Books I’m Taking With Me

1. ഒരു ദേശത്തിന്റെ കഥ – എസ്. കെ. പൊറ്റേക്കാട്ട് – it’s become one of my favourites- though I’ve read it, I like to relive certain portions now and then.

2. ആരോഗ്യനികേതനം – താരാശങ്കര്‍ ബാനര്‍ജി – recommended by Ammamma. Searched for it at many book shops and finally got it through Harimama’s publisher contacts.

3. മയ്യഴിപ്പുഴയുടെ തീരങ്ങളില്‍ – എം. മുകുന്ദന്‍ – recommended by Harimama.

4. പ്രഥമപ്രതിശ്രുതി – ആശാപൂര്‍ണ്ണാദേവി – Jnanpeeth award winning novel, first in a brilliant trilogy on the lives and position of women in the Indian society. Have read the other two. I feel they’re relevant even today.

5. പഥേര്‍ പാഞ്ചാലി – ബിഭൂതിഭൂഷണ്‍ ബന്ദ്യോപാധ്യായ

6. ഖസാക്കിന്റെ ഇതിഹാസം – ഒ.വി.വിജയന്‍ – haven’t read this classic yet.

7. ഓടയില്‍ നിന്ന് – പി. കേശവദേവ്

8. നാടന്‍ പ്രേമം, മൂടുപടം – പൊറ്റേക്കാട്ടിന്റെ രണ്ടു നോവലുകള്‍

9. The Complete Works of Kahlil Gibran

10. Selected Essays of Rabindranath Tagore

11 thoughts on “Books I’m Taking With Me

    1. Of course I like Basheer! 🙂 I haven’t read much of his works though. I’ve got his complete works in two volumes, but it’s too bulky to carry with me.

      1. 🙂 Bhoomiyude avakaashikal vaayichittundaavumallo?

        I like all his works, and guess I’ve read most of the sampoorna krithikal. If you want you can buy select works by him – costs only 20 or 30 Rs per piece (i.e one book like Baalyakaalasakhi or Premalekhanam or Entuppuppaakkoraana .. I also recommend “Jeevithanizhalpaadukal” and “Janmadinam”. Brought back life on many lonely days 🙂

        I have some of these here, but not sampoorna krithikal, and regret it.

  1. always wanted to read pottekat.

    I had read some of mukundan’s short stories. Frankly, I thought they were banal, both in content and narrative. Banality in content is common among writers. But in narrative, it is an unpardonable offence. May be his novels are better.

    Khasak is nice. Usual ‘let me get away from all this’ theme. But imagery and writing style is amazing.

    I would like to add two.

    One, Ini Njan Urangatte by PK Balakrishnan. I have read it a thousand times. Really brilliant work. If I write a novel sometime, this would be my benchmark. Huge amount of creativity. Mahabharata tales have been weaved together so unbelievably well. No emotional crap. Strong language, courageous approach to realities. Characterizations of Karnan, Draupadi are particularly well done.

    Two, Marthadavarma by CV Ramanpillai. Timeless classic. Thrilling narrative.

  2. I don’t know what is wrong with me, but I tried reading the acclaimed “Khasakinte ithihasam” and got bored within the first few pages; did not complete it!

    1. It’s a difficult read.

      Reading Malayalam novels requires some patience. It’s different from reading English books. I remember Vasu telling me once that when you finish reading a Malayalam novel, you wouldn’t feel that you’ve accomplished anything. But they give you a different perspective on life.

      1. Well, I wouldn’t like to read a book as merely an “intellectual exercise”. I also don’t like authors who use tough language to express their ideas.

  3. Good list.

    Basheer would be a welcome addition.

    I recommend “Vyasanum Vighneshwaranum” by Anand and “Higuitta” by N S Madhavan too.

    If possible, get some good Tagore collection too. Especially including the ones like “Ghare Baiyre”…… He was a unique genre of a person who is not to be evaluated by a Gitanjali alone; a true internationalist and a mystic humanist, who considered nature as a part of our existence and not a resource ….

  4. About ‘khasakinte ithihasam’

    I had read it a few years bak….its a very difficult read for the language used is a dialect spoken by ezhavas and muslims in palakkad 50-60 years bak…..although the dialect was almost disappearing even during my dad’s childhood and although he never used it, he could identify it…he was ok with the book and cud follow it, i found it very hard….although i finished it eventually, couldnt understand a lot

  5. The canvas of a reader should be broad…
    The list does not have any KAVITHA, stories…?
    and alas..!!! No female writers…!!!

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