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Ponniyin Selvan 1: Books Vs Movie

While the Mani Ratnam’s Ponniyin Selvan is a near perfect adaptation, there are some significant deviations from the books.

Never Never – A Review

Never Never: The Complete Series by Colleen HooverMy rating: 3 of 5 stars Charlize Wynwood and Silas Nash have been best friends since they could walk. They’ve been in love since the age of fourteen. But as of this morning…they are complete strangers. Their first kiss, their first fight, the moment they fell in love…every…

Framework of life for anxious beings

I decided to set up a framework for my life. A way to always know where I am and where I am going. A quality checking decision tree that would filter my thoughts and only bother me with the ones that matter.

7 Lies TV Perpetuates About Pregnancy and Childbirth

The irresponsible way in which pregnancies and childbirths are portrayed on TV and the naiveté with which I consumed them lead me to discover the hilarious, shocking, and mind-boggling lies TV perpetuated when I became pregnant.

Monsoon Mysteries

This monsoon, I’ve been in the mood for twisted books. Books about missing teenagers, mutilated bodies, serial killers, and humans that stretch the boundaries of evil. This was after a brief break I took from reading – before which I was nose deep into a serial killer series called Stillhouse Lake and a book of…

A Spool of Blue Thread – A Review

A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler My rating: 4 of 5 stars ‘It was a beautiful, breezy, yellow-and-green afternoon…’ This is the way Abby Whitshank always begins the story of how she and Red fell in love that day in July 1959. The whole family on the porch, relaxed, half-listening as their mother…

Udayar #1 – A Review

உடையார் #1 [Udayar] by Balakumaran My rating: 3 of 5 stars Udayar is Tamil novel written by Balakumaran. It is written in six volumes. The story’s first part was published in a weekly Tamil magazine and then published in monthly novels (Palsuvai novel, Ladies novel). Subsequently 5 volumes were published as books by Thirumagal Nilayam.…

Elizabeth is Missing – A Review

Elizabeth Is Missing by Emma Healey My rating: 4 of 5 stars In this darkly riveting debut novel—a sophisticated psychological mystery that is also a heartbreakingly honest meditation on memory, identity, and aging—an elderly woman descending into dementia embarks on a desperate quest to find the best friend she believes has disappeared, and her search…

Where the Forest Meets the Stars – A Review

After the loss of her mother and her own battle with breast cancer, Joanna Teale returns to her graduate research on nesting birds in rural Illinois, determined to prove that her recent hardships have not broken her. She throws herself into her work from dusk to dawn, until her solitary routine is disrupted by the…

Stillhouse Lake Series Review

The Stillhouse Lake series is another one of my great Kindle Unlimited finds. The four-book (and continuing) mystery thriller series written by Rachel Caine is about Gwen Proctor, a reincarnated killer mom escaping from her past as a serial killer’s innocent wife. Danger stalks the footsteps of the Proctor family in the form of the…

Midnight Sun – A Review

At the end of the day, Twilight/Midnight Sun is about two imperfect people falling in love and being perfect for each other. It should not be seen as anything more.

What Happened – A Review

What Happened by Hillary Rodham Clinton My rating: 5 of 5 stars Hillary Rodham Clinton reveals what she was thinking and feeling during one of the most controversial and unpredictable presidential elections in history. Now free from the constraints of running, Hillary takes you inside the intense personal experience of becoming the first woman nominated…

5 Best Dance Routines from B/W Tamil Movies

The choreography is so intense in these songs that you can do a full-body workout by dancing to them everyday. They might be colourless but they’re full of life.

India After Gandhi – A Review

India after Gandhi exposes the country’s wounds but, at the same time, gives you a lot of hope about the future.

What Are You Outraging About?

Our outrage is not selective. It is contextual. When you feel outraged, sit down, take a deep breath, and analyse why you don’t feel the same level of anger for objectively wrong things like murder, rape, genocide, wars.

What the Wind Knows – A Review

What the wind knows, indeed, has a bit of all three: Love, Magic, and History. It’s a magical romance, complete with time-travel, and it’s the history of Ireland, lovingly told.

Talking to Strangers – A Review

Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know About the People We Don’t Know by Malcolm Gladwell My rating: 2 of 5 stars In Talking to Strangers, Malcolm Gladwell has attempted to answer why some of our encounters with strangers go wrong. It was really telling that the stranger-encounters he’d picked for this book are mostly…

Kindle Unlimited Is… Not So Bad!

