Comfortably Numb

Sheila Kumar's Storehouse

Book review: The Good Girls by Sonia Faleiro

The Good Girls, An Ordinary Killing by Sonia Faleiro. Penguin Books.   If there is only one book you want to read to close your account for 2021, let it be this book, please.   Faleiro, whose writing style and credentials need no burnishing, goes to Katra village in western UP`s Badaun district, to investigate…

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Book review: Fifth Avenue, 5 am by Sam Wasson

FIFTH AVENUE, 5 AM by Sam Wasson, (Harper Perennial Books) is a delightful peek at everything that went into the making of the iconic Breakfast at Tiffany`s, into the making of its director Blake Edwards as also its much acclaimed  heroine Audrey Hepburn, Henry Mancini who provided the score, and last but certainly not the…

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Feature: The complexities of complicity

The complexities of complicity  The most recent backstory in a woefully long line of back stories to this particular topic concerns the sometime Bollywood actress turned dance show jury member, married to a man of mysterious wealth. The man gets arrested for making porn videos, the actress immediately pleads ignorance. Then there is the Hollywood…

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Book review: Lahore by Manreet Sodhi Someshwar

When Loar went up in flames In this book, the first of Sodhi Someshwar`s ambitious Partition trilogy, intense focus is trained on the city that buzzed with commerce, industry, life  and living. In the run-up to Partition, Lahore had a large presence of Sikhs, a sizeable population of Hindus, and a Muslim majority who went…

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Book review: The Living Mountain by Nan Shepherd

`The most appalling quality of water is its strength. I love its flash and gleam, its music, its pliancy and grace, its slap against my body; but I fear its strength…the mysteries in its movement…(the way) it slips out of holes in the earth like the ancient snake.`   To read THE LIVING MOUNTAIN (Canongate…

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Book review: The Discomfort of Evening by Marieke Lucas Rijneveld

This girl`s life The Man International Booker-winner for 2020 puts grief under the microscope It is an unescapable fact that some books draw you into the story gently while others take hold of you and plunge you into its pages in one deep dunk. The Discomfort of Evening, Marieke Lucas Rijneveld`s coming-of-age story of a…

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Book review: False Allies by Manu S. Pillai

FALSE ALLIES India`s Maharajahs in the Age of Ravi Varma by Manu Pillai  (Juggernaut Books). The book is something of an eye- opener for those whose opinion of Indian princes of the past  was less than favourable, who placed them all in one velvet-lined drawer of history, labelling them degenerates/despots/dissolute beings. So yes, some of…

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Book review: China Room by Sunjeev Sahota

The consequences of certitudes A moment of misidentification and its dreadful aftermath China Room tells of three young Punjabi girls contracted in marriage to three brothers, all of them controlled by the mother Mai, a woman who does not bother to cloak her iron fist in any kind of velvet glove. The family dynamics between…

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Book review: The Oracle of Karuthupuzha by Manu Bhattathiri

Of human nature Over the course of three books,  Savithri’s Special Room and Other Stories,  The Town That Laughed, and now The Oracle of Karuthupuzha, Manu Bhattathiri has spun into being the little hamlet of Karuthupuzha somewhere in Kerala, peopled it with a  fair share of average and eccentric denizens, and regularly stirred up little storms in…

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Book review: The Heart Asks Pleasure First by Karuna Ezara Parikh

In her remarkable debut work THE HEART ASKS PLEASURE FIRST, (Picador India Books) Karuna Ezara Parikh takes the reader gently by the hand and leads them to a circular house in `Lalabad` where they meet the wonderful Gyan and Asha and their daughter Daya; then across the border to Pakistan where they meet Aaftab preparing…

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