16 June 2015

Books in Books, a genre in itself


By Laws of probability or obvious deduction, we can assume all authors are book lovers ( although not vice versa). So the love for reading often comes up in the books. For me as a book lover it's a double treat when I explore a new author or a book through one book or author. It's like you can have the one in hand and get direction to the two in bush. Its highly likely if you like the current book and author then you are bound to like their subtle recommendation on the reference book. 

Unlike non fiction which uses the content of another book to validate or add to the premise. In fiction a book is used as an experience, an inspiration, or as an element to the plot. The choice of books, of the characters, of the story says a lot on their personalities and influences. 

Even 'Fifty Shades of Grey', has reference to literature. Remember when Mr Grey gifts first edition of the classic 'Tess of The the d'urbervilles'  to Anastasia which is supposedly her favourite book. I haven't read the classic but it's bound to have a connection where Anastasia identifies herself with Tess. 

Here are 5 books which have books in them. The surprising part is all 5 have been made into films. Book lovers and film lovers have a treat in store. 

1. Namesake 
Remember Jhumpa's Namesake had Nikloi Gogol's Overcoat. The protagonist credits the safety of his life to this book, the only thing remaining with him after a terrible trim accident which he survived. It's an essential part of the plot. After reading Namesake I had to read Overcoat to figure out the significance. There is a thin line between the two stories and you have to read both to understand the same. 

2. Suraj ka Satvan Ghoda
This book despite being a literary classic itself does shows the author Dharamvir Bharati's love and depth for reading. Through his storyteller and the character he references to some of the great works of Indian literature. He questions the reference of love in the economic and social context. Through his brilliant story telling he brings forth a correlation between love, romanticism, social divisions, economic challenges and aspirations. How all love stories are supposed to contain a message of social upliftment. The characters compare themselves to various literary figures - Paro and Devdas from Sarat Chandra's work and Devasena are a reference to the lives and plight of the characters. Dharamvir Bharati does a splendid job of presenting the Situation of Middle class of those times. 


3. The book thief 
The name itself suggests the love of books. No one steals books but for reading (unless it's some unique edition which one can sell as an antiquity and make money). With a backdrop of Nazi Germany the story unfolds with love of reading of a book thief. There is an ensemble of books which do not have any symbolic reference to the plot but add up to the love of books received, stolen, saved or created over various events in the story. 'The Grave diggers Handbook' , 'The Shoulder Shrug'  and many others. But the books I loved the most were 'The Standover Man' and 'The Word Shaker', written by Max Vandenburg for Liesel. 


4. The Jane Austen book club
Of course it's about book clubs and books and obviously about Jane Austen. Austen lovers unite and discuss her works month after month, as their own story unfolds along with these meetings. But like all Austen books, relationships, confusion, prejudices, misunderstandings, vanity, and alls well that ends well. 

5. Perks of being a wallflower 
The perks of this book was the long list of YA fiction list it suggests. The love for reading of the protagonist and his special bond with his English teacher, helps the readers with great suggestions of some good books. It will also resonate with you from a YA perspective the age you actually start reading. Read the full review and list of books here: http://storywala.blogspot.in/2013/10/the-perks-of-being-wallflower.html

Have you found a book which lead you to another. Share it with other book lovers. 

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