#ELLEreadinglist: 10 books to devour this month - Elle India

#ELLEreadinglist: 10 books to devour this month

From Paulo Coelho's Hippie to Tasha Suri's Empire Of Sand

BY Neville Bhandara | January 14th, 2019

“For me, reading is not a hobby, it is a passion, and my life. If I do not read, I feel I may die. So, I keep reading to live long.” Benyamin, Author, Jasmine Days

If You See Me, Don’t Say Hi, Neel Patel, Penguin Random House

This debut book of short stories is all about cultural collisions and juxtapositions, told from the perspective of first- and second-generation Indian Americans trying to navigate the pitfalls of un-belonging, as race, class, love, and the conflict between traditional beliefs and modern rituals try to trip them up.


Empire Of Sand, Tasha Suri, Hachette

This historical fantasy debut is inspired by Mughal India. Love, magic, intrigue and deception come together to make this story of a girl caught between her parents’ incongruent backgrounds a rollercoaster ride.


Hippie, Paulo Coelho, Penguin Random House

Everyone’s favourite writer-philosopher’s newest novel is also his most autobiographical. He takes us back in time to the world of a generation that longed for peace and love, above all else. 


Fierce Fairytales & Other Stories to Stir Your Soul, Nikita Gill, Hachette

Say goodbye to damsels in distress and hello to new-age role models—fearless princesses, a woke Little Mermaid, and even a reimagined Wicked Witch, all accompanied by the author’s own hand-drawn illustrations. This feminist fairy-tale makeover is recommended reading for kids of all ages.


Stillborn Season, Radhika Oberoi, Speaking Tiger

The novel opens in the aftermath of Indira Gandhi’s assassination in October 1984, as Delhi burns. Years later, the protagonist tries to piece together fragments from her childhood. But asking those who would rather forget the past to remember it, comes at a price.


Sweet Shop, Amit Chaudhuri, Penguin Random House

This is the Commonwealth Prize-winning novelist’s second book of verse in 14 years. It’s an ode to Kolkata, while simultaneously being an observation on culture and identity. 


Milk Teeth, Amrita Mahale, Westland

The first fiction title under Westland’s Context imprint, this book is about Bombay; not just the city, but the emotion. Set in the freshly hopeful economically liberal India of the ’90s, it follows Ira, an idealistic journalist, and Kartik, who works for a corporation while leading a torturous double life. 


Lethal White, Robert Galbraith, Hachette

The fourth in the series (after The Cuckoo’s Calling, The Silkworm and Career Of Evil), it’s just as gripping as its predecessors. It shadows private eye Cormoran Strike through the alleys of London, down the halls of Parliament and into the countryside in his quest to solve a mystery. 


Calm The F**k Down, Sarah Knight, Hachette

This is the latest in the appropriately titled ‘No F*cks Given’ series from the writer behind The Life-Changing Magic Of Not Giving A F**k. It’s for the anxious beast inside all of us—the one that makes you overthink and obsess to the point of oblivion. It’s about acknowledging the hurdles, picking up the pieces and getting on with your life. Because ain’t nobody got time for that.


Women & Power, Mary Beard, Hachette

A year on from the start of #MeToo, the classicist examines the evolution of feminist discourse, and traces how women have been treated over the centuries—with everyone from the Greek goddess Athena to Hillary Clinton making an appearance. 


3 books on Benyamin’s shelf:

Jerusalem The Biography, ‎Simon Sebag Montefiore
Flights, Olga Tokarczuk
Milkman, Anna Burns