Who Owns that Song?: The Battle for Subramania Bharati’s Copyright – A.R.Venkatachalapathy – Book Review

The Oxford Dictionary defines the term “copyright” as the exclusive and assignable legal right, given to the originator for a fixed number of years, to print, publish, perform, film, or record literary, artistic, or musical material. Subramania Bharati, the colossal progressive poet of  Tamilnadu whose nationalist writings and poems inspired and is still inspiring legions of people wouldn’t have pondered upon the thought that the copyright of his works would lead to a legal tuf of war, with the government eventually acquiring his works releasing it in the public domain.

Subramania Bharati is touted to be the first writer in the world whose copyrights of his works were acquired by the State Government and put his writings in the public domain in 1949. This honour has eluded Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru and even Rabindranath Tagore. To remind the readers, a trust held the copyright of Gandhi’s writings until it lapsed and passed into public domain in 2009. Congress party leader Sonia Gandhi holds the copyright to Nehru’s work until 2024 and publishers had free access to Nobel Prize-winning poet Rabindranath Tagore’s works only after 1992. The nationalisation of Bharati’s work by the Government of Tamilnadu made sure people devour the poet’s work without any hiccups or fears as it is in the public domain freed from the clutches of copyrights.

Eventhough he was not recognised while he was alive, he became a sensation with his writings becoming a posthumous bestseller. Bharati who spent more than 10 years in exile in Puducherry in his short span of 39 years, fiddled with free verses and haiku, was later came to be known as the “Founding Father of  New Tamil Poetry“. The gaze, his turban and moustache like his writings, is still etched in the minds of people reminding us the popularity of the poet in contemporary times.

A.R. Venkatachalapthy’s new book “Who Owns That Song: The Battle for Subramania Bharati’s Copyright” chronicles the journey of Bharati’s life as a writer and the subsequent legal quandary that eventually lead to the nationalisation of his works. The cover with its exquisite turquoise blue background welcomes us with Bharati in his high collared black coat and dhoti holding a staff.

At the inception of the book, a section titled Dramatic Personae divulges details and introduces the characters giving glimpses from their lives. Venkatachalapathy sets the tone of the book with this section and begins the prologue with the title Copyright Claws which would make the readers clear of what they are about to encounter in the upcoming chapters making them even more inquisitive.

The book is divided into 4 breviloquent chapters and has a selected few poems of Subramania Bharati translated by M.L.Thangappa at the end. The book draws a meticulous potrayal of events that happened during and after the poet’s life. The author’s fluid and engaging words keep the book a real page turner and he doesn’t shy away from sprinkling his academic finess educating the reader all along. He uniquely takes forward the non fiction which picks up pace once the legal tussle begins.

The book never once appears hagiographical with the author fixing his focus on the events that lead to the nationalisation of the poet’s work. The tale of how after Bharati’s death, his unlettered wife sold the rights for a paltry sum to Bharati’s half brother and how a movie mogul intiated copyright contempt against another moviemaker for using the poet’s verses in his film is succintly described through engaging chapters.

The book, eventhough teeming with details about numerous characters, never once appears insipid or vapid. The book untangles the role played by the Government, people and others who were instumental in bringing the poet’s work into the public domain. This insightful book will be an eye opener for all the people to know more about the national poet who died in obscurity without knowing his writings would live to kindle spirits even after decades of his death. The another beauty is that the book never ventures into the polemic realms with whom the copyright of an artist must be vested upon.

It also starkly reminds the readers, how we have failed Bharati by not popularising his works, who is a contemporary of Tagore. It is no wonder that Bharati in one of his essays wrote, “From now on support and succour for the arts will come from the common people. It is the duty of the artists to instil good taste in them. It will yield them good returns” in 1916.

To remind, Delhi High Court ruled in 2016 in one of its cases, “Copyright is designed rather to stimulate activity and progress in the arts for the intellectual enrichment of the public. Copyright is intended to increase and not to impede the harvest of knowledge. It is intended to motivate the creative activity of authors and inventors in order to benefit the public”. 

The Government of Tamilnadu has since then acquired more than 100 writers work and nationalised it. Remember, it all started with Subramania Bharati.

