Book Review: We Will Meet Again by Tarang Sinha

This book is in-escape-able!
The Blurb:
Paridhi Mathur, dusky, beautiful, and single, is doing everything to keep her academic records high and her love life nil, but lady luck keeps frowning at her.

When she meets Abhigyan Ambastha, rich – devastatingly handsome, intense and sometimes curt, her resolve wavers. Despite regular warnings from her ever-suspicious heart, she inexplicably gets attracted towards him. But she would not let him trespass her soul. 

Why? Is she scared of mendacious face of love her past has inflicted on her? Can Paridhi really trust Abhigyan? Will a blissful breeze of love ever kiss her heart?

A heart-warming saga of dreams and desires, We Will Meet Again promises to make you smile and cry at the same time. Hold on to your hearts before embarking on this roller coaster ride of emotions!

Excerpt:
“Why? Why Paridhi? Why you always misjudge everything about me? I’m sick of it.” He pauses for a second as if to control his anger, and then proceeds, “I have always tried to make you happy. Sometimes, I feel stupid proving myself in front of you for I don’t know what I want to prove! I don’t understand why can’t you trust me?”
He closes his eyes for a second, and then says abruptly. “I love you, Pari. I love you so much! Why don’t you get this simple truth? Is that so difficult? I don’t…just don’t understand what’s wrong with you?” His tone grows irritable. “May I know what churns in your mind, all the time? No seriously,” he confronts.
About The Author:
Tarang Sinha is a freelance writer and editor. She is an avid reader and active Blogger. Her works have been published in magazines like Good Housekeeping India, Child India, Woman’s Era and Alive, and a bestselling anthology “Uff Ye Emotions 2”. 

A science graduate, she holds a Diploma in Creative Writing in English from IGNOU.

‘We Will Meet Again…’ is her first novel.

The Review:                                                        
“The emotion that can break your heart sometimes the very one that heals it.” – Nicholas Spark
First impression lasts for long, if we have a bad experience in a relationship, then it becomes hard to take any such relations positively afterwards. Isn’t it? There is always a fear for the history to repeat itself which makes a person resistant to it, and, hence results into a more suspicious behavior. 
The Reviewer’s Heart…
We will meet again by Tarang Sinha is a remarkable novel which depicts how tragic one’s life could be. The protagonist of the story is Paridhi Mathur, a post graduate student. Her life forced her into so many challenges which although made her strong and independent but also a happiness deprived person. Life, which is generally called a blessing can also be miserable for some, to an extent that they fear to cherish their good times. Paridhi lives with her father, sister and bua and is the eldest daughter of her family. She appears to be an introvert in nature. She is pursuing PG in mass communication and journalism from Delhi. She is a consistent performer in academics and tries her best to keep herself away from any unnecessary relationships. However, she has a best friend named Reet since UG times. Reet is getting married, Paridhi and Mini (her younger sister) manage to convince their father to allow them to attend the marriage in Jalandhar.
Reet’s house, like any other marriage house, is full of lights, colors and flowers. On the arrival day, Paridhi and Mini are also having fun and desserts, however, happiness and Paridhi’s fate doesn’t get along for a long time. She confronts, Abhigyan, the guy she met an accident with, some days back in Delhi when she was going to submit her project to the college in hurry. Every other girl at marriage seems to have a crush on Abhigyan, in fact, Paridhi also admits that he is a handsome guy, in her subconscious, however, she never liked him since the beginning. Abhigyan seems to be a smart and stubborn gentleman. He wants to extend the hand for friendship with Paridhi but for her, he is nothing other than a reason for her stress throughout the marriage. She gets irritated easily in his presence. The more she tries to avoid him, the more she has to face him which makes her annoyed and confused during the whole time spent at Jalandhar.
The reason for Paridhi’s repulsive behavior towards Abhigyan is just not because of the poor first impression created during the accident but it was her terrible past experience in a relationship which made so harsh and hard when it comes to men. 
The story becomes mysterious when Abhigyan appears to be inclined towards Paridhi irrespective of her rude and blunt behavior. Now, the covert is, will Abhigyan be ever able to express his feelings to Paridhi? Will Paridhi be ever able to move on? Will she be ever able to understand Abhigyan’s love for her? In order to unleash the curtains, you need to read this book and I am sure you will never regret reading it. I would like to appreciate the author for her excellent efforts in maintaining the essence of the story till the last page of the book.
  
