Through The Window Of My Eyes

By Nispruha Desai

It is always a pleasure to know an author after reading his/her works. For a change, I happened to meet an amazing person who turned out to be an awesome author. During a casual discussion with Nispruha Desai, the topic of hobbies came up and I came to know that she is an author. My curiosity about the book further increased when she mentioned she wrote this book so that she could share her emotions and experiences with her grand children. This was the most brilliant gift I had ever heard about. Seeing my interest, she handed me the Gujarati edition.

The book is written in the form of letters addressed to her grandchildren Parv and Pankti. The book covers varied topics from travels to festivals to environmental hazards to food. The author has travelled widely across the world and this clearly reflects when she mentions about the trips. The cover of the book has been made from photos of her travels. Her immense love for her grandchildren is visible as she connects each letter with one or the other phase of their life like their mischief is connected to storms and hurricanes or their names indicate festivals, etc. The language is very simple and the description is so vivid that the reader is encouraged to look for images. Since each topic is covered in letters, one does not need to continuously follow any sequence. This makes it a great companion for those who love to read while travelling to and from work. Also there is a story in each letter, which makes it a good read to children before sleeping. A lot of knowledge is shared but in a very casual manner.

This was the first children’s non-fiction book I have read and I must admit it was awesome. In fact it is meant for people of all age groups. Personally I felt like going back to my school days, reading books in Gujarati. The reader is motivated to share their experiences through writing. Since the book is nicely written, the only thing I would have preferred was a few images of the places or location in maps. All in all it is one of the best books I have read from new authors. The next time you are planning to buy gift for kids, this is the right choice.

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The Namesake


By Jhumpa Lahiri

Although a movie has been made on this book still I couldn’t help writing a review on it after reading the book. This book is a story of two generations of bengali in USA, the senior couple have moved from India and their US born kids. To some extent it describes their conflict.

The story begins with Ashok being saved from an accident because of a page from a book by Nickolai Gogol. Ashok later moves to US but marries Ashima from India. They have a son and a daughter. One definitely sees a beautiful representation of emotional displacement through these two characters and from the way they try to preserve their culture by conducting all the ceremonies for their children. The son is nicknamed Gogol but due to a misunderstanding that becomes his official name. Here the author gives a very nice explanation of petnames in bengali by stating it is the name by which a person is loved, adored, remembered and scolded. Gogol grows up with a completely different thought process than his parents. He grows up and in a rebelious moment changes his name to Nikhil. Gogol repents this act when he comes to know the reason why his father respects Gogol so much. After this he understands his parents better but its too late by then. The subsequent events decide whether Gogol finds his happiness in adopting his roots completely or giving them up and how the family sticks togather.

This is a good book with a simple plot and so it can be taken up if one reads while travelling to and from work. Somehow a very sad life of NRI is presented in this book. Many aspects, like the inability of a four year old to answer to his official name, seem fictional. I wouldn’t suggest taking this book during a festive season. This book just makes me feel that authors like Jhumpa Lahiri should write more about the present day life of Indian youngsters which is almost same whether in India or anywhere.

Man-eaters of #Kumaon

By Jim Corbett

It was one of the monsoons when I was extremely sick and confined to bed, when this book landed on my hands from my cousin. This is a book on tigers and is written by #Jim Corbett, a British hunter, tracker turned conservationalist. He used to be called specifically to kill tigers who hunted in villages and had created a terror in those villages. This book contains some of those encounters.

The author not only describes the entire episode of how the tiger was killed but also a post mortem of the reason why the tiger became a man eater. A #tiger needs to be in perfect health to kill a deer. In case of old age or due to injury, the capability to hunt a deer or any forest animal is reduced. Today another reason could be human encroachment of forest areas. It is clearly visible a tiger does not become a man eater by will but is forced by circumstances. The author thus presents a very pitiable condition of the mighty animal often referred to as the king of jungle. Each episode has been described beautifully and the reader gets goosebumps while going through them.

This book is set in the forests of #Uttarakhand in the northern part of India. It consists of short stories so it is best choice for those who read while travelling to and from work. It is strange that the reasons for tigers turning into man eaters has never been discussed in detail. This is also a book which can be read by people of all age groups thus making it a great choice for gift. This book is a storehouse of knowledge for all the people who strongly feel for tiger conservation. It is also a good option for those who love to read thrillers. All in all it is a good choice for everyone. Infact it can even be taken up in schools and children can prepare projects on the content of this book.

Night train at Deoli and other short stories

By Ruskin #Bond

This is the first time I had read a book by Ruskin Bond. It happened on a long trip to home. The place where the bus stopped for refreshments had a small book store. Since more than four hours of journey was still left so I decided to buy the only book which stood out amidst all the bestsellers. I don’t know whether it was the picture on the cover or the title which prompted me to buy this book.

The book consists of short stories based mostly in #Uttarakhand which is a state in northern part of India. All the stories are events which might have happened with most of us. The beauty lies in the description of the scenary for example in the first story, the description of a #Railway station when a train arrives just brings back my school day trips. Each story connects the central character with a thing like a tree, house, book, etc. Each story just leaves the reader asking for more. I didn’t realize when my journey got over. One gets a beautiful view of the life in hills from the stories. The stories cover a wide range of topics from romance, mystery, child’s play to horror thus keeping the reader engrossed.

This is an amazing book and is definitely a great companion for journeys. Also it contains short stories so people trying to read while travelling to and from work will enjoy reading it. It is also a good book for those planning a trip to Uttarakhand as one gets a glimpse of the life there. All in all its a must read and can be read by people of all ages. While reading this book I realized there could be a story in small events like a wait of few hours in a railway station.