Kriti Chetri

“That I can read and be happy while I am reading, is a great blessing.” – Anthony Trollope.

What is better than books to feel manifold emotions without actually going through them? Here I have five picks for you to dive into this New Year.

Circe, Madeline Miller

Abandoned and banished, Circe is a strong character, who has built her own identity and is known for her powers, despite being the daughter of the Sun God Helios. She is so powerful that she is seen as a threat to the gods. Reading about her and her journey will ignite a sense of strength in the reader.

To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee

Only when we look at the world and its rules through the eyes of a child, do we realise how absurd they are. Scout, a six-year-old girl, will take you with her on a journey where her perspective will open your mind towards many things that you uncritically accepted so far. Harper Lee explores the irrationality of adult attitudes towards race and class.

The Namesake, Jhumpa Lahiri

This novel will take you on a journey of conflicts: of generation gap and cultural ambiguity, through which our own fears and regrets are reflected. It teaches us that only forgiveness and acceptance can overcome guilt. Also, the importance of culture is very well reflected through many events in the story. It is a must-read as it makes you realise the importance of so many little things we tend to ignore.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Stephen Chbosky

“We accept the love we think we deserve” – if this does not ring a bell, I do not know what will. This is a story that will instantly warm your heart. Love is not as complex as we think, and Charlie will teach you how you can love without the complexities that people usually attach to it. It is a story that will remain with you forever.

The White Tiger, Aravind Adiga

Want to know your country better? Want to know the depths of some sections of society of which you rarely think about? Then, this is the perfect pick. Darkly humorous and witty, this winner of the Man Booker Prize 2008 is definitely worthy of all the praise and attention. There is a boldness to the writing that you cannot ignore. The truths that are exposed will leave you thinking. This is a powerful story that every Indian should read.

Go ahead and pick up your read. As Neil Gaiman said, “Books were safer than other people anyway”. You know, he wasn’t lying after all.

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