Read: Sunila Gupte, Author, Quest for the Quetzal Feather
The Mahabharat by Ved Vyasa
It is a book for life and contains every possible emotion, character and situation under the sun. It shows you deviousness and cunning, as well as the ridiculous. You can reflect on it and get answers to life. I enjoy Valmiki’s Ramayan as well.
To kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
It’s funny, serious and happy at the same time. The people there are fantastic! Scout, Atticus and Jem — I love them all. The story is very gripping.
Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh
I didn’t want the book to end; I wanted to know what would happen to the people there. You get so involved in all their stories.
My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell
Set in Corfu, it is the story of a mad, crazy, warm family, whose closeness can be seen in their fights, jokes and squabbles.
Bombay...The Cities Within by Sharada Dwivedi and Rahul Mehrotra
I am a Bombayite (dare not say Mumbaikar after this book!) and spent my school and college years here. What a brilliantly researched book; it is a mine of information! The photographs are so telling.
Listen: Abhishek Mathur, guitarist, Advaita
Pink Floyd Dark Side of the Moon
The whole album flows from start to end like one long song or story. It epitomises the idea of a concept album.
Radiohead KID A
This album has many epic songs and incredible textural experimentation with electronic soundscapes, samples and crazy recording and production tricks. The soul of the songs and raw emotion, however, stands out.
Ustaad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan with Michael Brook Night Song
Every song is a gem. Ustaadji’s heavenly voice is given an amazing lift with phenomenal arrangements by Michael Brook whose groovy bass-lines are one of the highlights all through the album.
Parachutes is filled with slow unassuming melancholic songs and yet it became a huge hit in this age of radio friendly crass music and one hit wonders.
The Chemical Brothers Come With Us
One of my favourite albums growing up and getting into the whole electronic scene. Who says DJs can’t be soulful? This is as good an album in terms of the quality of the songs and the musicality as anything a regular band can make.
Eat: Clinton Cooper, executive chef at Four Seasons Hotel
The Table, Colaba
The chef, Alex Sanchez is a good mate. I like his cutting-edge approach to food. His menu offers some great flavours with a contemporary touch but it has its own personality which is what sets the place apart for me. I love the chicken wings, Kolerabi Bourguignon and the Zucchini Spaghetti.
Two One Two Bar and Grill, Worli
The outside dining area is chic and has a wonderful vibe. The kind that makes you want to sit there for hours accompanied by nothing but their delicious martinis. They do a great job with their pizzas and cocktails. The best is the Baked Brie.
Le 15 Pâtisserie, Worli
Great macaroons. What more do I need to say? I have a soft spot for pastry and this wonderful patisserie always manages to hit the right chord.
This is the greatest place to eat in the early hours after a night out.
It is great to see international brands such as this starting to migrate to Mumbai. The trend raises the bar. My favourites are the Peking Duck with Ossetra Caviar and the Hakka Braised Pork Belly.
Watch: Aditi Rao Hydari, actor
Andaz Apna Apna (1994)
This film gives me a giggling fit everytime I watch it. The humour, the acting, the whole narrative is superlative. There are so many funny scenes that it is hard to pick one as a favourite.
Pan’s Labyrinth (2006)
It delves into a child’s mind, which is full of magic and fantasy, and how they look at big problems. The several strange and magical creatures were cool as was the new side of life.
Love Actually (2003)
A wonderful romantic comedy. It makes me smile and tear up at the same time. Though an ensemble, everyone was perfectly placed in the film.
Shawshank Redemption (1994)
How can you not love it? Revenge, drama, suspense, excellent performances, the journey of a man in jail and his redemption.
Roman Holiday (1953)
Audrey Hepburn, Audrey Hepburn, Audrey Hepburn —need I say more? She is extremely beautiful and not to forget her awesome pairing with Gregory Peck.