Not very unlike what happens to Bob Slocum in Joseph Heller’s namesake book. Little events not connected to each other…a global conference, slight indisposition, dental treatment, procrastination, work overload, print deadlines, lethargy…enough to drive me round the bend and question my sanity. Before I knew it, I had stayed away from my blog for a week though not from other blogs. Frankly, it felt good.
I used the self-imposed and self-inflicted diversions doing a little of this and that. I read very little during this period. I am still ploughing through The Iron Tiger by Jack Higgins and Transplant by Frank G. Slaughter, authors I'd usually finish reading in a couple of days. The Great White Army by Max Pemberton remains on the backburner. Pemberton is a very good writer and his books deserve to be read and reviewed. They are available on the internet.
At this point reading a book seems like an uphill walk. I have had more luck with comic-books.
I bought and read part of a western comic-book Wes Slade: The Living Dead, written and designed by George Stokes who initially drew it as a comic strip for
Britain’s Sunday Express. While the
black-and-white illustrations are fantastic, the print in the speech bubbles is
tiny and hard on the eyes.
I also purchased a handful of Amar Chitra Katha (Immortal Picture Stories),
indigenous and largest-selling comics that retell stories from Indian history,
epics and mythology, and fables and folklore. I picked up The Story of the Freedom Struggle that affords a chronological
look at India’s
independence movement from the time the British occupied the country in early
19th century to its independence on August 15, 1947. Although I know
most of the famous and the not-so-famous freedom fighters of India, thanks
to my school history textbooks, this particular comic-book threw up several unsung heroes and their selfless acts of valour.
The other three ACK comics I bought were Tales from the Upanishads: Tales of Peace and Wisdom, the ancient Hindu scriptures; Sea Route to India: In Quest of the Ultimate Destination, which explores the trade expeditions to India by European explorers like Bartholomew Diaz, Christopher Columbus, and Vasco da Gama; and Marie and Pierre Curie: A Passion for Science that requires no explanation.
The rest of the week was spent reading a couple of spiritual books and listening to spiritual music, something that I have been doing off and on for years. A little soul-searching always helps.
I hope to get back to active blogging this weekend, hopefully, with a review of The Hessian by Howard Fast, fiction steeped in history, and respond to generous comments left under my posts. For now I have a few more comics to read.