Book Review: In Other Words


Unlike any of her previous works, this book in the words of the author herself is a “linguistic autobiography”. A book full of metaphors and a search within that leaves the author with contradicting feelings of joy and despair, independence and dependence.

“Why, as an adult, as a writer, am I interested in this new relationship with imperfection? What does it offer me? I would say a stunning clarity, a more profound self-awareness. Imperfection inspires invention, imagination, creativity. It stimulates. The more I feel imperfect the more I feel alive.” 


Master storyteller Jhumpa Lahiri practically uproots herself when she decides to move to Rome to learn Italian. Keeping aside her days in New York where she struggled to grasp the language, the author takes the bold step of relocating to a foreign land to learn a foreign language. That journey in search of a language, which is at times exciting and at times exhausting, is what this book is about.

The book has glorious moments in it where you can literally feel the struggle she is facing. The doubts she is having. A struggle which is not as much as in learning a foreign language, but more so in belonging to that language. It’s like a journey unlike any other. Which she sums up beautifully,

“ An absurd journey, given that the traveler never reaches her destination”

If you are looking for the vintage Lahiri, this book is not for you. It’s neither the fiction she is best at, nor a full-fledged autobiography. While the book has its moments it’s not an engrossing read Jhumpa Lahiri is famous for. But if we look back at the context in which this book was written, its incredible the amount of courage she shows in learning and writing a book in a foreign language, which she even refused to translate herself. Maybe this book will make you look at your own life and help you to take that next bold step in your life. Good luck with that!

Book Review: Gut: The Inside Story of Our Body’s Most Underrated Organ




Amazing would be an understatement for this book. “Gut” is the delightful international bestseller by doctor-scientist Giulia Enders. In this book the author talks about the much needed credit and recognition for one of our least understood body organ- the Gut. Through the chapters you get to understand your body and food habits better. And get to know about things which are often embarrassing but nonetheless important and even miraculous.
The best thing about the book is that it’s completely devoid of complex medical jargon and therein lies its success. It can become an effective companion for just about anyone. Though from the title it may seem like it’s a long boring rant about our digestive system, but it’s far from that. The author writes in a fluid and crisp language that’s easy to grasp and hilarious at the same time.

Backed by strong scientific research and studies the book touches on a whole lot of interesting topics- from the friendly microbes in your stomach to the food you should or shouldn’t eat. And even on how to check on your poop once in a while to make sure they are of the right consistencey!

This charming book succeeds in putting across some important information of how our body functions in an entertaining and informative manner. The content of the book is so important that it’s worth your time reading this. Coupled with lots of humorous illustrations by the author’s sister, “Gut” is an important book that’s not too preachy and a book I am glad to have read.

Book Review: Kafka On the Shore


As two parallel worlds collide, so do the lives of a 15 year old boy and a senile old man. What happens after that is a tale of love, loss, rebellion, magic and hope against all odds.

“Every one of us is losing something precious to us. Lost opportunities, lost possibilities, feelings we can never get back again. That’s part of what it means to be alive.”

Murakami creates a world of thoughts where the mind perceives the unreal as real and vice-versa. As the characters realise, so do the readers that the boundaries of realism are really that very fine. Where the only thing real is what we imagine it to be. For love and for hope no boundary is a boundary, nothing separates magic from realism.

As sardines and leeches rain down from sky, as a young man falls hopelessly in love with an older woman, as cats chat with humans, as an old man seeks out his purpose, as Johnny Walker drinks feline blood, as a person grapples with his sexuality, as Colonel Sanders pimps for prostitution in a Japanese street, as Beethoven brings out the subtelties of emotion in a rough young man; the readers become immersed in an experience.

Yes! , reading this book is not just that. It’s an experience. A time you just surrender yourself to the story and stop reasoning.

“Silence I discover, is something you can actually hear.”

Like the young Kafka, we the readers sit on a shore and gaze at the expanse in front; as the sea blends in the sky, so do our worlds of realism and make believe.Love it or hate it, for this and more Kafka On the Shore would remain an unique one.