 

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 Rating :
Image result for four stars book

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About the Book:

Title : Who Owns That Song: The Battle For Subramania Bharati’s Copyright

Author : A.R.Venkatachalapathy

Publisher : Juggernaut Publications

Genre : Non Fiction

Copy : Review Copy

ISBN : 978-9386228673                       

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Links :

Flipkart : Who Owns That Song by A.R.Venkatachalapathy

Amazon : Who Owns That Song by A.R.Venkatachalapathy

Also you can read it in the Juggernaut App or the Website here.

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Pinto Has An Idea – Rajeev Saxena – Book Review

Have you ever pondered upon this thought ? What would transpire if ever human race were devoid of ideas ?

“Ideas make the man”.

Pinto Has An Idea

Ideas still remain the crux of change in our world’s sophistication. With new ideas there emerge changes which makes the word a better place to live in. We now have the world in the tip of our hands and have aspirations to reach the remotest place in the far flung space which is all due to a spark of an idea. Ideas do wonders in making our life simple.

 

Rajat Srivastava is an eminent scientist known for his research and ideas across the orb. His parents call him Pinto and people prefer to use that name too. Pinto is an out of the box thinker with a keen sense of inventing new stuffs to help people ease their lives. He studys hard, cracks the toughest IIT exam, enters IIT Kanpur and does research at the MIT. But he realises his calling for innovating stuff which he is most comfortable with from his childhood and returns to India leaving behind his works on theoritical physics. He marries Lavanya who is like a pillar to Pinto also helping him with his invetions with her keen eye for research.

 

Did Pinto find solutions for problems to make people’s live easier, did he cross all the adversaries which stood in his way in doing so and emerge triumphant forms the rest of the novel.

The book strikes a chord with the readers with its unique charactes and a riveting plot which makes it engrossing. Pinto who is the protagonist of the novel carries the entire novel in his shoulders with his hankering for creating things. He strives to untangle the complexities of life with his simple ideas to create things making life simpler. Lavanya, Pinto’s partner who stands by him like a pillar is a character which stands apart in our hearts. The author has made every effort to make a captivating plot which is both intruiging and makes us think.

The book is filled with umpteen ideas which would surprise the readers. The ideas would make the readers ponder upon making it a reality and about its execution. This makes the book a winner compared with its counterparts. The book is not leading us astray even though there are incessant characters and innumerable anecdotes.

The writing is simple for everyone to understand but somewhere in the middle there is a lag which makes a dent in the book’s brilliance. The brevity in explaining comvoluted ideas easing the intricacies make this book stand apart from other fiction which all focuses on love mostly. The writing is also interlaced with wit and some excellent observations on the world.

The end was so sublte which would have disappointed some readers but that makes this unique because life always doesn’t give you a filmy racing climax. Despite the lag in the middle the book emerges a clear winner standing apart making its message clear and loud, that Pinto would ace the reader’s heart with his brilliance.

This book is for all fiction fans who look out for out of the box plot with a phrenic protagonist and an engrossing plot.

Would I like a sequel on the adventures of Pinto?

Why not?

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 Rating :
Image result for four stars book

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About the Book:

Title : Pinto Has An Idea

Author : Rajeev saxena

Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing (IN)

Genre : Fiction

Copy : Flipkart Review Program

ISBN : 9789386826930, 9386826933                       

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Links :

Flipkart Pinto Has An Idea by Rajeev Saxena

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The Boys Who Fought – Devdutt Pattanaik : Book Review

There would never be a day where stories cease to exist, I assure. With technology preponderating most of our valuable time with its zillion apps, hashtag trending, social media posts and fake news, the monomania for stories still exists and it never been out of focus the whole time. The appetite for epics such as Mahabharata and Ramayana never fades away. These were probably the stories we would have read many times and it does’t bore us even if we were to read it many a time again.

Devdutt Pattanaik “India’s favorite mythologist” is back with his new book “The Boys Who Fought”, a simpler version of the great epic Mahabharata for Children. It is similar to his previous work of “The Girl Who Chose” which was simple retelling of Ramayana with fantastic illustrations.

The book presents itself as a compressed version of Mahabharata with the focus on main characters bringing the book under 106 pages. Although this is a condensed version the story is beautifully explained with the help of his illustrations which makes the book compelling and page turning. The book doesn’t delve deep into the aspects of war deviating from it and tends to explain it in the perspective of Dharma which was quite a surprise for me.

