Month: May 2006

  • Review: Red, by I Allan Sealy

    (Written for India Today, April 2006)RedIrwin Allan SealyPicador IndiaRs 495, 344 pages Byline: Nilanjana S Roy Black and white should never have been allowed into a book called Red , but there it is: a black-and-white reproduction of Matisse’s The Painter’s Family , serving as introduction to Irwin Allan Sealy’s dazzling new novel. It is […]

  • The BS column: Sherlocks of the Third World

    (Carried in Speaking Volumes, the Business Standard, April 3, 2006) They make an odd assortment, the first fictional detectives to emerge at the turn of the nineteenth century. There was Edgar Allan Poe’s C Auguste Dupin, an intuitive thinker with a highly mathematical mind, who made his bones in Murder in the Rue Morgue in […]

  • The BS column: Indian writing

    (Carried in Speaking Volumes, the Business Standard, March 28, 2006) Just before the Hutch Crosswords award ceremony began, Krishna Sobti nudged me. “See how the conversations are going?” she asked. Urvashi Butalia, a judge for the English Non-Fiction prize, was immersed in a discussion with two of the translators. Ira Pande, whose Diddi was a […]

  • The Backspace Boys: Outlook City

    (This was just a squibble for Outlook City.) Except for the fact that I often find myself at the receiving end of it, I wouldn’t waste my time with the whole Bombay-versus-Delhi argument. Nude Elly has the publishers, a Gulab Jamun says sweetly. Yes, but Bumbay has all the poets, a Vada-Pau retorts. William Dalrymple […]

  • Profile: I Allan Sealy

    (Carried in The Hindu, April 2006; I loved driving down to Dehradun for the day to do this interview, and perhaps some of that comes through.) Like most fans of his work, I assume I know Allan Sealy: through the five previous books, through the readings he’s done over the years, the occasional journalistic writings […]

  • Brunchtime

    (Carried in The Indian Express, March 2006)Brunch skeptics belong to the Bourdain faction or the Seinfeld faction. The first will quote chef Anthony Bourdain’s essay at you with grim satisfaction: “[It’s] a dumping ground for the odd bits left over from Friday and Saturday nights or for the scraps generated in the normal course of […]

  • The BS column: Kiran Nagarkar

    (Carried in Speaking Volumes, the Business Standard, March 14, 2006) For years before I met Kiran Nagarkar, I’d been hearing about him from other Indian writers. They spoke of him with deep pride and affection; his books were discussed with every shade of emotion from envy and disapproval to passionate, almost devout fervour. There is […]

  • Last Word: A day of our own

    (Published in The Telegraph, March 11, 2006–the last of the Last Word columns) If you missed observing International Women’s Day on March 8, try November. That’s when a handful of men celebrate International Men’s Day in Trinidad & Tobago. There is an International Men’s Day on February 7 in Malta, on July 15 in Brazil, […]

  • The BS column: Breaking up the neighbourhood

    (Carried in Speaking Volumes, the Business Standard, March 7 2006) “So I’ll meet you at The Bookshop?” my friend said, and it was then that it hit us both. The Bookshop, one of Delhi’s older and more legendary bookstores, has moved, and until that moment, we’d pretended the move didn’t matter. It was only the […]

  • Masala art: six food books

    (For the Hindustan Times, March 2006) Pushpesh Pant: Food Path: Cuisine Along The Grand Trunk Road (Lustre Press, Roli Books)Esther David: Book of Rachel (Penguin India, Rs 295)Dr Aakash Singh Rathore: The Complete Indian Wine Guide (Lotus: Roli, price not given)Wine Wisdom: Buying and Drinking Wine in India: Magandeep Singh (Penguin, Rs 250) Chitrita Banerji: […]