On paper, the idea of paying Rupees 169/mo for the ability to borrow as many as 10 books at a time, seems awesome. But the reality is that the KU catalog is limited, basic, and has pages and pages of literary drivel. To a regular reader, a KU subscription seems worthless. But is it?

My Romance Reads of 2020

I have been in the mood for light romances for the past few months and I’ve been trying to pick the best ones available on Kindle Unlimited. While some of these are full on, steamy romances, some lean a bit towards drama and thriller. Read on to find out which of these need to be…

The Emperor of All Maladies – A Review

The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee My rating: 5 of 5 stars “The Dark Arts are many, varied, ever-changing, and eternal. Fighting them is like fighting a many-headed monster, which, each time a neck is severed, sprouts a head even fiercer and cleverer than before. You are fighting that…

The Great Hedge of India – A Review

The Great Hedge of India: The Search for the Living Barrier that Divided a People by Roy Moxham My rating: 5 of 5 stars “When I had first started my search for the Customs Hedge, I had been looking for a folly, a harmless piece of English eccentricity. It had been a shock to find…

The Argumentative Indian – A Review

The Argumentative Indian: Writings on Indian History, Culture and Identity by Amartya Sen My rating: 4 of 5 stars Published during the decade of rising communal violence, every essay in this book urges Indians to figure out an identity that is not rooted in their religion. Most Indians have a largely black and white attitude…

Fault Lines – A Review

Fault Lines: How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten the World Economy by Raghuram G. Rajan My rating: 4 of 5 stars The crisis The global recession that hit in 2008 happened as a result of the “risky” housing loans provided by the US Government to their poor. The house prices rose, the lenders defaulted and the…

How Much Should a Person Consume – A Review

How Much Should a Person Consume?: Environmentalism in India and the United States by Ramachandra Guha My rating: 4 of 5 stars There is a stigma attached to grown-up people who care too much about the environment. Once, when I was 15, my school friends and I were riding our bicycles back to our homes.…

Overdressed – A Review

Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion by Elizabeth L. Cline My rating: 5 of 5 stars Very early on into reading this book, I started to realise how I do not know anything about any piece of clothing I own other than where I bought it. I didn’t know where it was manufactured…

Thunai Ezhuthu – A Review

துணையெழுத்து [Thunai Ezhuthu] by S. Ramakrishnan My rating: 4 of 5 stars மதுரையை ஒட்டி உள்ள சமணர் படுக்கைகளைச் சென்று பார்த்த அனுபவங்களை திரு.ராமகிருஷ்ணன் ஒரு சிறுகதையில் பகிர்ந்துகொண்டார். நான் எட்டு வருடமாக வசித்த ஊரைப்பற்றி எனக்குத் தெரியாத விவரங்களை படித்தபோது எனக்கு வெட்கமாக இல்லை. இப்படியாவது தெரிந்துகொண்டோமே என்றுதான் தோன்றியது. சமணர் படுக்கைகளைக் காண எனக்கு ஆசை இல்லை. என்னால் கண்டிப்பாக போக முடியாது என்று தெரிந்ததால் நான் ஆசைப்படவேயில்லை. கனவு…

Sila Nerangalil Sila Manidhargal – A Review

சில நேரங்களில் சில மனிதர்கள் [Sila Nerangalil Sila Manithargal] by Jayakanthan My rating: 4 of 5 stars சில நாவல்களின் பின் பக்கம் இருக்கிற கதைச் சுருக்கம் படிக்கும்போது, இப்படி ஒரு கதையை எப்படி எழுதினார்கள், என்ன மாதிரி கதாபாத்திரங்களின் மூலம் இந்தக் கதையை சொல்ல முடியும் என்று ஒரு curiosity வரும். அதற்காக மட்டுமே வாங்கிப் படிப்பேன். இந்த புத்தகத்தின் மேல் அப்படி ஒரு curiosity வந்தது இந்தக் கதையை என்னுடைய…

The Peripheries of Travel

I hadn’t started ‘travelling’ in the spiritual sense of the word until about five years ago. I assumed this lack of experience was serving me well during the corona lockdown because I hadn’t caught the travel-withdrawal bug. An encounter with an aggressive bird made me realise that there are parts of travel that I do…

When We Believed in Mermaids – A Review

When We Believed in Mermaids by Barbara O’NealMy rating: 4 of 5 stars Some books are plot-driven and some are character-driven. I’d say ‘When we believed in mermaids’ is both and neither. This book is a mood. It’s a story of sisters torn apart by terrible childhoods but brought together by the sea and the…

Permanent Record – A Review

Permanent Record by Edward Snowden My rating: 5 of 5 stars Recently I, like the world, have been thinking a lot about online privacy. My gadgets-loving husband owns both Google Home and Amazon Echo. He encouraged me to back up all my photos on Google Photos. Our TV is connected to the internet and during…

My favourite things from 2019

I am always on the look out for a great story and in 2019, I found them in the form of books and TV shows. These are my favourites among everything I watched and read this year!

