Posts Tagged ‘Salman Akhtar’

Classic Satyajit Ray
Transl. by Gopa Majumdar | Penguin | Rs 399

In this collection of 49 stories you will not meet Professor Shanku or Feluda. But you will encounter the macabre, the supernatural and the ordinary. Just as his films, Satyajit Ray’s short stories have captured the imagination of generations of readers who have coveted his wit and skill at story telling. Mostly available to Bengali readers, these have now been translated into English and collated by Penguin as a ‘classic’. Included in the collection are time-tested favourites such as: Khagam, Indigo, Fritz, Bhutto, Patol Babu: Film Star and The Hungry Septopus. Pity the paperback version of this book, is typeset in eye-taxing tight-knit typeface.


Beautiful Disaster
Jamie McGuire | Simon & Schuster | Rs 350

EL James’ Shades of Grey appears to have opened the floodgates to a new trend in adult romances where ‘cruelty’ is the new ‘love’. In Beautiful Disaster, two young adults (Travis a bad boy and Abby, the bad girl) given to emotional violence, possessiveness and control mania are thrown together into a vortex of emotional-interdependence. Some have denounced the book as a story about ‘domestic abusive hero’ others have hailed it as gritty and unconventional. The book comes with fair amount of wordy slugfests and graphic sexuality. It’s for you to figure, how you read it.


The Book of Emotions
Salman Akhtar | Roli Books | Rs 250

In this pocket book on emotions, Akhtar, a clinical psychiatrist and psychoanalyst in Philadelphia, gives us glimpses of the many shades of what a human heart is capable of.  Writing of people given to self-flagellation he says, “They lack the healthy capacity for indignation that most mature and well-adjusted people possess.” While talking of courage he reminds the reader of the hanging of Dara Shikoh, shunning of Mirza Ghalib and hounding of MF Husain, all of whom had the courage to ‘think-out-of-the-box’. And on hope, he quips, “Hope is a petrol of life’s automotive and the best antidote against suicide.” Simple, lucid, readable.

(The above reviews appeared in the Sunday edition of the Mail Today, New Delhi, 9 September 2012)

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