Sunday, May 30, 2021
I finished this book a couple of days ago, reading compulsively, eager to know what happened next. I am still trying to process my thoughts, and hope to be more coherent in a detailed review at some point. For now, I can only say that Kiran Manral has surpassed herself with her latest book. It is mysterious, spooky, atmospheric, lyrical. It takes you to places that may or may not be familiar to you, but are so vividly described that you feel that you know that Bandra, that Goa, those mountains. The characters are etched with finesse, each one authentically portrayed, including the protagonist as a child, as well as the details of her family history, all adding to a richly nuanced story.
4th May, 2021
Belly Dancing! When life seems impossibly hard, more unpredictable than ever, it's an instant pick-me-up. Gouri Dange writes about food with knowledge, wit (at times acerbic), and her characteristic sense of fun. From an absolutely magical stew concocted with her father, to his pithlas, to the tricks children resort to to get rid of unwanted food, tiffins included, to food flavoured fiction from her wide ranging oeuvre, to the (undeserved?) snob value of certain foods, Belly Dancing is truly A Romp Through The World of Food. 3rd May 2021
Greatly impressed with Peggy Mohan 's new book:
Wanderers, Kings, Merchants: The Story of India through its Languages.
It takes you on wonderful journeys, introducing fascinating concepts, at times deeply philosophical, at times warmly personal. Ancient history gets a new perspective, that of migration, and its effects on local languages. I was particularly fascinated by the chapters which spoke of Amir Khusro and Mirza Ghalib, and their linguistic heritage. Hinglish figures in the final chapter, and one realizes how muchour worlds are circumscribed by the languages at our command. I am most impressed by the author's scholarship and her vast range of interests.
29th April 2021
Murder she wrote.
Anuja Chauhan's latest, Club Me To Death, is brilliantly written, with a delightful cast of characters, an insider's view of club life, a subtle yet highly perceptive look at social issues, snide potshots at the current dispensation, an adorable ACP, and a very juicy murder or two. Gripping. Her desification of the language adds to the fun. A classic, juicy murder mystery, set in the heart if Lutyens' Delhi. What's not to love?
19th March, 2021
Just finished reading The Anger of Saintly Men by Anubha Yadav.
It is a brilliant, authentic account of the lives of three brothers, their family and friends. It takes you across time and space and political history, many issues of identity, of boyhood, manhood, and the pressures of the situations the characters find themselves in. A rollercoaster of a book, rich in imagery, written with deep empathy. Brilliant, Anubha. Looking forward to your next!
10th March, 2021
It's been three long years
Since you left us in tears
Grappling with a grief immense
And we miss you still, so much
But if you had to go,
(And it must have been ordained
Why else would it have happened,
Your departure from our world?)
I am glad you went when you did
(I never thought I could say this)
Before this disease took over our world
There were hundreds of us there
To bid you farewell
Your sorrowing parents, family, friends.
Together we mourned you
Sought comfort together
No screens separating us
Our grief was naked
Slowly, but somehow,
We learned to live without you.
Today, death is wildly rampant
Our quota of grief numbed
By the sheer volume of loss.
Our tears have frozen
In our grief stricken hearts.
If you had to go so young,
I'm glad you went then...
9th May, 2021