Books,  ProfGiri,  Reading

#Books: Life, Productivity, Biography, and India

Even though I would like to read more, last few months have been productive in terms of reading books compared to the past, here are some excerpts (that are profound and relatable) from interesting books that I finished recently.


Once in a while I look at the books suggested by Bill Gates, in one of his list, there was “Life Is What You Make It” by Peter Buffett. I have read / seen a lot of videos about Warren Buffett (more on this in future blog); I went and checked their relationship to find Peter was Warren’s son. I read some reviews of the book and then decided to read the book.

“From those to whom much has been given, much is expected.”

“There is a profound difference between deserving good fortune and becoming worthy of our luck.”

“One of my father’s [Warren Buffett] often-quoted tenets is that a parent, if he has the means to do so, should give his children “enough to do anything, but not enough to do nothing.””

“The right choice isn’t necessarily the safe or comfortable or ovious choice.”

“Not all who wander are lost.”

“The things that look largest, and right in front of our noses, are sometimes the hardest to see.”

“Our absolute needs are few. And the more we imaging we need, the more we complicate our lives.”

“Part of the difficulty, I think, is that many simply don’t know how to be frugal, how to do without;”

“Where is the all-important intersection between the things we value in ourselves, and the things the world will value from us?”

Peter Buffett


Friend: What book are you reading now?

Me: Greatness: The 16 Characteristics of True Champions by Don Yaeger.

Friend: I started this book “Measure What Matters”, have not finished yet, if you are interested, you can take the book.

Me: Took the book, flipped it through, and decide to borrow it from him.

“People who choose their destination will own a deeper awareness of what it takes to get there”

“As Stephen Covey noted: “If the ladder is not leaning against the right wall, every step we take just gets us to the wrong place faster.”

“the key to satisfaction is to set aggressive goals, achieve most of them, pause to reflect on the achievement, and then repeat the cycle. Learning “from direct experience” a Harvard Business School study found, “can be more effective if coupled with reflection — that is, the intentional attempt to synthesize, abstract, and articulate the key lessons taught by experience.” The philosopher John Dewey went a step further: “we do not learn from experience… we learn from reflecting on experience.”

John Doer

I really don’t remember how I stumbled on this book, but it was a gripping book.

“Greatness is available to each one of us if we are willing to do common things uncommonly well!”

“Greatness readily accepts blame, and acknowledges responsibility and ownership of a situation.”

“No, I’d [Jack Welch, former CEO of General Electric] rather play. But I like to fight like hell before I lose.”

“in order to be Great, you have to be ready to assume whatever role your team needs you in to succeed.”

“Too many of us only take. We don’t give. Fame is what you have taken, character is what you give.”

“The most important thing is to identify what speaks to your heart because that is what will keep you involved.”

“Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”

Don Yaeger


Always ejoyed AR Rahman’s music (is there anybody who does not enjoy his music!), thanks to some of UG friends who induced the interest in AR’s music. During one of my travels, saw this book in the Airport bookstore, was attracted to it, flipped it through, and then added it to the stack of books I wanted to read.

“Rahman knows who he is. He knows what matters to him, and he is nver going to try to be anyone he’s not.”

“Rahman is always channeling creative energy from a higher plane, sharing it with the world. And that only happens when you head isn’t littered with doubt and desires from things you eventually come to realize you don’t even want.”

Be passionate, but never immerse yourself in something to the pont where you’re no longer objective. If you immerse yourself in something too much, at some point you won’t be able to tell if you’re in the right track any more.” ~ AR

“There is nothing one can do about the situation one is dealt in life, but what is in a person’s control is the ability to decide how they are going to react to it: positively or negatively. Circumstances are God’s but choices are man’s. And AR decided that everything thta happened to him, from there on, he was going to react positively.”

“the ability to put one’s faith and trust in a power beyond oneself; to dissolve all personal pride and develop a support system one can always rely on.”

Krishna Trilok


There was a lot of discussion around the movie The Accidental Prime Minister when it was due to release; it was trending on Twitter (I follow trends on Twitter for my research!). I got curious about it, watched the trailer of the movie and then decided to read the book. Given that I live in Delhi, there is a lot of reference in the book (both in terms of physical buildings / roads, and topics), I was able to relate and visualize it. I got to know India, Prime Minister’s role, politics, about Administrative officers (IAS, IFS, etc.), a bit more than what I already knew.

Below is my current book stack to read, if you have any good suggestions, please drop it to pk[at]iiitd[dot]ac[dot]in.

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Professor @ IIIT Hyderabad