Whenever I think of perspective, there is no better way to enhance it than by books. Books have shaped the way I think, I behave, I action and therefore the way I live.
But, there are certain books which provides unconventional views, widening our line of thought. They stand out as showing a very different angle to our standard beliefs and thus challenge our norms of existence.
Memoirs of Geisha
I love the way it explores the life of geisha. It is so different to be exploring Japanese tradition and lifestyle through this book. It explains the circumstances leading to a young girl to become a geisha, trying to escape from that life, finding a purpose in the tradition and her eventual transformation to become a geisha. Geisha still remain one of the most mystified institution in the world, arousing both curiosity and stigmatization.
A Thousand Splendid Suns
Khaled Hosseini narrates beautifully life of women through two main characters of Mariam and Laila in Kabul. It defines challenges one faces as a woman, especially in countries like Afganistan. But also, it brings out the ingrained inequalities of society with regards to preference for male child, acceptance of abuse of women and constant scrutiny of character of women.
“Like a compass needle that points north, a man’s accusing finger always finds a woman. Always.”
It is amazing how precisely it captures Chinese culture alongwith narrating a simple story of a farmer named Wang Lung. It explore various themes such as divide between poor and rich, subjugation of women from a man’s perspective , and impact of war on common man’s life.
The Hungry Tide
Set on the theme of islands of Sundarbans, this book explores as to how the life of inhabitants are affected by tigers and vice versa. I felt bad for tigers as much as for humans as it portrays how their life is affected by encroachment by humans in their natural habitats. Environmental concerns are also brought forward as the protagonist studies the behavior of dolphins in detail.