Obsession; Gurpartap Khairah Bishwa and Stormy Suraj Sinha, Tara, Rs.299

A sensitive portrayal of one’s deepest emotions, this collection of stories explores the psyche of an individual, a person’s most vivid desires, most profound fears and the ultimate revelation of his/her darkest secrets. The stories strip the human spirit of all pretence, exposing shame and sorrow, desire and desperation.

Path of the Swan; Charu Singh, Hachette, Rs.499

In the first part of The Maitreya Chronicles, Lama Ozer and Tashi travel through Sikkim and Tibet, meet with divinity and dark celestial beings, including the golden dakini Yeshe Nam Lha, whose son Maitreya the saviour, it is prophesied, will be born on Earth. But before that, they have to combat dark forces and free Yeshe from captivity.

The Emperor’s Riddles, Satyarth Nayak, Amaryllis, Rs.299

The mystery behind historian Ram Mathur’s death sets his daughter, Sia and her friend, Om Patnaik, on the path to discovering the truth. The story of an Emperor who parries with forces unknown and strong runs parallel. As a number of murders take place throughout the city, Sia and Om race towards their goal to put an end to the chaos.

Panty; Sangeeta Bandyopadhyay, Trs Arunava Sinha, Penguin, Rs.499

A collection of two novellas — Hypnosis and Panty — that revolve around women’s sexuality. In Hypnosis, a journalist lets herself be hypnotised and drugged to confront her unconsummated but passionate affair with a famous musician; while in Panty, a woman moves into a guesthouse, discovers a leopard-print panty in a wardrobe, and fantasises about it’s owner, leading to the mingling and blurring of the two women’s sexual lives. Bandyopadhyay’s narrative is strong, crisp and riveting.

Maps for a Mortal Moon; Adil Jussawalla, Aleph, Rs.495

Adil Jussawalla’s essays and entertainments take in everything from language to poetry, from ethics to model aeroplanes, from death and addiction to travel and alienation. In these pages, one meets poets, novelists, construction labourers, gamblers and, most startlingly, Jussawalla himself. Poignant, witty, melancholic and intense, this is the best of four decades of prose from one of India’s masters of the written word.

The Vedas; Roshen Dalal, Penguin, Rs.699

Noted historian Roshen Dalal sifts through centuries of information and research to present, in a straightforward and succinct account.  Using socio-economic data, archaeological and linguistic research, the author introduces us to the Vedic era, enabling one to understand the culture and philosophy that produced these ancient and sublime texts.