​How to Travel without Seeing – A travel book unlike any other

​Ever since I started my Spanish classes I have taken an insane interest in the language and the Spanish-speaking world. And since I knew I wouldn’t be travelling to any of these countries in the near future, I decided to bring this world closer to me. And so started my crazy research on the topic that led me to pick up at least twenty-five books during the course of three months. Insane, right? I’m not even calculating all the money I spent for fear I would make myself feel guiltier than I already am.

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Bookish List – My top 5 reads of 2018

This year was interesting, yet disappointing for me in terms of reading. I started the year with the intention to give the Hindustan Times’ Brunch Book Challenge to read fifty books a go, but sadly, due to unexpected circumstances I had to suspend active reading for the greater part of the year. But I did manage to read at least a dozen books comfortably, without having to race through them or be compelled to pick up short stories or slimmer books. Here’s my top five for this year in no particular order, followed by the complete list.

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​Headscarves and Hymens – A much-needed reorientation of society

It’s been a while since I last blogged and also almost a month since I finished Mona Eltahawy’s Headscarves and Hymens: Why the Middle East needs a sexual revolution. But I just couldn’t get myself to pick up another book since I was ‘not done processing’ this one enough. There’s much to read, explore and comprehend fully. And I knew the best way to get a wholesome grasp on a book is to write about it.

Mona Eltahawy is as much of an inspiring person, as she is intimidating for me. An award-winning journalist, she is an international public speaker on feminism, Arab and Muslim issues. She has written hallowed publications like The New York Times, The Washington Post, Foreign Policy and a correspondent for Reuters among others. Her body of work, her arguments and thinking only leave me gaping in awe and hoping to meet her some day.

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​The Sea, The Sea – A perfect holiday read

It’s been a long time since I’ve written about a book, but that’s because I’ve been busy travelling and there’s this particular book, The Sea, The Sea by Iris Murdoch that I was nose deep in. I took my time to finish it, reading at the most leisurely pace possible. Of course being 500 pages strong, this isn’t exactly an overnight read, and while I can speed read, I don’t prefer it. Especially not with books that are based in the English countryside against the backdrop of the sea.

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​Palestine – A medley of emotions

This book is going to be the highlight read of 2018. Period.

The book cover

​​Palestine by Joe Sacco has been an intense and difficult read. You’d think a comic book would be easy to read and completed in a couple of days. Not this one. Not for me at least. Joe, with his mix of graphics and text, gives the reader a comprehensive insight into the life and times of Occupied Territories in the early 90s. The text not only spells out the atrocities meted out to the Palestinians, but forms a broken yet hard-hitting style of narrative. With ample context and snippets, intense conversations and monologues, Joe managed to transport me to the world he witnessed, a world wrought with gunfire and uncertainty, of being denied basic human rights and land expropriated.

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