Mumbai Diary: Sunday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
It's only been three months since author Savi Sharma released her second book, This is Not Your Story, and the 23-year-old already appears to have struck gold. The Surat-based writer recently took to social media to inform her young fans that her book had sold over 70,000 copies.
Savi, whose self-published debut, Everyone Has A Story, was re-printed by Westland last year and crossed one lakh in sales within 100 days, has become the publishing world's miracle child. We asked her what she thinks about churning one bestseller after another, and she said, "Tell honest stories. If readers are going to invest their precious time to read my work, I should make it worth their while."
The TV queen's got a new avatar
A visibly svelte Ekta Kapoor (we hear it's the Keto diet working) throws a look at father Jitendra (extreme left) at a television awards night at Worli on Saturday.
Actress and the host of her own parenting show, Tara Sharma, has turned rapper for Mother's Day. The song, called Touch Wood, is dedicated to the kids and the mothers she has interacted with through her show.
"I tried it out as an experiment and isn't it always a good idea to laugh at oneself, as I am not really a rapper. I co-wrote and performed it and it was co-directed by my husband Roopak and Ishita Puri." Sharma, who is right now working on season 5 of her show, The Tara Sharma Show, is overwhelmed by the reactions she has been getting.
"Over 90,000 people have viewed it on Facebook in a day, and so many people have shared it!" It's truly a happy Mother's Day for her.
Then and now. Pic/Simin Patel
Style before heritage?
Fort's gorgeous Edwardian Neo Classical building that houses the new Zara store at Flora Fountain has been much talked about lately. The architects who restored it have rescued Ismail Buildings from near collapse and made it a statement structure for the international retail line.
While much of its original architecture and details of the building, which is christened after Sir Ismail Yusuf, have been retained, careful observers will point out that the unique logo right below the building's signage has gone missing. Bombaywalla, the Bombay-love blog run by Simin Patel, points out that the anchor motif was an important symbol of the Yusufs, "a prominent Memon family invested in the shipping trade."
An integral part of the city's trade and commerce history, the Yusufs had similar nautical symbols in their offices. "The problem of retaining architectural details is an old one in the city and something you see often in restoration and redevelopment work.
Zara's latest outlet is commendable for its heritage conservation, but, instead of erasing this architectural detail, they could have engaged with a part of the city's history. A nautical-inspired line that celebrates the building's legacy, for instance?" says Patel.
The all-women South African team
Five hundred women will gather at Wilson Gymkhana on Marine Drive next Sunday to create the world's longest chain of laps. Called the Lap of Faith, the exercise involves people sitting on each other's laps, thereby forming a chain.
The challenge is being undertaken by Giants Group of South Mumbai Youth under Giants International, a philanthropic initiative founded by Nana Chudasama in 1972. Their aim is to break the current world record held by South Africa last year, accomplished by an all-women team of 110, who held the lap chain for 30 seconds.
"More than physical power, it's about will power, is what I've learnt. The key is to have faith on whose lap you are sitting," said president Aamir Natterwalla over the phone from Johannesburg.
Rahul Roy at the music launch of his film, The Message, on Saturday. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar
Time for more Aashiqui
It was 27 years ago that actor Rahul Roy shot to fame with his blockbuster film, Aashiqui. While subsequent attempts at a comeback - To Be Or Not To Be in 2013 - went rather unnoticed, he's back once again.
This time, the former Bigg Boss winner, has launched his own production house and will release a film starring himself. "All this while I was in Australia, assisting my brother in his organic soyabean business, albeit in a small way.
Due to permanent residency issues, I couldn't stay in Mumbai for long, which meant I couldn't take up movies," he says. Now that he's back in India, Roy hopes to spend his time gainfully. "I have signed five films, two of these are being launched by my own production company."