For the sake of the handkerchief: Vikas Swarup
Madhusree Chatterjee
E is no ‘Slumdog Millionaire’, and neither is he the street-smart protagonist of this year’s favourite at the Golden Globes. Career diplomat-author Vikas Swarup, whose book Q And A has been made into Slumdog Millionaire, has his feet firmly planted on the ground. He knows the popular ‘g-zone’ — how to make his readers hold their breath till they reach the last page of his book.

Books received

Voices of anguish
Crossing Over: Partition Literature from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh
Eds Frank Stewart and Sukrita Paul Kumar.
Pages 254. Rs 295.
ON 26/11, India stood stupefied as it was taken hostage by a group of terrorists who believed they were waging a war against ‘infidels’. Irrespective of their belief, it was time to retrospect again the cause of mindless violence for hasn’t the Indian subcontinent seen enough of this violence during Partition?


Haute cuisine masala
Aradhika Sharma
The Hundred-Foot Journey
by Richard C. Morais.
Rs 295. Pages 180.
THE reviewer realises that this is a book that lacks in various ways, but she is not going to be too critical of it simply because she had so much fun reading it on a holiday! It’s an interesting, slick book with some over-the-top characters, a protagonist whom we really do not get to know really well even till the end of the book and details that at times do not gel.

Perils of casteism
R. L. Singal
Community Warriors: State Peasant and Caste Armies in Bihar
by Ashwani Kumar.
Anthem Press.  
Pages 229. Rs 450.

THE book is an exposition of the ugly and bone-chilling reality of Bihar, where everybody seems to be ranged against each other, and the state, once materially opulent and culturally rich, is now a land of weapon-wielding senas thirsting for the blood of their adversaries — the landlords and the landless, the Rajputs, the Yadavas, the Bhoomihars and the Kurmis and at the other end of the spectrum, several groups of communist extremists have converted Bihar into a raging battle field.

An economist’s view
Ambika Sharma
The Indian Renaissance: India’s Rise after a Thousand Years of Decline
by Sanjeev Sanyal.
Pages 230. Rs 499.
THE book studies the economic resurgence of India and dwells on the significant changes which made it re-emerge as a power to reckon with in the 21st century.

Nepal sees red over White Tiger
Sudeshna Sarkar
NDIAN author Aravind Adiga’s debut novel The White Tiger that went on to win the prestigious Booker prize in 2008, has raised hackles in Nepal over what is being regarded as the belittling stereotyping of Nepalis.

Nabokov’s last take
Chris Green
T is one of literature’s most fiercely-guarded secrets, a great author’s unfinished masterpiece that has lain deep within the vaults of a Swiss bank for more than three decades.

Fake manuscripts to go on display
Arifa Akbar
HE Victoria and Albert Museum has acquired five "medieval" miniatures worth £20,000, despite knowing that they were created by a forger.

Legacy of a patriot
Randeep Wadehra
Problems of Indian Nationalism
by Bhagwan S. Gyanee. Unistar.
Pages 140. Rs 295.

  • A Story of the Sikhs
    by Har Jagmandar Singh.
    Pages 320. Rs 250.

  • Silent Flows Danube
    by Harish K. Thakur. Radha Publications.
    Pages 77. Price not mentioned.