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In Focus - Ten Must Reads for this September 2015

Wind /Pinball includes Haruki Murakamis first two novels, published back-to-back, available for the first time in English outside Japan. With a new introduction by the author.

Published as a reversible hardback

If youre the sort of guy who raids the refrigerators of silent kitchens at three oclock in the morning, you can only write accordingly.

Thats who I am.

Hear the Wind Sing and Pinball, 1973 are Haruki Murakamis earliest novels. They follow the fortunes of the narrator and his friend, known only by his nickname, the Rat. In Hear the Wind Sing the narrator is home from college. He spends his time drinking beer and smoking in Js Bar with the Rat, listening to the radio, thinking about writing and the women he has slept with, and pursuing a relationship with a girl with nine fingers.

Three years later, in Pinball, 1973, he has moved to Tokyo to work as a translator and live with indistinguishable twin girls, but the Rat has remained behind. The narrator finds himself haunted by memories of a past relationship but also by his short-lived obsession with playing pinball in Js Bar. This sends him on a quest to find the exact model of pinball machine he used to enjoy so much.

Wind / Pinball (English)
Wind / Pinball (English)
Rs. 629
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Portrait of a Serial Killer is an unforgettable celebration of India and Indians by one of our most beloved writers.

Published on the hundredth anniversary of Khushwant Singhs birth, none of the essays in this collection has been published in book form before. A chilling account of the serial killer Raman Raghav rubs shoulders with an extraordinary portrait of Jawaharlal Nehru followed by an exuberant encounter with Dev Anand, as well as nearly twenty other profiles of saints, charlatans, writers, singers, politicians and other arresting characters. Another section of the book contains vivid sketches of various parts of the country - an unspoilt tribal village in Bihar, the fire of a gulmohar forest in Bokaro, the strange goings-on in the expat community in Darjeeling, a small community in the hinterland that is terrorized by a sudden invasion of snakes, and a bittersweet paean to Delhi, among others. There are also essays that provide insights into familiar characteristics of India - obnoxious VIPs, violence against women, corruption, amiable lunatics, idiot lawyers, stud bulls, Indian men and much else besides. Elegiac, witty and compelling, this is a book that will delight Khushwant Singhs numerous fans as well as anyone with an interest in contemporary India.

Salient Features-

  • Collects together essays that have never been published in book form before.
  • Selected from the notes and versions of draftshandwritten and typewrittenby his daughter Mala Dayal.
  • The essays are timeless and provide an incisive portrait of India and her people.
  • Contains the chilling account of one of Indias most notorious serial killer, Raman Raghav.

About the Author

Born in Punjabs Hadali village (now in Pakistan) in 1915, Khushwant Singh was among Indias best-known and most widely read authors and journalists. He was founder-editor of Yojana, and editor of the Illustrated Weekly of India, National Herald and the Hindustan Times. He published six novelsTrain to Pakistan, I Shall Not Hear the Nightingale, Delhi - A Novel, The Company of Women, Burial at Sea and The Sunset Club as well as several books of short stories which were published together as The Portrait of a Lady. Among his other books are 99: Unforgettable Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry & Humour, The Freethinkers Prayerbook, A History of the Sikhs, an autobiography, Truth, Love & a Little Malice, a biography, Ranjit Singh - Maharaja of the Punjab and a book of non-fiction, The Return of Indira Gandhi. In addition, he published translations of Hindi and Urdu novels, short stories and poetry.
Khushwant Singh was a member of the Rajya Sabha from 1980 to 1986. He was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1974, he returned the award in 1984 to protest the siege of the Golden Temple by the Indian army. In 2007, he was awarded Indias second highest civilian honour, the Padma Vibhushan. Khushwant Singh died on 20 March 2014. He is survived by his son, Rahul Singh, daughter, Mala Dayal and granddaughter, Naina Dayal.

Portrait of a Serial Killer : Uncollected Writings: Khushwant Singh (English)
Portrait of a Serial Killer : Uncollected Writings: Khushwant Singh (English)
Rs. 399
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Hidden deep within one of the world's most powerful organizations is a secret committee with a devastating agenda. Its members are afforded incredible protections considered elites, untouchables. But when four seconds of video is captured halfway around the world and anonymously transmitted to D.C, covert wheels are set in motion and counter terrorism operative Scot Harvath is tapped to undertake the deadliest assignment of his career. What begins as a favor will evolve into a globe spanning drama of highly personal stakes played out against a backdrop of stunning international intrigue, duplicitous political gamesmanship and the darkest, most clandestine fears of the espionage world. With razor sharp plotting, richly rendered characters and heart stopping surprises on every page, Thor is on top of his game.'

