I have to accept that I picked up this book only for review sake. But as I started reading it was simply unputdownable. I was reading it at the most unusual places …while brushing, in the cab, while waiting..just about everywhere. This book was my constant companion till the time I finished reading it.
Shruthi Rao, the author, brings this unique compilation of ‘Twenty Indians who changed the World’. We all have heard about the proverb ‘Bharat Ek Sone ki Chidiya’. After reading this book only, I realised what a treasure trove of knowledge our country has been. The twenty Indians, to whom this book is dedicated, are known to all. Many of us would have read their biographies or autobiographies too. But I can assure that there are still few hidden and gem of facts mentioned about them in this book.
For example, each one of us have heard about the famous Nobel winning scientist CV Raman. A startling fact that emerged while reading this ‘encyclopedia’ about Nobel laureates from India was that even while he served in full time demanding civil services job, he started living right next to Indian Association for Cultivation of Science ( IACS) in Calcutta, to cut down on commute. Not just that, he got a door built that led right from his house to the institute!
Also I accept that I never knew that Gandhiji had served as a Sergeant Major for the British Army in South Africa! Equally startling facts find mention about Panini, Bhaskar and Tipu Sultan! Gandhiji never received a Nobel prize..he was much above Nobel. Other Indians who have brought distinction in their respective fields won this coveted prize. However, more than winning Nobel, it was their indomitable spirit to excel and be of value to the society that’s described magnificently in this book!
I would say this one is a brilliant book to be read by all. However, a must read for teenagers and even pre-teens. Written in most lucid and unpretentious manner, brimming with unknown and interesting facts about these leaders who changed the world for the better, Shruthi Rao’s book is a jewel of informative and inspiring books!