In One Indian Girl, for the very first time, CB seems to have a female protagonist. And a badass one at that. A woman who works, who proudly proclaims that she has an opinion on everything AND that she’s reviled for it, who’s had relationships before.
In The Wedding Photographer by Sakshama Puri Dhariwal, when wedding photographer Risha Kohli sits next to handsome young tycoon Arjun Khanna on a flight, sparks fly. Buy this smart, sassy, sexy novel here. Hour 3 Risha plugged her memory card into her laptop, grumbling to herself. Nidhi called this her ‘post-partum depression phase’, sifting through thousands of photos for the first cut selection. Unlike traditional wedding photographers, Risha didn’t believe in sending her clients thousands of photos to choose from. She spent a substantial amount of time on a thorough quality check. She painstakingly looked through each image, discarding the ones with poor lighting or resolution, cluttered frames and, most importantly, the non-candid images or ‘posers’. Most clients had a regular photographer to cater to requests such as ‘Hamare kitty party group ki ek photo lena’; they didn’t need Risha for that. Risha gulped down her lukewarm coffee, and started with the obvious thumbnails. Select, delete. Select, delete. If Risha ever quit her job to do photography full time, the first thing she would do would be to hire an assistant for this specific task. She loved taking photos and even enjoyed working on the album design, but the tedium…
The following are two excerpts from the book A Half-Baked Love Story. (Buy A Half-Baked Love Story at the best price here.) 2 July 2008. It was the first day at my new school. I had scored ‘pretty average’ marks in my secondary school exams. Well, 88.7 per cent was considered a ‘pretty average’ score in my family. But I had to change my school as my father wanted me to study in a reputed institution. So I was dragged away from my friends. That day, I felt like a primary school kid, unwillingly sent to an alien place. I had reached school in time so as to make a good impression on the teachers on my first day. I was missing my previous school and friends terribly. To make matters worse for me, I had taken up the sciences. Everything was making me anxious. I felt an urge to run away. I wasn’t really sociable, so I couldn’t gather the courage to introduce myself and make friends with the people around me. What if they say, ‘No, we can’t be friends with you’? I felt they should have been courteous enough to help me feel comfortable on my first…
The Jaipur Literature Festival 2016 was a 5-day literary extravaganza which not only involved writers, but people from all spheres of life, be it media, cinema, politics, art or business. The common objective was to have a dialogue, exchange of ideas, of experiences and meeting their other half – the readers.
E-readers are still very English-dominated. It will be a while before my Dad can read his favorite Hindi magazine on a Kindle and my Mother can read Bhisma Sahani’s play on Kindle. E-readers aren’t a home for everyone. Not yet.
Hope springs eternal; and so, despite the disappointments and missed opportunities of 2014, I take a deep breath and resolve to do better in 2015. (Heck, don’t I always?) Here are some of my bookish resolutions. What are yours?
Tell us: what did you read as a child? If you’re a parent, what do you read to your kids? Do you insist on politically correct books and authors only? Or do you believe in letting kids choose for themselves? And last but not the least: who’s your favourite Indian author for children?
Booker fever has started! On October 14, a panel of judges will choose the best of English language fiction.This year marks the first time that American authors have been allowed on the list and also, unlike last year, focuses on novels that are ‘contemporary, not historical’, with two novels flirting with the theme of social media.
It is hard not to feel cynical about both love and marriage, when the papers are full of horror stories about women being tortured and killed over dowry, or honor killings in which two youngsters who dared to fall in love are butchered to death. One wonders if love and marriage ought to be relegated to the trash heap!
Chetan Bhagat announced the October release of his latest book, provocatively named ‘ Half Girlfriend ’. One wonders how much time he spent choosing the name! Because that name, that irritating, grammatically incorrect, execrable name has single-handedly gathered enough publicity to launch a rocket, never mind a book. No PR agency could have done better.