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On the shelf

The Cultural Revolution

By: | Published: May 22, 2016 7:55 AM

The Cultural Revolution
Frank Dikötter
Bloomsbury
Pp 396
R599

In The Cultural Revolution, author Frank Dikötter casts China’s most tumultuous era in a wholly new light, drawing, for the first time, on hundreds of previously-classified documents, from secret police reports to unexpurgated versions of leadership speeches.

The Bones of Grace
Tahmima Anam
Penguin
Pp 411
R499

On the eve of her departure to find the bones of the walking whale—the fossil that provides a missing link in our evolution—Zubaida Haque falls in love with Elijah Strong, a man she meets in a darkened concert hall in Boston. Their connection is immediate and intense, despite their differences.

The ISIS Apocalypse
William McCants
Picador
Pp242
R499

Based on ancient religious texts and secret al-Qaeda and Islamic State letters that few have seen, William McCants’ The ISIS Apocalypse explores how religious fervour, strategic calculation and doomsday prophecy shaped the Islamic State’s past and foreshadow its dark future.

House Spirit
Edited by Palash Krishna Mehrotra
Speaking Tiger
Pp276
R399

A collection of 31 essays, this book includes writings by the likes of Indrajit Hazra  (who introduces readers to booze jabberwocky in an essay brimming over with linguistic playfulness), Sidharth Bhatia (who writes about drinking in Hindi cinema) and Soumya Bhattacharya (who talks about drinking in Gujarat), among many others.

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