Short stories, self-help and seduction (Books This Weekend)
1. Book: Leadership: The Gandhi Way; Author: Virender Kapoor; Publisher: Rupa; Pages: 122; Price: Rs. 195
Mahatma Gandhi needs no introduction. An icon revered by millions across the world, he led a country to freedom through methods and principles never used before. What was it about Gandhi that made him an icon? How did a frail, ordinary man bring about a revolution? And how did he manage to get the poor, the working class, the elite and the intelligentsia to work together?
In this one-of-a kind self-help book, the author examines Gandhi's philosophy in action and derives leadership lessons from his life, explaining how readers can successfully employ these in their own lives. He reveals how Gandhi carefully analysed situations - akin to SWOT analyses - before formulating the best way to deal with them. It was thus that he formulated the idea of satyagraha.
The author also shows that Gandhi understood the power of emotional appeal, and used sincerity rather than empty rhetoric to maximize the effect of whatever he said.
2. Book: The Empty Pedestal; Author: R.M. Rajgopal; Publisher: Dronequill; Pages: 183; Price: Rs. 295
The fall of an idealistic labour leader, the nostalgia of a decaying musician and the aspirations thrust on uncomprehending kindergarten students are among the more engaging nuggets of life in India.
The author transforms everyday happenings into a commentary on our times.
3. Book: Scandalous Housewives: Mumbai; Author: Madhuri Banerjee; Publisher: Rupa; Pages: 255; Price: Rs. 295
Sapphire Towers: just another residential high-rise in Mumbai where the humdrum routine of daily life carries on with clockwork precision. But beneath the tranquil surface lurks a web of lies and deceit spun by a group of lonely housewives.
Gita, the frustrated mother of two young daughters, longs to escape the monotony of her marriage and lusts after a forbidden relationship. Sarita, a conservative Gujarati housewife and mother, is addicted to kinky sex and pays a dear price for it.
Stylish working mother, Aarti, nurses an appalling secret that could end her marriage. And sultry ex-model Natasha, who seems to have it all, is hopelessly in love with a much younger man - the son of one of her friends.
Even as these women scramble to conceal their darkest secrets, an anonymous email is sent out to all the residents of the housing society.
4. Book: The Harappan Seal; Author: Jay Chandella; Publisher: Tara; Pages: 459; Price: Rs. 299
Three Americans meet at Tara's party in New Delhi: Mike, a Vietnam draft resister stranded in India, Jody, his high school sweetheart touring India, and Kolchek, an archaeologist who is there to announce that he is the first to decipher an unidentified script on an ancient seal.
When Jody leaves Delhi on her travels, she is wearing a seal around her neck. Mike finds out that Jody's seal is the missing treasure and follows her to Pakistan.
On the run, Mike and Jody's destinies seem to be taking them straight into Afghanistan - into the heart of the turmoil of Soviet occupation.
Kolchek's deciphering of the seal's inscriptions has disclosed a dangerous secret. Indian military intelligence wants to find and destroy the seal before it splits the nation.
(Posted on 22-08-2014)