Friday, April 08, 2016


They were sitting in the balcony on a cool Bangalore morning - all 3 of them. The kid, Mom and Dad.

They had just lost their lovely puppy Sufi - to a canine virus - the previous night. She had entered their life just a week back.

The dad who hadn't cried that night before was sobbing. The kid had got over it - weeping uncontrollably on that fateful night along with his mother - perhaps the first time he ever cried for a living being.

The kid made jokes to cheer his dad.

It has been 3 months. The dad still misses Sufi a lot. He gets sad when he remembers Sufi and along with him makes the kid sad. They both sit and mourn and curse God.


Speaker for the Dead - Whattay Book I Say.

Don't read this book - "Speaker for the Dead" by Orson Scott Card,  if you haven't read - Ender's Game - which I highly recommend. This is my brief review from my 2014 Books Roundup.

"Brilliant Book. If you dig Science Fictions you should definitely read this. After Dune by Frank Hebert - this book captured my imagination and kept me in Enders World for the period I was reading this book.  A movie based on this book also came out in November but I missed it. "

After reading Red Rising I was looking for another Science Fiction and I picked up the 2nd part of Enders Game - and little did I expect what is in store for me.

It is unlike any science fiction I have ever read. There is the usual fancy aliens, starship travel and relativity ageing ( our Ender turns 3000 years old in this book ) - but I was hit with a very human angle.

How is to love animals as if they are human?

Now how it is to love aliens as human? This book addresses this in a beautiful way through Ender.  Living beings are classified into Framling, Raman and Varelse.  Varelse are the lowest.. and the aliens are like animals. Framling are humans. Raman is somewhere in-between .

Ender is now the Speaker for the dead. He can be called from any part of the galaxy to speak about a dead person - laying out the facts and telling the truth - bringing peace to the family.

There are 3 key parts in the book  - which are masterpieces in themselves.

In one scene Ender descends on to a widow's family - which is totally fractured because of the now dead Marco - the abusive family head on whom Ender is to speak of - and ill-mannered kids who hate Ender - and how Ender turns them around one kid at a time.

Another scene Ender, who is the Speaker for the dead - Speaks of the Widow's husband - laying out all the facts, and brings honour to the dead man and saves the Widow in the process from her misery by exposing the fact that she is an adulteress, yet making her look like a Goddess.

Final scene - towards the end - when Ender creates a treaty with the aliens - simply brilliant.

I hope they do not make a movie out of this and spoil this. But this book is too good to be left untouched by Hollywood.

Now there is the 3rd part - Xenocide - I briefly read on Goodreads about this. The reviews are really funny and discouraging - it seems one needs an iron will to read it - as author rambles a lot apparently.

And found a xkcd cartoon too on Xenocide.

Hmm.. for the time being leaving Xenocide on the table. I will build my mental courage and attack this one.