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Fishy Tales

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Following Fish: Travels around the Indian Coast By Samanth Subramanian
You read a book like this and you are reminded once more that there is little as compelling as truly good travel writing - delving into the idiosyncrasies of people and places with genuine curiosity and empathy, working with journalistic rigor yet bringing in a subjective viewpoint, combining good writing with unexpected insight.Subramanian’s first attempt at a book is an extremely interesting one. He works his way around the long Indian coastline - Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, moving to the west, to Kerala, Karnataka, Goa, Maharashtra, Gujarat. Every state has a story to tell Subramanian, unique yet strangely connected, interesting tales, bringing to life both the diversity of the Indian subcontinent and the commonality of the life on a coast. In Bengal, he writes about the Bengali obsession with hilsa (“If Bengali cuisine were Wimbledon, the hilsa would always play on Centre Court”) - the right way to chew it,…