Graphic novels, urban blues & art thefts on book shelf (IANS BOOKS THIS WEEK)

February 18th, 2012 - 2:53 pm ICT by IANS  

Chetan Bhagat New Delhi, Feb 18 (IANS) This weekend, the book cart rolls in light humour and racy stories. Browse with IANS.

1. “Stupid Guy Goes to India (Graphic movel)”; Written by Yukichi
Yamamatsu/Translated into English by Kumar Sivasubramanian; Published by Blaft-Westland; Price Rs.395

In 2004, having never before left Japan, 56-year-old “manga comic”
author Yukichi Yamamatsu travelled to India, armed with little money, less English, no sigmoid colon and absolutely no idea of what to expect. He did, however, bring with him his formidable art skills, a missionary zeal for spreading Japanese comics culture, and a keen pair of eyes - through which we are treated to a hilarious, brutally honest look at India, as it presents itself to the foreign visitor. This is the true story of Yukichi’s adventures — playing marbles, searching for bathrooms, betting on horses, visiting a brothel and his madcap mission to sell Hindi translations of Samurai “manga” on the mean streets of the nation’s capital.

2. “The Orange Hangover”; Written by Rahul Saini; Published by
Jaico Publishing House; Price Rs.125

He had the coolest lifestyle. Now he is stuck in his small hometown with no job, no girlfriend and to make things worse, he manages to tangle himself in a terrible case of extreme crime. Would he be able to follow his heart and stick to his values and ambitions? Would he ever be able to win the girl he likes? Would the terrible case of extreme crime ever be solved? The writer of “Those Small Lil Things” and “Just Like in the Movies” has spun a contemporary fiction about a small-town boy, who makes it big and loses all.

3. “The Headhunters”; Written by Jo Nesbo; Published by
Vintage/Distributed in India by Om Books International; Price Rs.315

Roger Brown has it all. Norway’s most successful headhunter, he is
married to a beautiful gallery owner and owns a magnificent house. But he’s also a highly accomplished art thief. At a gallery opening, his wife introduces him to Clas Greve. Not only is Greve the perfect candidate for a position that Brown is recruiting for; he is also in possession of “The Calydonian Boar Hunt” by Rubens, one of the most sought-after paintings in modern art history. Roger starts planning his biggest theft ever. But soon, he runs into trouble — and it’s not financial problems that are threatening to knock him over this time.

4. “Early Indications”; Written by G.B. Prabhat; Published by
Gyaana Books; Price (listed price) Rs.315

Madras, December 26, 2004: Shiva has a miraculous escape from the
tsunami. Twenty years before, a friend saved him from almost certain death, whose debt he was reluctant to acknowledge. Coimbatore, south India, 1969: It all began, most probably, because Shiva and his four classmates — all kindergarten students — were christened “The Five
Geniuses” by their doting first teacher. She did not stop with that simple declaration but, by a careful personality assessment, gave them their callings. Innocent utterances can change lives. How would their lives have turned out if they hadn’t been called geniuses? “Early indications” is a tale of friendship, oppression, disaffection, betrayal, guilt, false dawns, and the impossibility of redemption. It is about confronting the infinite shades of gray we are painted in, and wondering how much semi-serious pronouncements can shape the spectrum. The novel also showcases the subterranean charm of Coimbatore, which lies midway between the teeming metropolises and the overwrought village settings.

5. “Artist, Undone”; Written by V.Sanjay Kumar; Published by
Hachette India; Price Rs.495

“I can see where you are going. Up shit creek…with a paddle.” He was right. That is where I was going. It was the kind of thing that my analyst had always warned me against: “You are at an inflexion point, in a mood to do the irrational and the irreverent.” He forgot irreversible. Harsh Sinha — “Fat, F**ked and Forty” — is so moved by a painting bearing this name and a compelling likeness to him, that he spends a large chunk of his life’s savings on it. Announcing a year-long sabbatical from his advertising job in Mumbai, he returns to Chennai to his wife and daughter, determined to spend quality time with them. Sadly, his wife Gayathri no longer wants him; she is more interested in the artist next door. The artist, Newton Kumaraswamy, is an inveterate womanizer and a famous thief. With no job to turn to, and no family to lean on, Harsh returns to Mumbai to let himself freefall further into the seductive world of contemporary Indian art and artists.

6. “The Winner’s Price: Life Beyond The Campus”; Written by S.V.
Divvaakar; Published by Konark Publishers; Price Rs.250

For justice to be served, truth must bear its own witness. This is the germ of thought which makes the lives of Harsh, Kamal, Rocky, Armani and Ravi collide and entangle after their reunion bash. IIT alumni and super achievers, they realise that every success has its own price. The book has been described as a hi-tech IIT thriller — a combination of motivation, advise and racy fiction. Follows in the footsteps of Chetan Bhagat.

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