which can be visited more than once.

But I wonder, this is just a basic collection of Krishnamurthi’s talks around the world, something to get you started on the philosophy. Would his other collections be as easy to grasp and interesting to read?

Here’s a lovely picture of him in his youth:
Jiddu Krishnamurti

http://www.jkrishnamurti.org/default.php





The Great Indian Novel by Shashi Tharoor

16 01 2012

Rating: 4.5/5, Must Read

Genre: Historical Fiction

A Tale Of Two Great Epics by A Good Looking MP
Mahabharata: a great, possibly fictional, epic (people will surely want to debate that) and the freedom struggle of India: a great historical reality. Mix the two and you get ‘The Great Indian Novel’ by Shashi Tharoor. Its quite an old book but some books are timeless. A friend said I should read it and I never say no to a friend…well, almost never!

Until now the name Shashi Tharoor brought words like good looking, firangi accent and Sunanda Pushkar to mind. But after reading this book, the first Tharoor I’ve read, there’s much more I can say about him. The best thing about the book is the characterisation. Although some of them are quite obvious, like Bhishma being Gandhi, some are a completely unexpected fusion. So you know both the stories, right, thats not the pull. The real fun part of the book is guessing who is who and why. The unexpected characterisations come as a surprise to begin with but as you correlate situations, reactions and actions, you understand why. The book keeps your brain working and thinking and its got nothing to do with the stories (!) as you’ve heard them already.

Tharoor has done a good job on mixing the 2 stories but a great job on the characters. I think I can read more of his books but I do need pointers. So if anyone knows of any ‘good’ Shashi Tharoor books, do let me know.

A very interesting line from the book:
”India is not a developing country but a highly developed country in an advanced state of decay.”

For more information on Shashi Tharoor or his books:
http://tharoor.in/