What I liked?
The setting of the story is so realistic that the reader gets empathetic with the Protagonist and feels fully indulged in the story till the end. The flow of the story is intrigued enough which persuades the reader to imagine beyond the boundaries of the story. All the characters in the story are well-developed and sounds way too real. I admire the character of Abhigyan, a man with high morale and patience. The language used is simple yet sophisticated which accounts to one of the aspects of a worthy novel. 
What I disliked?
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. However, I felt that title could have been more exciting and precise, something which would have better suited the story line.
Why should one read this book?
For all those who are tough-luck and hopeless from their lives, looking for a source of hope and motivation, this book opens a door for you to stay hopeful and await by anticipating every possible twist which might change the definition of your fate. 
Rating:  
Blurb: 4.5/5
Description: 4/5
Writing Style: 4/5
Editing: 4/5
Excerpt: 4/5
Book Cover: 3.5/5
Overall Rating: 4/5
Book Details:
Title: We will meet again
Author: Tarang Sinha
Genre: Mystery
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Gargi Publishers 
Language: English
Pages: 192
Year of Publication: 2016
Price: 180 INR
Buy Paperback: Amazon
Stars… To this in-escape-able read with breeze of love and suspense I give a 4 star rating. Recommended to all
This book was given to me by the Author in exchange for an honest review. I am glad to read and review it. The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a 4 star rating on Goodreads and Amazon as I felt nothing less than that would be fair.

Book Review: The Calling: Unleash Your True Self by Priya Kumar

This book is un-put-down-able!

The Blurb:

The Calling is a spiritual adventure. It is an encounter with the truth, the wisdom and the force that is innate to us all. At the brink of a divorce and personal breakdown, Arjun took a trip into the heart of the Himalayas, on the insistence of a sadhu, who predicted that the journey up to Hemkund Sahib would align him to his purpose and change his life forever. At every turn the mountains holds secrets and tests that urge Arjun to evolve into the person he had denied to be – himself. Pretenses, falsities, confusions and untruths fall apart as Arjun is forced to confront the mess he had created in his life. What started off as an opportunity to escape reality, turned out to be an opportunity to escape from the dwindling spiral of self-created misery. Filled with spiritual insights and sprinkled with light humor, this story will help you find your calling, your voice and who knows, even your true self.

Inspiring Quotes:

Instead of usual excerpt, this time I am sharing a few quotes from the book:

Regret is to life like termite is to wood. It will eat you up. Confusion is to life like a parasite is to its host. It will consume you.

To sit in your space and your world and do nothing in it is a disgrace to the intelligence that you are bestowed with. It is a disgrace to the spiritual force that is inherent to you. Your role in the world is to take charge, to take responsibility for your role in your environment and of what happens in it.

Life doesn’t test you at your level; life tests you at a level higher that yourself. You don’t choose the test. That way you would have the choice to live small. The test is always a step ahead of you, so that in reaching beyond it, you grow beyond yourself.

This itself is inspiring enough to pick this book and read, still I would like to share my thoughts on the book.

The Review:

Congratulations Priya! This is an amazing read. I am very sure the other seven books written by you is going to be awesome.

The Reader’s Heart…

Books of this genre is usually boring unless until the writer has something good to offer to make it interesting. And that’s what Priya Kumar has done. When I got an email asking if I am okay to review the book from Priya Kumar’s Team, I thought for a second. I read the blurb from goodreads; I was impressed. The astonishing book cover added the zeal required. I quickly browsed Priya’s website and found her intro interesting. I responded positively and I received the book next day. Somehow I took time to start this book, but once I started reading the book, I swear I could not stop. I read the 150 plus pages highly motivating book in a single sitting.

I must say that “The Calling”, impressed me right from page one. The character Arjun, sounded like one of us, trying hard to balance between personal and professional life, excel in both but failing miserably. Standing at the crossroads of life – divorce filled and at the verge of losing job because of a missed meeting – he take a journey to Hemkund Sahib located in The Himalayas. With the help of his friend Jay he reaches a point from where Hemkund Sahib is just a few kilometres away. Really? He is accompanied by the most wittiest humorous easy going soul Chandu- the guide and two donkeys. Arjun finds Chandu irritating and enlightening at the same time, still he is the only way to reach Hemkund Sahib. What follows is a highly inspiring story narrated at a decent pace by the author.

