A-Z Book List: M for Memoirs

Not many books are successful as a movie. It is not very easy to convert a book into a movie in the first place. Books can be anywhere between 10 pages to 800 pages (a rough estimate that is) but a movie cannot be more than the max of 3 hours (if by then it doesn’t put you to sleep that is) Adapting a novel and delivering it with a good screenplay is always a challenge. That is why we have so many movies which failed to impress us visually even when their book counterparts were very successful. But, like everything else, we have exceptions to these too. And this book falls on that list.

Name: Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden

Genre: Fiction, Romance, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance

Honestly, I had a tough time to choose from my selection of books for M. I could have chosen Mahabharata by C. Rajagopalachari (which is an abridged version of the epic tale) or Malgudi Days by R.K. Narayanan or The Mirror, by our very own Navigator (a fellow blogger) I am listing these here so that you might have a chance to check these out too 🙂 And I have done a set of posts on ‘The Mirror’ already which also included an interview with the author himself 😉

Coming back the book of the day, Memoirs of a Geisha. I gave this book 4 stars in Goodreads. It is very poetic in nature. That is how I felt about it when I read it. Can you bring a certain grace and calm and elegance to characters with your words? It is not that easy. But this book does that. The pain, the suffering, the love, the yearning, the hate, the disappointment – we feel all that the Geisha feels. We are taken into a whole new different world in a different era and go through a whole life. A very well written book. The movie also was equally amazing. Mesmerizing performances by everyone involved. Very well adapted movie. One other book that comes to my mind where I was equally enamored with both the book and the movie was ‘Gone with the Wind’.

PS: Check out the rest of the A-Z Book list here

 

A-Z Book List: L for Ladies

Do you have a separate coupe/compartment in your trains for ladies only? We do have it here. I was once a very frequent traveller in those compartments. They are unreserved compartments which means you can buy ticket when you are travelling and just get in. I have so many funny and interesting experiences travelling in those compartments. It can be really very informative and can give you so many ideas and stories, if only you keep your ears open 😉

The book for today is based on one such experience, even though it is fictional.

Name: Ladies Coupe by Anita Nair

Genre: Drama, Fiction, Contemporary, Indian Literature

One woman gets into the ladies coupe (in a South Indian train, of course) on her way to Kanyakumari. She is running away (from her life, from her problems…etc…) There she strikes a conversation with 5 other women. Each of them share their own story and their own journey. Each of them have their own destinations also. But how their interaction and their stories impact her and her decisions is what Ladies Coupe is all about. I had written a review in my other blog (which isn’t functional anymore). This is what I had to say about this book.

Well as far as the stories go, if you have seen enough of KB’s (a Tamil Director who takes more off beat subjects) movies, read enough of Jayakandhan or Lakshmi’s Tamil novels, well these dont surprise you a lot. But with respect to writing, the flow was nice and smooth. Even though there were 6 stories altogether, you wouldnt be confused. You exactly know who was saying what and every thing had a perfect start and a perfect end. If you are woman, you can identify with each character, because you might have known them as yourself or as your sister, or your relative or your friend or your mom etc etc.. any woman you would know in your life. That is where she (the writer, I mean) scores. The vocabulary isnt too hard either. You can see a perfect control over the words and the phrases in some places.

Would say: Read it once atleast, if you are a woman.

I don’t think I can say anything more than this on this book. I gave it 4 stars in Goodreads.

PS: Check out the rest of the A-Z Book list here

A-Z Book List: D for Dracula

Not the one that Johnny Depp plays in ‘Dark Shadows’. Nope… This is the one that made Francis Ford Coppola adapt it to a movie with Gary Oldman playing the role of Count Dracula. I am not sure how many of you have watched that movie. Such an amazing one. I remember scaring my friends in the hostel with that movie. Made sure the room was dark with not a single light on and played the movie on a computer (had bought the CD version of it), I can still hear their screams 😉 I think I am jumping the guns here. Let us go in order.

Name: Dracula by Bram Stoker

Genre: Paranormal, Horror, Fiction, Gothic, Classics

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When I started writing the genre of this book is when I realized that this is the first book I read in paranormal. Twilight series was the second. The fact that this Vampire belonged to the same genre totally skipped my mind 😛 Wonder why. I saw the movie first and was so enthralled by the screenplay, the cinematography and the acting, that I wanted to relive it through the book. A big mistake. In this case, I loved the movie more than the book. Of course the movie did take some artistic liberties and moved a little hither tither from the story, which is usual, but that sort of added some glamour to it. Made it more spooky and scary. And I am not a horror genre fan. I never watch horror movies, if I can help it. Again, no spoilers out here. So without going much into the story, let me tell you that I felt the book a little bit boring and the ending quite exhausting. I felt totally disappointed and to help me get back to a good mood, I had to watch the movie again. I gave it only three stars in Goodreads. Gary Oldman as the Dracula was so mesmerizing (can’t think of any other word). The book Dracula wasn’t so much. May be I was constantly trying to picture Gary Oldman in the  book and it didnt quite fit and that made all the difference ? May be. Not many movies outdo the books, according to me. This one definitely did. Did you find this book better than the movie? If so, let me know. Would love to know why? What did I miss?

 

PS: Check out the rest of the A-Z Book list here

Being Invisible!

Have you ever wondered if it would do you a world of good if you had an invisibility cloak like the one Harry Potter had ? I have imagined myself having one in many situations. Not to actually snoop on someone or to find out something. But rather be invisible while being present in a particular place. Just to avoid that unnecessary smile, or a unwanted discussion or an unwelcome comment.
If I have to make a technical analogy of that concept in Harry Potter, it is like marking a file in your system as Hidden using its properties. The file is still there, the contents still in place, you just can’t see it when you list the files in your directory. The cloak is like the file attribute here. Take it off and any one can see it. I know I got a little bit technical over here. But then that thought just popped into my head.
So , there you go, I made it through this week’s prompt with my word ‘Cloak’.


Post for this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt.

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “-clo-.” Use a word or words that contain the three letters in order, and base your post on it/them. Enjoy!

SoCS Badge by HopeFloats@ My Leaky Boat

Man and Boy

Got this book, Man and Boy by Tony Parsons, from a book shop named Paperback in Bangalore, when I had been there to meet a friend. It was on a discount sale and did cost me around 150Rupees only. When I read the blurb, I was so captivated by it, I took it immediately. And I am glad I did. I have been savoring this story for a while now. The writing is so awesome, that I am so in love with it. Its so real that it hurts sometimes. It is also interlaced with humor that you find yourself smiling and laughing at very odd situations. It is placed under the genre of Chick Lit !? Really? I haven’t read Kramer vs Kramer so I can’t compare or anything, except that I really loved this book and glad that I got a paperback at Paperback 🙂

Especially with the mood I have been in recently, and the story also going in parallel, I had to read about a death, again of that of a father, and the impact of it on the people left out. But for some reason, I felt good reading about it.  It sort of tells you that its something that everyone go through. In this story too, there is this 5 year old kid (my nephew is 4 years) who loses his grandpa and is trying to come to terms with it. Its a story of a man becoming a father to his son and a son to his father and finally understanding what it all means. It was so heart warming. It makes you think of the relationship you have with your father. And also that of all the kids whose parents fight for their residency (not custody)

I am not going to go in depth with the story or anything. I gave a 5 star in good reads for this book. I just loved it so much. No wonder I took my time with it (its been more than two weeks since I started it I think). I thought the end was a bit cliched but still, that’s perfectly fine. I like my happy endings, even if I am not sure of its ‘ever after’ in this.