A-Z Book List: X for X

When one of my close friends moved to another country he left all his books with me. And most of his books were from the authors Issac Asimov and Terry Pratchett. I haven’t read any books belonging to these authors, ever. Primary reason: Science fiction. I am not even interested in those movies in the first place. But he was trying to convince me to give it a try and read a couple of Issac Asimov and then judge. Same with Terry Pratchett. Too geeky for me I guess. But now that I don’t have a book that I have read whose title starts with the letter X, I guess I would go with one of Issac Asimov’s which I have with me, but haven’t read.

Name: X stands for Unknown by Isaac Asimov

Genre: Non-fiction, Essay, Science

It is an essay. Now  I am sure I am going to have this with me for ever and not read a single line. But to be honest, it wouldn’t kill me to try and read it. But again, I should get into that zone to even try that. It is a non-fiction and mostly related to science. Hmm.. (sigh) Why aren’t there any books which are starting with the letter X. Do you know of one which is fiction and which is also good? Let me know.

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

A-Z Book List: J for Jokes

I am not a big fan of non-fiction. I tried, I swear. But it always puts me to sleep faster than any sleeping methods I have tried. My serious reading days are over I think. But that doesn’t mean I haven’t bought books that are non-fiction. There is no specific reason as to why I would buy a book. It can range from ‘I like that title’ to ‘I am intrigued by its success’  to ‘I loved the blurb’ to ‘I have read it once and I need to have this book for later reading’. Today’s book is one that I picked because of the title.

Name: Joking Around by Osho

Genre: Non-Fiction, Philisophy

I have to admit that I haven’t read this book fully. I bought it at a sale somewhere (not evne a book sale) and have had it for a very long time. What I usually do with this book is: Pick it up, randomly select a page, go through the chapter or the story (yes, this has some stories as a way of answers) and keep it back. That way it is more fun. I remember reading a nice chapter about ego. Do I believe in OSHO? I don’t know much about him or his views to form an opinion. We did try to visit his ashram in Pune on one of our trips but we ended up very late in the hour and it was closed. I am not sure when I will finally complete this book. But I have got it with me in paperback. So I can go back to it whenever I feel like it. I definitely need to be in a particular frame of mind to read such books and grasp what they are trying to tell. And with the work and other stuff, it is very rare for me to get to that space. Will definitely update you all when I eventually do (hoping that I will still be blogging and y’all still be reading my blog)… 😉

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

Portable Magic – Trying out reality

I did not own any book till I switched to a city with a better pay and place where I could afford to buy books for myself, mostly paperbacks. But I still used to get it on loan (am doing that even now) from my friends. One of them had lot of Michael Crichton books (yeah, he was a fan of his). So apart from Jurassic Park , Congo, Andromeda Strain etc etc there was one more book of his (Michael Crichton) which I picked up (sort of completed all the books that this friend had with him). I did not know what genre it was, except that it was among the book list so I started on it. Almost after the 2nd or 3rd chapter, I knew that it was a non-fiction (I can be slow sometimes). That book was ‘Travels‘. It had very interesting incidents that the author had encountered in his life at various stages, including his travels and the things he saw there. It was funny even in most places. I am not sure if that really made an impact and made me start my own travelogue , but if I need to give anyone credit for my efforts, I would give it to Michael Crichton. I never thought that non-fiction can be fun too. I really enjoyed that book. And that is the only travel book I have read so far.

There is no particular reason for me for not liking non-fiction. I love stories. And stories always amaze me. Its like being transported to a world so different from your own, where there are lesser rules and things can be as dramatic or as realistic as you want them to be or rather as the story teller wants them to be.  I cannot pen a story to save my life, but I can listen to it for hours together. That is the reason I always split my studies and complete them. They are bland and weren’t taught in a very interesting way, with live examples, interesting analogies , nothing of that sort. So my attention span on them will be maximum of half an hour. But when I try to teach (and I did teach papers for my classmates in my Post graduation when the teachers weren’t available for some subjects) I make sure it is not dull and limited to my attention span time. The same goes for non-fiction too. So no wonder Travels made it to my favorite list. But again I gave up non-fiction for fiction, there were too many to read yet.

After a lot of years, there came another book called ‘The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari‘ by Robin Sharma. This is the 2nd book I attempted and even though I don’t go for self help, philosophical books , it came at a time when I needed it. I did not take anything from that as far as I remember (and I donated that to my brother who , if he ever reads, reads non-fiction only) but it was definitely a help in a way where I needed some kind of inspiration. Those small things and quotes that it had , I took them at that time. And I decided that I will never go to non-fiction (does Khalil Gibran’s Prophet count in non-fiction ? because I love that one) unless and otherwise I have a very strong urge to read it. And I haven’t read any after that until recently. I will come to that in another post, because that requires a special mention. But never did I think I will be devoted to a book much like Ponniyin Selvan ever in my life. I thought that could never happen. How wrong was I ?

