I had a fantastic month of reading this time around.

For last months update, please go here.

I decided to make more time for reading this month and went back to my old routine of reading. Finally got around finishing a lot of books I’ve been reading for a while now.

I ended up reading 17 books this month.

The books I read were:

  • Series of 5 books by Ashwin Sanghi They were Rozabal Line, Chanakya’s Chant, Krishna Key, Sialkot Saga, and Keepers of the Kalachakra, in that order.

I think the quality of the books improved one after the other. I felt the author was trying to do a little too much in the first book, there was too much context switching and the rest of books show the ability of the author to learn from that maybe(?) and create a more robust storyline. While the historical references are loosely tied at best, they make for fun reads.

  • The Man who knew too much — G.K. Chesterton This was my first G.K. Chesterton novel and has been on my list for a while. It’s a series of short stories centered around the titular character. It’s the old school detective novel with the stories escalating in the impact of crime being committed. Overall a good read.

  • Reminiscences of Swami Vivekananda I’ve been meaning to read Vivekananda’s lectures for a while now, but, I haven’t gotten around to it. I was presented this book to act as an impetus for me to actually get around to that. I would say that has worked. It’s a collection of people from India and USA’s recollections of Vivekananda and the impact he had on them. At some point it becomes repetitive, but, it does offer insight into the man himself.

  • Not Working — Josh Cohen I’m currently in Singapore and I love working out of the libraries here. While ‘not working’ in one such library I noticed this book, and spent the rest of my free time while at the library reading it. It’s an interesting book, but, the concept I think is not beaten to death. No one disagrees that people need to ‘not work’, I’m on the author’s side, but, it doesn’t offer, atleast for me, any reasonable actions to take to ‘not work’

  • Thus Spoke Zarathustra — Friedrich Nietzsche This is now the hardest book I’ve ever read. This had such an incredible level of detail woven around anecdotes, I found it hard to keep up at times and used to reader companion for reference. Took me 3 months, totally worth it.

  • The Case for India — Annie Besant More of a compiled speech than a book, but, I’ve been trying to read back to pre-1930s Indian Independence movement and I found Annie Besant to be an interesting character who played a significant role. It’s interesting how the ask back then was Home Rule with a surrender to the crown.

  • Haroun and the Sea of Stories — Salman Rushdie This is actually my first Rushdie book. I picked this up in a book cafe.
    A book written for YA/Kids, I found this superbly joyful to read. It’s a one sitting relaxing book that I did not want to put down. Complete stress buster with lovely puns all over the book.

  • Uncle Tom’s Cabin — Harriet Beecher Stowe Finally got around to reading this. The book is somewhat tedious to read, the story moves at an alternating slow and moderate pace. But, I can imagine the impact of such a book written at the time of its writing. Offers interesting takes on self-subjugation and the pain of separation when a person has no right to a ‘soul’.

  • Mystics and Saints of Islam — Claud Field A collection of stories about important figures from Islamic history. Has a lot of focus on Sufism. Lead to quite a few interesting book recommendations.

  • Conquest of Happiness — Bertrand Russell I’ve read one Russell book before, In Praise of Idleness and much like this book, I think this has had a lasting impact on me. I will be writing a separate post on the concepts in this book.

  • Being Peace — Thich Nhat Hanh A book writing in simple language by a Zen Meditation master. In some ways it was exactly what I needed right now, reinforced some concepts and introduced alternative methods to practice being ‘at peace’, intend to keep trying some of these methods in the near future.

  • The Longevity Solution — Dr. James DiNicolantonio, Dr. Jason Fung I’ve read some of the authors posts on Medium in the past and I found them quite interesting. Tries to debunk quite a few old studies which modern health recommendations are based on and provides recommendations on the belief that age old practices which are backed by studies are the way to go.

  • Jerusalem: The Biography — Simon Sebag Montefiore I visited Jerusalem about a year ago and I’ve been meaning to read up more about it for a while now. Picked this book up at a relatives house and my god what an incredible read this is. So detailed and informative while keeping the magic of the place alive. Highly recommended.

I hope I covered all 17 books.

I also setup my Goodreads (finally!), do follow me there for more regular updates on my reading.

Thank you for reading what I’m reading

Sainath