When writers wrote books they hoped that they will move their readers, change their ways of thinking or just please them. Well, being a bookworm being moved by books was never much of an issue for me, but then there are movers and there are movers! If you ask me about the books that has moved me more than a little, even though there are more than ten I will list the ten that comes to mind instantly, and stays thereafter. Not giving up their due positions.
1. Of human bondage by Somerset Maugham, well, I instantly bonded with the narrator, even though I was lucky enough to not have any physical challenges our mindset was similar, like him I too have chased one wrong goal after the other, goals that took up all his energy, skill and yet evaded him, like him I too have been bullied a bit too much by my siblings (in his case it was other kids, who bullied him for his feet) at tender age. But above that, the thing that touched me most was his courage, the courage that made him stand up again and look for a new way, being exploited by a cunning woman for years he finally gave her up and married a decent girl, who was not a fashion diva or coquettish, just a simple girl with heart full of warmth, love. The thing that moved me most in this book is his fight, his indomitable spirit and the wisdom to accept failure when it was absolutely evident, like giving up Mildred or leaving Paris, where he went to become an artist because everyone told him that he has that skill, he realized after years of toil and waste of almost all his money that he did not had that thing.
2. “Aranyak by Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay” It is a Bengali novel, a novel that has touched me so deeply that even though I have read it at least 50 times but still, if I start sifting it I can’t stop myself from reading it again, just because of its sheer beauty, it’s the story of a young man of Kolkata who has to take up a job in a God forgotten village of Bihar, how the untamed natural beauty and the innocent people of that place captivated him, the story of those innocent, poor people and the sheer beauty of that place- only Bibhutibhushan can capture that I think!
3. “Pather panchali by Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay” sorry to break your heart those of you who think that high caste people of India suck blood of low caste people in India an roll on wads of cash, this is the story of the poorest of poor family of Brahmin, the story of a child born of a poor, educated but restless father and a normal mother of that time, who could only handle home, the father rarely stayed at home, he wandered here and there looking for his dream job, leaving behind his wife and two kids at ancestral home to face the claws of abject poverty, the girl dies due to sickness, without medicine, the boy survives. The world through his eyes. It is a sad story, I still weep when I read it, but it is irresistible, can’t be put down after picking it up.
4. “Les Miserables by Victor Hugo” This is the story of Jean Val jean an innocent man who went to jail because he stole a bread to feed his sister’s family, and then he stayed there for years, because he kept trying to escape, finally he did, and was chased by a self righteous cop for the rest of his life, at the end he dies, that death was heart breaking too. This story is an eye opener to anyone who thinks justice should be blind. It should only act on data and evidences. Mistakes should be taken into account but with that the reason too should be judged. Had it been a normal world he most probably would have gotten away with a rebuke and a basket of breads!
5. “Gitabitan by Rabindranath Tagore” this is the compilation of all poems written by Rabindranath Tagore, a genius when it comes to writing poetry. Different poets have their own different fields of expertise, but when it comes to Tagore, those who know Bengali will see that he has equal mastery over almost everything that matters to human beings- nature, devotion, love, society, human nature…anyone with enough patience should try his works in his or her own language.
6. “Crime and punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky” This is the story that is a humble reminder that sometimes an invisible power metes out the punishment far more viciously than any law can. It is the story of a young, poor man who commits a heinous crime and then his own conscience makes his life a purgatory. Honestly at the end you will pity him. Even though condemning his deed.
7. “Shreemadbhagwat Geeta” no wonder this book has been revered by Hindus for thousands of years, if you have an inclination for spiritualism, no matter who you are- a housewife, a tycoon or a field worker it will guide you through the maze of world with utmost expertise.
8. “All quiet on western front by Erich Maria Remarkh” This book is narrated by a young boy fighting in world war, it is a horrible heart wrenching story from trenches, it made me anti war at early teen and I have been that since then.
9. “The idiot” by Fyodor Dostoyevsky this is the story that tells a harsh truth, human society is not for angels. It is the story of a man with angelic nature and the way he is treated by people. Normal people.
10. “Hunchback of Notre Dame” by Victor Hugo. It is the story of loves that went all wrong, one woman three men, one won her heart and dumped it, one lusted after her and tried to get her against her wish, third one helped him but later repented and tried to save her from him but both perished. It is one amazing story that shows the complex nature of love in its full scale, if not glory!