Books
Nothing Is In Soft Focus
Books Magazine July 03, 2017
Review
One of India’s first female film editors, Patil’s story, shorn of self-pity, weaves personal and professional life and is also about breaking barriers
  • Review
    The great Qurratulain Hyder could be wonderfully gossipy yet notoriously tetchy. Jameel Akhtar brings out the real person, her world and her creations.
  • Review
    Lord Jagannatha’s Ratha Yatra is one of the great ritual showpieces in Hinduism. This meticulous study lists all, but leaves out the fascinating history.
So Then, What’ve You Seen?
Books Magazine June 26, 2017
Review
Nadeem Aslam’s novelistic Lahore bristles with rage, hatred and a demonic energy, taking a magnifying glass to Pakistan’s faultlines
  • Review
    The horrific excess of the Inquisition in Goa is fertile ground for a writer. But this Konkani novel is an error-prone travesty at best.
  • Review
    Arresting imagery and details bolster Salim’s realistic, sensual portrayal of the opposite pulls of small and big town life, as the Grim Reaper waits patiently
Trysts Under The Deodars
Books Magazine June 19, 2017
Extract
A stolidly varied ‘Indian’ background, swirling passions in liberal Mussoorie, his parents’ courtship, his prompt arrival and Granny’s house—snatches from an old foxtrot
  • Review
    Zahir Dehlvi isn’t a very reliable narrator, but his memoir describes the Mutiny in Delhi vividly. This is a loose translation of an important source.
  • Review
    Paleo-biologist Hope Jahren is at hand to show the wonder that is a tree. Among the thick foliage hangs the story of her struggle as a scientist.
  • Review
    Edouard Louis’s brutalising in his rough, provincial France has a direct connect to its right-wing rage. This is not charmingly evocative, but clinical.
The Book Of Perilous Sanity
Books Magazine June 12, 2017
Review
When the refusal of ‘the new normal’ takes fictional form, what comes out is a sprawling tale of the triumph of ­broken lives—blossoms cutting defiantly through rock
  • Interview
    The story-strands in Arundhati Roy's new novel 'The Ministry of Utmost Happiness', spin out to encompass and tie up almost all the themes that drove her non-fiction in the 20 years since her first novel, but it's also a vision of dark, comic-fabulist genius.
As You Queued Up Quietly
Books Magazine June 05, 2017
Review
An anatomy of demonetisation, with little empirical data, sums up well, also directing the Centre’s eyes to issues nearer black money
One Of Terpsichore’s Own
Books Magazine May 29, 2017
Review
Sonal Mansingh’s metier enveloped her soul. At the forefront of a renaissance in performing arts post 1947, this is a celebration of a life danced to the full.
  • Review
    Getting into Jayalalitha’s shoes, Outlook’s Tamil Nadu correspondent reviews a book that seems to be only a poor caricature of Amma.
  • Review
    This engaging history of the RBI—rich in events and tales of conflict over policy—effectively ends in 1981. What brings up the rear is biased, tepid stuff.
Thanka’s Purse Of Drachmas
Books Magazine May 22, 2017
Review
Part realistically imagined historical reverie, yet rooted in Kerala’s 20th century diversity, this novel is a skilful construction of myth and memory
If On A Balmy Night A Novelist
Books Magazine May 15, 2017
Review
Amit Chaudhuri revisits Bombay, and collapses into a post-modern echo chamber, where authorship and memory are tossed up. Is this really a novel?
More Than Mere Impulse
Books Magazine May 08, 2017
Review
A pioneering work on protest music in 20th century India looks into the musicality of IPTA songs and their absorption of genres far and near
Say Hello To Old Beauty
Books Magazine May 01, 2017
Review
The meaning of the most common term for something offering sensual and aesthetic pleasure is analysed to the bones by groups of expert professionals
  • Review
    A veteran of our space programme tells a proud, brick-by-brick story of ISRO, built by a band of idealistic young scientists and keen international exchanges
Nothing Is In Soft Focus
Books Magazine July 03, 2017
One of India’s first female film editors, Patil’s story, shorn of self-pity, weaves personal and professional life and is also about breaking barriers
This Well-Travelled Beauty
Books Magazine July 03, 2017
The great Qurratulain Hyder could be wonderfully gossipy yet notoriously tetchy. Jameel Akhtar brings out the real person, her world and her creations.
The Pilgrims’ Progress
Books Magazine July 03, 2017
Lord Jagannatha’s Ratha Yatra is one of the great ritual showpieces in Hinduism. This meticulous study lists all, but leaves out the fascinating history.
So Then, What’ve You Seen?
Books Magazine June 26, 2017
Nadeem Aslam’s novelistic Lahore bristles with rage, hatred and a demonic energy, taking a magnifying glass to Pakistan’s faultlines
Castel Figredi Wasn’t There
Books Magazine June 26, 2017
The horrific excess of the Inquisition in Goa is fertile ground for a writer. But this Konkani novel is an error-prone travesty at best.