The Three Body Problem – A Review

The Three-Body Problem by Liu CixinMy rating: 4 of 5 stars 4 stars for being a book that was nothing like anything I have ever read. The first few chapters in this book are filled with hooks. A scientist is beaten to death during the cultural revolution in China, his daughter is pulled into a…

The Dark Forest by Liu Cixin – A Review

The Dark Forest by Liu CixinMy rating: 5 of 5 stars “If I destroy you, what business is it of yours?” The second part of the epic saga that is the Remembrance of Earth’s Past is far, far better than the first. The human civilization has 400 years to prepare for an attack from a…

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle – A Review

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart TurtonMy rating: 4 of 5 stars Phew! That was a fun ride. I have been listening to the ‘7 deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle’s audiobook version for months now. It took months only because I had a strict ‘listening only while cooking’ rule. There were 2 hours of…

Ants Among Elephants – A Review

Ants Among Elephants: An Untouchable Family and the Making of Modern India by Sujatha GidlaMy rating: 4 of 5 stars My friend and I were talking about reservations in the Indian Education system when we realized that we don’t even know the right vocabulary to discuss it. Both of us were going on about it…

Nicknames

My husband calls me Cookie and I call him Boo. Anyone who knows my husband and I in real life would have a hard time believing that we have such ‘cute’ nicknames for each other. We used to be so anti-cute when it came to our relationship that even our close friends didn’t know we…

The Writer

For someone who had always wanted to be a writer, she was very reluctant about taking up the apprentice job. She had applied along with her friends when they had seen the advertisement. “It’s a great learning opportunity!” they’d said. He was a bestselling author with a broken right hand. He needed someone to type…

The Women of Ponniyin Selvan

All of Kalki’s characters, male and female, are brilliant. I could tell that he was a huge believer in the good of humanity and that he was a romantic. The men are handsome and the women are goddesses walking on earth. They are too good to be true but I liked Ponniyin Selvan in spite…

In Memoriam: MS Viswanathan, as Remembered by a Millennial

MSV composed songs that didn’t just stand the test of time but transcended it. Working closely with the great lyricist Kannadasan, he came up with compositions that captured the very essence of life. Whether you are a doting sister or a dying soldier, MSV has a song for you — a song for every emotion, a song…

How Do I Love Thee? Let Me Count The Books!

From 2015 Every time someone asks me why I read, I’m stumped. Especially when the person asking me that question is a skeptic who thinks reading “storybooks” is beneath them. The books I read will not directly influence my career or social status. I can’t say that it improves my vocabulary because it really doesn’t.…

Lemon and Lemonade

If life were a person, it’ll be the cruel kid that destroys a line of ants, one ant at a time. Life is unfair and ruthless. Life strips down your best-laid plans. Life strikes you where it hurts the most. Life doesn’t understand relationships. Life hasn’t the vaguest idea about ambition. Life loves hard work…

When Parents Stop Being Heroes

Parents stop being heroes at some point. And the circumstances leading up to it are always ugly. You realize they made the wrong call more times than you can count. You realize that the world didn’t screw them over; their worldview is screwed. You get frustrated when they don’t listen to you telling them to…

Brilliant Blunders – A Review

True, I wanted to blow my XS-sized brains out after reading this book. I was terribly upset that I had not been truly curious about anything that mattered in 23 years. Even as I was listing down the insects I can compare my intellect with, I could not help but be amazed by this book.…

Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter – A Review

For most part of this book I felt like I was taking a stroll on a beautiful sunlit morning in a quiet road that has trees on bothsides. A scene out of a postcard.  The 18 year old Mario’s unusual adventures and his witty descriptions were a lot of fun to read.  I hope the…

The Brothers Karamazov – A Review

I read a lot of books, but like most people I am scared of long/hard reads. I am torn between my desire to read well and read a lot. The Brothers Karamazov has been in my to-read list long enough for me to put a pause on the three books I was reading. I swallowed…

Bad writer ballad

There once lived a writer, a bad bad writer; With paper in the hand and litter in the mind. Through thesaurus he skimmed, to complicate every word. The and they he googled, to sound like a nerd. Not common as insignificant, He sounded only absurd; Not rare as brilliant, no, definitely, not a nerd. “Alliteration…

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