Read widely and often - it's powerful stuff

Read widely and often - its powerful stuff

Rue Kothari leans towards the rebellious and the renegades in books and authors



By Mary Paulose

Published: Fri 6 May 2016, 9:10 PM

Last updated: Tue 21 Nov 2017, 9:38 PM

What book(s) are you reading right now?
I'm reading three very different books - The Meursault Investigation by Kamel Daoud, that picks up the narrative from Albert Camus' famous existentialist novel The Outsider, from a fresh perspective, exploring Arab identity and the effects of colonialism. Then, Colourless Tsukuru Tazaki, by one of my favourite authors Haruki Murakami; I haven't missed a book since I discovered him two decades ago; his lightness of touch is unfailingly poetic.
Third, Chuck Palahniuk's Haunted, a book of short stories that's not for the faint hearted. I love this cult novelist's effortless unpredictability.
What are the books that changed your life and shaped your outlook?
On The Road, by Jack Kerouac: originality of voice and approach and the sheer rebelliousness of it, reflected a significant moment in American youth culture. Less Than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis: another literary renegade that defined his own genre; a nihilistic new generation. Beloved by Toni Morrisson: a strong female African author who lifted the lid on social injustice.
Which are the titles or who are the authors you can pick up and read any time?
. Hanif Kureshi
. F Scott Fitzgerald
. Martin Amis
. Hilary Mantel
What are the books you would love to pass on to your children or any young person to read and treasure?
. Alice Walker's Possessing the Secret of Joy
. Milan Kundera's The Unbearable Lightness of Being
. JM Coetzee's The Lives of Animals
All of them are deeply meaningful observations about life. I'll pass these on to my daughter and hope she learns as much from them as I did.
Any other book-related observation you may have?
Just my advice: read widely and often - books open your mind, fire your imagination and give you a depth of thought and understanding about the world around you that stretches beyond borders. Reading gives you the ability to express yourself with more precision and sophistication - it's powerful stuff.
- As told to Mary Paulose


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