The writings are simple and easily to understand which makes it hassle-less to follow the book. The illustrations in the book are the main attraction with laudable efforts from the author denoting characters with a letter for each, which makes it easy to identify the characters for the readers. The book is divided into six parts to describe about the Pandava’s fight as orphans, refugees, kings, exiles, warriors and hermits. This further makes it easy for the readers to understand the story better.

The book essentially for children also attracts adults and elders with its own kind of uniqueness among other retelling. The additional information along the bottom of the pages is a notable one as it provides wide knowledge on folk versions of the epic, the characters and other incidents. The book would a great way to indulge the interest of children in reading books.

The original epic consists of many characters, the focus is only on the Pandavas, Kauravas and other important characters to make the book shorter. Although I would have expected some more characters still to make it full fledged. Devdutt’s interest in retelling epics in a simple and profound way has to be lauded. Simple language, vivid illustrations, footnotes containing additional information would make this a great book to cherish.

The book, although a short read would be much of much interest to children and would be a great gift for parents who wish to indulge their children in reading stories and epics.

 

The Boys Who Fought

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About the Book:

Title : The Boys Who Fought: The Mahabharata for Children

Author : Devdutt Pattanaik

Publisher : Penguin Random House India

Genre : Fiction

Copy : Flipkart Review Program

ISBN : 9780143441618, 0143441612

Rating :  

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Links :

Flipkart The Boys Who Fought by Devdutt Pattanaik

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Empire – Devi Yesodharan – Book Review

It’s always bewitching to find historical fiction in the bookstores and in your bookshelves. It’s not just because for the information or the plot, it’s rather the landscapes they brief through which the characters saunter, the period or the century to which the plot and the characters belongs to, the kind of nostalgia it brings through the writings, all make the readers crave for historical fiction. Atleast that’s what I think of historical fiction.

And to my surprise there are very few books in English that has offered to describe in fiction about the stories of Cholas. Devi Yesodharan’s “EMPIRE” seems to fulfill that vague fissure by writing a plot set in Nagapattinam about Cholas. The interesting thing is that the plot follows the events that happen after a foreigner is trained to become a Chola, that too a woman named Aremis.

The cover design for the book done by Wasim Helal is wonderful with simple and profound illustrations. The clever placement of Yavani at the backside of the cover revealing only the enraged Chola warriors and the elephants is a good one that will intrigue the reader about the book.

The author has described that this is an accidental novel, but the details that go inside describing the landscapes of the 11th century Nagapattinam, the depiction of the characters of that times, the heirarchies and the extent of the social structures reveals that this is a well researched book that doesn’t disappoints on its grandeur. The plot is well set and the characters are woven around one another in a neat fashion though at some places the story strays from the plot but the author makes sure the plot is back from where it started. The characters of Anantha, Shrey, Aremis, Mandakini are struck in the readers mind and this shows the level to which the author has etched these characters potraying them with the plot.

The canny use of verses based on anonymous poets for a song sung by Anantha and Padma is taken from classical Tamil Anthology “AKANANURU” clearly indicates that the author clearly establishes his genius upon the readers.

The plot reveals before our eyes like a movie and it is easy to follow since the narration is in a first person and no confusion follows because of that. I couldn’t believe this is a debut book that is this grandeur in its plot and I could also see good comments for the book already.

But still, the abrupt ending of the book without mentioning about what happens to Aremis in Nagapattinam, the cunning plans of Perumbil and about the prophecy had me in confusion and cliffhanger. I expect the author would have reserved it for a sequel of the book and why not expect it ? It would be very cool to have a sequel for the Empire and I will be waiting for it very eagerly. With a rich imagination of a plot like this, I could already sense a movie in the making.

 

Some of my favourite quotes : 

Background Image Credits : Juggernaut Publications Website 

Editing of the Quotes : Corlos Zudin

P.S : Please give due credits to Juggernaut Publications and Corlos John  if you ever use this image. Request. 

