Friday, September 28, 2012

Jeebon ta boddo pnechalo jinish, dadabhai. Ei goto du hoptay ekebare haarey haarey ter peyechhi seta. Notun chakri peye, purono chakri chhere, boss er songe jhogra kore...sob miliye ekebare jachchetai byapar. Nawa-khawar somoy chhilo na, boi porar somoy ar thakbe ki kore?

Kintu ta bole ki boi porbo na? Nishchoi porbo. Pnechalo jeebonta niye deerghoshwas phelte phelte majhraatey ghume dhule asha chokh duto ke tene dhore chot kore ektu bhoot, dakat, shonda daroga der khoborakhobor niye ashbo.

Ei boi khana bhai boddo bhalo. Thik chhottobelar anandamelar moto, sheeter sokale roddure pith diye komolalebu khawar moto, half-yearly porikkhar shesh porikkha ta diye bari pherar pothe pujor prothom gondho pawar moto bhalo. Ei pora Dilli te, seta ki ekta kom kotha?

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

“They didn't know why these things were funny. Sometimes you laugh because you've got no more room for crying. Sometimes you laugh because table manners on a beach are funny. And sometimes you laugh because you're alive, when you really shouldn't be.”

Really? Alzheimer's? You had to choose this guy? 

Translations bother me. I keep thinking that I must be missing out on so much because I'm not reading this in its original version...and then I end up feeling vaguely dissatisfied throughout the reading process.

In fact, translations of works closer home bother me even more. Because then, I know for certain that I'm missing out on a lot.
Don't get me wrong. I loved the stories. And the woman stuns me. And now I want to learn Urdu and read Sadat Hussain Manto.

But then, suddenly, as I am reading, in one curious turn of phrase, in one halting sentence, the inadequacy of English strikes me once again.

And I finish the book with a slight sense of discontent.  

Sunday, September 9, 2012

One day, when I was throwing a tantrum at J and K's place, demanding books to borrow so that I could read during my impending 28-hour train journey, K handed me this book. I was assured that I would enjoy it. is not that I didn't.

I've never read any Argentinian author before, and so this was completely uncharted territory. Also, De Santis did amuse by all the tongue-in-cheek references to ALL the genres of detective fiction. But I demand a surprise at the end of my whodunits, and I could see this resolution coming from miles away.

I guess my philistine detective story-loving mind is forever expecting the unexpected.
Agatha Christie has ruined me.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Pattanaik never disappoints, does he? He might not always exhilarate, but he never does the opposite either.

This book is nowhere close to 'Jaya' in it's scope, efficiency, and language. What it is, is a delightful read with one of the best endings I've seen in recent times.

Recommended, pretty much.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

First up, I have no idea why the images are all going berserk on this page right now. My beloved Argentinian whodunit on the sidebar has assumed humongous proportions, while Rushdie's bird-fairytale assumes a tiny form. Oh, the drawbacks of being a tech retard.

Anyways, so I took a much-needed week long vacation to the Western coast of India. The sea soothed my soul and filled my belly with a large number of fish fries, and I fell asleep on the beach more than once. (Waking up to the sea in front of you is something one should definitely do once in a lifetime.) However, taking a vacation includes much ingestion of questionable substances, and reading had taken a backseat. Therefore, all of this is to tell people that I finished 'Grimus' last week, taking almost fourteen days more than it deserved.

I've always had a love-hate relationship with Salman Rushdie, but this book kind of tilted the odds in favour of 'love'.This is definitely not my favourite Rushdie. But even a mediocre Rushdie can sometimes blow your mind.

 I read somewhere that Rushdie himself had spoken ill of this first, nascent attempt at magic realism. I will just assume that he was suffering from addlebrain syndrome from dabbling with so much awesomeness.