Jan 16

The Elementary Particles – Michel Houellebecq, Frank Wynne (Translator)

Michel Dzerjinski is a highly acclaimed molecular biologist with impeccable credentials. His personal life however is a prosaic void bereft of love, empathy and relationships. Cocooning himself into a world of Double Helices, chromosomes and Hilbert spaces, Michel leads an existence that is both spartan and dreary. Microwave dinners, research entries and teaching aspiring students …

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Jan 16

Payoff: The Hidden Logic That Shapes Our Motivations (TED 2) – Dan Ariely

One of the most engaging and innovative behavioural economists practicing the subject today, Dan Ariely has demonstrated through his personal trauma that there is no hurdle which motivation cannot overcome, however insurmountable the vexing obstacle might seem at the outset. Now in this book – a part of the TED publications initiative – Ariely provides …

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Jan 16

Hot Milk – Deborah Levy

An opaque tale of grappling with identities, coming to grips with involuntary sacrifices and jousting with a simmering and confused sexuality, “Hot Milk” by Deborah Levy is Sophie Papastergiadis’ predicament with life, lust and a listless state of mind. Sophie’s mother Rose suffers from a strange malady which results in an intermittent loss of lower …

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Jan 16

Refugees, Terror and Other Troubles with the Neighbors: Against the Double Blackmail – Slavoj Žižek

In this acerbic, polemical work, the controversial philosopher Slavoj Zizek attempts to tackle the problems posed by a growing influx of refugees from the Middle East into Europe. Combining a complicated narrative style with complex metaphysical analogies, Zizek compares the reaction of both authorities and the public in Western Europe to the flow of refugees …

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Jan 03

Books v Cigarettes – George Orwell

The genius of George Orwell lies in the economy of his words. The language employed by Orwell is so sparse and yet so incredibly rich. There is not a single sentence that is irrelevant nor a single passage that is not contextual. “Books v Cigarettes” is a collection of a handful of essays by George …

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Jan 03

Even Dogs In The Wild – Ian Rankin

Undoubtedly the best Rebus book till date! Don’t we keep repeating this every time Ian Rankin comes up with a John Rebus thriller? But “Even Dogs In The Wild” has an allure about it which lends an unshakeable credence to a conviction that denies the fact that the existence of this intrepid detective from Edinburgh …

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Dec 28

The Art of Travel – Alain de Botton

Often times when we plan what we hope will be a fun filled, exciting and fulfilling travel, we tend to portray images of such bliss in our minds. The layered images are invariably optimistic, lending a hallowed credence to the ensuing journey. However there is an extraordinarily explicit dichotomy between what we perceive to be …

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Dec 28

Why Minsky Matters: An Introduction to the Work of a Maverick Economist – L. Randall Wray

The late Hyman Minsky once said, “[A] fundamental flaw exists in an economy with capitalist financial institutions, for no matter how ingenious and perceptive Central Bankers may be, the speculative and innovative elements of capitalism will eventually lead to financial usages and relations that are conducive to instability”. It were these very speculative and innovative …

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Dec 28

Your Fathers, Where Are They? And the Prophets, Do They Live Forever? – Dave Eggers

A taut socio-psychological thriller (if this is a genre, that is), this lengthily titled book is primarily a sequential series of conversations conducted between the protagonist Thomas and seven other persons whom he has happened to kidnap (yes you read that right) and shackled to posts in different quarters of an abandoned military barracks in …

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Dec 28

Caring Economics: Conversations on Altruism and Compassion, Between Scientists, Economists, and the Dalai Lama by Tania Singer (Editor), Matthieu Ricard, Dalai Lama XIV (Foreword)

A battery of world renowned scholars spanning the realms of Economics, Psychology, Philosophy, Neuroscience, Contemplative Science and business assembled at Zurich in April 2010 for a conference that was unique in both content and context. Imaginatively titled “Altruism and Compassion in Economic Systems”, the conference was hosted under the auspices of the Mind and Life …

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