Reader Interview of Bindu (The Newbie) @ BYOB Party in October 2019

We got to speak to Bindu who had been quite disappointed by Malcolm Gladwell’s latest book.

Tell us about your book journey. 

It was academics that led me to read so widely. I did my graduation, post-graduation, M.Phil and Ph.D. in English literature, so I read all the time, be it the classics or contemporary fiction. The ecosystem in which I studied involved books and more books and even batchmate’s book recommendations. It was like falling into a rabbit hole filled with books.

Fiction or non-fiction?

Since I ended up being an academic writer, I continue reading heavy doses of fiction and subject-wise non-fiction.

Do you read multiple books on the same subject?

No, my choices are more random and recommendations matter a lot to me. I work with subject experts so they keep me updated not just on books on a subject but meta-books as well. That’s how I came across an author like Robert Sapolsky, someone I wouldn’t have discovered if it wasn’t for suggestions from others.

Do you read vernacular books?

Not really. No one has recommended any book so strongly. I did read Tamil magazines and stories while in college but the English literature that I was exposed to seemed so far ahead at the time.

What kind of literature do you prefer?

Well, I have been exposed to a variety of subjects including European, American and World Literature. I particularly enjoy the magical realism of writers like Marquez and Rushdie.

Favorite books?

Catch 22 by Joseph Heller

Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger.

Do you read poetry?

Poetry is very cryptic and takes more effort though I must say that I was wonderstruck by Vikram Seth’s poetry in The Golden Gate while it was impossible to finish his magnum opus A Suitable Boy.

Audiobooks or eBooks?

Audiobooks, no doubt. The last book I read or listened to, rather, was Lincoln in the Bardo. It was amazing. There are around 183 characters in the story and what’s available on Audible is the performed version. The main character is narrated by the author himself. I love the audiobook experience as it is completely hands-free and I find an excuse to do the mundane just so that I can get at least an hour’s worth dedicated listening. I’m into the listening culture as I grew up listening to discourses.

How much do you read or listen on average?

I’d say 1-1 ½ hrs every day.

Thank you for sharing your bookish experiences, Bindu!

Leave a Reply