The Legends of Bollywood : Book review

Dutt Family. One underrated and understated 'film' family about whom very less is written. Maybe, because only one lineage is famous and other family member got lost somewhere in heaps of flop films. Raaj Grover, who was almost a family member to this household of one of the most graceful couple, Nargis and Sunil Dutt, notes down his chronicles with Dutt Sahab's Ajanta Arts, his memories with Nargis bhabhi and other stars with whom he shared a good chunk of his life.

Title 'The Legends of Bollywood' is aptly put. As it starts with (the one and only) Amitabh Bachchan. Very intersting tale of Bachchan's four days leave from job and what he did with Raaj Grover in the city of dreams - a chapter makes a very good start of the book. Which further goes into lives of Yusuf saab, Dharam ji, Baba, Kapoors and Dutts.

An unusual read this is. Because neither this is from pen of journalist, nor its from mind of a star or an actor. But being a producer, Raaj has this advantage of being impartial, and very natural, so that the reader himself doesn't feel deja vu when reading anecdotes about years in which Indian cinema evolved from b/w to stereophonic sound and cinema-scope.

My favorites are obviously of - Dutt sahab and Nargis's tales. Even Balraj Sahni's chapter makes a really good read. Despite the fact we know many bits and pieces of the incidents described herein, as a bolly-lover, it's always a treat to read, repeat, read, and so on. Just one thing I would complaint here is - it doesn't tell us much about baba's dark period. It felt like Hirani has written more than this-despite of being more attached to tbe family.

That little rant apart, this is surely a book for all bolly-lovers outthere. Because some memories are meant to be lingered on.

Oh yes, and by supporting it and buying it, you will help funding the ever serving Nargis Dutt Foundation. What a generous contribution by the author.

Book Review: Tenth Avatar

So, when I posted my last review, I decided no more indian mythology read for a while now. But then, I saw this book by Kanchan Joshi, Tenth Avatar. And then my thoughts changed. And I picked it up for reading. Leaving Gone Girl incomplete, I finished this one in a few days. And it left me craving for more.

This is a story with two stories running parrellel to each other. On one side we see the Ramayana from Hanuman's eyes and on the other, protagonist is a hotshot scientist, maths lover who goes to Higgs Boson experiment like it's his daily playground:Krish. Now, physics and maths is nightmare stuff for me but the author here, takes us on altogether different approaches that makes it really interesting to go to. Even the Ramayan bit is portrayed with all possible scientific reasoning, so that you have logical circumstances instead of Hanuman flying off the ocean or uprooting the mountain to heal Lakshman. Present day story keeps you interested but for a while it takes on your nerves when it goes too much into details of the science physics and maths and what not. 

However I felt there was no need for such long part of Ramayana which goes on for every alternate chapter. It all is deja vu and makes it a wasted opportunity. (Spoiler alert) This track proves only useful when we are almost reaching the end. 

Overall, this is not the usual retelling remixing of mythology with current day fiction but needs some brain cell churning. If you are ready for that ride, hop on. 

 My rating: 3/5