Bookless in Baghdad by Shashi Tharoor
Reflections on Writing and Writers

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'A fluid and powerful writer, one of the best in a generation of Indian authors' (New York Times Book Review), Shashi Tharoor, the acclaimed author of six books, all published by Arcade, is once again at his provocative best. Supremely personal, yet always probing and analytical, this brilliant collection is part memoir, part essay and literary criticism. In the title piece, we learn what Iraqis go through in their beleaguered land merely to get hold of a book, and how selling books from their own libraries on the street helps some put bread on the table. Tharoor reminisces about growing up with books in India and discusses the importance of the Mahabharata in Indian life and history. There is also a poignant homage to Chilean poet Pablo Neruda, whose home was raided by the oppressive military regime while he lay on his deathbed, and who famously said: 'There is only one thing of danger for you here-my poetry!' Pondering world affairs, Tharoor declares that 'the defining features of today's world are the relentless forces of globalization-the same forces used by the terrorists in their macabre dance of death and destruction.' Tharoor's astute views on Salman Rushdie, India's love for P. G. Wodehouse, Kipling, Pushkin, le Carr, V. S. Naipaul, and Winston Churchill make for fascinating reading. His insightful takes on Hollywood and Bollywood will intrigue even the most demanding cinephile. Together, these 39 pieces reveal the inner workings of one of today's most eclectic writers.

About Shashi Tharoor

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Published July 11, 2005 by Arcade Publishing. 288 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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Narayan, faulted for “the narrowness of his vision, the predictability of his prose.” Meanwhile, Tharoor frequently plugs his own novels: “Mining the Mahabharata” acknowledges the role the 2,000-year-old Indian epic poem played in the shaping of his Great Indian Novel, and “How Riot Nearly Caused...

May 15 2005 | Read Full Review of Bookless in Baghdad: Reflecti...

BC Books

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So, Tharoor brings together a mixed bag of his own book reviews and columns on writers, books and literary musings from the past decade or so in this collection.

Sep 16 2005 | Read Full Review of Bookless in Baghdad: Reflecti...

India Today

Shashi Tharoor says he writes, as George Bernard Shaw famously said, for the same reason a cow gives milk: "It is inside me, it's got to come out, and in a real sense I would die if I couldn't."

Feb 28 2005 | Read Full Review of Bookless in Baghdad: Reflecti...

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