Romance, business and philosophy (IANS Books This Weekend)

New Delhi, July 8 (IANS) Immerse yourself in two distinct love stories, understand the machinery behind the markets that dominate our lives and flick through a philosophical story about sight and perception. This is what the IANS bookshelf offers its readers this weekend.

1. Book: A Silver Dawn; Author: Leena Varghese; Publisher: HarperCollins; Pages: 176; Price: Rs 250

Talented choreographer Clarissa Milagres Silvera is beautiful, young and widowed and intensely mistrustful of men. With a violent marriage behind her, she is now determined to be independent, both emotionally and financially.

Leon Rodriguez, a hotelier tycoon with less than humble beginnings has been drawn to her since he was a teenager. Now successful, he approaches Clary’s family for her hand in marriage. Even as he patiently woos his stoic love, Leon realizes he must protect her from the sadistic mafioso Igor Chekanov, who is eyeing Clary’s family estate.

Will Clary trust Leon enough to accept his love? Will Leon keep her safe regardless? What is Igor’s motive? Is time running out for them?

2. Book: Neon Moon; Authors: Tanuj Solanki; Publisher: HarperCollins; Price: Rs 499; Pages: 216

The protagonist is a bruised man, adrift, keening for a lost love. His sorrow submerges everything: his agony is truest, his epiphanies greatest. His true love, Anne Marie, has left him. He has an awkward encounter with a girl who pretends to be a lesbian. Then, he finds Noon, just the sort of woman who might mend or again break his wounded heart. He also finds Orhan, who may or may not be the son he never had.

Here is a debut novel once pensive and feral, cutting down to our most private tragedies and to that shameful inference we must all some day come to: We are neither heroes nor insects.

3. Book: Marketology; Authors: Ray Fisman and Tim Sullivan; Publisher: John Murray Learning; Pages: 206; Price: Rs 399;

Marketology reveals the machinery behind the markets that dominate our lives. We’re not talking commodity markets or grocery stores, but rather the truly transformational markets that have infiltrated how we live every day – from e-commerce businesses like Amazon, products of the sharing economy like Uber and dating sites to how charities operate. How we interact with one another and how we get the stuff we want have been fundamentally changed by ideas from one discipline: Economics.

The book takes you behind the scenes, revealing the ideas that have made this revolution possible. While the world works a whole lot more efficiently that it used to, we are paying a price in autonomy, privacy and control. Effectively, we’ve all become part of a grand experiment — subject to the whims of economists and businesses that are remaking our world.

4. Book: Blind; Author: Joginder Paul; Publisher: Harper Perennial; Pages: 238; Price: Rs 350

In the home for the blind that Baba runs, the residents can see. Sharfu sees through fingers that weave bamboo strands into beautiful baskets. Even blinded by desire, Roni sees through her lovers. Bhola keeps a watchful eye over his friends using his intuition and guile. Yet, when Baba, guardian and mentor to them all, regains his sight in an accident, all he sees is a corrupt and decadent world.

The author tells an incisive story about sight and perception and how they impact many facets of human existence — territoriality, greed, selfishness, corruption, acceptance and discovery. A powerful metaphor for India itself, the book examines a society that is crippled by spiritual and moral degeneration. Sparked off by a visit to a home for the blind in Nairobi, the story asks: Of what use is sight to those who only look and don’t see?

–IANS

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