I sometimes read at breakneck speed. Almost all the time I miss writing reviews because I am so into the next book. Since I have read so many books that I thought I could do brief reviews of some of the books I have read. I know this does not do justice to any of the books mentioned but this will have to do for now. Later, maybe (no promises) I will write a complete review for each.
Ishmael by Daniel Quinn
An ecological novel that gives you a different explanation about how industrialization of the world begun. Through the words of a master who uses Socratic dialogues to impart knowledge and who happens to be a Gorilla called Ishmael, the narrator and ultimately us discover why is it that our civilization has destroyed itself beyond repair.
I read this book while in 3rd year college and reread it recently. I still swear by it. Recently, I found it at Landmark and grabbed the only copy around.
The Clothes They Stood Up In by Alan Bennett’s
Another precious little find from Aries bookstore.
My playwright friend enlightened me about the author Alan Bennett. Bennett is a playwright himself whose first novel is this parable. It’s the sorry of the ironically named rather traditional couple called the Ransomes.
One day, mysteriously they are robbed off ALL the items in their apartment down to the roll of toilet paper. For a while, they try to adjust to their existence minus all the material things. Mrs. Ransome discovers new things and neighbours and better adjusts to the situation while Mr. Ransome is plain irritated by it. When they do get their things back, their life has changed. They have changed.
This book raised some interesting questions in my head: how dependent are we on material items of daily life? Can we do without them? Would we react like Mr. Ransome or like Mrs. Ransome welcome the change?
The Shadow of the Serpent by Mercedes Lackey
An out and out fantasy novel. (Yes, from Aries again!) I picked up this book because of the plot and character. An Anglo-Indian heroine who can perform magic was too much to resist. This is also supposed to be reworking of Snow White and the Seven dwarves.
Dr. Maya Witherspoon has left India and is running away from her mother’s sister an evil sorceress who worships the demon goddess Kali is after Maya because she hated the fact that her magician sister had polluted their blood by marrying outside her caste and community. Maya’s father a doctor by profession is killed mysteriously leading Maya to migrate to London with some of her loyal servants, Gupta and his family and her seven protectors/pets. She needs to learn magic formally from an English mage to protect herself and her family.
This novel provides a good break with reality with a romance thrown in for good measure.