Shop now Shop now Shop now See more Shop all Amazon Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Learn More Learn more Shop now Shop Fire Shop Kindle Paperwhite Shop now Discover more Shop now
Profile for Mr. S. Ghosh > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Mr. S. Ghosh
Top Reviewer Ranking: 9,026,318
Helpful Votes: 56

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Mr. S. Ghosh (Bangalore, India)
(REAL NAME)   

Show:  
Page: 1
pixel
Botham: My Autobiography (Don't Tell Kath)
Botham: My Autobiography (Don't Tell Kath)
by Ian Botham
Edition: Paperback
Price: £14.99

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An honest account from a Cricketing Legend, 1 April 2006
I recently read "Botham: My Autobiography" and wish to demarcate a few vital points for all reviewers wanting to buy the book for personal perusal; keeping in mind the following two important points:

1) Ian Botham is definitely one of my all time favorite cricketing icons, but I write this account without taking into consideration this and other related personal biases (as this account shows).

2) I personally consider Ian Botham as one of the finest all-rounders in the history of cricket; along with Sir Sobers, Imran, Kapil and Sir Hadlee.

The most important point of the book is absolutely honesty. All readers agreeing or disagreeing with Botham's life-style, his attitude on and off the field and so on however cannot refuse to acknowledge the fact that nearly all sections of the book has been written with absolute honesty. Where Botham did commit a mistake or a series of mistakes, he mentions that he said something blatantly, or did what was reported instead of either denying it simply (as most modern-day icons choose to do) or not agreeing with the matter.

His early career, life-long friendship with King Viv and his cricketing days are all described in superb finesse. The legal dispute of Botham-Lamb against Imran Khan is also delineated in great detail. One of the sections which I read and re-read for a few times is where Botham illustrates the happenings of the 1992 World Cup final against Pakistan where Wasim Akram's over (in his second-spell) (producing Allan Lamb and Chris Lewis' wickets in two successive deliveries which sealed the fate of England in the finals); I consider this section to be a bit "blown out of proportions". I wouldn't call it an "untrue" or "dishonest" account (because: 1) Pakistani fast-bowlers and swing bowlers have the tendency of picking the seam for movements and 2) As final footage shows, the ball was moving way too much all the time in the 2nd spell), but my greatest objection lies in the manner Botham describes the whole affair. After reading this section, a reader who has not happened to follow the 1992 World Cup Final closely will resort thinking that Pakistan won the 1992 World Cup simply owing to ball tampering and thereby producing the deadly reverse swing. As is evident from the videos of the Final (which can be bought online from any major vendor), Akram was swinging the ball from the very first delivery, and Akram's over (producing Lamb and Lewis' wickets) is considered by many experts as one of the best ever over bowled in ODI history. One can swing a lot by tampering with the seam, but to know how and where to pitch it with the seam upright is a talent from within. Especially Lewis' delivery (which I watched a million times over and over again clearly shows that the ball when hit the ground was seaming in, and Akram pitched it well outside off-stump with the rough side (as seen in the videos) being on the inner side. So, Akram definitely knew or had a faint idea that after hitting the seam the ball with do a reverse and dip in. Guessing this is not everyone's cup of tea). Botham does not mention any of this, but simply blatantly calls the Lewis' delivery a "banana" delivery (and one of the strangest deliveries he had ever seen in his career) thereby concluding that Akram won Pakistan the World Cup because of reverse swinging the ball at wrong time (Botham's exact words are: "The delivery came out of the blue") which Akram did only by picking at the seam. This I found a bit offensive in terms of description of events and a few other statements related to this matter leaving aside the fact that Akram is considered by many as one of the greatest swing bowlers in both versions of International cricket (Test/ODI).

Other than this above-mentioned matter, nearly everything else mentioned within is of superb quality, written in great style and in detail. Whether Botham was right or wrong in mentioning that Pakistan won the 1992 World Cup only by resorting to ball tampering under the auspices of the legendary Imran Khan; is a highly debatable issue. Leaving that out of frame, this is an excellent account of the one of the greatest all-rounders in the history of the game. If you're a cricket enthusiast, or a cricket player or just looking for a good read for a vacation ahead; pick this up. It's highly recommended without any reservations whatsoever. 5 stars overall!!!


