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HindustanTimes Mon,15 Sep 2014

Book reviews

Arpita Kala and Akshay Kapoor , Hindustan Times  New Delhi, July 02, 2013
First Published: 17:23 IST(2/7/2013) | Last Updated: 16:14 IST(9/7/2013)

Strumming the right strings

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Title: Vanished
Author: Sheela Chari
Price: Rs 250
Published by: Disney-Hyperion
One missing cursed veena, American Born Confused Desi (ABCD) issues and an exciting, eventful trip to India. Meet 11-year old Neela Krishnan and her musically inclined family. She dreams of following in the footsteps of her grandmother, Lalitha Patti, who is an illustrious veena player. All is well in her world barring a few pesky problems such as keeping up with her headstrong best friend, combating stage fright and snapping veena strings.

But all hell breaks loose when her grandmother gifts her an antique veena with a dragon-head peg box. The instrument is apparently cursed and has many hands vying to keep it for themselves. When it is stolen from her on a rainy day after school, Neela embarks on an exciting quest to reclaim her instrument.

Vanished is a well-written and intriguing piece of literature that will make a good read for its intended audience as well as the oldies.

Arpita Kala


A web of lies in here
Title:
A Delicate Truth
Author: John le Carre
Price: Rs 399
Published by: Penguin Books
A web of lies in here John le Carre’s latest novel, A Delicate Truth, takes its own sweet time to build up the story. But when the narrative picks up, it is at a feverish pace, and you have to be quite attentive so as not to miss the finer details in this clever spy thriller.

The tale is about a clandestine counter-terror operation in Britain’s colony, Gibraltar, being carried out to nab a jihadist arms-buyer in 2008 by both British special forces and mercenaries employed by the US. Sir Christopher Probyn, a British diplomat, is sent to the scene as the eyes and ears of an English foreign office minister, who has orchestrated the entire plan. Though ‘Paul’, as Probyn is code-named, is told that the mission is successful, the minister’s private secretary, Toby Bell, finds out three years later that things are not what they seem to be.

Together with a retired Probyn, he sets out to uncover the truth, which is far more sinister than they could have imagined. Throughout their journey, the duo unravels a web of lies about the so-called operation and tries to expose it to the whole world. For fans of spy genre, this book is a captivating read.

Akshay Kapoor

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