17 Sep 2006

The Book Meme

I have been tagged by the erudite and universally-linked [;)] John Baker for a meme. Thanks, John. It was fun doing this. :)

1. One book that changed your life?
As a high school teenager it was Charles Chaplin's My Autobiography. To me, his story was a testimony of the triumph of human spirit, and the book served as an inspiration for many years.

A few years back, I read A Fine Balance and was jolted out of my complacency. The book made me think for days and made me more conscious about the lives outside my insulated sphere of existence.

2. One book you have read more than once?

Rabindranath Tagore's Sanchaita (collected poems). It's been a constant friend.

3. One book you would want on a desert island?

Gitabitan, Rabindranath Tagore's book of songs. It has some of the finest of this sage poet's poetry, sweeping the entire spectrum of the universe. Since I also sing Rabindrasangeet (Tagore songs), this book will be a perfect companion at a deserted island.

4. One book that made you cry?

Most recently it was The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini.

5. One book that made you laugh?

Carry Me Home by Sandra Kring. The book also made me cry in places. Terrific read.

6. One book you wish you had been written?

The Kite Runner. I wish I could like as lyrically, create a setting as enchanting and atmospheric, and evoke emotions as strong as Hosseini did.

7. One book you wish had never been written?

Am yet to come across a book like that.

8. One book you are currently reading?

The Plague by Albert Camus.

9. One book you have been meaning to read?

SO many. My immediate priority is The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri.

Now for my victims, er, friends to tag. Here they are: Shadow Writer, Lotus Reads, Bernita, Susan, Amin, and Simran. Can't wait to see your answers!

PS: I just noticed I read one of the questions incorrectly. Q 6 asks about "one book I wish had been written," and my response is for a book I wish I had written. LOL. You can expect that from this daft reader/writer. So instead of answering the original question, I am tweaking it here so my answer fits. Yes, I am lazy too.



Amin said...

Bhaswati, thanks for the tag.

I've not come across this before and it looks like a lot of fun.

The questions you've got there are pretty thought provoking!

Bernita said...

Bhaswati, you are so baaad.

Shadowrite said...

Great post Bhaswati!

I can't say I've read any of the books you mentioned but I'll definitely keep my eye out for those now, especially Kite Runner.

I'm happy to play! Gotta think about it. There's so many books I love.


Anonymous said...

Ah, The Plague ! Do write your observations on this novel.

Of late, I have often felt that Camus, rather than Sartre, is the more perennial writer of the two existentialist greats. In my student days, it was the reverse, possibly because of Sartre's stature as a demi- god of the Left.

And good to know about your Rabindrasangeet expertise too. How about a podcast? :-)

- bhupinder

Susan Abraham said...

Dear Bhaswati Ghosh,
I am still at the cybercafe because of my connection not yet repaired. Would you mind letting me know which Susan you mean for the meme...
Not me, I think. I mean, i daren't think...
By the way, I really really loved the Namesake and the way Lahiri's command of the English Language in literature reflected pure excellence.

Bhaswati said...

Amin, you are welcome. I can't wait to see your responses. :)

You bet, Bernita. ;)

Jas, you will love The Kite Runner. Your style of writing tells me you will. I look forward to seeing your answers!

Bhupinder, I am finding The Plague so interesting. Will likely note my observations here once I finish reading it.

I am a little shy when it comes to singing to the audience. And I have no idea how a podcast works (one of those tech idiots, yes). But that sure sounds like an interesting idea. :)

Dear Susan Abraham, if you had only placed the mouse over the word Susan in my post, you would have seen it's indeed you who has been tagged. ;)

I hope you get back your net connection soon and can play. Good luck!

Saaleha said...

I can identify with your feelings about Kite Runner. I read it twice, or was that thrice? And now I know that I must read The Plague.

Bhaswati said...

Welcome to my blog, Saaleha. The Kite Runner is such a wonderful read, isn't it?

