Book Review: How I Taught My Grandmother to Read and Other Stories by Sudha Murty

Avinashjee
Avinashjee / Blog / 7 yrs ago /
  0

These are not stories written by a master story writer. But these are nevertheless stories which everyone should read. They teach you so much about life itself. They also tell you so much about qualities we seem to have forgotten - like honesty - and also people that were great, not for the money they had, but the strength of character they had - like JRD Tata. They also tell you what ingratitude is.
I found them to be wholesome and I found myself stronger in my beliefs having read this book.

There is a story - 'A' for Honesty. The writer's own child rings up from US and is depressed about an exam in which he committed an inadvertant error. As a teacher I was moved reading this story. I used to think I am a fool to normally behave like the teacher in the story when most teachers don't. But my belief in myself was strengthened having read this story. But the story is mainly about honesty.

There is another about ingratitude of a student who was helped in his climb up by several self-effacing and ordinary people. This too is a moving story and tells you how not to live life.

Then there is an unforgettable story regarding the author's fight against what she thought was gender discrimination at the best industrial house in India - TATA. What happens, what JRD TAta himself does, how shee comes to meet JRD etc. is told with such plain simplicity that it leaves you not just with an impression but inspiration too.

There are countless other stories here and all of them are true life incidents. One that I recall - after having read the book at least 2 years back - is about Gowriamma. This simple tale brings tears to your eyes as it does to the author's eyes.

Surprisingly, these tales that move you so, are not written by any acclaimed literary genius. They are written by Sudha Murty, Chairperson, Infosys Foundation, and wife of Narayana Murthy. These tales are about simple things that happen all around you and each one of you has experienced most of the events and emotions in these stories. And yet, these are written in a manner that you will enjoy these stories as much as you will from a master storyteller.