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Books

Quick review



Previous
Chopped Green Chillies in Vanilla Ice Cream


By Sam Mukherjee 


Rupa


287 pages, Rs 195


The Bose family wins a lottery. It's a ticket to a better lifestyle as they move to Kolkata's posh Vanilla apartments. The high-rise building also houses misfits and wannabes. The book gets its name from this strange mix. Young Chinmoy of the Bose family soon becomes friends with four other kids in the same residential complex. The novel tells their story ranging from ghost-busting to dealing with blackmailers and other scandalous, behind-the-door goings on at the apartments. The book starts off slowly but gathers speed. Mukherjee offers a fairly entertaining read that manages to amuse if not engross.

Quick review

May 28, 2011


Chopped Green Chillies in Vanilla Ice Cream By Sam Mukherjee Rupa 287 pages, Rs 195 The Bose family wins a lottery. It's a ticket to a better lifestyle as they move to Kolkata's posh Vanilla apartments. The high-rise building also houses misfits and wannabes. The book gets its name from this strange mix. Young Chinmoy of the Bose family soon becomes friends with four other kids in the same residential complex. The novel tells their story ranging from ghost-busting to dealing with blackmailers and other scandalous, behind-the-door goings on at the apartments. The book starts off slowly but gathers speed. Mukherjee offers a fairly entertaining read that manages to amuse if not engross.

Niche


By James Harkin


Hachette


250 pages, Rs 595


Niche is about how brands that become too pervasive or mainstream get boring and fail. And how specialised or indie stuff becomes fashionable and profitable. In the first category, think of GM or Nokia;in the second, The Economist magazine, HBO and the films of Quentin Tarantino. Harvey Weinstein, who'd built up Miramax as a cult studio with brother Bob, wanted Tarantino to cut the gruesome torture scene in Reservoir Dogs to make it more mainstream. Tarantino didn't. Dogs never became mainstream, but was a hit. As niche brands become widespread, don't they lose their exclusivity? That paradox is not answered in this entertaining book.

Quick review

May 28, 2011


Niche By James Harkin Hachette 250 pages, Rs 595 Niche is about how brands that become too pervasive or mainstream get boring and fail. And how specialised or indie stuff becomes fashionable and profitable. In the first category, think of GM or Nokia;in the second, The Economist magazine, HBO and the films of Quentin Tarantino. Harvey Weinstein, who'd built up Miramax as a cult studio with brother Bob, wanted Tarantino to cut the gruesome torture scene in Reservoir Dogs to make it more mainstream. Tarantino didn't. Dogs never became mainstream, but was a hit. As niche brands become widespread, don't they lose their exclusivity? That paradox is not answered in this entertaining book.

Flashback By Bob Christo Penguin 263 pages, Rs 399  In the 200-odd Bollywood movies he acted in, Bob Christo generally had bit parts. But his autobiography shows that the late actor lived life king-size. Before coming to India, the Australian civil engineer let go of a small role in Apocalypse Now that eventually went to Harrison Ford, chased a lost spy ship and ran an escort service in Africa. He also fornicated like a rabbit. Enjoying sex standing in the sea, indulging in threesomes and making love to a Mumbai maid - Big Bob did it all. Among the most readable and honest autobiographies written by a Bollywood actor.

Quick review

May 28, 2011


Flashback By Bob Christo Penguin 263 pages, Rs 399 In the 200-odd Bollywood movies he acted in, Bob Christo generally had bit parts. But his autobiography shows that the late actor lived life king-size. Before coming to India, the Australian civil engineer let go of a small role in Apocalypse Now that eventually went to Harrison Ford, chased a lost spy ship and ran an escort service in Africa. He also fornicated like a rabbit. Enjoying sex standing in the sea, indulging in threesomes and making love to a Mumbai maid - Big Bob did it all. Among the most readable and honest autobiographies written by a Bollywood actor.

The Prayer Room By Shanthi Sekaran HarperCollins 385 pages, Rs 350 A lonely, confused Indian housewife in an American suburb talks to the photos of her dead mother and friends in the comforting solitude of her prayer room. Her husband, a reclusive British academician, still secretly longs for his former English girlfriend. The clash of cultures and an ache for the past forms the central theme of this novel, which is peppered with engaging characters - a lecherous grandfather and a couple of loony aunts back home in Madras. The Prayer Room is weighed down by a clunky story line and clichês of immigrant life even as it impresses with its eloquent prose.

Quick review

May 28, 2011


The Prayer Room By Shanthi Sekaran HarperCollins 385 pages, Rs 350 A lonely, confused Indian housewife in an American suburb talks to the photos of her dead mother and friends in the comforting solitude of her prayer room. Her husband, a reclusive British academician, still secretly longs for his former English girlfriend. The clash of cultures and an ache for the past forms the central theme of this novel, which is peppered with engaging characters - a lecherous grandfather and a couple of loony aunts back home in Madras. The Prayer Room is weighed down by a clunky story line and clichês of immigrant life even as it impresses with its eloquent prose.

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