1) Chanakya’s Chant
by Ashwin Sanghi
I had some high expectations from this book after reading some of the reviews on goodreads. However, this book disappoints and how.
It tells how Chanakya- the world renowned strategist used his brains to put Chandragupta Maurya to the throne. The historical event goes hand-in-hand with Gangasagar using his skills to put his protege- Ashwini to power in the Indian Parliament several centuries apart. I did not like it because the book is straight-forward with Chanakya and Gangasagar taking the lead in every scene. It reduces the other characters to…well…just characters.
Half-way I was reading it just to end it (I don’t like to keep books half-read). Anyway, if you like Chetan Bhagat’s simple story-line books then you might enjoy this one.
2) Iran Awakewning
by Shirin Ebadi
This book is based on the true story of the Iranian lawyer and the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi. Needless to say, it is a must read for all those people who migrate abroad saying their country is hopeless. This woman stays on to fight against the Iranian government’s biases and its patriarchal society. I have friends who want to settle abroad simply because “India is not good enough.” and all I can simply say is that you need to make it good enough. This book proves that.
This is a must-read for everyone.
3) By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept
by Paulo Coelho
I had become a Paulo Coelho follower and for a change thought of picking books based on the author rather than what is written on the back-cover. I say “had” because this book destroyed that recent change (thankfully). Paulo Coelho’s books and themes are spiritual but this one has been stretched too much. I almost put down this book but finished it with some difficulty. No more Paulo Coelho books for me for a while now.
1) Eleven Minutes
by Paulo Coelho
Paulo Coelho’s books have a central theme and a story is made around it. This one is about love. This book is for those people who think that they are going to be alone forever and that no-one will love them. The theme did not suit me but I guess once in a while everyone should read about “The Crazy thing they call love”…or whatever. Just…read it if you are some lovey-dovey person. 😛
2) The Alchemist
by Paulo Coelho
This is THE most popular book written by Paulo Coelho. This book, for me is all about choice. All of us…at some stage in our lives are given indicators about the right path…some follow them while some ignore them. This book is about someone who follows them. It reminds us that sometimes, if not every time we should let those signs guide us. It does not take too much time to read and is a good book if you feel that “things are not going your way.”
3) The Witch of Portobello
by Paulo Coelho
This, for me is the best Paulo Coelho book among the three. I liked the way the book has been written- a diary about a woman by those who knew her. It is engaging and fast-paced. This is a book I will recommend to anyone who enjoys reading.
1) The God of Small Things
by Arundhati Roy
You need to make a family chart to read this book. Simply because the family goes back to 3 generations and every character is described in detail and have complicated south-Indian names. I got confused at certain points as well. However, Arundhati Roy has written this novel in a very different style. This Pulitzer-prize winning novel has a very simple story, but the way the characters have portrayed their emotions is what will keep you hooked to this novel. It does get a little slow and boring in between but this novel is worth a read if you are looking to read something which has a plot that is very different from the other novels.
by Henri Charriere
This novel reminds me of Shantaram, but this one seems better. It is about this French guy (Henri Charriere, known as Papillon) who was wrongly convicted for a murder in 1931. This is his journey as he runs away from many prisons, is captured again and escapes again (from a prison no one had ever escaped before) and is captured again…only to escape again. He vows to get back into society and prove to the French justice system that even prisoners can start a new, clean life. It has been written in a way that you will feel that you are on a journey with him. You will rejoice with him, cry with him (I did not :D) and go on a journey across South America together.
One small chapter in which Papillon is in solitary confinement for two years just takes your breath away. A definite read!
3) Animal Farm
by George Orwell
This book and the author need no introduction. I remember half the class doing a book report on this book until the teacher told everyone to pick another book. But this book should be read by everyone. It is just 160 pages but has an impact like no other. If you still have not read this book, then do it today…and I assure you that you will be done in 2 days.
Next is a Paulo Coelho week. 🙂