Will Arjun reach Hemkund Sahib? Will he reunite with this family? What lessons the journey had to offer him?

To know the answers reading this enlightening book of twists and turns, filled with many surprise elements that will keep you hooked till the very end.

What I liked?

It’s hard to pick one and rate it the best. Right from the storyline to the narration, chosen characters to one-liner quotes, it is highly is very impressive. Hats off to the author.

What I disliked?

There’s nothing I disliked in this book.

Why should one read this book?

Aren’t we looking for motivation or inspiration at work?

This is a story of us. This is where we stand. This is why we should read this book!

Rating:
Blurb: 5/5
Description: 5/5
Writing Style: 5/5
Editing: 5/5
Excerpt: 5/5
Book Cover: 5/5
Overall Rating: 5/5

Book Details:
Title: The Calling: Unleash Your True Self
Author: Priya Kumar
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Books That Inspire
Language: English
Pages: 166
Year of Publication: 2016
Price: 120 INR
Buy: website | Amazon
Follow on Goodreads: Book | Author

Stars… To this highly motivating read, I give a five-star rating.

The Calling: Unleash Your True Self is a true bestseller to me. A ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Book! Highly Recommended to all and special recommendation to those who seek motivation in life and work. No second thoughts!

This book is provided by author in exchange of an honest review. The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a five-star rating on Goodreads and Amazon as I felt nothing less or more than that would be fair.

Info: I took two hours to complete the book and one hour to write this review.

Book Review: A Dog Eat Dog-Food World By Suresh Chandrasekaran

This book is un-put-down-able!

The Blurb:

A hilarious pseudo-history of marketing management, which explicitly denies resemblance to any actual history, and which will be horrified if some semblance be found. ‘A dog eat dog-food world’ is the story of a man who discovered that the path of life is strewn with treadmills and, if you get on one by mistake, you could keep running all your life to stay in the same place. The story of how just minding your own business can lead to unexpected consequences, guided by the ‘invisible hand’ of long dead economists. Anything you learn from the book – be it the basics of marketing management or a satirical view of Society – you do at your own risk.

The tale only dogs the doings of Spike Fortune who only sought to feed dogs and Jerry Fortune who, being fortuneless, gets dragged helter-skelter by his uncle Spike’s careening pursuit of commercial success; Spike’s rival Tom Rich, who is unwillingly dragged into upstaging Spike and tries to do it by teasing the palates of cats, helped by the bumbling efforts of his nephew, Jasper Rich who would rather be chasing girls than chasing cats.

Excerpt:

Prologue
The difficulty with history is that you never know whether that is the way it really happened. There is always this niggling question – Did the good guy win or did the winner proclaim himself to be the good guy? You know how it is – the winner is always the good guy and, if he murdered, raped and pillaged, it is only because the poor chap was forced to do so. And, of course, the winner is also going to wax eloquent about how he was not only fearless and astute, but was also steeped in virtue.

Let us assume that the winners have virtue sloshing inside them and overflowing from their ears. You still do not know whether the chap, who was most energetic in getting the victory, got the credit for it or whether he got sidelined by his colleague, who was more energetic in claiming the victory. While the former is still getting back his breath from his exertions, the latter could well have been yelling, “I won! I won!”, and having the entire populace fawning on him.

As if that is not enough, you have a further problem of what gets touted as a victory. For example, can any achievement, which is valued only by the lazy chaps, get written in the books of History? Achievements that cause ecstasy to the lazy man will remain unsung, simply because he is too lazy to sing hosannas to the achiever. All of us have heard about James Watt and his sterling contribution to the steam engine – merely because he made it possible for the rest of the world to run around in circles faster than before. Can you name the person who invented the arm-chair? That poor chap rests in relative obscurity merely because the man lolling around in the arm-chair – with a book in one hand and a glass of beer in the other – is unlikely to be jumping around, buttonholing people and singing the praises of the inventor. It would spoil his relaxation, make him spill the beer all over himself, and ruin his day.

Such, then, are the ways of the world. You can change the entire life experience of the indolent with the fruits of your intellect and you shall live and die like that ‘violet born to blush unseen’. You could merely change the design of a button for the energetic man and be feted by ‘crowned heads and coronets’ – or, in modern terms, by double-breasted suits and designer dresses. It is not merely enough for YOU to be energetic – it is also necessary that you benefit the energetic.

