Chalk by Paul Cornell
My Rating: 3/5
Winner of 2016’s Man Booker International Prize, Han Kang’s subtle written book, The Vegetarian is a surprise package. It’s a long form of a novella and divided into three parts, first published in 2007. However, the concept of this novel originated in 1997 when Kang wrote a short story titled, ‘The Fruit of My Woman’. Set in modern-day Seoul, it tells the story of Yeong-hye, a home-maker, whose decision to stop eating meat after having a nightmare.
This leads to consequences for her and people in her family as the try to force her to eat meat. Relationships starts falling apart around her and everyone comes to a conclusion of her reaching the peaks of insanity.
My Rating: 5/5
Words mean things, and when certain words are repeated in certain type of situations they change behaviour and can change the course of how we live. In the book Ego is the Enemy, when Ryan holiday speaks about ‘Ego’, he does not mean the Freudian definition. He is talking about ego in an informal way, the way we used it in our casual conversations. The ego he refers are the unhealthy belief in our own importance, our arrogance, and our self-centred ambition. That desire for recognition, and those excuses we make to ourselves. This is a crucial concept to understand if you are planning to read this book.
Will 2017 be the year we finally get our hands on The Winds of Winter? I am eagerly waiting for it and I am sure you excited too. Thus, while we both wait for George R. R. Martin to finally disagree with Game of Thrones TV show’s producers and to show gratitude towards the thirst of his fans and readers, we still have plenty to read and crave for in particular genre of science fiction as well as fantasy.
It is not that we have a short time to live, but that we waste a lot of it.
Human beings are master of not thinking rationally over the time. We live in denial of recognition [of our conscious time] which then leads to us being unproductive procrastinators and our frequency of fantasizing about the outcome of a situation “in a perfect” manner turns into something we want to forgetfully avoid it and further leads to passivity.
Distracting ourselves, as we cruise through our daily lives, in this manner is strictly equal to being absent from our selves. Roman philosopher Seneca wrote in an essay about 2,000 years ago: On Shortness of Life.
For a start, I want you to watch this video:
No, I did not watch this video before reading Mastery by Robert Greene book. Though I do watched it after reading the book and it made me read the book again and get deep into it. Malkhaz has elegantly and importantly described the whole 310 pages long book in almost 13 minutes and if you are not going to read this post, at least watch the video. You’ll definitely learn something new. If you decide to read this post, keep in my mind that I’m only writing about this book is because I enjoyed reading it and simply want to share my thoughts on it.
I was first introduced to Robert Greene’s works in 48 Laws of Power when I saw that red binding, vertical blue stripe in the middle of the cover in a local bookstore. I had a series of thoughts in parallel and some of them were extreme and exciting. After reading a few pages, he become my company for the next few days, especially morning and night. Not many books do I enjoy reading in the morning, but I can say Robert Greene’s writing is definitely the one to be enjoyed in the morning bliss. Wake up, get yourself together and Greene’s words will help to get hold of yourself for the rest of the day.
The first week of the new year started with some variations that I didn’t know it would have for me. It was like a sine wave (if you know what I mean, if you don’t you can check it here), this week. Well, what does it matter, we are not here to discuss it, instead, we are here to talk about books you and me both read this week.
One thing I’d like to say is that this year I am again taking part in Hindustan Times‘s magazine, HTBrunch: #BrunchBookChallenge (a reading challenge). First time when I did it, was in 2014. However, it’s a bit different this year. One has to read 36 books as compared to 24 in the previous one and out of 36 books there has to be at least 6 titles written by Indian Origin authors which personally I think will help ms explore Indian writers. Here is the link to full set of rules you have to keep in mind while taking this challenge. I am done with four books out of 36 including one Indian Origin writer Siddhartha Mukherjee and his lastly published book The Gene: An intimate history.
As this year is closing down, I have decided to produce some lists under the title “Read in 2016” for you such that would have more trouble managing your TBR lists next year (*grin*). More titles to add to you to-read lists. Well that’s the whole intention of all book lists such as the Top Tens, and the Top Fives, of the year, to introduce you to books that , are the chances, you might have not read and I will try every ounce to convince to at least take look at the titles over Goodreads.com or Amazon and may be, add to your wishlist/TBR/to-read list.
Q. Thank you for agreeing to this interview. Briefly, about yourself?
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to be interviewed by you. So, a little about me…I’m an Ohio native who loves to garden and read and bake really delicious pies.
Q. What genre is/are your book(s)?
Q. What draws you to this genre?
I just write what’s in my head, and it happens to be what is categorized as literary fiction. What is beautiful about this genre is the opportunity to really get deep down into a character’s soul.
Q. Briefly, what led up to last/latest book?
Also, Please describe what the story/book is about in one sentence. In one sentence I’d say: “The devil comes to town.”
Q. What was the time frame for writing your last book?
I wrote The Summer that Melted Everything in one month during the summer I was twenty-eight.
Q. How much research do you do?
It varies from novel to novel. With The Summer that Melted Everything I had to research the 1980s. How people dressed and how they were as a collective culture of that decade. It wasn’t too much research involved with this novel. But my most recent novel had much more research because it takes place during the Second World War, so I had to research the major events of the war, the Holocaust, and make sure I got the timeline concrete to the truth.
Rebus is back. And he’s not getting old, age seem just a number for him and his creator, Ian Rankin. He’s 21 books old now. Rather Be The Devil is the new entitlement released on November, 3rd. When I heard earlier this year that Ian Rankin has rejected to my request for an interview with for a third time in three years, I thought, ‘Oh Boy! Either I am a pretty bad interviewer or he’s upto something really good. Probably a new Rebus novel. I’ll take that gladly, sir.’
Rebus is into his retirement for almost a couple of years now. But curiosity is a disease and when one’s neurone start sending the type of electrical signals, the giant awakens. Mind gets to work and pulls bits and pieces out of the back of itself. It happens to humans, generally. Nonetheless, Rebus breathe and lives to the extent you can almost smell the cigarette he’s been smoking, but not this time, anyway.
So now you know the process, Rebus mind draws his conscious attention to a cold case from 1970s involving a murder of a female socialite in one of the Edinburgh’s luxurious hotels. An unturned stone for over forty years, and no one was found guilty. Lacking hobbies in his sixties, Rebus, starts up a personal investigation with series of meetings with some old frenemies like Big Ger Cafferty and an ex-cop. Things have already begin to turn nasty in Edinburgh when both DI Siobhan Clarke and Malcolm Fox come across each other once again despite their lack of communication over time to look into those nastier things themselves. Local crime boss and entrepreneur is hurt. Money problems, shell companies, skeletons in the closet and a dangerous mobster hovering over the city of Edinburgh.
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"If you don't like to read, you haven't found the right book." --J.K. Rowling
dabbles in writing, loves music and nature. Sierra Leonean
blogger–novelist–opinionated but curious
"There is no friend as loyal as a book"
"should I be doing this again?"