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Sheila Kumar's Storehouse

Book review: Wild Himalaya by Stephen Alter

Wild Himalaya by Stephen Alter. Aleph Books. Stephen Alter,  our go-to Himalaya man, has delivered up a real treasure trove with this book. It is divided into eight sections dealing with virtually all aspects of the mighty mountain range: orogenesis (the process by which the Himalaya was formed through deformations in the earth`s crust), the…

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Book review: Azadi by Arundhati Roy

This is more a brief take than a review. AZADI by Arundhati Roy. Penguin Books. This one`s a keeper. Roy touches on all the old familiar topics: Kashmir; communal rioting; lynchings including lynchings-by-TV; the manipulation of the populace for electoral gains; rape and other attacks on the weak, the marginalised, the ghettoised; the less than…

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Book review: Around The World In 80 Trains

Around The World in 80 Trains by Monisha Rajesh. Bloomsbury Books. Straight off the bat, let me say it: This book is such a delightful,  easy read. I read Rajesh`s debut Around India in 80 Trains some years ago, and quite enjoyed it but this one I positively relished. It combines strands of a love…

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Book review: The Women who Forgot to Invent Facebook and Other Stories by Nisha Susan

Snark Attack In her debut collection of short stories, Nisha Susan oscillates between the savage and the gentle, but never lets go of her trademark sarcasm It`s that expectations thing. It can`t be easy to be Nisha Susan debuting her book of short stories. That’s because Susan, co-founder  of The Ladies Finger and Grist Media,…

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Book review: Beast by Krishna Udayasankar

Beast by Krishna Udayasankar. Penguin Ebury Books. I think I speak for all readers — and reviewers — when I state that the two basic tenets of a good book rests on the author’s ability to create/conjure up a story that will immediately catch their target audience`s attention, as well as the author`s capability to…

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Book review: Bombay Balchao by Jane Borges

BOMBAY BALCHAO by JANE BORGES, Tranquebar Books. Bombay Balchao is rather akin to that tangy relish Goans are so justifiably proud of, the balchao. The interlinked shorts in the book are  slice- of- life stories of a section of society with surnames like D`Lima, da Cunha, Crasto, Ferreira, Coutinho, Mascarenhas, Pinto, Gomes;  a mix of…

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Book review: Cari Mora by Thomas Harris

Thomas Harris might have risen to cult figure status with his maniacal creation Hannibal Lector in The Silence of the Lambs, and fallen low when giving Dr Lector a noble backstory in Hannibal, but that`s another story.   It was Harris` Red Dragon that I found a terrifying but compelling read. I recall my hands…

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Book review: Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line by Deepa Anappara

Basti log A trio of kids set out to solve the mystery of disappearing kids.  This book has a slew of most impressive names blurbing about it, using words of high praise. And usually, that would be enough to make me somewhat suspicious. Not in this case, though. Anappara`s debut fiction more than deserves all…

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Book review: Gun Island by Amitav Ghosh

Gun Island, Amitav Ghosh, Penguin Hamish Hamilton Books  A disclaimer is necessary: I am a huge fan of Ghosh, and positively devour each book of his with avid interest. But that in no way impinges on my statement that GUN ISLAND  is a terrific read, packed with information, and that info is delivered so effortlessly,…

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Book review: Life in the Garden by Penelope Lively

This is a book less about gardening methods, types of plants and the like, and more about literary characters and their gardens, imagined as well as real. Get out there and dig, weed, prune, plant, when stuck with whatever was being written, advises the author who apparently is very adept at both writing as well…

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