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Showing posts from July, 2010
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The Immortals of MeluhaBy Amish TripathiWe know that the Indus Valley Civilization still retains an aura of unsolved mystery with their strange seals and un-deciphered language. The term Meluha is attributed to this civilization, hypothetically what the Sumerians called them. Amish Tripathi, one of the many b-schoolers turned writers, sets his first novel in Meluha, in 1900 BC. Tripathi pulls strands of Hindu mythology into a kind of an Indus Valley setting and creates a computer-game-like world, filled with action and love, heroes and kings, good and evil. Of course, this is neither history (the IVC is the perfect land conceived by the maryaada purush Ram?) nor mythology as we have read it. But in a strange wonder-filled way, Tripathi creates a racy read, one that will stand you in good stead these days if football is not your thing.Shiva is the hero. The writer conceives of him as an ordinary mortal, a rough chillum-smoking, battle-scarred Tibetan tribal chieftain who through the va…
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Beatrice and VirgilBy Yann MartelI remember Martel’s Life of Pi as warm and whimsical. Beatrice and Virgil, his next novel is different – serious and allegorical, sometimes heavy and ponderous, very rarely touching.Henry is a writer, much like Martel himself. He has written a fairly successful book but his next concept novel has run into trouble. Writing about the holocaust (because so few writers have actually tackled this epochal event) in a new way – with a novel and an essay bound in the same book, his publishers reject it as too radical, strange and unwieldy. Disillusioned, Henry moves to a new city with his wife, gives up writing for the time being, acts in a local theatre, takes music lessons and works in a chocolate shop. His life moves along on an even keel, with a dog, a cat and an upcoming baby. Until he meets up with a taxidermist who wants to share a play he has written with him. The play is called Beatrice and Virgil and is the heart of the novel. It is a Waiting for God…