Saturday, September 17, 2005

The Zahir and the Summer of Katya

I have just finished reading these two books

The Zahir by Paulo Coelho

This in my view is his best book.He taunts and teases the readers to think again about the coventional approach to love and marriage. Sounds autobiographical !
Some snippets
-age only slows down those who never had the courage to walk at their own pace
- he died while he was still alive
- the game of seduction is the most interesting game in the world. the effort of seduction forces us to give our best.
- we are close to our mission, when what we are doing is touched with the energy of enthusiasm
- all the important things in our lives had arisen out of long conversations we'd had sitting at a table in some bar or walking along a street or in a park

- we have been conditioned to believe that if a man and a woman like each other and circumstances allow, they are bound to end up in bed together.
- as soon as one decides to confront a problem, one realises that one is capable of more than one thought one was.
- love devours
- harnessing the energy of love will be like discovery of fire
- it is not the destination that matters,but the journey

The Summer of Katya by Trevanian

i had read his first novel Shibumi, which had made a powerful impression about 25 yrs back. This second book has reconfirmed that Trevanian could move my heart and soul, as intensely as he had done when i was young, innocent, foolish and timid.Katya challenges the mind with her puns and wit while letting herself take in the joy from the bright day,colours and perfume of flowers.her twin brother paul, the snobbish Parisian makes mincemeat of the rustic and proud Basque doctor Montjean with his merciless frankness.
some snippets

- patients think of bitter and unpalatable stuff as efficacious , having been conditioned by the christian assumption that pleasure is evil and pain redeeming
-love is not what one feels for another. it is a state, a condition outside the two persons, a kind of shared shelter within which both find comfort and confidence. Either one is absorbed as a whole totally or it is not love
- paul excused himself, claiming that there were a thousand things demanding his attention,so he had better take a nap and give them a chance to solve themselves under the influence of his benign neglect.
- confession is good for the spirit. it empties the soul, making space for more sin.
- romance is a fiction by which tender-minded negotiate their lust
- having attempted nothing, he had no sense of his limitations. having dared nothing, he knew no boundaries to his courage.

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