Hello people. How are you all doing??? Sorry I have been MIA. I am trying to complete the Asylum series and have been binge reading it, I just have to read Warden Novella, the last book in the series. I am 4 chapters in and will be finishing the book shortly. Well, I know this blog is coming out late but, to be honest, it is not my fault, a reader gets busy reading and thinks about nothing else. You know how it rolls, don’t you??? So let’s not waste any time further and get into it, shall we???
So one of my book club members, Satabdi Mazumdar has given me her Top 10 South Asian book Recommendations for the blog so that I can share them with you. The blog contains her thoughts on each book and the paragraphs under the recs are written by her. Also a short description of who she is and how awesome my cute fish (her pet name) is has been provided below with her picture, please give her lots of love and support this post.
1. Chokher Bali by Rabindranath Tagore.
The story revolves around Mahin who decided to marry the meek and gentle Ashalata. It also narrates the changing relationships of Mahin with all his family members including his best friend, Bihari. But what happens when one-day Binodini, a young widow enters the house as a guest? Tagore’s beautiful take on love, lust, jealousy, and the entangled fate of the Bengali household makes this book an evergreen classic.
I was introduced to the Chokher Bali movie when I was 16 years old, the plot and characterization caught my eyes. I was too young to read the classic novel on which the movie was based. But when I did, I fell in love with the beautiful writing and description by Tagore. This book is an emotion to me, hence would urge everyone to read it.
2. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini.
If I have to pick a book that broke my heart every single time and left me in tears, then I will have to pick this one. The book explores Laila and Mariam’s relationship and their courage to stay strong in this unfair world. If you are willing to pick a book for a good reading then here it is, but make sure to keep a box of tissues ready by your side.
3. Bombay Balchao by Jane Borges.
Bombay Balchao is another excellent contribution to the Bombay Books, which is a collection of interconnected stories set in the little Catholic enclave of Cavel in Southern Bombay. Through nonlinear short stories, author Jane Borges gives a great insight into the city’s Catholic community (East Indians, Goans, Mangalore people) have always had a fascination with old Mumbai, our very own Bombay. I was delighted to come across this book which consists of interconnected stories based on the older days of Bombay. And it is one of my favorites to date.
4. The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi.
This book is one of my favorite reads from this year. The way Alka Joshi portrayed ancient Jaipur through her narration makes this book a must-read. The book has strong characterization, well-illustrated plotline and explains the story of Laxmi, an independent woman who somehow managed to run away from her abusive husband and makes a living as a Henna Artist in the city of Jaipur.
5. The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri.
How can we not pick this particular book by Lahiri if we are discussing South Asian Literature? If I had the potential, I would have made everyone fall in love with this book since it taught me to embrace my identity and value the importance of my Bengali roots. Just like Gogol, I too questioned my identity, the meaning behind my me- I hated it, thinking why such a different name? We all have our purposes, our own identity in our life, which can mostly be realized once we land up in a place away from our comfort, our roots, and the warmth of our homeland. I guess that’s what this book teaches us.
6. The Night Diary by Veera Hiranandani.
Imagine yourself experiencing the flares, lost homelands, and separation from an eye of a 12-year-old child. Horrifying, isn’t it? I guess that’s what makes this book a special one to me. The Night Diary is a story of a 12-year-old Nisha and how every night she pens down letters to her mother. Hence, the title of the book gives a proper justification for the story. It is set during the time of pre-independence and explains the story of little Nisha and her twin brother, Amil who had to encounter the harsh realities of separation, death, and the constant flares between the Hindus and the Muslims.
7. The Room On The Roof by Ruskin Bond.
I have grown-up reading books by Ruskin Bond and this particular book is one of his masterpieces based on adolescence, friendship, and young teenage life. It was written when the author was seventeen. It perfectly portrays the hopes and passions that captivate the minds and hearts of young people. It has remained Bond’s most cherished work.
8. Gul Gulshan Gulfam by Pran Kishore.
This book caught my eyes in the first place and I decided to add this to my TBR. It is a story based on Kashmir, but something different than the usual trauma that we get to hear about this place. It is a story about the people of Kashmir, their dreams, and ambitions. This book is also adapted to a television series with the same name.
9. The Widows Of Malabar Hills & 10. The Bombay Prince by Sujata Massey.
I have barely come across any good Indian murder mystery but I was shocked to see some of the amazing reviews on these two murder series. The blurb of both the books sounded mysterious and thrilling, so would highly recommend these books if you are a fan of thrillers.
•Our Little Recommender.
I am Satabdi Kashyap commonly known as if_pages_could_talk_95 on Bookstagram. Books have always been my place of comfort. On every Sunday, my mother would sit by my side and read out a paragraph from the book she was reading. That’s how I fell in love with books. I choose South Asian Literature as my top 10 recommendations because this was the very first genre that I explored during my childhood days. My first reading experience started with “The Room On The Roof by Ruskin Bond”, a book gifted to me by my father. While growing up I found comfort in reading books by Indian Authors and on South Asian Literature, so I could not have thought of any other genre than this. When I am not reading, you can find me enjoying painting and vibing to old Bollywood songs. Apart from this, I do have a knack for writing too, and maybe because of that, I ended up working as a full-time Content Developer. Currently, I am based in Bangalore due to my job but I am originally from the Land of tea i.e., Assam. My entire childhood was spent in the Northeast, surrounded by tea gardens and hills. So, yes, you all can call me a full Pahadi girl who is obsessed with her Ginger tea. A perfect cup of tea is what drives me for the entire day, most especially during my comfy hours with books.
It is because of my love for books and writing that I thought of opening a Bookstagram account where I could share my thoughts with everyone. It’s been only 6 months that I joined Bookstagram and I am loving it here. I wish to read as many books as possible shortly and also discover the beauty of blogging through my writings. Right now I am a newbie and hence, every day here is a new experience. I am just too excited to share my most favorite reads with all of you here and if they interest you, feel free to find me out on Bookstagram. Till then grab a cup of coffee/tea and pick up your favorite book from the shelf. Happy reading!
So that’s it for today, hope you enjoyed the blog and liked Satabdi’s choice of books. Next week recommendations will be given by a close friend of Satabdi and mine and a new mommy to the cutest baby ever so until then…
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