Code of Conduct (English)
Code of Conduct (English)
BRAD THOR
Rs. 407
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In this gripping follow-up to Percy Jackson and the Greek Gods, demigod Percy Jackson tells the stories of twelve of the original Greek heroes in all their gory, bloodthirsty glory. Want to know who cut off Medusa's head? Which hero was raised by a she-bear? Who tamed Pegasus, the winged horse? Percy has all the answers.

About the Author

Rick Riordan is an award-winning mystery writer. Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief, Rick's first novel featuring the heroic young demigod, was the overall winner of the Red House Children's Book Award in 2006 and is now a blockbuster film franchise, starring Logan Lerman. Rick lives in Boston with his wife and two sons.

Percy Jackson and the Greek Heroes (English)
Percy Jackson and the Greek Heroes (English)
Rs. 399
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Good morning, its 6 a.m. and I am wide awake because the man of the house has decided that he needs to perform a series of complex manoeuvres that involve him balancing on his left elbow. When I fell asleep last night, there was a baby lying next to me. Her smelly diaper is still wedged on my head but aside from this rather damp clue, I can't seem to find her anywhere. I could ask my mother-in-law if she has seen the baby, but she may just tell me that I need to fast on alternate Mondays and God will deliver the baby back to me . . Full of wit and delicious observations, Mrs Funnybones captures the life of the modern Indian womana woman who organizes dinner each evening, even as she goes to work all day, who runs her own life but has to listen to her Mummyji, who worries about her weight and the state of the country. Based on Twinkle Khannas super-hit column, Mrs Funnybones marks the debut of one of our funniest, most original voices.

Mrs Funnybones (English)
Mrs Funnybones (English)
Twinkle Khanna
Rs. 239
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In twelve linked stories, the characters in The Lovers and the Leavers intersect and drift apart across several years and continents. Komola, a maid in a quiet mansion in Dhaka, begins a doomed relationship with a handsome, mysterious man. Her nephew, a gifted little boy in her village, nurses a terrible secret, and his mother flees, ending up by the sea in Chennai. At the other end of the world, a Bangladeshi-American woman, Rox, lusts after a teenager, while her best friend, the rebellious Ila, must choose between love and tradition. Artfully woven with poems and photographs, these stories move between India, Bangladesh, America and Europe. A haunting, lyrical collection, The Lovers and the Leavers announces the arrival of a formidable talent.

The Lovers and the Leavers (English)
The Lovers and the Leavers (English)
Hoque, Abeer Y.
Rs. 429
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Even before Indian writing in English became the fashionable thing it is today, Nayantara Sahgal was a name to reckon with internationally. In Day of Reckoning - Stories, her first collection of short stories, one finds a familiar engagement with society, human rights and politics and a Sahgalesque subversive take on tradition.
A foreign journalist tries to make sense of a rapidly changing India even as a leading political leader is assassinated in public, a Naxalite who believes in scientific killing of the class enemy and the cult of violence is shattered when it boomerangs on him, a favourite aunt assigned the task of getting her young nephew back to India from London for an arranged marriage finds more than she had bargained for.
This is a thought-provoking, yet disturbing collection of stories from a master storyteller. Brimming with rare insights on the human condition and informed by the changing political and cultural ambience of the nation, Day of Reckoning is a must-have addition to every library.

Day of Reckoning Stories (English)
Day of Reckoning Stories (English)
Sahgal, yantara
Rs. 315
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Three young men from very different backgrounds come together in a journey from India to England, where they hope to begin something new. To support their families, where they can, to build their future, to show their worth, to escape the past. They have almost no idea of what awaits them. In a dilapidated shared house in Sheffield, Tarlochan, a former rickshaw driver, will say nothing about his life in Bihar. Avtar has a secret that binds him to the unpredictable Randeep. Randeep, in turn, has a visa-wife in a flat on the other side of town, whose cupboards are full of her husbands clothes, in case the immigration men surprise her with a visit. She is Narinder and her story is the most surprising of them all. Utterly absorbing and beautiful in its scope, The Year of the Runaways is written with compassion and touched by grace. As Tochi, Avtar, Randeep and Narinder negotiate their dreams, desires and shocking realities, as their histories continue to pull at them, as the seasons pass, what emerges is a novel of overwhelming humanity: one which asks how far we can decide our own course in life and what we should do for love, for faith and for family.

