Books of the week: From Vaasanthi's biography of Karunanidhi to Sonali Gupta’s Anxiety, our picks

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

Aarushi Agrawal May 10, 2020 09:48:10 IST
Books of the week: From Vaasanthi's biography of Karunanidhi to Sonali Gupta’s Anxiety, 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 Vaasanthis biography of Karunanidhi to Sonali Guptas Anxiety our picks

– FICTION

The Politician
By Devesh Verma
Penguin Random House India | Rs 599 | 376 pages

Former journalist and Sahitya Akademi Award-winning translator Devesh Verma’s novel begins at the peak of the Nehruvian era, dwindling to an end in the early seventies. It follows the ambitious Ram Mohan, who refuses to be held down by his origins and aims for things usually inaccessible to those from his background. He soon realises that a respectable life is only possible with political or bureaucratic power, and through meeting Gulab Singh, is also persuaded of the use of violence in certain situations.

Read more about the book here.

– SHORT STORY COLLECTION

Night of the Restless Spirits: Stories from 1984
By Sarbpreet Singh
Penguin Random House India | Rs 499 | 288 pages

Poet, playwright, and author Sarbpreet Singh’s collection of short stories recalls the horrors and uncertainties of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, through focusing on the stories of ordinary people dealing with the consequences of something much bigger. The lines of personal and political are blurred in the characters' lives, as they navigate love and tragedy, holding on to hope even in the face of despair.

Read more about the book here.

– MEMOIRS and BIOGRAPHIES

That Can Be Arranged: A Muslim Love Story
By Huda Fahmy
Andrews McMeel Publishing | Rs 252 | 192 pages

Comic artist Huda Fahmy tells the story of how she met and married her husband, revealing the challenges of finding a man as a 21st-century Muslim woman. In a world of chaperones, suitors, and arranged marriages, she’s dodging mismatched suitors, gossiping aunties, and the social expectations of Muslim women. Through offering her perspective, the book also discusses the idea of finding a balance between independent choice and tradition.

Read more about the book here.

Karunanidhi: The Definitive Biography
By Vaasanthi
Juggernaut | Available for free because of COVID-19 | 401 pages

Writer and editor Vaasanthi presents a biography of M Karunanidhi, among India’s most powerful regional leaders. Five-time chief minister of Tamil Nadu, DMK leader for over 50 years, and regarded as the man who never lost an election while strongly influencing national politics, this biography offers a rounded portrait of the leader through his political and personal life.

Read more about the book here.

Galileo: And the Science Deniers
By Mario Livio
Simon & Schuster India | Rs 599 | 304 pages

Astrophysicist and bestselling author Mario Livio interprets the life of scientist Galileo Galilei, offering a new perspective on his life. It discusses Galileo’s discoveries, based on careful observation and experimentation that contradicted conventional wisdom and the church’s teachings. The book also talks about how he dealt with the challenge of science deniers, as scientists today face a similar problem with climate change.

Read more about the book here.

– NON-FICTION

Anxiety: Overcome It and Live Without Fear
By Sonali Gupta
HarperCollins India | Rs 299 | 256 pages

Clinical psychologist Sonali Gupta discusses anxiety, a mental health crisis that has gripped almost three crore Indians. In the book, she delves into the condition, using case studies to identify triggers at work, in relationships, and through social media. She recommends strategies to cope, and answers questions like ‘what can you do when you have a panic attack?’ and ‘how do you know when it’s time to get help?’

Read more about the book here.

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