Ranveer Singh rocketed to fame with his 2011 debut Band Baaja Baarat, opposite co-star Anushka Sharma. A film about two friends who start a marriage planning company, it was a full-on desi movie with all the flavours and sights and sounds of Delhi. Ladies vs Ricky Bahl recreates some of that same magic, but with a bigger cast that includes newcomer Parineeti Chopra. As with the first Singh flick, I enjoyed this one too, and it has since stood up to several repeat viewings, which is pretty much Bollywood gold right there.
Ranveer and Anushka have done very few films to date in their respective careers and this is their second film together, but despite everything else, they pulled off a winner here. Great songs as usual, and a great script plus great acting made this a standout movie for me in 2011. And here’s the reasons why.
Ever since I started reading SFF for good back in high school, what I like to call my formative years of reading genre fiction, I’ve read some quite thick books. That was around the time when the Harry Potter novels were extremely popular as well and were following the trend of each new book being thicker and bulkier than the one before, so it was truly an interesting time. In more recent years, I’ve stopped reading big fat SFF novels all that much because I don’t really want to spend all that much time reading a book now. When I was reading like 3-4 novels a year, it was fine to spend a couple weeks on these books, but these days my daily life is far too fast-paced for me to be that slow.
While Scott Lynch’s debut novel The Lies of Locke Lamora isn’t quite the thicket fantasy novel I’ve read to date, its certainly one that’s taken me the longest, almost an entire week during which I barely kept up with my comics reading and blogging. The novel was that much of a slog throughout. I started reading it since I’d gotten caught in all the excitement of the release of the third book in the series, and I kind of wanted to see what all the buzz was about. So I had some high expectations going in, but few of them ended up being met and the novel generally proved to be a poor one with a lackadaisical plot, some uninteresting and bland characters, and limited world-building.
This week was a bit heavy on DC reading, mostly because a lot of top titles were released, titles I’d been looking forward to all month and so I went all-out for the most part. Some bit of Marvel and Image mixed in as well, which is always great to break up the monotony of reading just the DC-stuff. Read a bit more this week than I usually do, which was a surprise since this week was also marred by reading a really huge science fiction novel, which proved to be a long, long slog, so that’s something I guess.
Also, I finally managed to read a graphic novel, which was great. It wasn’t one that I was really planning to read, but it was on the list for a long time, so it all balances out in the end, which is what matters most. And now I’m pumped on to read more, and this week should be good on that front. Fingers crossed!
Watching the first four episodes of Leverage about three weeks back proved to be one of the best experiences of television viewing to date. The show began on a really good note, and it brought together some really fun characters, put them in what initially appeared to really tough situations and then showed how they got together, pooled their resources and abilities to come up with some really innovative and bright solutions to these problems.
Outside of a handful of movies, I haven’t really seen any show where confidence men and heists were the big premise, and in that regard the show proved to be extremely fresh for me. Especially since at the time of writing this review, I’ve already finished all thirteen episodes of the first season and have seen the first three episodes of the second season. I had “vowed” to myself not to get into the second season until I finished reviewing the first season but the other day, I just couldn’t hold back anymore and after a valiant 10-day break, I was back into Leverage. That’s how damn good this show has been till now.
Earlier this year, I read Matt Forbeck’s Leverage: The Con Job, a novel he had written as a tie-in for the TV show Leverage, which had just recently been taken off-air after a full fifth season. Set at San Diego Comic Con, the biggest geek convention in the world, it was a really fun story about a group of people who use their skills at conning people to help those who have been cheated in one way or another by the “system”, whether corporations or criminals or whatever. You can read my review of the novel here.
The novel was one that made me really want to watch the TV show itself, but I didn’t get a chance to do that until just a few days ago, pretty much nine months later. So far, I’ve seen only the first four episodes of the first season, but I’m really enjoying it. The entire concept behind the show is really fun and the execution has been brilliant.
I did two “Best of the…” lists last year, one for the half-year from January to June, and the other for the half-year from July to December. The lists proved to be quite popular, and I was recently asked if I was going to be doing any more. To which I said yes. I like putting together lists like this. It gives me a chance to reflect a bit on all the good stuff I’ve been reading in novels and comics, or listening to in terms of audiobooks, audio dramas and so on.
You can check out my top-of-the-month lists on my Reading Awards page and this list is both an extension, and a continuation of what goes on there.
Let’s see what makes the cut and which comes close then!