Thursday, February 17, 2011

Airport Bookshops

Ive been having a run of bad luck with the last few books I've bought. Or actually the last few times I've visited a book store. I hardly ever come across an interesting book and have been sorely disappointed during all my sojourns to  book shops high and low in the last few months. And the one or two times I've grabbed courage with both hands and picked up a book that looked half interesting, let it suffice to say - I never managed to get through even half of it.

But it all changed this week. And how!

Was travelling with the hubby and we were at Mumbai Airport's Terminal C. [As an aside, that terminal deserves a whole separate post dedicated to it - but that's another day's writing]. With hubby also fast becoming quite the book junkie, once we past security, we made a bee line to the book store. 

I was almost expectant of another disappointing hour, but boy was I wrong! In the first 15 mins, I had already short listed  3 books:

  • Stephen Fry in America: I've been hooked on to travelogues since Bill Bryson - and add in Stephen Fry - who really is the wittiest man on British television [Have you seen QI?!] - the British wry humour and I was sold!
  • East of the Sun: Notes from the NorthEast: By Siddhartha Sharma: It was a travelogue. Described as quirky. And I really needed to increase my travelogue reading to India locales. Otherwise I'd feel like such a fake.
  • The Case of the Exploding Mangoes - It was a fictitious account of the story behind the assassination of Pakistan's president Zia-ul-haq. It had South Asian Politics, Mystery and was supposed to be dark and satirical. How could I put it down?!

See, before we go ahead, you, dear readers must understand one thing. The hubby dear is a chief proponent of ecommerce and he believes with fervor that books must be bought online. Something about getting 20-25% off. He may be right, but it just doesn't feel the same. So I try and buy most of my books online. The savings and all. But once in a while I get uncontrollable urges in book shops and then I cannot leave without buying the book.

So after much puppy faces, puffed cheeks, batted eyelids and the works, after which he was ready to buy me all the 3 books himself... I decided to be a nice girl and settle for just one book from the bookshop to tide me over the plane ride back home. And would buy the other 2 online.

Ofcourse then the heart breaking decision of "which book was to be bought" needed to be made - really folks its like choosing between your kids...I finally decided on "The Case of the Exploding Mangoes", paid for it and immediately dove nose first into it.

For the next 3 days, I have barely surfaced to breathe. But with office, food breaks, some sleep and such... I finished it in 3 days. And what a page turner it was. 

Fast paced, funny, satirical portrait of  Pakistan's military leadership and their bloody history. Its a political thriller, a dark comedy and a South Asian story - all rolled into one. Go read it!


MusingMunitions said...

Read 'Immortals of Meluha'? Try it - recommended!

ssoggo said...

What about fiction? The syrupy romance novels and blood-filled gory adventure series?

I, for one, love historical romances (all bookstore purchased, mind you!), but your description of the Exploding Mangoes has me a wee bit interested in non-fiction...

Nandita said...

Actually Exploding Mangoes is a fictional story - just based against the backdrop of a real life incident.