Is the cost of the Iraq War $50 billion (approx. Rs200,000 crore), as projected by the White House? No, says Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph E. Stiglitz and Harvard professor Linda J. Bilmes in their new book The Three Trillion Dollar War. The real cost, they conclude, after their investigations, is close to $3 trillion. They highlight the costs that the US government has hidden from the taxpayer, and meticulously measure what the taxpayers’ money would have done to improve the home economy, if not for the costs incurred in this war.
Considered widely as one of the most influential journalists in the world today, Fareed Zakaria, editor of Newsweek International, follows up his best-selling Future of Freedom with The Post-American World, a book on the new global order. He says that the hegemony of the US will be replaced by growing nations such as Russia, Brazil, China and India. Zakaria also points out how the US should be dealing with this changing order. Already well-received by critics all over the world, the book arrives in Indian bookstores by end of May.
Heart of the city
Horniman Circle, at Fort, can be considered the very heart of Mumbai. Zero Point: Bombay, a new book of 21 essays and photographs chronicle the area’s Portugese and British history and traces its development in the post-colonial era. Now it is also a hub of Mumbai’s commercial centres. The 21 writers—Kamla Ganesh, Sanjna Kapoor, among others—combine historical and ethnographical research with a lively narrative.
This compilation includes stories of some of the greatest heroines from American pulp fiction and crime novels. Edited by crime fiction writer Otto Penzler, most of these heroines in Pulp Fiction: The Dames created by legends such as Dashiell Hammett, Cornell Woolrich, Raymond Chandler are known to be fiesty and elegant, a combination that make them memorable characters—whether they’re gun-totting women with gangster boyfriends, reporters in search of a scoop or stylish outlaws. Detective fiction author Laura Lippman writes an introductory essay.
Al Gore tears the Bush administration into shreds in his new book, The Assault on Reason. Americans, when they were asked to list what stuck in their minds about Bush’s anti-Saddam Hussain campaign, voters most frequently named two Bush TV ads that played to fears of terrorism. The book contains other such tidbits about issues that range from health and social welfare to the environment. The book has been touted as Gore’s “farsighted and powerful manifesto for clear thinking”.