One on One with the author of ‘The Mirror – Book One’

Hello Everyone,

When I joined WordPress, I didn’t expect to make friends, much less become a test reader for a non-fiction work of a fellow blogger, author and friend. Life is full of surprises, isn’t it? And to add more to it, here is something I didn’t envision myself doing it ever in my life: conducting an interview  🙂 I literally shy away from it, even when forced to do it in my official environment. But the interview that you are going to read has been an absolute pleasure to do, because of the person involved.  Without further ado, let me welcome my guest of honor, Mr. Michael M. McConaughey, known popularly in the blogging world as Mr. Navigator.


He is the author of the recently released book ‘The Mirror – Book One: Welcome to the Evil Sisterhood’, currently available in Barnes and Noble , Amazon and most other online book sellers. You can find the other sources for his book using the ISBN by search option.


Now, straight to the questions.


You started working on the book as far back as 2008. Why and when did you actually decide that you need to write a book to bring out all the injustice  and pain that you have gone through. It would have reopened a lot of wounds, wouldn’t it ? What sealed the deal on the book front, for you?

[Nav]  Although I didn’t realize it at the time, my initial 2008 research into parental alienation, narcissism, and feminism–which I was doing to help me understand why my kids were being taken from me–would help form the basis for what would eventually become The Mirror, Book One – Welcome to the Evil Sisterhood. I had a couple of false starts during the 2009-2010 period in getting the book going, but I was still knee-deep in fighting to protect my children. What sealed the deal for me was a strong sense of justice–you just don’t hurt children, especially not mine, and think you can get away with it.

I suppose I always knew that I would have to write about my story and my discoveries, and it did eventually open the old wounds afresh, but this was a necessary unpleasantness. It allowed me to process some powerful emotions that might have otherwise festered. The broader writing experience was cathartic, especially the bonds I’ve formed with my blogging friends.


I admire your courage on that front to go through the unpleasantness, and I’m glad to be part of this blogging world, to discover you here :).

You had to write the book using a different name and added to that you had to not disclose a lot of real names in the book too. How difficult was this during the writing process? How did you decide which names should not be changed, because some of them are actual names, aren’t they ?

[Nav]  By law, I cannot publicly identify my children’s real names, nor my ex-wife’s, nor mine. This is to protect their privacy, which is fine.

It was initially a bitter blow to be told by my defamation lawyer that I should change the names of other actors, though, as I have written the truth as to what they did and did not do. I wanted to see these people held accountable. However, using pseudonyms ended up making for a better story, as I could be “creative” with the false names.

I generally used real names of experts whose work I refer to, for credibility. There is one case where I felt a moral obligation to use one researcher’s real name, as his influential work has been academically discredited, yet it is still used to rationalize feminist policies. His influence has to be countered.


Okay. You mentioned once in a post of yours that not revealing your real name might add a mystery element to the book. Do you have any doubts as to how using a pen name might have an effect on the personal impact of the book ?

[Nav]  I initially had some doubts, as one is supposed to do very public things in marketing a book – book signings, etc. But the more I think about it, the more remaining publicly anonymous is “just right” when it comes to the book. The title and cover design, for example, are highly symbolic and fit perfectly with the book (i.e., narcissistic mirroring). Similarly, the story reflects the experience of so many fathers who suffer similar fates, in silence.

Better that I remain hidden, as my story is our story. Who actually told it doesn’t really matter. The names change in real life, but the angst and heartbreak doesn’t. I suspect this will contribute to the personal impact that the book will have on a reader.


Did you think at least once ‘Damn!!! I wish I could have my picture at the back of the hard cover ? ‘ 🙂

[Nav]  [Laughing] I was thinking at one point to maybe put a joke picture on the back cover, perhaps Bozo the Clown or something else absurd, just to thumb my nose at ardent feminists. But, all things considered, I’m happy that I remain indistinguishable from everyone else when walking down the street. I’d sooner be an unknown than have any degree of fame or notoriety. My compass rose avatar will suffice rather well, I think.


Oh no! not the clown 🙂 and the compass rose says a lot. Does that feature in your book ? I don’t remember seeing it. As I had commented in another of your other posts, you have touched upon quite a few subjects like Philosophy, Law, Humanities and Psychology in your book and in a very well ordered fashion, too. Did I miss anything else ? 