The Da Vinci Code (Robert Langdon)
The Da Vinci Code (Robert Langdon)
by Dan Brown
Edition: Paperback

1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good read, but fundamentally flawed, 1 Jan. 2006
Is a good read, but somewhat a bit too hyped. I’m mainly into perusal and critical analysis of political works or works of writers of the likes of Hemingway, Dickens, Dostoevsky and Seth (lately). A number of my buddies at college, outside college and others have had highly recommended me this book over time and again. So, I decided giving it a shot! Though I’ve had the chance of reading a couple of detective novels/thrillers by Michael Connelly and Val McDermid, but I must say, though the overall macrocosm in this book is finely painted, a lot remains to be asked about the underlying microcosmic current which sweeps across in resemblance to a tempest.
I personally have no faith in God! But not because of the reason(s) the author chooses to express here. He talks about the secret society, pagan worship and other related things which are very difficult to prove indeed. Though all religions and all gods are basically man-made things, there's only one line in the whole book which is an eternal truth. After losing the Battle of Waterloo, Napoleon had truly mentioned, "History is a set of lies agreed upon by victors!" If this holds true, then maybe the way Catholic Church have had oppressed the pagan worshippers and the whole cult as a whole does make sense, but to prove that Jesus indeed was a married/familial man and Lady Magdalene was pregnant with indeed his child is, at this very point, at this very juncture in 21st century, quite difficult. Though a very good work of fiction, but would fail to impress fatalists, existentialists and cynics. As for myself, I'm happier with Feuerbach who mentioned, "Religion is the dream of the human mind" or Marx mentioning, "The concept of God of man is the divinized concept of man himself".
Subhasish Ghosh
St Cross College
University of Oxford


Mao: A Life
Mao: A Life
by Philip Short
Edition: Paperback

21 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb read, 29 Dec. 2005
This review is from: Mao: A Life (Paperback)
An excellent account of Mao’s early life, indoctrination into Marxism, early role in Chinese politics and then gradually his rise to power in the Chinese Communist Party. His encirclement campaigns against Chiang-Kai-Shek’s Kuomingdang battalions, and the early years of turbulence in Chinese politics is so very well illustrated and exemplified. Moreover, two of his biggest blunders, the GREAT LEAP FOWARD and CULTURAL REVOLUTION in which more than 10-15 million Chinese civilians, peasants, workers and CCP party workers were purged are explained in an outstanding fashion. Though a ruthless man, yet his knack for poetry, philosophy and political strategy planning prepared him to become one of the greatest political icons of the 20th century. A must read for anyone who wonders HOW one man changed the fate of the most populous nation in the world, converting it from an utterly impoverished nation to one of the strongest super-powers of the current period. 5 stars in all!
Subhasish Ghosh
St. Cross College,
University of Oxford
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 22, 2011 2:44 PM GMT


Stalin: A Biography
Stalin: A Biography
by Robert Service
Edition: Paperback

28 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb account, 26 Dec. 2005
This review is from: Stalin: A Biography (Paperback)
Without much debate, one of the best works on Stalin. What is worthwhile mentioning here is: Unlike many American and European historians, biographers and political analysts who have had written, edited or commented on Stalin and his rise to power in the CC of the USSR quite acrimoniously and dubiously over the years, this book is quite different. Instead, Service does an EXCELLENT job of:
1. Taking into accounts as they were and not mentioning what he thinks on them. Rather criticising Stalin and his every political move, we get a clear account of his real motives, his way of thinking, pressures he handled, the question of being either in power or out of it.
2. His fights with Trotsky, later with Kamenev and Zinoviev and then finally with Bukharin are mentioned and exemplified in great finesse. What one ought to note is that contrary to what most historians (over the decades) have seen Stalin as: short-tempered and haughty, he was a man of great discipline, far-sighted and highly motivated political analyst.
His childhood, rise to power, dekulakisation, rapid industrialisation and collectivisation of farms and other facets of Soviet regime are very nicely introduced, mentioned and illustrated. Moreover what makes the reading even better is: opposite views from Lenin, Trotsky, Kamenev, Zinoviev, Bukharin and others are mentioned and contrasted. 5 stars overall!
Subhasish Ghosh
26th Dec 2005
St. Cross College,
University of Oxford


Page: 1