It is that time of year when we
- cannot believe another year has gone by and
- simultaneously ponder on what a long year it was.
The quixotic nature of time – once again making a fool of us all.
It is also the time I look back fondly on the books that lit up my inner world, and take a moment or two to jot down all the notable titles, read other people’s lists, and make jolly to-read lists for the coming year, and so much more.
I thought I was scatter-brained, had a lot going on, and therefore, my reading took a hit. But it seemed to be the other way round. Reading, once again seemed to have worked its magic in helping me through 2022.
There were quite a few books in this genre. Only mentioning the ones that stood out in my mind for various reasons. (Not because of the content alone, but also time of year when it seemed to have been relevant, how much I managed to absorb of new ideas etc)
- Emperor of Maladies – Siddhartha Mukherjee
- Chasing Science at Sea – Racing Hurricanes, Stalking Sharks, and Living Undersea with Ocean Experts – Ellen Prager
- Secrets of Infinity – 150 answers to an engima – Antonia Lamua – Editor
- A Crack in Creation – Jennifer Doudna & Samual Strenberg
- World Peace – & Other 4th grade achievements – John Hunter – The first part of this article was published in The Hindu titled Collective Effort dated 10th April 2022
- This is your mind on plants – Michael Pollen
- I am not a dinosaur – by Will Lach
- The Alice Network – Kate Quinn (this one is a fictional account of real life events of female spies who used to smuggle messages across borders at considerable peril to themselves.) The daughter told me that Audrey Hepburn’s (Of Roman Holiday fame) was also well known for her efforts during this period when she held underground ballet concerts and so on to help people during the miserable times of the Second World War, and many times risked being caught and hoping to get off easily because of her diminutive stature and size.
- Women of Troy – Pat Barker
- A Blizzard of Polar Bears – Alice Henderson (A good racing thriller for airport reading)
- Akimbo and the Elephant – Alexander McCall Smith
- The Blue Book of Nebo – Manon Steffan Ros (What happens after a nuclear war – I am sure many of us have pondered what the aftermath of an apolcalypse would be like. This book that does just that.)
- Young Mozart – William Augel (hilarious! )
- Plus my standard dose of R K Narayan, Miss Read & P G Wodehouse– whose wise and irreverent view of the world, I find refreshing and a regular tonic to life.
- Project Hail Mary – Andy Weir
- Daughter of the Deep – Rick Riordan
- Bewilderment – Richard Powers (This is one of the best books I’ve read – highly recommended. Stays with you for a long time)
Special Children’s Books:
- Every Turtle Counts – Sara Hoagland Hunter (lovely depiction of a child on the autistic spectrum – it helps to have neuro-diversity in books so we all know acceptance of diversity)
- Oh! The Places You’ll Go – Dr Seuss
- The Peace Tree from Hiroshima: The Little Bonsai with a Big Story – Sandra Moore, Kazumi Wilds. Tuttle Publishing
- Listening to the Stars – Jocelyn Burner Bell – discovery of neutron stars and being denied the Nobel
- My heart is a compass / Deborah Marcero
- Mr Rabbit and the Lovely Present – Charlotte Zolotov, Illustrated by Maurice Sendak – Caldecott
- Sky full of bucket lists – by Shobhana Kumar (This book went on to the win the coveted Tagore Prize for literature and very well deserved win too)
- A Thousand Mornings – Mary Oliver (esp the fox poem)
- Black candle : poems about women from India, Pakistan, and Bangaladesh / Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
How can there be no magic in the list?
- Ickabog – By J.K. Rowling
- Tehanu – Ursula K Le Guin
Please share your reads with me. Would love to get started on my reading list for 2023.