Book Rack

Book Rack

Kabul Disco

Nicolas Wild
HarperCollins, 2009, pp 145, Rs 325
In 2005, a wandering French writer found a job and somewhere to live at the same time. The only problem was that the place was Kabul, in Afghanistan, a country left unstable after several destructive years of war. Honest and perspective, inquisitive and unsettling, this book casts an ironic yet affectionate look at the realities of a country that never strays from the headlines.

The Dreaming House
Tanya Mendonsa
HarperCollins, 2009, pp 136, Rs 299
Conceived of as a journey both spiritual and geographical, this is an anthology of poems in two parts. The poems in ‘The Voyage Out’ are mostly about the transition from childhood to maturity; people, whether real or imaginary; and wars, both historical and internal. Set in the lush and watery landscape of a village in Goa, ‘The Country Beyond’ focusses on the natural world and its ability to transform human beings.

First Proof: The Penguin Book of New Writing From India 5
Penguin, 2009, pp 218, Rs 250
The fifth volume of Penguin’s First Proof includes translations, travel writing, poetry, memoir, short stories and portraits, both fictional and real.

Karl, Aaj Aur Kal
Cyrus Broacha
Random House, 2010, pp 234, Rs 195
Karl and Kunal are just two ordinary Mumbai boys who like ordinary things: bunking class, food, films and pornography. Intent on attaining stardom they fly off to the legendary Lee Strasburg Acting Studio to sharpen their craft in acting and in chasing girls. They fail on both counts but come back with a jackpot: their maiden movie role.

The Many Conditions of Love
Farahad Zama
Hachette, 2009, pp 308, Rs 295
A bustling contemporary marriage bureau proves a perfect backdrop for a splendid array of characters making sense of the collision between modernity and tradition in this magnificent return to the world of ‘The Marriage Bureau for Rich People’. A warm-hearted and witty picture of modern India.

To The Last Bullet
Vinita Kamte & Vinita Deshmukh
Ameya Prakashan, 2009, pp 221, Rs 300
This is the story of Ashok Kamte, Additional Commissioner of Police in Mumbai who died fighting terrorists in the 26/11 attack on Mumbai. Co-auhtored by Ashok’s wife, this book traces the life and career of this fearless officer who showed exemplary valour at his postings — be it at the Naxalite-affected Bhandara district, Satara, Solapur or Mumbai.

Victoria Gowramma
The Lost Princess of Coorg
C P Belliappa
Rupa & Co, 2010, pp 235, Rs 295
The author has reconstructed the extraordinary saga of the earliest Indian royalties to visit and live in Victorian England. He has unearthed hitherto unpublished material that throws light on Veerarajendra’s (the exiled Raja of Coorg) and his 11-year-old daughter, Princess Victoria Gowramma’s life in England, and the amazing affection Queen Victoria bestowed on the young princess.

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