Flying high at 75
B. G. Verghese
History of the Indian Air Force (Volumes I, II & III)
by Pushpinder Singh. The Society for Aerospace Studies, New Delhi. Pages
612. Price not stated.
is a pity that so little of
India’s military history has been written. This is partly because
Indians seem somewhat unhistorical and have often left it to others to
write about themselves. However, excessive classification has also been
A blueprint for harmony
by Arun Maira. Penguin. Pages 210. Rs 395.
is among the largest
democracies in the world, and a vibrant one at that, but discord appears
to be the main impediment in its development. All sections of society
have their say, with vested interests throwing in their weight for their
selfish motives, and progress is the casualty in the process. This book
presents a blueprint for arriving at consensus among varied groups,
having different backgrounds and needs, and paints a picture of harmony
among antagonistic shades of opinion.
Of love and hope
High Tea in Mosul
by Lynne O’Donnell. Cyan. Pages 213. US $21.95
arrived with a suitcase in
their hands, with the men they’d fallen in love with. It was to a land
they’d soon grow to love. It was a journey, they hadn’t quite
imagined. There were no potatoes. Unthinkable. Like so many others, they
were journey women. Is it an ordinary story?
OFf the shelf
Forgotten treasure trove
V. N. Datta
1857 Revisited: Based
on Persian and Urdu Documents
Ed. Prof S.M. Azizuddin Husain. Kanishka Publishers, New Delhi. Pages
book opens with a 32-page
scholarly introduction written in a modest spirit and in free and
flowing Urdu prose, bereft of artifice and frills. The author, Prof S.
M. Azizuddin Husain, a Professor and Head of the Department of History
at Jamia Millia Islamia and a specialist in medieval history, has
compiled in this work the generally neglected primary Urdu and Persian
source-material relating to the Revolt of 1857.
Superb recreation of a lost world
Filming: A Love Story
by Tabish Khair Picador. Pages 399. £16.99.
tried in the late 19th
century to set pictures in motion, but the cinema, as we know it, began
only with the demonstration of the Cin`E9matographe by the brothers
Auguste and Louis Lumi`E8re at a Paris caf`E9 in 1895. Within months,
the brothers had dispatched representatives to demonstrate their
invention all over the world. Bombay was one of the earliest cities to
be visited and the new technology proved an immediate hit.
Biography that jingles
in the long run, benefits mankind more? Is it the deviser of a new
literary form or the inventor of a new machine? If
the answer is the deviser of a new literary form, then Edmund Clerihew
Bentley has served mankind more enduringly than the inventor the motor
Comic take on life
Comics and MySpace have teamed up to launch Coalition Comix, a
new online comic book platform, allowing readers to work with leading
comic book creators in developing new characters and stories.
Are Harry Potter books bad for
Pottermania rages across the world with the launch of the seventh
and final instalment in the tales of the boy wizard, so does a debate
about whether the Harry Potter books could affect children in an adverse
way by promoting witchcraft and superstition.
Back of the book
The Queen of the Night
by Paul Doherty, Headline. Pages
314 AD: the cosseted world of Rome’s rich and powerful is
rocked by a series of violent abductions, as the elite’s children are
kidnapped and held to ransom. Meanwhile, veterans of Constantine’s
army are being barbarously murdered; the killings reminiscent of the
gruesome practices of the Picts whom they fought many years before.