Books of the Week: From Julia Alvarez's Afterlife to Devyani Khobragade’s The Adventures of Young Ambedkar, our picks

Our weekly roundup of books that should be on your radar.

Aarushi Agrawal April 19, 2020 09:47:45 IST
Books of the Week: From Julia Alvarez's Afterlife to Devyani Khobragade’s The Adventures of Young Ambedkar, our picks

We love stories, and even in the age of Netflix-and-chill, there's nothing like a good book that promises a couple of hours of absorption — whether curled up in bed, in your favourite coffeehouse, or that long (and tiresome) commute to work. Every Sunday, we'll have a succinct pick of books, across diverse genres, that have been newly made available for your reading pleasure. Get them wherever you get your books — the friendly neighbourhood bookseller, e-retail website, chain store — and in whatever form you prefer. Happy reading!

For more of our weekly book recommendations, click here.

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Books of the Week From Julia Alvarezs Afterlife to Devyani Khobragades The Adventures of Young Ambedkar our picks

– FICTION

The Machine is Learning
By Tanuj Solanki
Pan Macmillan | Rs 499 | 256 pages

Author Tanuj Solanki’s novel follows Saransh, who works at a life insurance company. He’s part of a group developing an AI system that will leave 552 employees redundant. For this, he begins travelling across the country, collecting information from the very people the machine will replace, even as his journalist ex-girlfriend Jyoti questions his complicity in their loss of livelihood. Through Saransh’s journey, the novel touches upon the impact of technology, and the idea of guilt.

Read more about the book here. Read an interview with the author here.

Afterlife
By Julia Alvarez
Algonquin Books | Rs 700 | 272 pages

Author Julia Alvarez’s novel follows immigrant writer Antonia Vega, who has just retired from her job as an English teacher in a college when her husband Sam suddenly dies. More jolts follow, like her sister’s disappearance. One day Antonia comes home to a pregnant, undocumented teenager outside her door. A woman who has always sought direction in literature, she must now face challenging realities.

Read more about the book here.

– BIOGRAPHIES and MEMOIRS

Raya: Krishnadevaraya of Vijayanagara
By Srinivas Reddy
Juggernaut | Available for free because of COVID-19 | 264 pages

Scholar and translator Srinivas Reddy’s book is a biography of Krishnadevaraya, who is remembered for his success on the battlefield, for being India’s first truly global leader, and a celebrated poet. For this, Reddy draws upon Portuguese and Persian chronicles, and several overlooked Telugu literary sources.

Read more about the book here.

– NON-FICTION

Joy at Work: Organising Your Professional Life
By Marie Kondo, Scott Sonenshein
Pan Macmillan | Rs 675 | 256 pages

Tidying expert Marie Kondo and organisational psychologist Scott Sonenshein’s book guides readers through the process of tidying up one’s work life. With examples, the book explains how to refocus the mind on what’s important at work. It offers advice about problems like organising the desk, getting through emails, and finding balance by ditching distractions, taking the reader step-by-step through their working day.

Read more about the book here.

– YOUNG READERS

The Adventures of Young Ambedkar
By Devyani Khobragade
Juggernaut | Available for free because of COVID-19 | 39 pages

In a bid to educate children about the struggles of the Dalit community, Joint Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs Devyani Khobragade’s first children’s book tells the story of Dr BR Ambedkar as a child, adding some fictional elements.

Read more about the book here. Watch the author read an excerpt from her book, here.

The Highland Falcon Thief
By MG Leonard, Sam Sedgman
Pan Macmillan India | Rs 399 | 256 pages

Authors MG Leonard and Sam Sedgman’s new series Adventures on Trains follows Harrison Beck aboard the Highland Falcon as he solves the case of a jewel thief. In this first book, Beck joins his travel-writer Uncle Nate aboard the royal train, but during the journey, a brooch goes missing. Filled with illustrations and clues, the book details Beck’s race to solve the mystery before the train reaches the end of the line.

Read more about the book here.

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