European writers

This tag is associated with 17 posts

Pereira Maintains by Antonio Tabucchi

In the sweltering summer of 1938 in Portugal, a country under the fascist shadow of Spain, a mysterious young man arrives at the doorstep of Spain. His name is Monteiro Rossi. Pereira sees Rossi as the son Pereira never had, but also, in the way of late 19th-century literature, his other self, his political conscience … Continue reading

Liquidation by Imre Kertész

Imre Kertész is an Auschwitz survivor. It seems, without alluding to this fact, the book is about being a survivor. Liquidation, his first novel since winning the Nobel prize in 2002, is basically a fictionalised argument that after Auschwitz, fiction is an unworthy pursuit. Having said all that, Liquidation is a philosophical and cerebral novel. … Continue reading

Desert Divers by Sven Lindqvist

Little known to many, my guilty pleasure is reading travelogues and travel books. I stumbled upon this book and thought it would be a great companion to a trip to the desert. It is part biography, part historical, part travel, part confession sort of a book. The book is arranged in short chapters and the … Continue reading

Woman With Birthmark by Håkan Nesser

I was busy posting my final reviews for my August read and even finished my draft on August wrap-up when I picked Håkan Nesser’s Woman With Birthmark up and finished it within 2 days! What is it with some crime writers that they decide upon a title that give the clues away? The Man from Beijing … Continue reading

The Castle in the Pyrenees by Jostein Gaarder

The severance between us was surgical, and there was no anaesthetic… Solrun and Steinn, two fifty-something former lovers, run into each other some thirty years after a fateful event has driven them apart. It is by coincidence that their encounter takes place at the hotel where they took their refuge many years ago. Can we … Continue reading

The Tiger’s Wife by Téa Obreht

A tiger escapes from the local zoo, padding through ruined streets and onwards, to a ridge above the Balkan village of Galina. His nocturnal visits hold the villagers in terrified thrall. But for one boy (Natalia’s grandfather), the tiger is a thing of magic – Shere Khan awoken from the pages of The Jungle Book. … Continue reading

50 Models for Strategic Thinking (is it really all strategic?)

It is a little of a blog fodder to talk about strategic thinking and decision making model in my otherwise pleasure reading literary book review blog; but models were really what I do at work for awhile and still love them a lot. Pictures do speak a thousand words, a lot of complex management theories … Continue reading

The Orange Girl by Jostein Gaarder

Reading Jostein Gaarder Sophie’s World in 1995 brought me fond memories. It was such a long time ago but I remember it as a piece of important work that I will re-read one day (two copies sitting on my shelves testify for a fervent intent!) “My father died eleven years ago. I was only four then. … Continue reading

Camus: A Romance by Elizabeth Hawes

Although I knew the ins and outs of Morocco, I don’t know much about neighbouring Algeria and its history as a French colony. So, when I first learnt about Albert Camus who writes in French and an Algerian, champion of existential thought, a journalist and an activist, my interest is piqued. But who was Camus, … Continue reading

Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse

Let’s face it, I have trouble spelling Siddhartha… a double d? single d? or a double T? Yet this book intrigues me enough to read it. Here’s why.  Siddhartha is a novel by Hermann Hesse that deals with the spiritual journey of a boy known as Siddhartha from the Indian Subcontinent during the time of … Continue reading


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Ratings Defined

0 = Abandon the book after first chapter

1 = Waste of paper, we will see what the environmentalist say about this!

2 = Skip it, read the book if you have got nothing better to do

2.5 = An average book, easily forgettable.

3 = A good read.

3.5 = A good entertaining read, a page-turner

4 = So glad that I read the book, a book with substance and invaluable for future reference

4.5 = So glad that I read the book, would pester everyone to read it, invaluable, I would want to own it and wouldn't mind a second read (something that I seldom do)

5 = The book is so good that I feel like I am on scale 4 and 4.5, and more, it blew me away and lingers on my head for weeks!

Books Read

JoV's bookshelf: read
Hold Tight
The Fault in Our Stars
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
The Thief
Catching Fire
A Tale for the Time Being
Into the Darkest Corner
The Liars' Gospel
Goat Mountain
Strange Weather In Tokyo
Strange Shores
And the Mountains Echoed
Ten White Geese
One Step Too Far
The Innocents
The General: The ordinary man who became one of the bravest prisoners in Guantanamo
White Dog Fell from the Sky
A Virtual Love
The Fall of the Stone City

JoV's favorite books »
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Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking. - Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)