To stumble upon two good books in succession, after reading some pretty tedious ones, is like a windfall. The sense of deep satisfaction and gratefulness that fills the soul, as you settle into the new world, is unmatched. So, I’ll begin with my book recommendations and then move on to the rest.

Books :

Strange Sally Diamond by Liz Nugent – This book is breathtaking, unpredictable and jaw-dropping right from the start. A daughter, who blithely incinerates her dead father and cannot understand the brouhaha that follows, learns about her past in small, unexpected and incremental ways. Sally is a remarkable character. She is unemotional, literal-minded, and tenaciously pushes past her fears to unravel the horrifying details of her birth. Two narratives merge where the black comedy and hope, dissolve into dissonance and terror. It is incredibly satisfying when characters are written well and stay behind to haunt, amuse or inspire, long after the book is done.

The Age of Vice by Deepti Kapoor – I’m halfway through it and I’m hooked. The introduction is reminiscent of multiple real-life cases that we read about in the news. A driver is arrested for involuntary manslaughter when the car he is supposedly driving kills 5 people sleeping on the roadside. The lens of the storytelling is focused on the poor, exploited, and deferential protagonist, Ajay. He discovers his way from a life of poverty, exploitation and horror into a universe that is grand and morally corrupt. The book is almost written for adaptation into a series or a film. I hope it fulfils its promise.

Podcast :

Huberman Lab hosted by Andrew Huberman was recommended to me by a friend. If the workings of the human body and healthy living interest you, then this is worth a listen. It is a well-researched, credible and in-depth examination of subjects like intermittent fasting, sleep, nutrition, supplements, fitness protocols and more.

Documentary :

2040 was made in 2019 by Damon Gameau. It envisions a regenerated world, 20 years into the future, for the narrator’s daughter, using practical and realisable solutions. The documentary is beautifully crafted. It is peppered with the voices of children asking for a better world. It offers hope. This documentary should be mandatory viewing in schools and for policy makers, globally.

Film :

Gone with the Wind is an all-time favourite and I revisited it after more than a decade. The film still holds appeal. Rhett Butler and Scarlett O’Hara’s star-crossed love traverses the landscape of ego, adultery, defiance, desire and rejection. The film is a well-made adaptation of the book and like a lot of classics, it lives on.

An Insta reel to make you smile.

That’s it for now. Do share your recommendations and thoughts.

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