Inter-continental love, spirituality and salsa

New Delhi: The mercury is steadily climbing the Celsius scale. And a book is the best coolant if you are stuck indoors thanks to the harsh sun. Here are five new books to add to your reading list this week:

1. "Indian Dreams"; Written by Roshwitha Joshi; Published by UBS Publishers` Distributors Pvt Ltd; Priced at Rs 250

This is a tale of a tender inter-continental love. A long-distance telephone call shakes up Norma in her Bavarian home in Germany. The voice on the other end belongs to her former lover Akash, who begs to reunite with him in India.

Torn between the familiar and the dreams she once harboured, Norma follows her dream. It takes her to Delhi, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh.

Set in India of the 1970s, when socialism influenced polity, the craving to possess what one professed not to want spawned hypocrisy, and when `rajahs` become hoteliers, the book makes you frown, laugh and wonder about the frailties of existence. A candid look at changing India of the 1970s by Hamburg-born Roshwitha Joshi.

2. "Behind a Thousand Names"; Written by Osho; Reprinted by Osho Books/Rebel Publishing House; Priced at Rs 295

Osho loves the `Nirvan Upanishad` because it is so revolutionary. It says the only way to experience true awareness is to go beyond all systems of morality.

Speaking at a meditation camp in Mount Abu, Rajasthan, Osho shows the real experience of truth is something way beyond the many names we may call it or claim to know it by in a series of 15 discourses.

Osho elucidates the enduring wisdom of this ancient teaching: the true meaning of initiation or "sanyas" and the qualities needed by a seeker.

3. "How to Salsa in a Sari"; Written by Dona Sarkar; Published by HarperCollins-India; Priced at Rs 199

Issa Mazumder, a nerdy half-Indian, half-African teenage girl who lives in the US with her single mother, is devastated because the gorgeous Cat Morena, Issa`s worst enemy and the most popular girl in school, has stolen her equally nerdy boyfriend, Adam.

And there`s worse to come - Issa`s mother announces that she and Cat`s father are getting married, and that they are moving into Cat`s huge mansion. But Issa gets some tough advice: if she wants Cat to welcome her traditions, Issa had better learn to salsa in a sari!

Dona Sarkar, born in Kathmandu, moved to the US at a young age. After doing the standard South Asian thing of getting a `real` job, Dona began taking writing classes and found her true voice in young adult stories. A racy book with humour and cheer.

4. "The Great Golden Sacrifice of Mahabharata"; Written by Maggie Lodchi Grassi; Published by Random House-India; Priced at Rs 999

The book is an unusual reinterpretation of Ved Vyasa`s epic "Mahabharata" after Arjuna`s victory at Kurukshetra.

The Pandava prince realises the meaning of sacrifice and ponders on the ravages of war as he stands desolate amid the barren plains of devastation, dotted with piles of dead bodies.

The book is divided into three segments. While the first is a retelling of the lives of the Pandava and Kaurava brothers in their youth, the dice game, the Pandavas` days in exile and the battle at Kurukshetra, the second part explores the war and the Bhagwad Gita.

The third segment is an analysis of the aftermath of the war - the plight of the victims, the price of every war...and the survivors, who must go about their daily business of life. And build on the ruins of lost civilisations. A riveting book.

5. "The Fifty-50 Marriage: Return to Intimacy"; Written by Vijay Nagaswami; Published by Westland; Priced at Rs 295

Young couples who have read the "24X7 Marriage Smart Strategies for Good Beginnings" may be asking themselves: "What now? What if the magic leaves us?". Couples married for more than three years may be asking themselves: "Where has our marriage gone?"

This book is the second in Nagaswamy`s series on the `New Indian Marriage` and it caters to people who have moved on to committed relationships that may have nevertheless lost some of their earlier spark. But it`s never too late to reignite it, says the self help book.



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