Rome: The biography of a city

Wed 24 May 2017 by Thejaswi Puthraya

What's the first thing one picks up when intending to go sightseeing? Most likely a guide book? The popular guide books (like Lonely Planet) cater to more than sights ie food, experiences etc. Christopher Hibbert's "Rome: The biography of a city" is an unconventional guidebook that intertwines history of the …

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The History of Rome

Sun 30 April 2017 by Thejaswi Puthraya

How did Rome end up becoming such an important city? How did it's story start? Michael Grant, tries to compress nearly 1500 years of history into 300 pages. The book's language is simple but condensing so much into a single book is quite overwhelming. Nevertheless, this book is a great …

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The Big Short

Mon 17 April 2017 by Thejaswi Puthraya

How would you feel if you made millions of dollars through trading? In seventh heaven, I guess?

How would you feel if you made millions of dollars betting against the herd? When the herd's collapse could shutter some of the biggest financial institutions and push thousands of home owners on …

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Seabiscuit: An American Legend

Wed 29 March 2017 by Thejaswi Puthraya

Seabiscuit was the horse that held up the spirits of not just it's owner but thousands of Americans during the Great Depression. The horse had gone unnoticed until it came into the stable of Charles Howard, a successful America car dealer. Charles Howard appointed Tom Smith to train the horse …

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Somanatha: The Many Voices of a History

Thu 02 March 2017 by Thejaswi Puthraya

The plunder of Somanatha by Mahmud of Ghazni was supposed to be a watershed moment in Indian history. It is usually summed up as the start of Islamic rule in India and the oppression of majority Hindus.

Romila Thapar investigates if that is the case. She concludes that is not …

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Early India From the Origins to 1300AD

Mon 27 February 2017 by Thejaswi Puthraya

When one generally talks of Indian history, we immediately assume the story of Kings, wars, their golden administration and vilification of the other neighbouring kingdoms. But Romila Thapar's "Early India from the Origins to 1300AD" is a different kind of a history book.

It emphasises little on kings and stories …

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Annihilation of Caste

Sat 28 January 2017 by Thejaswi Puthraya

Annihilation of Caste was supposed to be the last speech to have been delivered by Dr. B.R Ambedkar before he gave up Hinduism and converted to Buddhism. The speech was to have been delivered before an anti-caste organization in Lahore in the 1930s. But the anti-caste group found Ambedkar's …

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Nature's Spokesman

Sat 21 January 2017 by Thejaswi Puthraya

M.Krishnan was amongst India's earliest nature conservationist and policy expert. This book is a collection of short stories on his tryst with nature's creations.

Some of the stories are everyday stories like the author's encounter with a snake in his backyard or with common birds like crows. Others being …

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The Price of Inequality

Mon 16 January 2017 by Thejaswi Puthraya

One of the reasons for the Arab Spring protests in 2010 and the subsequent Occupy movement in the 2012 was the symptom of globalization, rampant inequality.

Joseph Stiglitz, a Nobel Prize awarded economist and the author of this book discusses the causes of inequality and the ways to fix it …

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Alexander the Great

Thu 29 December 2016 by Thejaswi Puthraya

Alexander built one of the largest empires in the shortest time and at a young age. But how did he manage this? Was he blessed with unmatchable valour or did he rule through an iron fist? There were a lot of such questions in my mind before I started reading …

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