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September Preview: Our Top Five Indian Releases

  1. The Nationalist

nationalist

It will not be an exaggeration to say that multinational conglomerate Larsen & Toubro (L&T) is behind every critical national endeavour – India’s first nuclear submarine; its strategic weapon and missile systems; the space exploration programme; and infrastructure like metro systems and nuclear power plants. And one man has been instrumental in taking L&T to these heights: its chairman, A.M. Naik.

Naik joined L&T as a junior engineer in 1965 and rapidly rose through the ranks to become its chairman in 2003. As he steps down in 2017 after more than fifty years at the firm, The Nationalist is his candid and clear-headed assessment of his own life as well as L&T and the Indian economy.

 

  1. Pink

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No means no.

In September 2016, Pink released in theatres and immediately began to trend. Over the next few months, as it became a huge box-office success, it also became the subject of several social and cultural debates – on the rights of women, the justice and penal system in India and other related issues. For a Hindi film to be able to do that was unheard-of.

Releasing on the first anniversary of the film, this book looks at its making and tries to understand what made it resonate with large sections of society. Including the screenplay of the film, a foreword by Amitabh Bachchan and an afterword by Shoojit Sircar, this is an account of one of Hindi cinema’s most influential films in recent times. 

 

  1. Husain

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Six years after first seeing him on a rainy day outside the Jehangir Art Gallery, Ila Pal met the star painter for the first time in 1961. Thus began her long and enriching association with M.F. Husain.

In this warm and intimate biography, Ila describes the evolution of Husain, a boy from Pandharpur, to a painter of billboards, a toy maker, the inveterate artist he soon became and the style icon walking about barefoot with a long brush in hand. Filled with anecdotes about his sharp wit and biting sarcasm, this book attempts to unravel the enigma of MF, who became the master of contemporary Indian art.

 

  1. Himalayan Hazard

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After years of fighting vicious secret wars in distant, obscure locations, Gautam Shukla heads to the hills for a life of quiet retirement. During a brief trip to Delhi, he meets Ruth, a striking young Israeli security officer and, while out jogging with her one morning, is witness to a highly professional ‘hit’ on a political figure in the heart of Lutyens’ Delhi.

As Gautam gets drawn into the hunt for the assassin, disturbing events begin to unfold close to his mountain retreat. An international drug cartel is building an opium-poppy-growing base in the mountains and has come uncomfortably close to Gautam’s estate. Gautam must now not only help track down the assassin but also foil all attempts to convert the pristine – and until now peaceful – Kumauni countryside into a deadly nest of crime and violence.

 

  1. Miss Laila, Armed and Dangerous

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A building collapses in Mumbai. In the debris is a man who is mumbling something in delirium. It appears that he is passing on the real-time movements of a young Muslim couple. Elsewhere, a young intelligence agent is assigned to shadow two terror suspects, one of whom is a teenager and the sweetheart of her street, Laila.

Taking up a slice of recent history, the novel glares at the entire system – not just politicians, the bureaucracy, the police and lackeys, but also the good folks. Pervasive in its satire, wicked in its humour and broad-based in its canvas, no wonder Miss Laila, Armed and Dangerous is one of the most anticipated books of the year!

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