BOOK REVIEW: ‘A Short History of Nearly Everything’ by Bill Bryson

Bill Bryson A Short History of Nearly Everything Review

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It’s just one mindgasm after another!

Many years ago, I noticed this book on my shelf… and ignored it. Over time, it vanished from sight. I don’t know what happened, or where it went. And didn’t much care.

For my last birthday, my sister gifted me another copy. Once again, it languished for almost a year on my long list of ‘books to read’… until one fine day, two weeks ago, I opened it to start reading.

And that was that. I was hooked. Instantly. Irretrievably.

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Compatibility

Holding Hands
  • She likes her coffee weak and sweet; I prefer mine strong and black.
  • She loves sour tasting stuff like gooseberries and raw mangoes; I like other flavors like grapes and ripe mangoes.
  • She enjoys being outdoors and traveling; I’m a homebody who’s happier curled up with a book.
  • She copes poorly with stress; I thrive on it.
  • She likes horror and drama movies; I watch comedies and thrillers.
  • She needs a good 8 hours of sleep a night; I’m comfortable with barely five.

The list just goes on and on.

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Meaningful Numbers

Meaningful Numbers

The sheer size of India’s population is staggering. And that leads to some interesting spin offs.

25 people isn’t a “crowd”. Only 250 people is. Or maybe ten times as many.

Educating 100 children doesn’t seem special. 1,000 is. Or better still, 10,000.

Go big, or go home.

It’s taken (too) literally.

Something gets lost along the way.

A sense of fulfillment, even pride, in what’s achieved pales in light of what remains to be done – and expected.

A solopreneur doesn’t think of bootstrapping his way to the first 15 or 20 customers – but sets up on a bigger scale right from the beginning.

An author believes finding 50 readers, or even 500, is ‘failure’ – and dreams of selling 50,000 copies of her debut novel.

Everyone’s got their eye on the “Numbers” ball… and it’s BIG!

But see another perspective.

A sick man who’s cured of his illness isn’t as concerned about how many more have benefited from his doctor’s skill – only that he did. And it doesn’t lower the value he received from the medico.

A college graduate who secured a high-paying job that will transform his family’s circumstances forever doesn’t care if he’s one of 40,000 others. Or 4,000. Or even 400. His achievement will change his world.

Big numbers are nice. They make for impressive statistics and pretty graphs.

Small numbers – like ONE – also matter.

Often, even more.

Because they tell stories of individuals who have won or lost, lived or died, succeeded or failed.

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Book Review: Koi Good News – By Zarreen Khan

‘Koi Good News’ is a deliciously humorous peek into the pregnancy of a Punjabi couple, Mona and Ramit Deol.

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Crafted in a unique storytelling style, you’ll find yourself flipping alternately from inside one’s head to the other’s, getting to see the same incident from two different perspectives. Once you get the hang of it, this is fascinating.

And at times, incredibly funny!

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Book Review: Keep Calm And Mommy On by by Tanu Shree Singh

Keep Calm and Mommy On by Tanu Shree Singh Book Review

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“That is exactly what motherhood seems like sometimes – velvet bugs scattering from a broken jar.”

I laughed out loud. Both at the vivid imagery that sentence evoked, and at the ironical fact it evinced… that parenting is a journey fraught with peril and pitfalls.

It’s a really long ‘examination’ on the subject of ‘Life’ – one that lasts a good twenty years or more… One where a hapless mom or dad can only hope and pray to pass graciously, not come out with shiny honors!

Because the “exam questions” are really, really tough.

  • Am I an adequate parent?
  • Is there a defined parenting path I followed?
  • Did I ensure optimal levels of “cognitive functioning”?
  • Have I “charted their trajectories” properly?

How CAN we, as parents, ever hope to answer them?!

But this book lets you dare to dream bigger.

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