Archive for the ‘bookworm’ Category

Befuddled with Bond

I have just took up Quantum of Solace: The Complete James Bond Short Stories (James Bond 007) and though I would generally wait to write about it till I finished the book, this one has thrown me off the beaten track. I bought this book because I wanted to see for myself how Fleming had set about to write such swashbuckling adventures of guns, gadgets and women with a deft human touch (Casino Royale & Quantam of Solace movies being testimony to the latter). I more than half expected to see a technicolor spy tale penned as vividly and passionately as the movies if not more, but Fleming seems to be a completely different genre writer from the two stories I have read so far.

Predictably I started with QOS and apologies for the spoiler(?) it is not a spy tale at all, it is a very poignant tale about, get this, marital discord as recounted by an ageing diplomat to Bond over drinks. The story is great by itself, but the fact that it is a Bond story and a jazzy Bond movie shares its name, makes u do a double take. Though you can guess why the movie was named so after reading the story, and I can only smile at the movie writer’s silent fanboy homage.
Stumped but intrigued with QOS, I read the next one, called “Risico” ,risk in Italian (by way of slang or not, I’m not sure). This was a spy tale alright complete with a Bond Babe but the writing style was restrained….Bond was reflective, thought about good, bad, acknowledged there could be grey too (you see this trait of his only with newer movies), Bond’s romancing styles were subtle and to top it all, there were no gadgets or cars at all, Bond just with his service gun, rather his adversary pulled one on him with concealed gadgets!
In all honesty, I haven’t read the others, like “A time to kill” which could be different as Fleming evolved into a more flamboyant style, but the movies aren’t based on short stories, they just borrow the character and fill it with larger-than-life Hollywood touch. 
But I ain’t complaining, I am being treated to two Bonds. 😀 

[As an aside, my previous read was Agatha Christie’s trilogy and besides being enjoyable, it has reproved my theory that reading Old World English works wonders for your vocabulary]. 

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Chick lit for the soul

Though my pseudo-intellectual self is loathe to admit it, Chick lit is my junk-food treat in my reading platter. Every time I finish one , I ask myself if my time spent on such a mindless pursuit of 200+ pages would be worth better spent on Pamuks & Hosseinis who undoubtedly fill me with longer wholesome literary joy, but well as the chick-lit-credo goes …. a girl needs her treats too….

So here I am. ..I just closed my latest read and I can guess why I read them….of course I like all the spice about high life, style trends (yeah, google reader with Vogue subscriptions along with Techcrunch & /. , that’s me) and romances….but there is something more..all these books, without fail follow a fixed curve…so-called-girl-next-door who happens to be slim,cute ( isn’t it an oxymoron?)  has her life going pretty good which could have been better….but rapidly goes into dumps among hilarious but devastating incidents, followed by a chapter of humiliation due to her folly, a page of serious reflection at her lowest low and before you can say chick-lit, she has turned her life into a fairy tale with the series of best coincidences….a great job, the man she always coveted, you name it….she has it!
The last part is what I love about these books.

Of course, life is not a candy and over-simplified like in these books, but the end of such books always fill me with a warm feeling , that yes, you might have made terrible mindless mistakes earlier but life could be forgiving. You might not be forgiven in 10 pages for your past follies but if your heart repents truly, things would surely fall into place sooner or later….. you would get back all you have lost along the way…
So, is there a redemption for everybody…..well, if my faith wavers, I just need a shot of the latest of Bridget, Andy or Rebecca.

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Back to Old Habits….

After spending a small fortune early this year on books, not all of them were classified as books as which I would be proud to buy, I made a resolution to join a library and cut my expenditure especially on pulp-fiction..which is anyways like a literal junk trip….

I stuck to that resolution for more than 5 months, endured worse books from a M&B, SS specialist library than buy slightly better ones, read some good ebooks from scribd..but finally temptation & reason ( i spent an equivalent fortune on retail therapy, so why not books) overcame.. and treated myself at LandMark this weekend. My shopping cart contained  ShackThe Perfect Thing: How the iPod Shuffles Commerce, Culture, and Coolness, World without End which is a sequel to the highly recommened Pillars of the Earth and Eat,Pray, Love . Well,  the selection isnt exactly esoteric but Im sure I going to be treated to a sumptuous spread…Happy Reading to me!
P.S. U know what to expect from the next few posts 😛

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