[Nav] The compass rose didn’t make it into the book or the back cover. The ones you listed are the most obvious subjects that I delve. I would add strategic studies to these, as I cite from classical military theorist Sun Tzu, and I also reference something from military doctrine known as Information Operations. While they won’t be discussed until the sequel and only in a non-technical and informative way, principles of geometry, social criticism, and feminist “theory” will come into play. The former might go under philosophy, and the latter two might count as humanities, though.


I hope it makes it to the 2nd part. It is an interesting picture actually.

If I were your child and I come to know about such a book written by you, alienated or not, I would want to give it a read to know your side of the story. I am not sure of the current status of your relationship with your children. Is that even possible , i.e. for them to read your book ?

[Nav] Research has shown that the average time to reunification for an alienated child is 20 years, and that it is a gradual process of dawning realization. Years of cult programming have to slowly unravel, and deep and powerful emotions have to be processed.

My 23 year old daughter, who’s completely rejected me since 2008, might reflexively avoid the book, or she may still be completely closed to my version of events. I enjoy reasonably good relationships with my two university-aged sons, all things considered, which was a minor miracle that I was able to achieve. However, they’ve been programmed (manipulated) to “defend” their mother against me. It’s possible that my book could trigger such an automatic response. All said, I will not engage my children on the subject of reading my book, for the time being. The time isn’t right; the risks of it being counter-productive are too great to ignore


Hmmm… I wish that they don’t have to wait that long to know the truth. Did you ever expect most of your beta test feedback readers to be women? Did you feel at least once how they would react to the contents of the book considering it was attacking their own gender who are doing injustice in the name of feminism ? 

[Nav] No, this was a bit of a surprise, to be honest. I had assumed divorced fathers would be the most interested readers. It had occurred to me that the story, and how I told it, might be upsetting to some women. My assessment was that their displeasure would be directed towards feminists who caused the story, instead of towards me who wrote the story. The books exposes the true nature of ardent feminists, and this is actually a means of expressing respect for emotionally healthy women. The Mirror isn’t an attack on the female gender at all. Rather, it is directed towards a malignant element within it, and women test readers seem to agree with me on this.


I had to actually ask that question because that was there in my mind for quite too long 🙂 With that I come to the final question, what is the plan for the second book. Is there any tentative time frame that you have in mind? You are already in the process of writing it, aren’t you? How well is it going and how far along is it? 

[Nav] The Mirror, Book Two – Harbinger of a Dark Age is a work in progress. It both completes the story of how the matriarchal family “justice” system wilfully abused my children and me in the divorce, and develops my thoughts on gender and narcissism. This second aspect is especially exciting—Malcolm Gladwell on steroids, if you will. Writing has begun, but I’ve still a fair bit of research to do, too, and now the marketing for Book One competes for my time. Realistically, we’re looking at 18-24 months for Book Two, but hopefully sooner.


Waiting eagerly for The Mirror, Book Two, Nav, and all the very best for the just released Book One. I hope that the marketing for this book goes well, and that you are able to achieve both social impact and considerable gains from the sales. Good luck on that.

Before I signoff, here are some quick tidbits about Mr. Navigator. If you happen to stop by his blog, be sure to read his Yogateria Chronicles (which I should say is a blast) and his recent experiments with cooking (still in preparation stage, yet to be cooked more). He is an expert with all things vinyl 🙂 He has also posted his journey of his book in his blog, which might be helpful for all the writers out there.


Here is my 2 cents worth on the book:

It is an extremely emotional and a very well organized book. He not only explains what happened in his life, but also why it happened, the background, why and how the officials, who happen to be women, tend to do some gross injustice to children (not only his) in the name of saving the women from men in the name of feminism, the laws, the loopholes, the misguided leaders or judges and more. And this book, which is the first part, is just the beginning. It explains a lot that often slips past, unnoticed by us, especially in the name of law. I am of the opinion that this book could be used as a research material for further understanding with respect to parental alienation and narcissistic-feminist behavior,  because it has so much valuable information in it. It will take you on a journey to a father’s heart and soul on surviving the injustice meted out to him and his children, and his fight for justice.


It is a book meant for everyone.


Thank you for the read. I would really appreciate it if you could leave the comments about his book or anything related to it in his blog. I hope this interview has been as much fun and interesting to read, as well as acting as inside review for the newly released book,  as much as it had been for me to do it with the strong support of Mr. Navigator 🙂

Thank you once again, Nav, for the wonderful idea and co-operating with me and giving me the confidence to go ahead with it.


[Nav] Thank you in return, KG, for the wonderful interview experience and the warm hospitality and support that I’ve received here. It’s very much appreciated, as the purpose of the book isn’t so much financial success as it is success in raising awareness and forcing positive changes to occur in society.