Sunday 16 October 2011

The score so far - II

More books, and here's my verdict! I re-read a couple of old favourites again over the last few weeks (they don't figure in this list), so my library reading has been correspondingly lower.
Susanna's 7 husbands - Ruskin Bond. I don't care much for Ruskin Bond really, his writing never struck a chord with me, so the only reason I picked it up was because the storyline was intriguing. Also, I haven't seen the movie and have no plans to see it but assumed the book would be more interesting (the movie having got iffy reviews). All I can say is, the original short story was quite gripping. Short and hard-hitting and left the reader wondering what exactly had happened. They should have just left it at that instead of stretching it into a novella and then a screenplay! However, since the copy I picked up had the short story, novella and screenplay all in one, it was quite good to see how a story/book was transformed into a dramatic form. 
The palace of illusions - Chitra Divakaruni. A cousin fortuitously gifted it for my birthday and I loved loved loved it! I take back what I said about the author, I still don't like any of her other books but this one was effortless and mesmerising and did a good job of capturing the many moods and shades of that enigmatic queen, Draupadi.  
The glass palace - Amitav Ghosh. Good one. I thought it dragged in places but I like stories that take in a vast panorama of people, places and events and this one fit the bill. Additionally, never having read anything about Burma before, it turned out to be a treasure-trove of information on that unhappy land. The author writes confidently and deftly which is so difficult isn't it? I'll definitely be picking up more of his books. 
Shakespeare - Bill Bryson. Once again, Bryson doesn't disappoint. Though not choc-a-bloc with his trademark humour (after all it is a serious biography of the great man of English), it still seems well-researched. Astonishingly, as Bryson points out again and again, there is very little known about Shakespeare the man and a lot of it is just conjecture and intelligent guesswork. A good book on the Bard and an easy and entertaining read. Given how little is known about Shakespeare, it's amazing Bill Bryson even managed to get as much as a slim book out of it!
I'm currently struggling...yes, struggling...with the Emperor of all maladies. I'll persevere for a few more days and if I don't make any headway, I'm returning it to the library :(


  1. yay..glad you liked The Palace of Illusions...hey you know what? Hubby kinda gifted me a kindle as a belated b'day gift. I should tell this to the other Aparna too- she's the eternal kindle patronizer!!..:-)
    the sad part is i haven't really used it so far..:-( but i intend to do it soon..bookmarking your fav reads..

  2. Wow uma, that's a lovely gift! My husband tells me he will only get me one of those once they come out with a waterproof version :( Let me have ur review of the gadget.

  3. IS the cousin that recommended Palace of Illusions the one that i know? cos she recommended it to me too.

    Glad you liked Amitav Ghosh. I might have mentioned this earlier, but reiterating, Shadow Lines is his best work and truly truly gripping.

  4. @Sumanya: yes its the same cousin :) I do remember u mentioning shadow lines, i've already added it to my bookshelf.

  5. Nice book list Aparna. I have had an overdose of Fantasy (Brandon Sanderson!) and classics (for a book review I helped with at D's school), so really need to try something new next :).

    Uma - Yay !!! You better start reading on it soon - or else!! Lots of ebooks at my disposal - let me know at if you are interested.

    Aparna - Waterproof cover LOL.. seriously is it as bad as that? :)

  6. Apster, sure I
    and Aparna,is it that bad??? :-)


I would love to hear your thoughts :)