Another chapter has been completed in my life and I find myself at the cusp of my 30s. Turning older is definitely an unhappy experience after you have crossed 18, and add to it my husband’s constant scare about all the hidden minefields that await me through the battle of my 30s. Hence, for me, 29 is an age to savor (although I always feel 14 at heart). The journey from 28 to 29 has been exceptional for me with a dream trip to the Serengeti, my husband’s post-graduation, addition of new friends into my friends list (and dropping a few obviously) and some good financial decisions (fingers crossed).
While I bask in my birthday glow, throwing enigmatic glances at my husband with subtle hints as to what I would like to have as my gifts, he is left clueless, scurrying around to grab anything which he thinks that I might like. However, a bigger challenge for him is to hold on to the surprise till the end. Every year he spills the bean one way or the other either by accidentally giving my number as the contact number to the drop-off guy or by confessing to me when I show an interest in purchasing the item that he has already planned as birthday gift. This year, to my amazement, Amazon left the books he had ordered at our doorstep and I picked it up even before my husband could find it. My evil mind relished watching him ask around the neighboring houses about a package that had been dropped at our doorstep and was nowhere to be seen before I revealed to him that I had hidden it for fun.
Seeing my excessive love for books surpassing even that of jewelry or clothes, his go-to gift every year is – you guessed it right- BOOK(s). Over time he has honed his skills more and has started selecting from the list of Booker Winners (a wise move I must say). So, here is my birthday haul selected by my loving husband.
Thank you for the books!
An Overview of the Books
1. Swing Time by Zadie Smith – Man Booker Prize Nominee for Longlist
Two brown girls dream of being dancers–but only one, Tracey, has talent. The other has ideas: about rhythm and time, about black bodies and black music, about what constitutes a tribe, or makes a person truly free. It’s a close but complicated childhood friendship that ends abruptly in their early twenties, never to be revisited, but never quite forgotten, either.
2. The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead – Man Booker Prize Nominee for Longlist, Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, National Book Award for Fiction (2016), Arthur C. Clarke Award
Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hellish for all the slaves but especially bad for Cora; an outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is coming into womanhood – where even greater pain awaits. When Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape. Matters do not go as planned and, though they manage to find a station and head north, they are being hunted.
3. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness by Arundhati Roy – Man Booker Prize Nominee for Longlist
The Ministry of Utmost Happiness takes us on an intimate journey of many years across the Indian subcontinent, from the cramped neighborhoods of Old Delhi and the roads of the new city, to the mountains and valleys of Kashmir and beyond, where war is peace and peace is war.
4. A Horse Walks into a Bar by David Grossman – Winner of Man Booker Prize International (2016)
The award-winning and internationally acclaimed author of the To the End of the Land now gives us a searing short novel about the life of a stand-up comic, as revealed in the course of one evening’s performance. In the dance between comic and audience, with barbs flying back and forth, a deeper story begins to take shape–one that will alter the lives of many of those in attendance.
5. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins – The #1 New York Times Bestseller, USA Today Book of the Year
Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning and night. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost. And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel goes to the police. But is she really as unreliable as they say? Soon she is deeply entangled not only in the investigation but in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?
My reviews coming soon!!!
*All summaries taken from Goodreads.