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About the Book:

Title : Empire

Author : Devi Yesodharan

Publisher : Juggernaut Publications

Genre : Historical Fiction

Copy : Review Copy

ISBN :  9789386228376, 9386228378

Rating :  23bae-4-52bstars

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Links :

Get the digital book in Juggernaut here : Empire by Devi Yesodharan (Juggernaut)

Flipkart : Empire by Devi Yesodharan

Amazon :  Empire by Devi Yesodharan

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What Kitty Did – Trisha Bora : Book Review

What Kitty Did – Trisha Bora: Book Review

 

Books have to bind the readers with the plot so as to make a conversation with them, nowadays books like the above-said ones are an anomaly. Trisha Bora’s debut novel, What Kitty Did falls in the former category and it binds the readers with the plot of the story and intrigues the reader to read more.

Coming to the plot of the story, the protagonist Ketaki Roy, a fresher out of a college as an Engish literature graduate works in the Poise which is a magazine. The real life of Kitty changes ways with the death of Roxy Merchant, a yesteryear actress and the wife of a celebrated diplomat during the dinner at their central Delhi bungalow. Kitty’s boss gives her the job of writing a profile piece about the dead actress and also hints at promotion to her if it is done well.

What Kitty Did

What kitty did afterward moves the story in a not boring level and did she incur any clues about the death of the celebrated actress, whether she got into any troubles during her work and will this case about writing an article change the whole life of Kitty.

In the meanwhile, she also has to deal with the guy who is not steady on his stand due to her posh mother. The significance of this story is that Delhi as a place is said vividly and the story is set in the streets of Delhi. So if you are from Delhi, you can relate the streets said in the story. This can actually be said of a story from the perspective of a person from Delhi and the lifestyle of the people who live there.

The story can be related to everyone who works out to get a life from that, Kitty is one among them. The story is a thriller and the unearthing of the events makes this book a sure shot page turner.

The cover of the book is very different and also has a significant connection with the story and the designer has to be applauded for his detailing of the cover, A designer’s perspective to the story.

The language of the book is simple and I came to know after a little research that the author has a long publishing history to her credits.  The author has already written some short stories and this is the first stint of the author in a full fledged novel, she has nailed it in saying that she is good in making new stories too. There are mentions of a lot of novels in the story and I’m sure the influence of those books had an impact on this story.

This story is partly romantic and part mystery and we cannot come to a conclusion about a particular one. I would recommend this book to fiction lovers and mystery lovers and also to readers who wish to explore a city in the books. This book is surely a page turner and it took me some time to finish rather than a single sitting. The author has succeeded in her first stint as an author and I will definitely read her books in the future too. Do keep this in your reading list, if you are in search for a new book to read.

 

Book Details : 

Author:  Trisha Bora

Paperback: 306 pages

Publisher: HarperCollins India

Language: English

Genre: Fiction

ISBN-13: 978-9352644476

Copy: Flipkart Review Programme

Rating:  4/5


Links :

Flipkart: What Kitty Did by Trisha Bora

Amazon: What Kitty Did by Trisha Bora


 

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When Dimple Met Rishi – Sandhya Menon – Book Review

It intruiged me when I read the blurb that this book is set in United States of America based on Indian people and guess what it is of Young Adult Fiction. So simple that one doesn’t become tired on reading about love. The plots which are based on love never cease to top the bestsellers list and there is quite a frenzy for love stories. It is eventual that the emotion can’t be set aside.

Sandhya Menon’s book alternates between Rishi and Dimple who are the protagonists of the story. The change in the point of view is so exciting that the continuity is explicit and doesn’t stray away leading us to a point where turning the pages of the book becomes an natural ease. The majority of the plot is set in Insomnia Con (a summer web development programme) and beautifully spreads the base for a story wihtout hassle. The book cove could have been better for immediate pciking.

Dimple dreams and breathes programming who aims at winning the Insomnia Con before joining Stanford. She is annoyed at her mother’s thought that she isn’t making her presentable and her neglect to find the I.I.H (Ideal Indian Husband). And thus she reaches Insomnia Con with the dreams of winning it along with meeting her idol Jenny Lindt.

Rishi, who got to join MIT goes to Insomnia Con on the belief that he and Dimple can spend the six weeks time before joining the college on the insistence of his parents thinking that they would be compatible for a long relationship. Dimple who doesn’t seem to know whole fiasco is upset with her parents on setting her to this. Dimple and Rishi are paired to make the protype of the app for the Insomnia Con and did they win the Con and did their relationship workout or fizzled out forms the later part of the story.