Death Be Not Proud
Books Magazine June 26, 2017
Arresting imagery and details bolster Salim’s realistic, sensual portrayal of the opposite pulls of small and big town life, as the Grim Reaper waits patiently
Trysts Under The Deodars
Books Magazine June 19, 2017
A stolidly varied ‘Indian’ background, swirling passions in liberal Mussoorie, his parents’ courtship, his prompt arrival and Granny’s house—snatches from an old foxtrot
On Blackened Marblestones
Books Magazine June 19, 2017
Zahir Dehlvi isn’t a very reliable narrator, but his memoir describes the Mutiny in Delhi vividly. This is a loose translation of an important source.
Behind The Golden Boughs
Books Magazine June 19, 2017
Paleo-biologist Hope Jahren is at hand to show the wonder that is a tree. Among the thick foliage hangs the story of her struggle as a scientist.
Waist-Deep Mud At The Somme
Books Magazine June 19, 2017
Edouard Louis’s brutalising in his rough, provincial France has a direct connect to its right-wing rage. This is not charmingly evocative, but clinical.
The Book Of Perilous Sanity
Books Magazine June 12, 2017
When the refusal of ‘the new normal’ takes fictional form, what comes out is a sprawling tale of the triumph of ­broken lives—blossoms cutting defiantly through rock
Books Magazine June 12, 2017
The story-strands in Arundhati Roy's new novel 'The Ministry of Utmost Happiness', spin out to encompass and tie up almost all the themes that drove her non-fiction in the 20 years since her first novel, but it's also a vision of dark, comic-fabulist genius.
As You Queued Up Quietly
Books Magazine June 05, 2017
An anatomy of demonetisation, with little empirical data, sums up well, also directing the Centre’s eyes to issues nearer black money
Tied In Notes Of Amiri Todi
Books Magazine June 05, 2017
Amjad Ali Khan’s recollections of 11 great classical musicians do have well-known details, but his anecdotes are lit up by a sense of ‘ethereality’
One Of Terpsichore’s Own
Books Magazine May 29, 2017
Sonal Mansingh’s metier enveloped her soul. At the forefront of a renaissance in performing arts post 1947, this is a celebration of a life danced to the full.
Mistress Of Ice-Cream Coldness
Books Magazine May 29, 2017
Getting into Jayalalitha’s shoes, Outlook’s Tamil Nadu correspondent reviews a book that seems to be only a poor caricature of Amma.
Grand Tale, Lame Ending
Books Magazine May 29, 2017
This engaging history of the RBI—rich in events and tales of conflict over policy—effectively ends in 1981. What brings up the rear is biased, tepid stuff.
Thanka’s Purse Of Drachmas
Books Magazine May 22, 2017
Part realistically imagined historical reverie, yet rooted in Kerala’s 20th century diversity, this novel is a skilful construction of myth and memory
Lattice Of Lyrical Majesticity
Books Magazine May 22, 2017
The royal masque in Akbar’s glittering court at Fatehpur Sikri is occasion for Sealy’s exquisite poem-prose, decorated with words, absences and old longing
Their Book Of Revelations
Books Magazine May 22, 2017
Southal’s Punjabi widows lead lives of abject pettiness, yet explode into lurid sexual thoughts when prompted. This novel unearths their buried desires.
If On A Balmy Night A Novelist
Books Magazine May 15, 2017
Amit Chaudhuri revisits Bombay, and collapses into a post-modern echo chamber, where authorship and memory are tossed up. Is this really a novel?
Home To Mary And Theodora
Books Magazine May 15, 2017
A biography of Istanbul tells of Justinian, the cult of Mary, its cosmopolitan, progressive core and its Ottoman past with lightly-worn scholarship
Our Inimitable Railway Bazaar
Books Magazine May 15, 2017
The Indian Railways is a country—with its own history, customs, smells, even architecture. This anecdotal, yet serious account stops at all stations.
More Than Mere Impulse
Books Magazine May 08, 2017
A pioneering work on protest music in 20th century India looks into the musicality of IPTA songs and their absorption of genres far and near
Turning Just For The Spin
Books Magazine May 08, 2017
Fickleness is an espionage asset, but Bhagat Ram Talwar, its great master, spun circles around his Russian, British and German handlers during WWII
Cracklin’ On Like An Ol’ 78
Books Magazine May 08, 2017
The novel inhabits the forgotten world of early blues, while fakery and the fantastic, served in overlapping narratives, keeps a steady, modernist beat
Say Hello To Old Beauty
Books Magazine May 01, 2017
The meaning of the most common term for something offering sensual and aesthetic pleasure is analysed to the bones by groups of expert professionals
There Were No Outer Limits
Books Magazine May 01, 2017
A veteran of our space programme tells a proud, brick-by-brick story of ISRO, built by a band of idealistic young scientists and keen international exchanges
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