Posted in Books

Book Review: Turning Points: A Journey Through Challenges, by APJ Abdul Kalam

About the author:
APJ Abdul Kalam is one of India’s most distinguished scientists. He served as the 11th President of India, between 2002 and 2007. He was fondly referred to as “The People’s President” during his term. He has honorary doctorates from over thirty universities and is the recipient of the country’s three highest civilian awards – the Padma Bhushan, the Padma Vibhushan and the Bharat Ratna.

My thoughts on the book:
Inspiration comes in various ways. To read a book and be inspired by it is really a wonderful feeling. Over the last few days, I have had the pleasure of being inspired by few such books. Two of them were written by the man I have had the pleasure of seeing two times as well, the eleventh President of India, APJ Abdul Kalam.

The two books are two parts of his autobiography, and this book, Turning Points is the sequel to the first book, Wings of Fire.

Not that I’m comparing autobiography parts, but this was equally as good as Wings of Fire I feel. Yes, the life story of APJ might not be as endearing or understandable to us, but there are takeaways in each chapter, most certainly in the quotes that are there under the title names, and the concluding paragraph of chapters, and in the messages that are part of this book.

Take title quotes for e.g.

“Vision elevates the nation” was something that I liked. Only when you have the notion to change can you change, and some changes can elevate the nation itself. Another was “The ignited mind of the youth is the most powerful resource on the earth, above the earth, and under the earth”. It felt like he is telling us that a bright mind can move the earth.

There’s a poem in the chapter titled “Learning from others”. It is titled “What can I give?” For me, that poem was one of the highlights of the book. It asks us to share knowledge that we have, if we have resources, to share them with the needy, to use our mind and heart to bring a smile to those who need it. If we can give something, then we will be blessed.

Other things that are interesting in this book are the photos, and also the interview at the last. Again, this book isn’t something that would be appealing to all people, but I found it to be nice and worth the time.

A rating of 8/10
A rating of 8/10

Book details:
Title: Turning Points
Author: APJ Abdul Kalam
Genre: Autobiography
ISBN: 978-93-5029-347-8
Publishers: Harper Collins
Price: INR. 199


This book is a personal copy. No payment was taken for this review.
The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced.

Shared with Indian Quills Reading Challenge at Tales Pensieve.

(Aug 3rd, 2013)


Poetry and writing are to me, a breath of fresh air in a life that is sometimes covered by the smoke of sorrow or self doubt. They also become the sweets I share to celebrate when life offers me a reason to. But most of all, they are to me, my life. For each word I write is a piece of my heart, a thought that just had to find its way into the world.

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