What I have been upto

Before some people start wondering if I am dead or haven’t read a book in a long time, let me come out in the open and say neither of it is true. I am pretty much alive and I have been reading quite a lot. Since time is a luxury these days, I prefer to use up whatever little time I get to read books rather than blog about them.

Non-fiction

Of late, I have taken an interest in broadening my culinary field, so I read a couple of books on food. Eating India by Chitrita Banerji is about her travel all over India in order to experience the varied culinary styles of the subcontinent. She has packed in quite a few states. It is not complete, but for those interested in knowing India’s culinary history, this is a good book. Quick and Easy Indian Cooking by the much renowned Madhur Jaffrey was a letdown for me. Nothing interesting or innovative – the same, mundane recipes. I realized later that the book is not intended for native Indians but for those who want to learn cooking the Indian way. Chandra Padmanabhan’s Simply South is a much better book. Lots of sambhar, rasam, rice, dosa recipes. I tried the recipe for rasam powder from this book and it turned out really well.

Another book that needs special mention here is Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love. A book that is so hyped up, I don’t see the point why. Yes, it is a good book, no denying that, but what is with all the hype? It is about the author’s journey to three different nations (one of which is India) and her discovery of self, true love et al. I totally loved the author’s writing style – witty and riveting, but the book was so-so.

Fiction

I realized I had been reading a lot of non-fiction lately, so I decided to stuff in more fiction books. I chose popular books since I don’t have time to explore and read reviews and then choose books. Some popular books I read are The Bell Jar, The Lord of the Flies, Breakfast at Tiffany’s and The Road (yeah, I hadn’t read that!). The Bell Jar by Syliva Plath was so dark, I found myself in depression for a few days after reading that book. The Lord of the Flies was better. I liked the writing syle of William Golding and all the metophoric ‘stuff’ in that book. Breakfast at Tiffany’s was a short and sweet book and my first Truman Capote, so I am looking forward to reading In Cold Blood. But The Road was a total let down. I don’t know why I don’t like these kind of books which every other person seems to like. The writing was too descriptive and the book was too long for me. Here, I said it out loud, I didn’t like The Road. Sue me.

After thoroughly enjoying The Secret Life of Bees, I picked up Sue Monk Kidd’s The Mermaid Chair with a lot of expectations and was sadly disappointed. The book did nothing to me. It is supposed to be about a woman realizing her self and identitiy and what not, but really, I prefer the first book, thank you. I picked up Kim Edward’s The Memory Keeper’s Daughter on an impulse and this has been the best book of this lot. Intersting story and simple writing, touching and mildly disturbing – I liked this book.

So, this is what I have been upto. How about you?

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