Archive for the ‘English Novels’ Category

The Alchemist – Paulo Coelho

A short and sweet philosophical book written in a story-telling style.  I feel this acts a tonic to realize the power lies within oneself.  And everyone need to read some verses again and again in a regular interval to invoke the inner strength and good qualities.  I liked some short stories shared in this book and the lifestyle of people living in desert.  One of the philosophical statements which I liked is “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve:  the fear of failure”.

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2 States – Chetan Bhagat

Yet another time-pass novel by Chetan Bhagat, but worth give a reading for the fun-filled contents.  I’ve felt more emphasis was given to characters and lifestyle of Tamilians, as its natural to read the novel from the eyes of a Punjabi.  It was cinematic on how Punjabi-lad wooing Tamil Brahmin family and Tamil-girl impressing the Punjabi parents.  I’ve felt more humorous sense during the final wedding chapters.   All his novels would be definitely best-seller for masala-loving Bollywood-tight Indian society.

Harry Potter – Part 2 and 3

Completed reading the books “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban”.  Harry completes his second and third year at his Hogwarts school by learning many magic skills.  Rowling is good in story telling by providing some mysterious plots.  Harry found his parent’s identity and their best friend.  Readers would find it interesting to surmise the culprits on the course of story.  I’ve given a break to Harry Potter series now to read a Tamil novel.  After that, I’ll be entering into Wizard World soon.

HP and the Philosopher’s Stone – J. K. Rowling

I too indulging myself with the Wizard Utopia of world-wide Harry Potter fans by reading this first volume.  Nothing to praise about the exemplary story-telling skill of the author, as its implicit for the fame.  Its worth reading the book for kids as it shows the bravery and good-will of characters Harry, Hermione and Ron.  Also, it improves the basic vocabulary and imagination for school goers.  Looking forward to read the subsequent miracles in Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardy.

The Fountainhead – Ayn Rand

This novel based on “objectivism” and “individualism” is quite interesting to read.  I like the protagonist Howard Roark, because of his humbleness and self-respect.  He is a college-drop out Architect, but perfect in whatever thing he does.  I would like to live in a home built by Howard Roark now.  The lead lady Dominique Francon sometimes behave crazy in marrying one guy after another.  Howard Roark’s classmate and virtual arch-rival Peter Keating and the philosopher Ellsworth Toohey lives in normal way of life every human lives in the world now.  But the persons who exhibit individualism are Howard Roark, Dominique and industrialist Gail Wynand.  Eventhough it is ideal or sometimes look stupid to live a life visualized by Ayn Rand, but during some difficult times, everyone should think about to take decision based on Ayn Rand’s philosophy to live a satisfied life.

We could see many similarities between this novel and Atlas Shrugged as both exhibit the same philosophy of supporting “egoism” of man, but in different storyline.   The characters of both novels could be easily compared based on their life style and ideology as:

Howard Roark — John Galt

Dominique Francon — Dagny Taggart

Gail Wynand — Hank Rearden

Peter Keating — James Taggart

Ellsworth Toohey — Francisco d’Anconia (in slightly different way)

Anyway, I feel this is a good novel to read, which introduce a new world of objectivism in reader’s mind and some persons may get influenced by Ayn Rand’s philosophy.  But I was not influenced by her words.

The White Tiger – Aravind Adiga

This booker prize winning novel is not impressive to me.   The lifestyle of a car driver in depicted here by constantly showing the ugly face of India.  The uniqueness I’m seeing here is, the entire story is being narrated by the lead character in a letter to Chinese Premier.  Some information I got from this novel is:  White Tiger is a unique species which comes once in a generation in a jungle.  Here the protagonist who is a car driver was praised as White Tiger by his school teacher for his intelligence in studies.  But due to poverty he was unable to continue his studies and work as a hotel servant in his village.  Finally he becomes a car driver for an American-return lad who is married to European wife.  While the story get unfurls, the author explains the sufferings, poor life-style and challenges faced by a car driver.  Whenever his car enters into posh shopping mall or other luxury hotels, the driver feels uncomfortable to roam around the place, but he feels safe only if he is inside the car.  The reason for his killing his owner and the life he leads thereafter in other city by simply neglecting his family from the beginning was quite shocking.  As a whole I feel this novel is fine for being in a library for readers but not a booker prize winning piece.  May be the booker prize selecting panel people got excited by seeing negative facts of India and offered this recognition to this novel.

Atlas Shrugged – Ayn Rand

This is the longest philosophical novel in English I’ve read.  The clash between industrial conglomarates, inventors and politicians forms the base of novel in which the protagonist John Galt make strategies to stop the motor of the world.  The plot of the story is somewhat hypothetical but the intention of Ayn Rand is make the reader feel about one’s individual strength.  I would like to meet a lady like Dagny Taggart who is so strong in her ideologies and having the courage of ‘never give up things’.  Eventhough Hank Rearden’s character looks no so friendly, he is ‘individualist’ by nature and admires people around him in friendy gesture.  Readers can take positive advices from this novel to increase the inner strength lies inside every human being.  And if a person is having a will power with passion, then he can achieve any height in the world amidst tough situations.  My favourite character is Francisco D’Anconia for his passion towards work and knowledge.  It looks like some movie would be taken based on this novel; will wait to watch that.

The Inscrutable Americans – Anurag Mathur

This short novel narrates the experience of an Indian lad who is visiting USA for his higher studies. Whatever he see, feel and think new in the alien land was presented here. Gopal is the protagonist, hails from Jajau village of Madhya Pradhesh belongs to orthodox vegetarian family starts his way to USA for one-year diploma higher course. From the maiden flight experience to the new college apartment he faces everything new. His friend Randy introduces him the style of American living by taking him to dance bars, introducing some girls for dating, etc. He tries to find a sweet-heart in college and doesn’t succeed on the same. He feels enigmatic about Americans language on saying football as soccer, ball played by hands as football, usage of “got it”, “have a nice day” after every short conversation, etc. It’ll be humorous on how Gopal narrates his experience to his brother by letter and explain to his friends about his family-business of hair-oil company. He too face some bad experiences like getting man-handled by some black men, blinking alone without any girl as companion in club, feeling house-arrest during snow-days, etc.  As a whole, its a good time pass novel like Chetan Bhaghat’s “five point someone”.