Seeking love, law and gossip

From an insider's view of the world to cinema to seeking gender sensitisation of the judiciary, going through the feeling of homelessness and seeking love in personal life, the IANS bookshelf this weekend covers a broad spectrum. Take a look.

1. Book: Games Girls Play; Author: Aastha Atray Banan; Publisher: Rupa; Pages: 201; Price: Rs.195

When the prudish Siya, who dreams of writing a book some day about dating in Mumbai, meets the unabashedly promiscuous Natasha, both their lives change dramatically.

Prodded by Natasha, Siya makes the daring decision to shed her inhibitions and put herself out there in the fiercely competitive dating market. And who better than Natasha to guide her through the glamorous, hidden world of the singles of Mumbai?

Natasha, too, is on a quest of her own. She wants to find a man who will look beyond the merely physical and value her for her true worth. And even as she finds true love in the unlikeliest of men, she begins to find her self-worth anew.

2. Book: Once Upon a Star; Author: Gajra Kottary; Publisher: Harper Collins; Pages: 272; Price: Rs.350

Offering an insider's peek into the world of cinema and the many faces of the film industry, this new novel revolves around the Mehras - the "powerful Bollywood family".

Enter Raj and Simran Mehra, who once much-in-love are now on the verge of a marital breakup owing to the former's inclination towards the reigning queen of Hindi cinema, Sia.

So, while Raj's parents dote on Simran, a former actress but now down in the dumps, they are not successful in preventing him from meeting Sia.

With a whirlpool of familial incidents, how will Simran ever come out of the web of rejection and seek out happiness?

3. Book: Talking of Justice: People's Rights in Modern India; Author: Leila Seth; Publisher: Aleph; Pages: 214; Price: Rs. 500

In this book, the author discusses several critical issues that she has engaged with in a legal career spanning over 50 years - violence against women, the nurturing of the girl child, the need for a uniform civil code, women's rights, prisoners' rights, gender sensitisation of the judiciary and judicial administration, among others.

From being the first woman judge of the Delhi High Court to being the first woman to become chief justice of a high court; from the landmark Justice Verma Committee, on which she suggested amendments to the law as well as speedier trials and more effective punishment for all those accused of sexual assault and violence against women, to her experience as a member of the 15th Law Commission of India, to her appointment as the one-member commission to inquire into the custodial death of businessman Rajan Pillai, the author shares her insights on some of the most substantive and contentious matters facing the nation today.

4. Book: Bloodline Bandra; Author: Godfrey Joseph Pereira; Publisher: Harper Collins; Pages: 258; Price: Rs.350

Painting a vivid portrait of life in the Pali village, the book is an engrossing tale of love and loss, of home and homelessness.

The protagonist, David Cabral, a journalist and also one of the originals - an East Indian from Pali - manages to move from his village and head to New York to chase the big American dream. But after reaching there, his dream crashes as he isn't able to make both ends meet.

What is more difficult was that he couldn't collect enough money to head back to India. In between, he finds solace in a Japanese cello student, with whom he falls in love. But that too isn't promising because of their cultural differences.

This book captures with flair and wit the flavourable language of the East Indians, life in the tight-knit community of Pali village and a way of life that is dying.