Saturday, June 18, 2011

A walk into a new world

Harry Potter walked into a wall... and walked into a new world.

And I, after all these years of zero interest in literature pertaining to Economics, am finding myself devouring it like there is no tomorrow. Whenever I ran into such books at the bookstores, I used to dismiss them all as hot gas. It might have to do with the Economics fanatics (mostly posers, who seemed to have no idea of what they are talking about) I have come across. But boy! this is one wonderful world. To be honest, while I was reading the first few books which turned me into this new convert on the block, I couldn't stop wondering why the hell did I ever not bother to know more about it? But then, I would have missed this charm of tripping on something like this, unexpectedly. Also, after all these years I've more or less caught up on this pattern of life. The way I bump into something and discover a whole new world from time to time. What's the fun in life otherwise?

It all started with Blink, which takes off from the good old saying "First impression is the best impression" and goes on further to investigate its validity. This new perspective of looking at reflexes formed at a subconscious level, appealed to me. It's like learning to tune into your sensory responses. This is something I've been paying serious attention to, since the past year or so. Whenever I meet a new person, or visit a new place, I open myself up to feel the energy flow towards me. We've always known it as intution, though now it is like making a conscious effort to increase the awareness to our surroundings. And I'm amazed at the quality of guidance provided by that capacity. Afterthought: May be 'Love at first sight', is not altogether a Mills and Boon sponsored concept, eh?

And so, I went scouring for other books by the same author, which led me to The Tipping Point. And that, my friends, is the book that spiked my interest in Economics. It is not a hardcore economics book, in the literal sense of it. But I loved the way it ushered me into that world. The way it beautifully discusses seemingly mysterious happenings and tries to find it's cause whcih turns out to be so very surprising for a naive person. I've been particularly interested in the tools and methodology they've used to reach their conclusions. And so, that book led me to Freakonomics (super freaky, super fun) and I'm glad to say, I'm happily hooked to this apparently freaky domain.

As of now, I'm busy lapping up The Argumentative Indian, which I'm very much liking much to my surprise, as Indian history is not something I was very interested in, during my formative years at school. It's only lately that I've found myself looking up historical facts, in a bid to understand the Causality of current trends in our assorted culture and belief system. It's been 5 years since I've been hearing about this book, but as I always believe, you get to a book (or rather the book finds you) only when you are prepared for it. I loved the timing, because I've never been so keen about the socio-political scene in India. It all started with another book (ha!), A suitable boy, I read early last year. For some reason, the gentleman who runs that little library wanted to know whether I managed to read the whole book. When I told him how much I loved the book for the insights it provided about that interesting phase post-independant India was going through, he gave me the warmest smile ever. Apparently, quite a lot of people who borrowed the book from him could not manage to sit through the whole book. I still don't get how they all managed to not put it down. The book is my idea of an wholesome novel. Sheer brilliance.

And how could I have gone without mentioning Many Masters, Many Lives. My first read of a book on Parapsychology (looks like it's been a month of Firsts for me). To be honest, I was a li'l skeptical about this one. Because, the ways of the mind seem to me like a maze of winding narrow lanes. I'm not quite sure of what exactly holds me back. Whether it is the fear of getting lost in there, or the fear of finding what is at the other end. Some seriously scary $hit, that is. Thanks to Dhanya, who gave me a very re-assuring review of the book, I went ahead and read it up the very same evening. While I was getting prepared to deal with it, in case it turns out to be a disturbing read, it amazingly put me at ease. You'll find it interesting too, if you have ever wondered about afterlife and the concept of re-incarnation.

Dhanya was also gracious enough to lend me her copy of The inheritance of loss , while treating me to an awesome mallu lunch at her new pad. (Bless the noble bunch of blog friends). Now let me revel in my kid-in-the-candyshopbookstore mode, while you peeps get back to your own world of books.


In other news: Have been getting my fill of some good Bollywood masala as well. Will write about them soon.


  1. Wow!! Usha..I am already feeling jealous.

    Spending quality time with books have always been a distant dream for me, especially with half of the time taken up by job and the rest by kids.Yet books have been very dear to me.

    Great going, my friend!!

  2. oh please hang on, the kids are gong to grow up so soon that you'll be soon saying, I wish they were both still little kids! :)

    Books have always been dear to me too. Though my fave genres vary a lot from time to time. And just as the area of interest varies, books are what I count on first, while I take my baby steps in any new domain.