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My Online Writings - 2004 - '07

Part 3
It is foretold! The torrential flow of inexorable destiny!
The varied reading

It is very difficult to find persons who share the same reading habits as you. There are immense number of writers, and an innumerable array of themes.

I remember a number of authors who awoke my imagination, during my younger days. There were a wide variety of them. For one thing, I was not tied up to any particular philosophy, even though in my school days, I was an atheist, and also a communist. The latter affliction I got from reading too many Russian and Chinese themes, coupled with what I saw in my nation.

I don’t get time to read modern novels much, even though I still read odd authors like Sidney Sheldon. Among authors from a little bit earlier years, Joseph Hiller who wrote the Catch 22 was attractive. I really do believe that his book ‘God knows’ if it had been about certain other religions, would have really invited a fatwa for his beheading.

I remember Frank Yerby, the American author. He caught my attention through his book: Gillian. It was a really interesting book, which made me read many of this other novels, many of which had themes in exotic locale.

Then there was Alister Maclean, who did write books connected to the Second World War. I think that ‘Guns of Navarone’ was his. Ice Station Zebra, also I think was his.

Harrold Robbins was an author who I did read with much appetite. I can still remember the theme of : No: 47, Park Avenue.

James Hadley Chase was simply a supreme personality. May be, he was a genius in his own genre. His versatility was of a supernatural level. What all themes and what all titles!

In this context, I still remember Perry Mason, the creation of Erle Stanley Gardner. I still recommend this series of books to all who want to get acquainted with legal terms, and courtroom phrases. All the books started with the words: Case of the ————.

I can’t miss Arthur Hailey. The first book of his I read was Hotel, then came a number of them: Money Changers, In High Places, Final Diagnosis. They were all very informative, yet in recent times, I believe the world has immensely changed, from the scenarios described in them.

I did read Barbara Cartland, who seems to have lived with an enduring infatuation for those of noble blood. Yet, her books were not boring.

Then there is : Gone with the Wind. By Margaret Michelle. The immortal classic which carries the mood of the American Civil War. Yet, I have many times tried to decipher whether the protagonist, was really a likable lady, or someone with mean manners, and malicious character. And, what about Reth Butler? In life, he could have represented the men who threw to wind the basic qualities of refinement and cultured conventions, that were the endearing attributes of the English race. And replaced it with crass opportunism, and craze for private profit, masquerading it as the fabled spirit of adventure of the same race. Yet, the book is simply great!

There was: Rebecca, the book by Daphne du Maurier. I remember seeing the film version made by Alfred Hitchcock, in the compay of another person. He literally shivered throughout the show; I could manage to keep my wits, because I knew the theme.

In those day, A. J. Cronin also was a deeply liked author of mine. He hooked me with his ‘Shannon’s Way’. Yet, one young lady who now lives in the US told me that it was a sort of Mills & Boon story. But I really liked the story, and set me on to read almost all his books. Later his novel, The Citadel came again to me, as a prose text in my college days.

There are others. May I try to remember them?

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