OFF THE SHELF
A message neither time nor custom can stale
by V. N. Datta
Guru Nanak: His Life and Teachings
by Roopinder Singh.
Rupa & Co., New Delhi.
Pages IX+83. Rs 295.
WHY should we have another book on Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikh religion, when there exists already a vast literature on his life and teachings? There would indeed be a justification for a new study of Guru Nanak and his life, if some hitherto unknown facts relating him are found, or a reinterpretation of existing literature on him is required.

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The other side of IT
by Surinder S. Jodhka
Information Revolution and India: A Critique
by S.S. Gill.
Rupa, New Delhi.
Pages XIII+329. Rs 395.

W
HAT exactly are computers? How do they work? In what ways are they changing our lives? Has their impact been as radical and far-reaching as was that of the industrial revolution? Where does India stand in relation to this new technology?

Itís all in the mind
by Kavita Soni-Sharma
The Splintered Mind: Understanding Schizophrenia
by Dr Vijay Nagaswami.
Penguin Books, New Delhi.
Pages 223. Rs 295.

Schizophrenia can be controlled, and even cured, if the patient gets timely medical attention. The treatment, possible only by a trained doctor, involves careful use of drugs, as also social and psychological counselling.

A master of verse
by Mukul Bansal
Dom Moraes. Collected Poems, 1954-2004.
Penguin Books.
Pages 355. Rs 395.

I
N the preface to this book, Dom Moraes tells us: "I worked at poetry like an apprentice at his trade." He adds: "We (poets) serve a ferocious master." Domís work as a poet has already earned liberal praise from legends like T.S. Eliot, Stephen Spender, Karl Shapiro, W. H. Auden and Allan Tate. It may be more fruitful, therefore, to talk about Domís poetry published in his career spanning 50 years than to assess it.

Desi lives on alien shores
by Gitanjali Sharma
Suburban Sahibs
by S. Mitra Kalita.
Penguin Books. Pages 180. Rs 250

S
UBURBAN Sahibs is an American desiís account of American desis. The author S. Mitra Kalita, a reporter with Washington Post whose parents immigrated from Assam in the 1970s, talks about three Indian families clutching on to and hoping to realise a dream called America on American soil. They are all desperate, in their own different ways. If for the Patels the question of survival has been hard to dislodge ever since they descended on the land of options, the tech-savvy Sarma couple has been kept on tenterhooks by the alarming layoffs and the head of the Kothari household, disgusted with the subtle and not-so-subtle discrimination against South Asians, hopes to lend a voice to the community by standing for elections.

SHORT TAKES
Reflections on life and nature
by Randeep Wadehra

Fixations
by Kota V. Subbaram.
Impromptu.
Pages ix+5. Rs. 100.
JOHN Keats described poesy as a "drainless shower of light". Others have compared it to a mirror, Cinderella etc. Poetry is all these and more. For a poet it is as much a process of finding solace as it is a weapon for fighting personal and societal demons.

PUNJABI REVIEW
Bhai Ditt Singh remembered
by T. S. Tarsi

Bhai Ditt Singh Giani: Jeevan, Rachna Te Shaksiat
by Dr Karnail Singh Somal.
Giani Dit Singh Memorial International Society, Chandigarh.
Pages 296. Rs 220.

B
ORN in Nandpur Kalaur village, which was also where Bhai Ditt Singh Giani (1851-1901) was born, Karnail Singh Somal, a well-known Punjabi scholar, has brought out a well-researched account of the life, writings and personality of Bhai Ditt Singh.

The tale behind Canterbury Tales
by Andrew Cawthorne

S
IX centuries after immortalising British medieval author Geoffrey Chau*cerís seminal work The Canterbury Tales, an anonymous scribe has been unveiled as the long-haired son of an English landowner.
Adam Pinkhurst ó whose name was found by a US handwriting expert ó wrote the 14th century manuscripts of Chaucerís pilgrimsí stories, the most celebrated work of medieval English literature.
"I was amazed he had not been found before,íí said Pinkhurstís discoverer Professor Linne Mooney, an American academic at Cambridge University.

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