Month: July 2005

  • Subterranean homesick blues

    Jessa Crispin talks to one of Cortazar’s translators: “Literature in translation may always be low-profile in bookshops, but what can lead to even greater frustration for McLean is the simple lack of appreciation for a writer who is one of her favorites.“In decent bookshops you see Hopscotch and Blow-Up, and in really good ones, you […]

  • Ooh, those labour pains

    Suketu Mehta on outsourcing: “The rich countries can’t have it both ways. They can’t provide huge subsidies for their agricultural conglomerates and complain when Indians who can’t make a living on their farms then go to the cities and study computers and take away their jobs. Why are Indians willing to write code for a […]

  • Summer Reading from Edge

    Just…bookmark this page. Or print it out. Carry it around in your handbag till you’ve got the lot. No, really. Edge has the best summer reading list ever.

  • Potterhead? Get your dope…

    …off the Google News page, why don’t you, 9,420 stories up already. Sheesh. I just finished reading Harry Potter and the Half-Baked Prince, and no, baby, the earth didn’t move for me. The gears of the story whir and click creakily; Potter spends most of his time “feeling angry”, which is a one-size-fits-all emotion that […]

  • Two words: lousy timing

    Chris Cairns’ (sorry, it’s just me; they mention “football”, I think cricket) Cleave’s Incendiary, about a suicide bombing attack on a football stadium in London, came out the same day the London bombings happened. From The Globe and Mail:“Yesterday, Cleave set up a website ( asking readers about the novel, which is basically a letter […]

  • The children’s hour

    Suketu Mehta had planned to set up a legal defense fund for children, which is up and running in conjunction with CRY. Go visit. Hang around the site for a bit. See what you can do to help. (Link via Zigzackly. One Bombay morning, walking on the road leading to the Strand bookstore, I saw […]

  • Home on the strange

    Ruchir Joshi, who has moved on from the cooler-only norm (but still has just the one AC), decodes the room on the roof: “Barsaati???” My friend cried in horror, “Good god, you never told me you lived in a barsaati! That’s quite different! Everyone knows you need a minimum of two ACs to dent a […]

  • The bones of a lover’s spine

    In Colombo and Anuradhapura, I saw the books written on ola leaves, known for the strange brittleness that made them resistant to sharp, vertical or horizontal strokes; over time, the Sinhalese alphabet developed curls and curves, rounded itself out as monks and scholars learned to bend their letters to the nature of the leaves. From […]

  • I’ve been…

    …elsewhere. Learning the landscape of Michael Ondaatje’s poetry. Blogging will resume tomorrow, but until then: The Distance of a ShoutMichael Ondaatje We lived on the medieval coastsouth of warrior kingdomsduring the ancient age of the windsas they drove all things before them. Monks from the north camedown our streams floating that wasthe year no one […]

  • Go here. And here. And here.

    Homi Bhabha, an interview with John Makinson, an over-the-top review of Kamila Shamsie’s Broken Verses, Pradeep Sebastian on listening to books… The Hindu Literary Review is out. Read it here. In The Little Magazine, S Diwakar unpacks a photograph: “Please look at this photograph. The couple sitting here are newlyweds. From the ornaments they are […]