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Promising titles to refresh your reading list

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As the heat waves of summer are replaced by rain and weather in the Capital seems pleasant, it is probably time to refresh your reading list. Sit by your window watch the tiny drops of rain kiss the earth while a pigeon here and a sparrow there rejoices the beginning of the end of this summer and engage yourself in some of these fresh promising titles.

From the author of Tiger Hills, Sarita Mandanna, comes another epic tale, about war and its legacy, and its impact on family and friendship. At the outset of the Great War in 1914, New England Yankee James Stonebridge and Louisiana native Obadaiah Nelson are among the handful of young, idealistic Americans, who have volunteered with the French Foreign Legion. Despite their very different backgrounds, James and Obadaiah forge a deep friendship that helps them endure the brutalities of war. A series of tragic events however tests their bond to breaking point. Good Hope Road, published by Aleph Book Company is Sarita Mandanna’s second novel and it is just the right time to grab the title.

Tired of working in the corporate world? Here comes Dr N S Rajan, the Group Chief Human Resource officer at the Tata Sons, Quote Me If You Can, a compilation of his thoughts about how to be happy at work and in the corporate world. Deepak Parekh, Chairman of HDFC Limited found the book immensley thought provoking and said, "A one-of-its-kind book imminently readable, inspiring and thought provoking quotes for every day of the year. Rajan has a refreshingly original take on leadership and people management.” Banmali Agrawala, President and CEO, GE South Asia also shared similar views about the book stating, "The simplicity of Rajan&’s book compels the reader to look inwards and ask some very basic questions, which we often lose sight of in our daily grind. The essence applies not just to “work” but to all aspects of living. This book is an excellent anchor for one and all, to remain inspired and humble at all times." The book is published by Penguin Books India and is slated to release in August.

 Are you a Bollywood freak? Bollywood baddie Amjad Khan&’s son Shadaab has written an exciting crime thriller, an engrossing murder mystery set in the big bad world of Bollywood. Nikhil Kapoor, Bollywood&’s biggest film director, made this shocking proclamation to his friends one night. Sameer Ali Khan, Bollywood&’s badshah, seethed with rage. Nyra Oberoi, filmdom&’s queen-in-waiting, turned her face away. Ishan Malhotra, producer extraordinaire, laughed out loud, while Kiki Fernandez, dress designer to the stars, looked afraid. Two nights later, both Nikhil and his wife, leading actress Mallika Kapoor, were found dead. It is up to Senior Inspector Hoshiyar Khan to solve the puzzle. Murder in Bollywood from Penguin Books India is just what any Bollywood frak may be looking forward to.

Grab your copy!

Then there is Katha: Tell a Story, Sell a Dream by Shoba Narayan, about the art of storytelling in business. It tells you why stories are important, when you must tell a story and how to find and tell the most effective tales, whether you are communicating to stakeholders, business associates, employees or colleagues. Written in simple, lucid prose, Katha demonstrates why the art of storytelling is perhaps the number one skill and how the power of storytelling may well be the key to achieving your goals.

Amartya Sen’s The Country of First Boys, published by Oxford University Press is also slated to release soon. The title includes essays on justice, identity, deprivation, inequalities, gender politics, education and the media. The book has a foreword by Gopalkrishna Gandhi and is said to be based on Amartya Sen’s intellectual journey through the past and present to seek an understanding of India’s history and the demands of its future. The themes of these essays include the hardened and extreme nature of inequality in India, and what can be done about it.

Get a taste of the gold and grab Portrait of a Serial Killer and Other Uncollected Writings by Khushwant Singh (edited by Mala Dayal). There are nearly one hundred anthologies of Khushwant Singh&’s writings in print today. The material in these books is usually recycled and reconfigured depending on the focus of the anthology in question. This book collects material that has never been published before in book form. Drawn from sources like the Illustrated Weekly of India, Yojana, and New Delhi, as well as unpublished manuscripts in the possession of the anthology&’s editor, Mala Dayal, the reader will find here extraordinary pieces on crime, war, caste, religion, larger-than-life personalities, politics, travel, philosophy and all the other areas that Khushwant Singh wrote about better than practically any Indian writer before or since. The book will be published on the 100th anniversary of his birth in August.

Rethinc by TT Ram Mohan, published by Penguin Books India, which deals with three very important themes decentralisation, executive pay and corporate governance, that are live issues in India at the moment, is another promising title. The book contends that the solution lies in the near-total dismantling of hierarchy or the creation of a bossless organisation. In such an organisation, the structure is flat, employees operate through self-driven teams, there is peer review, power rests on one&’s contribution and not one&’s title and the organizational purpose goes beyond the making of profit, and several other features. So what are you waiting for? Refresh your reading list and enjoy the company of these brilliant titles.