Thursday, November 29, 2007

Books I Read (very unimaginative title)

“It was inevitable: The scent of bitter almonds always reminded him of the fate of unrequited love.”

And thus I begin to read Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s Love in the Time of Cholera. I know it is a great book, the first few pages are evidence to that. I have never read Marquez, though I love the way his name rolls on my tongue. Actually I love the name most Latin American names sound, be it Che Guevara or Antonio Banderas. Anyways, I bought myself the book for my birthday. The first few pages made me feel like going slow on the book and really savoring it, like the way I read Alex Haley's Roots. (Ok, ok I admit it, I am too preoccupied and busy with other things to read for long!) Roots was one amazing book…… screeeeeeech!!!! I am losing my train of thought here….

Anyway, this post is about what I am currently (pretending) to be reading. There is Marquez, a book of poetry called the Satsai by an ancient poet called Bihari, translated from Brij to English. Also Paulo Coelho’s Eleven Minutes (second time reading, wait, I think it is the third) and the best of Ruskin Bond for some stress buster reading. Also a Kannada book on Queen Shantala by G V Iyer. Phew! that’s a long list, only wish I could finish faster than I can manage now.
Off late, I re-re-re-read Jean Webster’s Daddy Long Legs (a beautiful, light hearted classic) and Moth Smoke by the Pakistani writer Mohsin Hamid. It was a strange book, all about the characters being high on drugs. I guess I could say it was an ok book, though it is not much of a recommended reading.

Also read Racists by Kunal Basu. Now when I read the blurb on the jacket of the book, I just had to buy it. It is a story set during the height of the slave trade in Britain when two scientists decide to conduct an experiment. There put a black boy and a white girl, both babies on a deserted island along with a nurse who is deaf and dumb. The idea is that the children grow up without any intervention and without any emotions. The scientists study the “samples” periodically to see whether nature intends white supremacy over the black as was the accepted norm of that society or whether racial differences sprang up due to upbringing. Sounds very interesting, right? The book build up beautifully but was extremely disappointing towards the end. Bad! That’s what it was.

I so miss reading books sometimes. The days when I would perch up on the window sill in my room, hear the pitter-patter of the rain drops and be engrossed in a novel. The nights when I would stay up and read into the wee hours. The times when ma would yell at me to switch off the lights and I, very naturally, disobeyed her and read under a torch light… I miss all that. I miss the times that give me these warm thoughts of nostalgia, the times that give me memories that I weave with the threads of my dreams and store away in a corner of my mind, the cozy blankets that warm me on a rainy day, a hot summer afternoon or the winter morning….I miss those…..

1 comment:

Anand S said...

Indeed, what a bummer that Kunal Basu book turned out to be, esp towards the end. Darn right.