It’s almost Spring time!
February has been an interesting reading month with a bit more variety. A month that has been more about quality than quantity with work taking priority. And there have been quite a few books that have rolled over to March. As always, almost all have been digital reads.
As Blogchatter has been focusing on translated books, I picked two. A translated book and a book on translation. Strangely, I did not pick a romance read in the month of love. Maybe I will make it up in March…. maybe!
Here is the list of books I read last month. Hope you find some picks that appeal to you too.
Books I read:
Himachal Ke Rang: Katha Pachisi Edited by Vandana Bhagra
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐, Genre: Anthology, Format: Kindle Ebook
There is a certain joy and charm in reading a book in Hindi. Edited by Vandana Bhagra, the duo-lingual Himachal ke Rang: Katha Pachisi is a collection of 25 short stories in Hindi and English written by Himachal’s writers above the age of 40.
Short stories on real-life experiences based in Himachal. Thought-provoking reads exploring not just culture and traditions but also women’s education, poverty, exploitation, and ecological issues. I listened to the book on Keekli’s podcast channel and it was a treat.
Highly recommended. Check out the detailed review.
Before Your Memory Fades by Toshikazu Kawaguchi
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐, Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Format: Audiobook
I finally got around to reading Before Your Memory Fades in February. The third book in the Before the Coffee Gets Cold series is a compilation of four interlinked short stories. Four visitors who wish to travel into the past for another chance at goodbye.
As much as I enjoyed the other two books, this one was a letdown. All four stories followed a similar arc and by the time I got to the third one, I could predict what would happen next.
That said, I am looking forward to the fourth book, Last Chance to Say Goodbye, in November 2023.
Chasing the Clouds by Debeshi Gooptu
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐, Genre: Short story, Format: Kindle ebook
I have always enjoyed Debeshi Gooptu’s writing with Mr. Eashwar’s Daughter and Gurgaon Diaries being my favorites.
Chasing the Clouds is a beautiful short story set in the mountains. A story that is not new or path-breaking. But charming in the way it is narrated.
Don’t want to give too much away. All of 18 pages. Do give it a read.
Translating Myself and Others by Jhumpa Lahiri
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐, Genre:Non-fiction, Format: Audiobook
Who owns the language? Why translation by an “outsider” is objectionable. Why translation by the authors themselves often results in a rewrite.
Translating Myself and Others is a collection of essays on the undervalued craft. From Ovid’s myth to European history to the contemporary, the author explores the art of both writing and translating. And struggles with the most common roadblock. How does one translate when the other language does not include the corresponding word?
Although it might seem a bit dry and is more targeted at authors, an interesting read nonetheless.
Women Warriors in Indian History by Yugal Joshi
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐, Genre: Biography, Format: Kindle ebook
Think of warrior women in Indian history. The first and probably the only name that comes to mind is Rani Lakshmibai. We rarely read about the Gondwana queen, Rani Durgavati, or the Maratha queen, Maharani Tarabai.
Women Warriors in Indian History explores the life of ten such women. What makes the book unique is that the life story of each is narrated by a contemporary historical character. Marco Polo, Emperor Jahangir, and Tantya Tope are just a few.
As you read the book, you can’t help but notice. Each woman had to face social and political opposition not for their capabilities but simply for the fact that they were a woman. Do pick up the book.
I am currently reading three books in three different formats.
The first one is ARC for the highly anticipated Dust Child by Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai. I am about halfway in and it is just as good as the previous book. Looking forward to sharing a detailed review soon.
I am also reading a review copy of Not Quite a Disaster after All by Buku Sarkar. It is the perfect pick for femme-march. I am enjoying the beautiful prose by the debut author. Review coming soon.
Last but definitely not least is The Blue Women by Anukrti Upadhyay, one of my favorite authors. There is something atmospheric about her writing. And these short stories are no different.
I have way too many ongoing reads so I am keeping it simple with only a couple of books on my March TBR.
The first one is How Creativity Rules the World: The Art and Business of Turning Your Ideas into Gold by Maria Brito which has been on my shelf for a while.
I haven’t had a chance to pick The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley yet. It has been moved to my March TBR.
As expected, the reading challenges are on track with 11 books this year.
I read Translating Myself And Others for the Project Backlist challenge and Women Warriors In Indian History for the non-fiction challenge. And made a progress on the bingo challenge too.
From the Blogosphere
Resh Susan @ The Book Satchel is back with the book recommendations and her post on 70+ Asian books to reading 2023 is at the top of my list. It includes some of my favorites. I have already added a few to my reading list.
Censorship in the U.S. is more organized now and is targeting schools and libraries. Check out Pages Unbound’s post on Censorship has a New Look.
Do you share negative reviews? Nicole @ Thoughts Stained With Ink’s presents A Case for Negative Book Reviews.
On the topic of book reviews, who are reviews for? Readers? or authors? Check out Lila @ Hardcover Haven‘s On the Question of Who Reviews are For.
We are already into March and you have probably set your reading goal. Aria @ Book Nook Bits discusses Are reading goals worth it?
What have you been reading in February? Do share in the comments below.
This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’ hosted by Cindy D’Silva and Noor Anand Chawla in collaboration with Mads’ Cookhouse.
I’m participating in the #TBRChallenge by Blogchatter.
