New Delhi: A wealth of books that excites and touches the intellect.
1. ‘Black Limericks’; Written by Ranjit Lal; Published by Roli Books; Priced at Rs.195
Completely outclassed by her genius younger brother Jayant, 17-year-old Maaya always regarded herself as a background person. Her only talent was to produce instant limericks which left her brother unimpressed and her friends appalled.
However, a terrible truth held back at a vital juncture of her life changed her life and she was thrown into limelight with the world looking at her with awe and respect. But a cousin`s devious cunning unleashed chaos in her life. And Maaya was confronted with a unfolding nightmare. The book is a whodunit - woven around cousins and dark intrigues.
2. ‘Healing Through Ayurveda: Tips for Dosha Understanding and Self Care’; Written by Sonica Krishnan; Published by Rupa& Co; Priced at Rs.95
Some people are skinny, some plump. Some creative, some perfectionists, some easy-going. Some have a tough time fighting digestive disorders, some crib about skin afflictions, while some sniff and sneeze frequently.
Trust it sounds familiar as you may yourself bear some of these traits. Even in a single family, all members have diverse personalities. The ancient Indian science of Ayurveda has the answer to it. It is all about the play of ‘vatta, pitta and kapha’ -- the three primary body doshas.
This book helps you identify yourself, understand the actions (and reactions), physical and mental characteristics and balance the imbalance to restore natural well-being for entire life.
3. ‘Growing Up Bin Laden: Osama`s Wife and Son Take Us Inside Their Secret World’; Written by Jean Sasson; Published by Penguin Books; Priced at Rs.399
Osama bin Laden`s wife Najwa Ghanem bin Laden and son Omar share an extraordinary view of bin Laden as a man hated by so many, yet both loved and feared by his family. Osama disapproved of modern conveniences, including electricity and medicine and he toughened up his sons by taking them to the desert without food or water. He transported his wives and children to the rough terrain of Sudan, where he claimed to be preparing them for attacks from western powers.
Osama commanded them to dig holes to sleep in and allowed nothing more than sand and twigs for cover. Omar is horror-struck by the murder of a boy his own age by members of a `jihadi` group living among them in the Sudan. The book throws light into the bin Laden home in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on the morning of September 11, 2001, when Omar receives a phone call from his mother who escaped from Afghanistan only two days before the New York attacks.
4. ‘Swar Samrat Mohammed Rafi’; Written by Choudhary Zia Imam; Published by Harper Collins-India; Priced at Rs.199
As a boy, the man with the golden voice, who immortalised music of 1950s, 1960s and 1970s Bollywood, was blessed by a fakir who would wander around in his village, singing songs. The boy would follow him around, singing after him.
One day, the fakir picked him up and said: ‘Son, the world shall take your name with love and reverence, people will aspire to become like you.’ The boy grew up to be Mohammad Rafi. The biography tells us things we never knew about the greatest playback singer Indian Hindi film industry has ever had.
5. ‘The Ledge Between the Stream’; Written by Ved Mehta; Published by Roli Books; Priced Rs 295
In the summer of 1943, an Indian public health official (Daddyji) and his wife (Mamaji) were travelling to the vale of Kashmir with their six children on a holiday. During a break in their journey, their blind nine-year-old son Ved (the author), heard water flowing and asked about it. He was told there were two streams -- one clear and one muddy. He said he wanted to see them for himself. His family climbed down into the gorge and onto a narrow ledge separated by the icy torrents of Jhelum.
As Ved put his hand in both the streams, a cloud burst suddenly, causing the Jhelum river to rise and the Mehta’s scrambled out with their lives. The author`s experience of 40 years ago haunts his memoirs as noted writer Ved Mehta paints an intimate portrait of 20th century India -- an experience enriched by the sounds of feelings rather than sight.