OFF the shelf
Five rivers, five centuries
V. N. Datta
Pre-colonial and Colonial Punjab: Society, Economy, Politics and Culture:
Essays for Indu Banga.
Five Centuries of Sikh Tradition
ed. Reeta Grewal and Sheena Pal, Manohar, New Delhi. Pages 498 and 394. Rs 1195, 975, respectively.
These two felicitation volumes are presented to Dr Indu Banga as a bouquet de fleurs by her pupils, colleagues, social scientists, and eminent historians, Irfan Habib, J. S. Grewal, John C. B. Webster, Harish K. Puri, K. L. Tuteja and others in recognition of her contribution to historical knowledge, especially regarding Punjab. Dr Banga has carried on the tradition sustained by J. D. Cunningham, Sita Ram Kohli, Hari Ram Gupta and Ganda Singh.



In step with tradition
Sridhar K Chari
Indian Classical Dances
by Shovana Narayan Shubhi Publications, Rs 3500. Pages 240.
THE various traditions of classical Indian dance are cherished by a select following, but there is a wider audience out there crying out to be introduced to their distinctive elements, their subtleties and nuances, and indeed, the very building blocks with which these rich art forms are constructed. Shovana Narayan’s book is tailor-made for that audience.

Making a woman's life worse
Meghan Daum
ALL me a masochist, but I spent a recent weekend reading a book called Women Who Make the World Worse: and How their Radical Feminist Assault Is Ruining Our Schools, Families, Military, and Sports. I knew I really should have been dusting the blades of my ceiling fan, but after months of hearing about author Kate O’Beirne and her "battles with the man-hating ‘sisterhood’, " I figured it was time I saw what the fuss was about.

Unshackled thoughts
Ramesh Luthra
My Sainted Aunts
Bulbul Sharma. Penguin. Pages 176. Rs 200.
MY Sainted Aunts is a delightful, yet thought provoking collection of short stories by Bulbul Sharma. Stories revolve around emancipation of women in pre-Independence India. Her protagonists embark upon journeys and acquire changed mindset. Tongue-in-cheek narrative makes the anthology appealing.

Shakespeare for children
Marylou Tousignant
O you whine about having to go to school? Some mornings, does your mom yell at you to get moving? William Shakespeare felt your pain, and wrote about it, 400 years ago! His description of an unhappy student, "creeping like (a) snail unwillingly to school," comes from As You Like It, one of the 39 plays he is credited with writing.

Recipe for dumbness
Candy Sagon
T Kraft Foods, recipes never include words like "dredge" and "saute." Betty Crocker recipes avoid "braise" and "truss." Land O’ Lakes has all but banned "fold" and "cream" from its cooking instructions. And Pillsbury carefully sidesteps "simmer" and "sear."

Mind matters
Rajnish Wattas
The Joy of Mental Health: Some popular writings of Dr N.N. Wig
Edited by Dr K.J.S.Chatrath. Mental Health Forum. Servants of the People society. Pages 215. Rs 250.
THE human mind is the most fascinating creator. It weaves its own hell or heaven. We all have our share of such swings of emotions. In an era of pop spirituality and a market laden with escapist, inspirational books; this one by an established eminent specialist is most welcome.

Books bowled out
elevision has virtually killed sports literature in India, with books on cricket plummeting a whopping 90 percent in the last decade, a leading publisher says. The reading culture itself has drastically fallen in the country - and the worst hit is cricket literature, according to Theo Braganza of niche publisher Marine Sports.

Verse gets better
Surinder S. Tej

  • Ik Kuknoos Hor
    by Pritam Singh Rahi Ravi Sahit Prakashan, Amritsar Pages 352, Rs.300

  • Parchhavian Di Khushboo
    by Sukhdev Singh Grewal Lokgeet Prakashan, Chandigarh Pages 107, Rs.100

  • Udai Ton Ast Hon Tak
    by Jagmohan Singh Prageet Prakashan, Mohali Pages 112, Rs.125

Back of the book

  • The Critical Space Studies in Literature, Theory, Nationalism and Diaspora
    by Manjit Inder Singh National Publishing House, Jaipur. Pages 259. Rs 575

  • The Complete Indian Wine Guide
    by Dr Aakash Singh Rathore Roli books. Pages 175. Rs 295