The Plague is quite an interesting and intelligent book. I am liking it.

There was another similar comment from you that I didn't publish. :)

Lotus Reads said...

Hi, Bhaswati! I truly enjoyed reading through the meme and it reminds me how much I need to get myself a copy of Rabindranath Tagore's poems! Thanks for tagging me, I will get to it, I promise! :)

And oh, I second Bhupinder, I would like a podcast, too! I'm so homesick for Rabindrasangeet!

Simran said...

Bhaswati, You're going to LOVE the Namesake! Can't wait for the film to come out on it.

Bhaswati said...

Lotus, thanks for agreeing to play. I really can't wait to see your answers. How could I not tag my book fiend friend?

I wish I could send some Rabindrasangeet CDs to you and Bhupinder. Hmm, now that's an idea. Oh, no, not sung by me. LOL.

Simran, now that you've recommended it, I know I will like The Namesake. The film is already out. Lotus saw it and has posted a review on her blog you may want to check out.

Susan Abraham said...

Hi Bhas,

Just to let you know that I've already completed my part of the book meme. It was a pleasure to have been chosen by you and I thoroughly enjoyed it though my choices were poor as my loves for titles read are so varied.

I thought that the question said, "A Book I wish I had written." I have decided to stick to it as I thought it served as a highly-insightful question in itself. Hope that's ok, considering I've already tagged others.


Scott said...

I loved Interpreter of Maladies. Jhumpa is such a talented writer.

Simran said...

Thanks Bhaswati. It's already out in theaters? Not here. :-( I'll check out Lotus' site right now.


Bk30 said...

Kite Runner uh? Okay..keeping an eye out :)

Simran said...

Susan, Interpreter of Maladies is the one I'm reading now. Love it!

anna said...

Hi Bhaswati, my first visit to you and what a wonderful one. Couldn't resist responding about A Fine Balance. It is one of those books that have stayed with me since I read it. I think of it often.
Some of it such absolute horror, unthinkable really on this little island where I live, and yet there was such a sense of hope and on the whole it was so uplifting. I must read it again!
as for The Kite Runner I have had this on my list of 'must reads' for quite awhile. Definitely I shall have to hunt it down now.

Bhaswati said...

Susan, many thanks for playing. I am yet to read yours and Lotus's. Bad me, swamped with work. See? I misread the same question! It's perfectly okay to stick with it; I did that too. ;)

Scott, I was similarly impressed with The Interpreter of Maladies. I agree with you wholeheartedly. :)

Simi, I think Lotus saw the film at the Toronto film festival. Hope you read the review on her blog. :)

BK, do read it. I can guarantee you will love that book. :)

Anna, a warm welcome to my blog. I can imagine how unthinkable the scenarios described in A Fine Balance must be where you live. You are blessed it's that way. That book that impacted me heavily, leaving me desolate and even hopeless for days. I wished for the ending to be a little more hopeful, even if that defied reality. But what a book. It shakes you up and brings you face to face with the dark, dirty side of politics.

Don't waste any more time in reading The Kite Runner. I can't recommend it enough, I guess. :P

Simran said...

Yep she did and haan i read her post too. Now I really can't wait to see it.

Simran said...

Bhaswati, how can I join this book meme?

Bhaswati said...

Simran, it's like a chain. Someone tags you to play it, then you tag 5 more people. Would you like to play? I will tag you right away.

*Goes to edit post and tag Simran*

Simran said...

Thanks Bhaswati. My post is up. Now I have to find two more victims to tag because I only put three. OOPS. ;-)

John Baker said...

Now I'm going to have to find myself a copy of A Fine Balance, Bhaswati.
It was great to read your answers, and if the podcast ever happens, please don't let me miss it.

Bhaswati said...

John, do read that book if you can. It's powerful and disconcerting, tragic and beautiful--all at once.

Thank you for the tag. :)

Oh yes, if the podcast ever happens, I will be sure to subject you to the torture. LOL

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