What book would you gift this festive season?

What book would you gift this festive season?

Metrolife asked prominent citizens which titles they would present to family and friends, and why

‘On history of Bengaluru’

Suresh Moona, a columnist on Bengaluru’s history, would gift a book on Bengaluru.

“It helps people learn about the rich history and culture of the city. and foster a sense of belonging. I would recommend Kannada books like ‘Bengalurina Itihasa’ by Ba Na Sundara Rao,” he says.

Ankita Pustaka, Rs 395

‘Tales of courage’

Bhaskar Rao, additional director-general of police, internal security division, would like to gift books on courage and determination. ‘The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream’ by Barack Obama, and ‘Long Walk to Freedom’ by Nelson Mandela are his personal favourites. These changed his outlook towards life, he says.

The Audacity of Hope
Crown Publishers, Rs 363

Long Walk to Freedom
Little, Brown, Rs 499

‘Stories of women musicians’

Manasi Prasad, vocalist and director, Indian Music Experience, recommends ‘Women of the Records’, authored by Vikram Sampath.

She says, “The book has just come out and it’s a revelation. It tells the stories of Indian women who broke barriers and pursued music in the early 1900s and lived like superstars, going around town in carriages, and charging a hefty fee for their talent. Gauhar Jaan, Bangalore Nagarathnamma, Miss Indubala and Salem Godavari are some names.”

The book also comes with a CD of their recordings (co-produced by Ricky Kej).

Penguin, Rs 1,000

‘Lessons from Mahabharata’

Fashion stylist Prasad Bidapa would like to gift Kannada writer S L Bhyrappa’s classic novel ‘Parva’ this Deepavali. “This is a glorious retelling of ‘The Mahabharata’. It helped me understand the Indian psyche a great deal,” he says. Bidappa was introduced to the book by Prakash Belawadi, who was directing the play for Rangayana in Mysuru.

“Prakash asked me to design the costumes and gave me the book to read and understand the play better,” he says.

Sahitya Bhandara, Rs 752

‘Let’s denounce wars’

For film director, producer, and actor B Suresha, Yuval Noah Harari’s ‘Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind’ embodies the spirit of Deepavali in some sense. Instead of celebrating one’s loss and another’s victory, let’s work towards a world that denounces wars and personal attacks on others, he says.

Penguin, Rs 599

‘Essays by Kuvempu’

Publisher Guruprasad would recommend Kuvempu’s ‘Vichara Krantige Ahwana’ to the young.

In this communally charged environment, Kuvempu’s thought-provoking essays help youngsters think in the right direction and stay clear of hateful propaganda, he hopes.

Udayaravi Prakashana, Rs 90

‘Commentary on society’

‘Hosa Vicharagalu’ by KP Poornachandra Tejaswi is a great book to read this Deepavali, says Vasant Shetty, co-founder of MyLang Books.

A public intellectual, Tejaswi has covered everything one needs to know about globalisation, technology, education, climate challenges, language reforms and India’s economy.

“It is an eye-opener and I would gift it to anyone who cares about society,’” he says.

Pustaka Prakashana, Rs 519

‘Seminal work on statecraft’

Film and theatre actor Krishna Hebbale’s pick would be RP Kangle’s ‘The Kautiliya Arthasastra’, all three volumes. The original text was written almost 2,300 years ago and is considered a seminal work on law, politics and ethics. “The book says that artists can make fun of rulers, administrators, kings and others using dark humour, and that every business must have a forum, like the associations we now have. Rules about marriage and punishments for crime are also covered,” he says.

The Kautiliya Arthasastra (Vol I to III)
Motilal Banarsidass Publishers, Rs 3,000

‘Books are best gifts’

Kannada film actor Ramesh Aravind feels books are the best gifts to give or receive. A few books he has enjoyed reading and finds gift-worthy are ‘MankuTimmanaKagga’ by D V Gundappa (DVG), and ‘The Prophet’ by Kahlil Gibran.

The Prophet, Alfred Knopf, Rs 70;

MankuTimmanaKagga Tanu Manu Publications, Rs 128

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