Thursday, January 26, 2012

Book Reviews Jan 2012

Tuesdays with Morrie - Mitch Albom

What a disappointment this book was. There is very little substance in this book. Whatever lessons Morrie had to teach, could have been summed up in a short chapter. I feel like there was no book here. Mitch Albom reconnects with an old dying teacher while he is out of work and essentially capitalizes on his meetings with him to profit off of a book. There is no character development. The book is divided into small chapters on a specific "life" topic. In each chapter there is maybe one sentance of wisdom Morrie imparts, without real life experiences to support them.
Book is totally overrated, overpriced and undercooked!

Losing my Virginity - Richard Branson

Great life of a great guy... but somehow I didn't find any of it interesting from rock music cd business to his little stunts, from his space shuttle service to his views of war/ global warming. This book is an advertisement of Virgin products and the greatness of the author.

Immortals of Meluha - Amish Tripathi

This book is an exciting fictional take on Shiva and related mythological events and characters. Some parts of this book make you appreciate the richness and depth of the mythology one grows up with in India, but rarely ponders overs. Other parts challenge the conventional understanding of the myths and elements of ancient Indian culture.

I will caution that the quality of writing is not great. The writing style is shallow and lacks expression and illustrative power. The dialogue seems awkward, cliched and sometimes cheesy. However, what the author lacks in writing skills, he more than makes up with the breadth and ambition of the plot built around Shiva and his path to becoming a Mahadev.

Kudos to the author for what I hope will be a ground breaking book. A book that shows that Indian mythology is a woefully underutilized source of wit, wisdom, inspiration and philosophy. Of amazing characters and great drama. There isn't another culture that has been blessed with such riches. It is high time we took this heritage off the shelf; stopped blindly worshipping it and started exploring and understanding it.

The secret of Nagas - Amish Tripathi

Secret of the Nagas is as brilliantly written as the Immortals of Meluha. The reader would already be used to the language by now, so it ceases to be a hindrance in the enjoyment of the book and the story. The story is extremely fast paced and is a complete page turner.

आपुलकी - पु. ल. देशपांडे

मराठी भाषेच ज्ञान असलेल्यांनी पुल वाचल नसेल तर मराठी समजण्याच्या सर्वात मोठ्या फायद्यास ते मुकले आहेत.
पु. लंची ख्याती मी काय लिहावी. त्यांच्या प्रत्येक पुस्तकातून आणि प्रत्येक वाक्यातून ते पुन: पुन: प्रभावित करतात. हे पुस्तक त्यांच्या आयुष्यात आलेल्या निरनिराळ्या लोभस व्यक्तिमत्त्वांवर आहे. त्यातील एकाही व्यक्तीबद्दल मला अ का ब माहीत नसतांना त्या माझ्या मनात तरंग उठवून गेल्यात. आपुलकीने लिहिलेल हे पुस्तक त्यातील चरित्रांबद्दल आपुलकी निर्माण करुन जाते.