What would Audrey do?
What would Audrey Do? Timeless Lessons for Living with Grace and Style, by Pamela Keogh is one of the books that I’ve been very excited about in recent times. And my overall reaction after reading it has been less than delighted (I’m just as shocked as you are!). Now its not a horrible book that I couldn’t even finish, or a bad book in terms of content, it IS about Audrey Hepburn, after all. At the very least, the subject matter pleases me enough to not hate it.
My book review with a twist will be in the form of listing out Pros and Cons. Starting with Cons, so we can end on a good note.
- The writing style of using the Royal “We” got annoying quick;
- Names dropped where none was called for;
- Its about 100 pages too long – a LOT of the parts are repeated (over and over again) throughout the book;
- It practically paints Audrey as a mythical saintly being, there’s even a chapter in called “St. Audrey” (for heaven’s sake!). To me that was very Un-Audrey! (oooh the delicious irony of it all);
- Typos – this made me both mad and sad. It made me wonder if it was even edited;
- Speculative – the parts which actually attempted to answer the titular question, is the most annoying part (which is ironic).
- Its got biographical parts on Audrey’s life which I didn’t know about before;
- The style and makeup tips (yay! These were my absolute favorites);
- The Cover, look and feel, of the book is pretty and pink;
- Its about the lovely Audrey Hepburn. Enough said.
A book (any book) has the power to evoke so many emotional responses from its readers. The ones that make me feel like it ended too soon, or leaves me reaching for it over and over again, are the real winners! Unfortunately, I don’t feel that about this book. But it wasn’t horrible, so that will do for now.
The art of the good life
My first reaction, to books with titles like this which promise to reveal age old universal secrets of greatness or mindfulness or some such popular keyword of that time, is to scoff with derision. One might assume that this is because I’m naturally inclined to roll my eyes instead of embrace new ideas. I’m not. However, such titles come off as presumptuous and a bit full of its own virtues.
Having said that, The art of the good life by Rolf Dobelli turned out to be one of the best books I’ve read in the recent past, and one which I will likely recommend to everyone I know. I’m humbled and will happily accept that my initial reaction based only on the title was wrong. There are certain books that compel you to read it over and over again, because the messages in it are so simple yet essential that you would never want to forget any of it. This is one such book.
The concepts are simple, but told with a witty and often hilarious way that you can’t help but enjoy with an inadvertent smile, while taking mental notes on the author’s advice.
Almost towards the end of this book, I found that this is the second in a series of such books by this author, the first one being The art of thinking clearly, needless to say I am off to amazon after this to place my order for it.
And on a completely vain note, the book is beautifully packaged, a white hardcover with lettering in Gold. Ah its a beauty, indeed. Right up my aesthetic alley. Highly recommended to anyone who is reading this.
Askew – A short biography of Bangalore
One of the books I’ve most looked forward to after reading Degree Coffee by the Yard was the short biography of my city, Bangalore.
And when it finally arrived, I read it in about two days (sadly, I have other things to do as well), its actually a quick read, with about 120 (or so) pages and divided into 5 Chapters.
There were enough new and cute stories about the city I know and love for me to immensely enjoy this book, about the cultural melting pot that is Bangalore, but there were also a few chapters which were centered around people from some of the prominent families of this city, which I didn’t particularly enjoy. I wanted more tidbits of the city, of how it has embraces everyone who choose to make it their home, or more about how it transformed itself from pensioners paradise to pub city. Basically more on the transformation I have seen growing up in this underrated city.
Now, this isn’t a conventional book review with spoilers, and other usual bells & whistles, but I will tell you this, despite some of the bits which felt biased (and perhaps written solely to stroke a few egos) and disjointed from the rest of the chapters, it is a book to read if you like Bangalore city, and want to read more about it.
For me, it was simply a matter of reading (and appreciating) the city I call home, in other words, a must read. 🙂
Described as catnip for conspiracy theorists, and I can’t help but agree. Any book/post which gives me an idea of how the world (as we know it) works is always a fun read. This book by Jacques Peretti is very detailed and well researched, and quite frankly a bit alarming.
This book reminded me of the concept of the butterfly effect, one seemingly innocuous flutter of a butterfly’s wing which changes the course of events thousands of miles away, consequently changing the world. This book gives the reader a glimpse of how decisions are made by way of handshake deals which impact billions of people and more importantly billion dollar industries (if that). It makes the reader re-think how we feel about food, taxes, our own weight, our insatiable want for technology, basically every aspect of our lives.
Am I reviewing my own consumption patterns over the years and my attitudes, Certainly. Would I recommend this book – YES! I think every person should read this book. Not because I like to perpetuate fear-mongering trends, but in a world where we are the “Commodity” that a handful of people are betting on (or against), a book like this one will perhaps make people look at their own worth (perhaps even understand it)!
Underneath the incidents, I feel like that is the point… Let me know what you think.
Peace & Love