Thursday, February 9, 2012

Hungary: The Invisible bridge - Book Review

This is the third book in the series - Around the World in 24 books! The story is based on Hungary.

Countries visited earlier:

The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is Julie Orringer's first novel. It is a sad love story set against the backdrop of Budapest and Paris during World War II and the family's struggle to survive against forces of annihilation.

An epic historical novel which makes you live through the days of the second World War. The story has been beautifully narrated and the characters have been beautifully portrayed. Some parts of the novel had too much detail and I found myself skimming thorough the pages. The book had a sad tone throughout. Not recommended if you are looking for a happy read. It was a super long novel but I definitely leant a lot more about war, Jews, WWII, Hungary and the hardships faced by everyone during war.

The book made me realize how fortunate I am not living through war and disaster!

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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

My new hobby - Knitting

I started knitting earlier this year. I have always had fun crocheting little coasters and other fun stuff when I was a kid. I learnt the art of crocheting during one of our summer vacations. I never continued crocheting after I went to college. After coming to the US, I have always loved looking at the different varieties of yarn at the craft stores. I wanted to learn how to knit.

I came to know that our local library had knitting sessions every thursday and I dropped in the first week of January. I was surprised to see kids, ladies and elderly women knitting several cute stuff. I wanted to jump in the bandwagon. A lady was kind enough to teach me the basic garter stitch the first day. I practiced the stitch at home using chopsticks, since I had not bought needles yet.

This scarf is the outcome of my first knitting project! Even though it was not that perfect, I am satisfied with my first try!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Afghanistan : The Swallows of Kabul - Book Review

The Swallows of Kabul
by Yasmina Khadra
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is my second book review while traveling around the world! Check out my review while traveling in India!

Swallows of Kabul is a quick read which portrays vividly the life of the people in Afghanistan under the Taliban rule. It is really shocking to know the desperate lives lead by the Afghans. The author portrays Afghanistan as a land of ruins, dust, heat, hopelessness, confusion, arrogance and isolation. The novel has a depressing and haunting tone. Would recommend this book to people who would like to read more about Afghanistan, the Taliban rule and the hardships people face over there.

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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Plate to Pixel : Digital Food Photography & Styling - Book Review

Foodography: Digital Food Photography & StylingFoodography: Digital Food Photography & Styling by Helene Dujardin
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Paperback: 288 pages

This book is not part of the project, Around the World in 24 books, but I wanted to read this book for long. I had placed a hold in the library long back and I started reading this book last week and I just loved reading the book! Here is my review..

Being a food blogger and interested in food photography, I absolutely loved reading the book! It has so much information about food styling, camera techniques, composition, lighting etc. The author herself being a cook and a blogger touches all topics right from plating to editing pictures and copyright issues. The book is filled with beautiful food pictures that make you drool! I see myself using some of the techniques I learnt from this book in the future..

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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

India: In the Convent of little Flowers - Book Review

In the Convent of Little FlowersIn the Convent of Little Flowers by Indu Sundaresan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Country: India

This is the first book for the year 2012!
I have taken up the challenge - Around the World in 24 books and this is my first book for the country - India. Here is my review..

I am a big fan of short stories and quick reads and I liked this book - In the Convent of Little Flowers . Some short stories are intense and mostly talk about lives of Indian women and the struggle they undergo. What was refreshing and interesting about this book was that each short story talks about a different issue and is set about a different class or society in India. Coming from South India, I could relate myself to some of the situations.

Indu Sundaresan's writing has a different personality, that makes you turn pages and leaves much to the reader's imagination. The stories leave you thinking about the various characters even after you have finished the book. The book had more of a sad and intense tone to it, with most stories having a sad ending. It would have been better, had Indu included some stories with happy endings and also portrayed the bright side of Indian culture in few of the stories.

I liked the postscript, where the author includes snapshots of her life which inspired her to write these short stories.

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