Photo credit: Canva.com
March 2, 2023 @ 9:22 pm
I read Whereabouts in Feb, translated by Jhumpa Lahiri from Italian. And in December I’d read Before the Coffee Gets Cold. I would like to add BYMF to my list next. Debeshi has been on my mind for some time now since I follow her on Twitter.. I better get a hand on her short story first.
March 3, 2023 @ 9:42 pm
An impressive list of books, Ritu. I have read two though..Himachal ke rang and Women warriors of India. Your reading list has always been so extensive and I really admire you for that.
March 4, 2023 @ 11:30 am
I didn’t even know that so many reading challenges are being hosted. I would love to read Jhumpa Lahirii’s book, as I have not read her works. I am going to keep the calendar of challenges too, just to keep me motivated to read more.
March 5, 2023 @ 10:40 am
Thats truly some list of reads I liked the first 2 caz its compilation of shorts stories.
I admire your read challenge.
March 4, 2023 @ 7:50 pm
I am amazed at the books you’ve read and how well you’ve articulated each of them. I am a voracious reader and many times forget the content of the books I’ve read. Writing a review/blog is a beautiful way to remember and recommend books. I’ll surely check out the books you’ve listed in the blog. starting with Jhumpa Lahiri, whose previous work I’ve read and liked.
March 4, 2023 @ 10:54 pm
Ritu, how do you manage to devour so many books in a year! I absolutely admire you for that and wish to be like you. I have made a note of the recommendations and I really want to read some Hindi works, at least to keep in touch with the language. Thanks, dear…your recommendations have forever been my favorite.
March 5, 2023 @ 12:42 am
Ritu, you always admire. How do you read so many books and write such a good review. Your list is so huge even I get Inspired to read. I would like to read Himachal Ke rang and woman warrior.
March 5, 2023 @ 2:23 am
I wish I could read as much as you! The only books I read in February were the ones of my daughter’s. To help her study. I am definitely reading the one by Jhumpa Lahiri
March 5, 2023 @ 4:15 am
Translating myself and others was such an interesting book to listen to. Especially not knowing anything about the Italian books and authors she mentions, it was quite a learning experience.
March 5, 2023 @ 10:48 am
I am impressed with your choice of books and I will not deny the fact that its quite different from the regular choices of the seasoned readers. I liked it and decided that in coming time I will ask for your advice when I will be confused regarding the books I should pick to bring variation in my reading style. Coming to the way of your presentation of the books … Its short and crisp … enough to give idea to a reader about the book. Thank you so much for this awesome post.
March 5, 2023 @ 11:23 am
I love the lists you put up. Before your memory fades sounds like an amazing book. I will be adding it to my TBR list. Thanks Ritu…
March 5, 2023 @ 12:53 pm
An amazing list of books you’ve read! Must praise you for the discipline you had to be able to finish all of them in a month! As much as I love reading, I could only sum up 3-5 pages at most a day. I got some amazing recommendations as well!
March 5, 2023 @ 1:21 pm
I was in a need of this to add some books for upcoming months. All these books are new to me and from the details you gave, all these look like intriguing.
March 5, 2023 @ 2:59 pm
That’s a really good start to the year Ritu… congratulations… and as usual, I admire your capacity.
Of all your Feb reads, women warriors of India looks really intersting to me.
March 5, 2023 @ 4:54 pm
You have been going on and on about Dust Child. I will read it for sure. I am also going to read the censorship post you have shared.
March 5, 2023 @ 5:57 pm
I just picked up Before Your Memory Fades- love the summaries you have given and your March list looks super interesting too- can’t wait to see what you read next
March 5, 2023 @ 6:54 pm
Your posts always inspire me to become a better blogger! You really are my gold standard in blogging 😀 I may not have read any of these books, but I look forward to your posts so much!
March 5, 2023 @ 6:57 pm
Whoa, Ritu, that’s quite a collection of books you have there. Just one has been read by me so far. Himachal kae rang. Honestly, you’ve got my respect for your abilities. I will take one year to read all these 🤭.
March 5, 2023 @ 7:34 pm
Even in a lean month you have read so much! Sadly, I have not been able to read much. With work taking some screen time, I want to rest my eyes a bit as I get headaches these days, even with glasses on. Hope to get back to reading soon.
March 5, 2023 @ 9:21 pm
This reading challenge looks amazing , especially for those who love to read but cant manage their time. A great habit for sure. Let me know how to participate. The books are really great to start with especially Jhuma Lahiri, one of my fav authors.
March 5, 2023 @ 10:47 pm
Wow Ritu, I’m amazed at how meticulously you plan your reading and are so committed to completing challenges. Hats off! Women Warriors sounds interesting, so does Himachal ke Rang. Hope they help me break the reader’s block.
March 5, 2023 @ 11:20 pm
Wow, what a great set of books you have read Ritu. I have been wanting to read Before the Coffee Gets Cold Series for a long time now. Also, how do you do so many challenges? Kudos for that. And btw what is ARC ?
March 6, 2023 @ 10:34 am
Reading has taken a bad hit the whole of last year. Hopefully, I can complete my TRB challenge. Thanks for the recommendations, shall pick one from them to make a start for this year,
March 6, 2023 @ 4:52 pm
Very colorful list of translated books, had to read before memory fades and women in mythology. Very useful post for book reviewers.