Month: September 2003

  • From the New Deals listings on Publisher’s Lunch: “Author of NBA finalist COMPLICATIONS Atul Gawande’s untitled new book, a passionate narrative of science at its most heroic–and hubristic–about a small group of unusual physicians who, in the 1950s and 1960s, worked at the edges of knowledge and ethical tolerability to find treatments for the dangerously […]

  • For her most recent book, ‘The Nora’ has an unusual collaborator…herself. The Babu is glumly aware that he can’t make ‘The Donald’ type jokes about Nora Roberts, since he is ‘The Babu’ after all. Damn. Oh well. Steve Almond’s guestblogging at Bookslut, and he strongly urges you to read Lisa Gabriele in Nerve on why […]

  • Jail is where they don’t let you read, because reading is fun, or subversive, or prohibited according to Statute 12.a. Reg.2.iii of the Indian Jail Manual or some such–and this in the country where Nehru wrote some of his best-known works while he was enjoying the hospitality of the government. The Indian Express on Sudhir […]

  • The Booker 2003 shortlist is out: Amis axed, Atwood favourite, Ali in. Three first time novelists; one yet-to-be published novel; almost as many women on the list (three cheers) as you’d get with the Orange Prize. The Babu would be more excited about this if the august committee hadn’t left the likes of Banville and […]

  • * “…His storytelling skill, his promotion of less-established writers, his donations to libraries and schools and the sheer volume of his work, which has found a multitude of readers…” On account of all this, not to mention the “cultural influence” of his work as disseminated through TV and films, the NBA intends to hand Stephen […]

  • Jonathan Swift’s A Modest Proposal was meant as monstrous satire; Germaine Greer’s “modest suggestion” is more serious: in an essay for the Quarterly Journal, she makes the case for an Aboriginal republic in Australia. Also from the Aussie Age, a profile of Irvine Welsh, and a photograph that makes him look oddly like an escapee […]

  • The New York Review of Books: Orwell’s List: “If the charge is that Orwell was a cold warrior, the answer is plainly yes. Orwell was a cold warrior even before the cold war began, warning against the danger of Soviet totalitarianism in Animal Farm when most people were still celebrating our heroic Soviet ally. He […]

  • Kali’s two offspring: In 1984, Urvashi Butalia and Ritu Menon founded Kali for WomenIndia’s first feminist publishing house….Over the years Kali has come to be seen as one of the most significant publishing houses within Indian and internationally. Its name stands for quality, editorial attention, excellence of content, and, most importantly, for providing a platform […]

  • * “The real action starts with your obituary.” Martin Amis joins the long list of authors who do not read their reviews. Funny how the rest of the world differs from Indian authors. The Babu has met, on separate occasions, three authors of Indian origin who in the course of conversation claimed a) never to […]

  • LittleMag’s Via Media issue is online. There’s a short-short by Paul Zacharia called The Night Desk which could use some work, but has a beguiling concept anyway: “Bits of news wriggled on tabletops. They crawled on the floor, ran about, wandered like refugees. ‘The news is strangely restless today,’Mrityunjayan said to himself.” Shilpa Paralkar’s Maniben […]