The Year of the Runaways (English)
The Year of the Runaways (English)
Rs. 437
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Haruki Murakami
Haruki Murakami is one of the most famous writers and profound thinkers in Japan. He is the winner of many international awards. He has written books such as Norwegian Wood, After Dark, Sputnik Sweetheart, South of the Border, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, 1Q84 and several more. He has also written many short stories. His books have been translated to more than 40 languages. Many film adaptations have been made based on his books. The writing style is very contemplative and surreal, with detailed characterization. The text is streaming and engrossing. Murakami was born in Kyoto, Japan. He was deeply influenced by western writers when he was a child. In Tokyo, he completed his graduation in Drama from Waseda University. He had also worked as a translator of many books. He currently resides in Tokyo. His work stands differently from traditional Japanese literature.
Books By the Author View More »
Rs. 399
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Portrait of a Serial Killer : Uncollected Writings: Khushwant Singh (English)

Portrait of a Serial Killer is an unforgettable celebration of India and Indians by one of our most beloved writers. Published on the hundredth anniversary of Khushwant Singhs birth, none of the essays in this collection has been published in book form before. A chilling account of the serial killer Raman Raghav rubs shoulders with an extraordinary portrait of Jawaharlal Nehru followed by an exuberant encounter with Dev Anand, as well as nearly twenty other profiles of saints, charlatans, writers, singers, politicians and other arresting characters. Another section of the book contains vivid sketches of various parts of the country - an unspoilt tribal village in Bihar, the fire of a gulmohar forest in Bokaro, the strange goings-on in the expat community in Darjeeling, a small community in the hinterland that is terrorized by a sudden invasion of snakes, and a bittersweet paean to Delhi, among others. There are also essays that provide insights into familiar characteristics of India - obnoxious VIPs, violence against women, corruption, amiable lunatics, idiot lawyers, stud bulls, Indian men and much else besides. Elegiac, witty and compelling, this is a book that will delight Khushwant Singhs numerous fans as well as anyone with an interest in contemporary India.

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Teaming up with Eric Klinenberg, Aziz Ansari provides us the much needed perspective on what relationships are like today and what it takes to actually find the one “true love” in today’s age and time, with several dating apps and people literally at the beck and call of a swipe and click. “Modern Romance” looks at data, a lot of data, given that Ansari and Klinenberg also conducted surveys in different cities of the world to subreddits whose responses were recorded and analysed to getting privy to their texts (of course after their permission) to learn as much as they could about modern dating. The book has a lot of information on the psychology of dating and romance over the years and how we view it today, given the onslaught of apps and sites, catering to every single need and whim of what one expects in a partner. “Modern Romance” is a funny and insightful book on how to navigate the terrain of love in the digital space. For instance, all the time Ansari emphasizes on humour and good it is to break the ice at most times. Aziz with his insights will make you reconsider and think of online dating differently for sure and at the same time make you see how investing, both in terms of time and effort might actually lead to something amazing between two people.
Modern Romance (English)
Modern Romance (English)
Aziz Ansari
Rs. 755
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I received the book at 11.30 am and finished it by 6 pm the same day. I am a serious reader as fiction is well past my glory days. At 44 and essentially a 'serious' reader I stick mostly to Autobiographies and likes of India after Gandhi and many such. I was currently reading another serious book 'The Autobiography of a Yogi' when Mrs Funnybones came in. It’s a masterpiece! It gave me some respite from serious stuff yet helped me to ponder more seriously on some matters. I also occasionally follow the same in the TOI but getting it all consolidated was a superb experience! Mrs Twinkle I wish you had spent more time here than in Bollywood! But past is past and we now see an awesome evolution! By the way, don't blame your mother for your name. The book may have been quite different otherwise!
Mrs Funnybones (English)
Mrs Funnybones (English)
Twinkle Khanna
Rs. 239
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