Who’s reading what: Gul Panag

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“I usually read on my Kindle as it is compact and fits into my purse. I began reading a lot more after I got the Kindle,” says Gul Panag.

Gul Panag
What are you reading now and why did you pick these titles?

I am reading three books currently. I am always reading more than one book at a time. One is a reference book that I read regularly, Dr Spock’s Baby and Child Care. It is an essential parenting book. It gives a half-page note on everything that could possibly happen. My son is 10 months old now. With babies, since they cannot speak, knowing what is making them cry is always a challenge. The book is a guide that offers insight into what to expect.

The second book I am reading is Rajmohan Gandhi’s Punjab: A History from Aurangzeb to Mountbatten. It is a fine book on the history of Punjab, including but not limited to multiple invasions, the undivided Punjab. It is a fascinating history.
I chanced upon Who Moved My Cheese many years ago. Now, I am reading it again. We get too comfortable in any situation. I think it is important to not get comfortable because the moment you do that, you are setting yourself up for disappointment, as change is constant in every manner. The learning from the book can apply to anything — health, fitness, career, family, relationships at any phase of your life.

Which were the last couple of books you read?
I read Jackdaws by Ken Follett. It is a quick pulp fiction that is good to read on a flight. Another interesting book I read recently was Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging by Sebatian Junger. He is an American journalist, who probably wrote the first documented analysis of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among war soldiers and embedded journalists. It speaks of how humans are essentially primates who are meant to co-exist as a community and not in fancy but lonely towers, cut-off from everyone else. It speaks of the how we are hurtling down a precipice of mental illness due to this, especially the affluent. I also read Zia Mody’s Ten Judgments That Changed India recently.

Where do you usually prefer reading?
I usually read a lot on flights as I am travelling constantly. I also usually read in bed but that is also a problem because then I eat into my sleep time. I would love to curl up on a couch and spend the day reading, in the proverbial way, but it does not happen.

Do you read on a device or do you prefer a physical copy?
I usually read on my Kindle as it is compact and fits into my purse. I began reading a lot more after I got the Kindle. Also, I end up leaving books behind, when I am carrying their physical copies. Books like Dr Spock’s — I have a physical copy of it — it is cumbersome to keep going back and forth on a Kindle for reference.

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