The author has to be applauded for including the socio-economic aspects of the American Indians in the plot since it seems to have frimed the story deep into the minds of the readers with a better understand ing. The characters are also well etched with their emotions captured well.

But one cannot deny the fact that somethings were a cliche like Rishi assinged to the team of Dimple and the final climax act which sees to lower the speed of enthusiasm. The setting is superb fun and the flow of the chapters were flawless. The realtionship issues between the protagonist, their friends and parents are caputred well. They show the vulnerabilities of each character and let us realte them with characters we already know. I expect Sandhya Menon to still hone her story for her second novel coming summer 2018 and wish her success.

The story is simple, empathetic and a real page turner, but in the end I felt that there was a dragging in the middle which could have shortened. This is a book that can be perfected in a bollywood movie with its finess and the pleothora of characters involved would sure make for a blockbuster with some finetuning. I would also recommend this book for readers who adore Young Adult fiction and those who want to read a quick story that doesn’t take too much of their time.

 

 


About the Book:

Title : When Dimple Met Rishi

Author : Sandhya Menon

Publisher : Hodder Paperbacks

Genre : Fiction / Romance

Copy : Flipkart Review Program

ISBN : 978-1473667402

Rating :  Image result for 3 stars out five

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Links :

Flipkart : When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

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BAAZ – Anuja Chauhan – Book Review

Readers would be in for a surprise from Anuja Chauhan in her new book “Baaz” which has an interesting storyline with backgrounds of Bangladesh Liberation War. Apart from her regular female protagonists in her previous book, this book has a male protagonist with an intensive back story.

Anuja Chauhan is known for her books that strongly portrays emotions filled with befitting family relations, witty sub characters, romance overflowing with absolute Indian flavors.  But here is a romantic thriller that makes us go in awe and without giving us the opportunity to avert our eyes from the exhilarating plot.

The plot is about a fighter pilot named Ishaan “BAAZ” Fajudar aka Shaanu who is from Chakkahera, Haryana, who always finds pleasure in doing things that others dread even thinking about. He is all for the dhook dhook and the initial pages firmly establish his eagerness to attain wings and soar the vast blue sky.

Baaz

He is in a constraint relationship with his father and have siblings who he loves more than anything in the world. He then joins the Jodhpur flying school and joins the Indian Air Force to fly the famous Gnat aircraft fighting for the army in the Liberation army. He is fueled with a passion of patriotism and justifies the war.

These are until he meets Tehmina Dadyseth aka Tinka, a war photographer plunging into war zones speaking about non violence and war less worlds, although coming from a family of army people. And both people fall in love.

The plot thickens from here and shifts to sequences which will be better if you read and know what is aftermath of this. The author has touched upon a number of things such as cumbersome parenthood, love filled siblings, effects of war, patriotism and also about incessant arguments that will be the highlight of this book.

Anuja Chauhan always indulge the readers into intricately oven plot line which doesn’t falters or diverges us from the main story and this is also a reason that this book engages us to the end.

The language of the book is simple to understand without any complications and makes for a breezy with characters like Raka, Tinka’s aunt who are as important to the plot line. The book rather than speaking about vanity of wars, the great courage of he army, love for the flying and this is a perfect ode to the Indian Air Force.

This book will surely engage you with its amazing brevity. The Hinglish doesn’t bother us much as this brings genuine Indianess into the crux of the story and the witty places make us laugh well.

The book is a good page turner engaging us till the end with its awesomeness and of course Chauhan’s characters that mesmerizes wanting us know what happens next will sure make to pick the book for a re-read. Also there is much to know about how passion strives thoughts.

I would recommend this book to all Anuja Chauhan’s book and she has’t disappointed her readers and also for new readers who wants a racy plot with genuine Indianess imbibed within it. So do give it a read and share your thoughts.

About the Book:

Title : Baaz

Author : Anuja Chauhan

Publisher : Harper Collins

Genre : Fiction

Copy : Flipkart Review Program

ISBN : 9789352644124

Rating :  23bae-4-52bstars

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Links :

Flipkart : Baaz by Anuja Chauhan

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