A Look Inside K. R. Meera's Library

An award-winning writer and columnist, Meera won the Sahitya Akademi award in 2015 for Aarachar, which has been hailed as a contemporary classic and a bestseller in Malayalam.

Compiled by Suchismita Ukil Updated: Sep 28, 2018 10:09:10 IST
A Look Inside K. R. Meera's Library

K. R. Meera is an award-winning writer and columnist, with more than a dozen books to her name. In 2015 she won the Sahitya Akademi award for Aarachar, hailed as a contemporary classic and a bestseller in Malayalam. It is published as Hangwoman in English and was shortlisted for the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature. Her other translated works include Yellow is the Colour of Longing, The Gospel of Yudas, The Poison of Love and And Slowly Forgetting That Tree. She lives in Kottayam, Kerala, with her husband Dileep and daughter Shruthi.

One Hundred Years of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Penguin Books, Rs 399)

My soul grew wings while reading this magical novel about the Buendia family in the fictional town of Macondo.

A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens, Fingerprint Publishing, Rs 99)

Ebenezer Scrooge's story influenced me so much that I learnt the art of self-analysis.

Lord of The Flies (William Golding, Penguin Classics, Rs 599)

This book, about a group of boys deserted on an island and trying to govern themselves, gave an insight into the human willpower. Reading it was like the opening of a third eye, which could see through the hearts of the people around me.

Mother (Maxim Gorky, Maple Press, Rs 225)

Alexei Maksimovich Peshkov's masterpiece set during the Russian revolution of 1905, written under the pseudonym of Gorky, was presented to me as a prize in an elocution competition I won while studying in the fifth standard. This book baptized me into communism.

Aithihyamala - Kayamkulam Kochunniyum Kathakalum (The Garland of Legends) (Kottarathil Sankunni, Green Books, Rs 105)

This Malayalam text is a treasure trove of local myths and legends -- it transported me into an imaginary world where I received scientific training in fantasizing.

The Hunchback of Notre-Dame (Victor Hugo, Collins Classics, Rs 199)

This book made me understand the man's world in which a woman lives. I still remember how the idea of a death sentence scared me not knowing how it would haunt me over years to write a novel like Hangwoman.

Panchatantra (Vishnu Sharma, Penguin Random House India, Rs 299)

Reading the translation by Sumangala into Malayalam, these ancient animal fables were one of the first to impart an understanding of human psychology and sociology.

The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand, Penguin USA, Rs 399)

Russian-American author Ayn Rand's protagonist, the young idealist architect Howard Roark, helped me overcome suicidal tendencies in the late teens.

Uncle Tom's Cabin (Harriet Beecher Stowe, Collins Classics, Rs 199)

Published right before the American Civil War in 1852, this anti-slavery novel made me cry over and again and wash away with tears all thoughts about caste or creed.

Keralathile Pakshikal (Birds of Kerala)* (Induchoodan, Kerala Sahitya Akademi, Thrissur)

Better known by his pen name, K. K. Neelakantan, the renowned ornithologist, first published his findings from bird watching in 1958. The book shaped my ideas about the environment.


*Currently, out of print.

Book prices are subject to change. All book details are as seen on Amazon.in.

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