Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas/Nathar Puthu Varuda Valthukkal!

Still not done with the Quran, so I'll just post about the book I gave my boyfriend:

It's a picture book! Captions in both English and Tamil, available for just 395 rupees at Flipkart, and for considerably more from Amazon.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Sunday book market at Daryaganj!

Not even 3/4 of the way through the Quran, 'cos I'm rushing deadlines (and anyway my iBooks is acting funny now I'm back in Singapore).

So I'll fill this post with images of the lovely Sunday second-hand book market in New Delhi, in the district of Daryaganj, just outside the Jamaa Masjid. Mostly classics and textbooks, as you can see...

But there's some cool stuff hidden in there.

...even an entire section devoted to erotic literature!

Most of this cost from 50 cents to S$4. Only trouble was limiting myself, reminding myself that I had to cart all this shit back home.

They might say print publishing is dying, but its fruits will be with us in Asia for some time to come. Yay for paperbacks!

Friday, December 9, 2011

I wanted to buy a Guru Granth Sahib in Amritsar...

... but the only full English translation available as like, five mega-thick volumes long, with old and crinkled covers. The bookstore owner at the Golden Temple had to present it on a folding book stand when he wanted to show it off: everything's in the original Gurmukhi script, the Latinised transliteration, and English so you get the sound of the original poetry unadulterated for home worship.

Luckily, there was also an introductory book of extracts for dilettantes like me, selling at 80 rupees (20% off the cover price, equivalent to roughly S$2!). Will skim through it on the plane, maybe, since it's easier going than my other holiday reading: Mervyn Peake's Gormenghast and the Quran (halfway through now!).

Did finish Victor Pelevin's Omon Ra, though. 'Sgood!

Now, could I ask you folks: what should I read for my India book? Kalidasa's Shakuntala? Salman Rushdie's The Satanic Verses? Mahasweta Devi? The Penguin edition of the Upanisads? Chetan Bhagat's 2 States? Or the Guru Granth Sahib?

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Progress update

I'm only about a quarter of the way through the Quran, which I'm actually reading off a .pdf file on my iPhone, so I'm temporarily leaving you with this TED talk from another, more committed Quran reader:

Incidentally I'm also in India with my mother: we're currently in an obscenely lovely heritage hotel that would quite probably coincide with the Muslim vision of paradise. Lucky us!