Friday, September 30, 2011

The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie.

This is the debut novel of Agatha Christie. The first Hercule Poirot mystery. How can I not read this?

The story is narrated by Hastings, who is going to appear in many more Poirot mysteries. After being wounded in the war, Hastings is in Styles staying with some of his friends. Emily Ingelthrop, who is the mistress of Styles, is murdered by poisoning. Enter Hercule Poirot, an old friend of Hastings, who happened to stay in the same village. As usual the husband, Mr. Ingelthrop, who is going to be most benefited by the lady's death is the prime suspect. But as you know, the prime suspect is never the actual culprit in detective novels. So once Mr. Ingelthrop's innocence is proven, what will Poirot do next?

This first novel of Christie was a best-seller and was rightfully so. It started this golden era of crime fiction and introduced, maybe, the most loved detective till date. Christie is very close to perfection in this one with the plot and methods. 

Don't miss this one if you like Christie. If you haven't read Christie before, this will be a perfect start. 4 out of 5.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Mukesh Kathakal, Jeevithathile nerum narmavum by Mukesh

Seems like memoirs are the current best sellers in Malayalam. Everybody is writing memoirs now a days.

This book has memoirs of Mukesh, the famous Malayalam cine actor. This book proves that Mukesh, famous for his humorous  roles in Malayalam movies has a great sense of humour in real life also. The book mainly has incidents from his college days and some from his initial days as a cine artist. Mukesh has really combined truth and wit to form entertainment.

A light and easy read, recommended especially if you are travelling. 3.5 out of 5.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger

I have a "thing" for books that had been made into a movie. May be because of the very obvious logic that "It has been made into a movie; so it should be good". It will be a good idea to add a tag for such books.

Andrea Sachs, recently graduated with a degree in English aspires to be a writer in some place like "The New Yorker". But she ends up in a fashion magazine as the editor-in chief's personal assistant. Her boss, Miranda Priestly, is a powerful lady in the fashion industry and Andrea's job is supposed to be one "million girls will die for".  But, an alien to fashion and fashion industry, Andrea finds it uncomfortable in her new environment, surrounded by superskinny colleagues in branded clothes. Adding to her misery is her boss, Miranda Priestly, who expects her assistants to be at her service 24X7, sometimes taking care of her laundry and sometimes hiring a new nanny for her kids. Andrea, anyhow, wants to keep this job because continuing in this job for at least a year will make her chances to get into "The New Yorker" bright, because of Miranda's contacts in Magazine publishing. But she has to struggle to keep her identity in the new place as well as to keep her personal life from falling apart. Will she be able to do that? 

The highlight of this book will ofcourse be fashion. Pages are dedicated to explaining the life in fashion magazine publishing.(The character of Miranda Priestly is rumoured to be  based on Anna Wintour, the editor-in-chief of Vogue. Interestingly, Lauren Weisberger was her personal assistant) The storyline easily blends with this. A negative will be that the middle chapters do not add anything to the story but keeps on stressing what is said in the initial chapters. You can easily read only the first and last two chapters without missing much.

Read this if you feel like reading something light. 3 out of 5.