Chocolate and Gold Coins

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Book Tag

Amit Varma of India Uncut did a dirty trick on me. He tagged me. Now I have to write about a several books that I have read and that have made an impact on me.

Several books?

Would Amar Chitra Katha count?

Every Christmas, my wife gives me a book to read. The last book that I read that I really enjoyed was Lucy Jago’s The Northern Lights, The True Story of the Man Who Unlocked the Secrets of the Aurora Borealis. It is all about the great Norwegian scientist Kristian Birkeland. It’s a good story.

However, I think that I will change this meme ever so slightly and talk about the favorite books my six-year-old son is reading. By the time his is seven, he will have read more books than his father.

How many books does my son have

For a six-year-old, he has many many books. I would guess he has about 300 to 400 books.

Latest book that we bought

The latest book that we bought for my son is Shel Silverstein’s wonderful book The Missing Piece. Its all about a rock that looks a little like Pac-Man who searches for his missing piece. It discovers that the journey is more important than the objective.

Latest book that we read

The latest book that my son read is one by Roald Dahl. He has read many of those. The best one was my childhood favorite: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. (I couldn’t resist adding some chocolate in this post). Perhaps this book is a bit politically incorrect but the idea of the great entrepreneur firing all of his ungrateful workers and replacing them with people who want to work for him might appeal to some Libertarian types.

Five books that mean a lot to my son

It is hard to say now, but several books are favorites. I will arbitrarily exclude fact books: books about whales, dinosaurs, trains, and other stuff because they aren’t in any sense stories.

1. The Complete Adventures of Curious George, by Margret and H.A. Rey. You got to love a story about the ultimate naughty but loveable child: Curious George.
2. Mike Muligan and his Steam Shovel, by Virginia Lee Burton. A wonderful book from the 1930’s. It teaches a lesson about technological obsolesce that children can understand. And, of course, it’s fun to root for the old steam shovel.
3. Thomas the Tank Engine: The Complete Collection (Railway Series), by Wilbert Awdry. Excellent stories for really young children. These stories actually teach a lot about the politics associated with any enterprise. But little boys just love stories about trains.
4. Amar Chitra Katha Jataka Tales. My son loves these animal stories. They are a little violent and occasionally there is a story about someone who is suicidal, but otherwise these stories are classics. My son recognized the story of the crows-strength through unity (they all fly off with the net) when he saw the fish caught-in-a-net scene in Finding Nemo.
5. The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins, by Dr. Seuss. Dr. Seuss is the all-time great of children’s literature. I could have named the Cat and the Hat, or Green Eggs and Ham (a real favorite) but this one is a personal favorite.

Tag someone else

I should tag five people but since I found the easy way out of this assignment, I will only tag three people who have become regular readers of my blog, and have very nice blogs that more people should be reading. Hopefully they will not mind:

Sunil Laxman,
Vikram Arumilli,
Kunal Sawardekar.


  • Hey Michael,

    My books are up. Thanks for tagging me!


    By Blogger Vikram A., at 12:44 AM  

  • I have done the dirty, written up my book tag and tagged some more unsuspecting bloggers!

    By Blogger Sunil, at 9:50 AM  

  • Hi Vikram and Sunil
    I'm glad both of you (and Kunal as well) decided to play along with the meme. There are so many interesting sounding books - maybe I will have to read two books next year instead of one.

    By Blogger Michael Higgins, at 9:28 PM  

  • Hi! Your interest in and knowledge of things Indian reminds me of another Higgins - Jon B. Higgins, affectionately called Higgins Bhagavathar. He was a Carnatic (south Indian classical) musician and would regularly travel to Madras to perform in the annual Music Season in December.

    By Blogger Srikanth, at 11:51 AM  

  • Hi Srikanth
    I'm no relation but I have heard of Jon B. Higgins. My wife's parents live in Madras(Chennai) and attented one or more of Jon B. Higgins's performances.

    My family is thinking of going to Chennai in December. Maybe we can take in a performance. That would be very nice.

    By Blogger Michael Higgins, at 2:12 PM  

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