These are the books which I have read in 2005………
At least the books which have left a mark on me – good or bad…..Besides the ones that I mention I have also read many others….but they were either too boring or too crappy to write about….. So….. here goes –
*"Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy" – My biggest literary discovery in 2005 was Douglas Adams.I can’t believe what I was missing out on….. I have read all the 5 books in the hitchhiker’s series now…. Unfortunately though I found that the quality declined with each progressive book in the series…..
*"The Fountainhead" – I liked this book. I had read ‘We the Living’ by the same author a couple of years back….but I think that ‘Fountainhead’ is so much better. Absolutely fell in LOVE with Gail Wynand….but DID NOT like Howard Roark…thought he was too perfect for his own good. My biggest mistake though, was that I tried to read ‘Fountainhead’ and ‘Atlas Shrugged’ back to back….my head got SO full of high ideals that I had to leave the latter unfinished…..I am too unintellectual for this kind of intense reading I guess….
*"Five Point Someone" – I LOVED this book. Made for an excellent read during a boring train journey. Liked Hari….and especially loved the parts dealing with vodka,floyd and grass. Thought that Ryan was the ultimate college cool dude. I have not read ‘One Night at the Call Centre’ as yet….but have heard that it fails to live up to the expectations……
*"The God of Small Things" – I sort of found the book interesting. But some parts of it were way above my head. I liked Arundhati Roy’s descriptive powers though….
*"The Alchemist" – Probably one of the best books that I read last year. Became a true blue Coelho fan….plan to read more of his books soon.
*"Freedom at Midnight" – I LOVED the book. Thought it was really AWESOME. And developed a raging interest in India’s freedom struggle for the time being. But regretted not reading it before my class tenth board exams. Would have done better in history then. At least in Indian history.
*"Train to Pakistan" – Read it right after ‘Freedom at Midnight’. And the combined effects of these 2 awesome books were enough to make me wish that I had a time machine so that I could go back to the 1940s.
*"The Family" – Was shocked and amazed by the book. But in retrospection I think that it was a pretty good read. Comes nowhere near ‘Godfather’ though.
*"Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince" – Finished the book in one evening as it was lent to me for one day only. So only remember it superficially….as a result of superfast reading. Liked it though. Liked it quite a lot.Thought that the idea of the half blood prince was brilliantly conceived and concealed till the end. But thought that Rowling had still failed to live up to the expectations that she had generated after the first 4 books. But half blood prince is still much better than her 5th book – ‘Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix’. That was really really crappy…perhaps the worst of the Harry Potter series.
* Don’t know why but I went completely Erich Segal crazy after my board exams got over. So in the months before the results I read ‘Acts of Faith’, ‘Doctors’, ‘Man woman and child’ and ‘Oliver’s story’. Liked each one of the books. Oliver’s story was good but disappointed me because I couldn’t let go of ‘Love Story’. My favourite among these is probably ‘Acts of Faith’. Simple LOVED the book.
*I also went Ruskin Bond crazy last year….and started reading everything by him that I could lay my hands upon. His writings have this strange, ethereal, timeless beauty which absolutely mesmerized me.
*I liked ‘The Da Vinci Code’ by Dan Brown. So I naively thought that his other works would be good too. I was wrong. I read all of his other books in one go and ‘Digital Fortress’ was the only one I liked. Was especially disappointed by ‘Angels and Demons’.
*Read 4 books by Robert Fulghum and came to the conclusion that these were probably the best anti depressant medicines available in the market. The books had weird names though. They went something like – “All I really need to know I learnt in kindergarten”, “It was on fire when I lay down on it”, “Uh-oh” and “Maybe (Maybe not) – Observations from both sides of the refrigerator door.”
*Apart from these I read lots of short stories by Maugham. He is one of my favourite authors. Especially loved the story ‘Rain’. It literally sent shivers down my spine.
*I read lots of classics too. Some of which were a part of my course – and so compulsory reading. ‘Wuthering Heights’ was by far the best read among all of them.
*Reread many of my favourite books like ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’, ‘Catcher in the Rye’, ‘Gone with the Wind’, ‘The Godfather’ etc. Found out that ‘Godfather’ still had the power to reduce me to breathless excitement. And though I read ‘Catcher in the Rye’ 3 times, was still confused by it.
That’s all I guess….those were all the mentionable books that come to my mind right now. The mentionable English books at least…..( I admit though that I may have missed out quite a few)
And following are the books that I absolutely definitely plan to read this year –
*‘The Manticore’s Secret’ by Samit Basu ( I am reading ‘The Simoquin Prophecies’ right now, and loving it)
*‘Hungry Tide’ by Amitav Ghosh
*‘The Namesake’ by Jhumpa Lahiri ( I loved ‘Interpreter of Maladies’)
*‘Lord of the Rings’ by J.R.R.Tolkein( I know, I know I haven’t read it yet…and that’s a bloody shame)
*‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ by Roald Dahl (I may have passed the age in which people generally read it, but I think that I should read it all the same.)
*Books by Teri Pratchett ( I haven’t read any)
*Books by Salman Rushdie (I haven’t read any)
*Books by V.S. Naipaul ( Again, I regret to say that I haven’t read any of his books.)
p.s. Tried to see if I could read mills and boons. Gave up after trudging through 3 novels. Actually got tired of heroes who had “ rugged good looks with broad shoulders and rippling muscles…” and passion which “flowed like hot and liquid honey through their veins”. YUCK!!