It is one thing for a person to make a place for himself in History. To make History, though, is wholly a different matter. To make History you not only need to change yourself, you also need to interfere with and change other people. You need to kick people out of their comfortable rut, drown out their pathetic pleas that ‘what ain’t broke don’t need fixing’, and force change on them. Everyone may happily intone ‘Change is the only constant in life’ but it is truly a rare person who actually thinks that it will happen to him. (It is much like saying, “The only things certain in life are death and taxes”. You never really accept the fact that you will die one day, and you never lose the belief that you can successfully evade taxes.) So, for someone to make history, he really needs to exert himself. Pushing one man to change is a herculean enough task – pushing the vast majority of humanity to change is of the stuff of nightmares.

I know – the moment we talk of making History, there will be a chorus chanting the names of Gautama Buddha, Jesus Christ, Mahatma Gandhi and such others. Really? Even after conveniently deifying them, so that we can all say, “Ah! But I am no Mahatma” as an excuse for not following their tenets, and continuing on our joyous journey of hatred, violence and corruption? I don’t think so. They have made a place for themselves in History but on the issue of whether they have made history, measured by whether they have changed the way WE live, I am afraid that the jury is out and showing no signs of returning in the near (or far) future.

Of course, there are other individuals who have made History and proved themselves capable of making lasting changes. The roll-call of honour includes people like Alexander the Great, Napoleon Bonaparte and Adolf Hitler. It is a fact that the easiest way to make History is to make war. I mean, if you were to say, “How dare the people from the next street take a twig from our street? Do they think we are cowards, and they can deal with us so despicably? Let us go and bash them up”, you would possibly assemble a gang ready to follow you into mayhem. Just try saying, “There is no point in waiting for the government to clean up the streets. It is our street after all. Let us get together and clean it up”. You will find that people do have paranormal powers, after all. The speed with which they disappear can only be explained by telekinesis.

So, yes, it is easier to make History by making war. Getting together a gang of people to butcher others is simpler and, as for making changes in the others, it is easier to beat the change into them than to drill a new idea into their heads by reasoning. It is amazing how receptive people become to new ideas when you poke a sword in the guts or put a gun to their heads. So, periodically, we have had these people coming in and changing the world by spreading their own people all over the earth, spreading their ideas and their culture. Once you do things like that, you can become the Emperor or ‘the Great’ or the ‘Fuehrer’ and enthuse the coming generations to follow in your footsteps – another lasting change.

People of latter days have ascribed either physical or mental disorders as reasons for the abnormal energy and activity of these individuals. Some of these hyper-achievers are said to be suffering from mental derangement due to syphilis; some have been called megalomaniacs and some are said to be over-compensating for an inferiority complex. So, there is something other than normal about these people that makes them do what they do.

As in History, so in pseudo-history. What you are about to read is the pseudo-history of a man who changed the world and a rare achiever who did that without making war – at least, not war as we conventionally understand the word. He, too, started out suffering from a disorder. A strange one!

Incidentally, difficult though it must be to believe, the world was not always run by computers and a cell-phone was not something that could only be removed from the body by surgery. One of the various amazing and unbelievable things, that History talks of, is the tale of times when neither of these was the case. As with History, so with pseudo-history. The times of this tale were bereft of computers and cell-phones BUT this is still pseudo-history and not fantasy.

From tiny acorns do mighty oaks grow – or, in modern metaphor, from the tiny micro-chip does the mighty Information Technology industry spring. The genesis of the world-changing revolution was a simple visit by a doctor. And the ailment was….

The Review:

Congratulations Suresh (CS) for the solo debut paperback! I am very much impressed!

The Reader’s Heart…

Having read author’s previous works, I had huge expectations on this book and I must say that “A Dog Eat Dog-Food World”, impressed me right from the prologue. To be frank, the prologue is out of the world.

What followed is a brilliant management story that revolves around the reality of life. The character details, their styles and tones is very impressive. The chat conversation between Jerry and Spike, Tom and Jasper, played well in the middle chapters. The so-called innovations, the marketing strategies, is very close to the reality. In fact, this is what happening today in the market. Popular brands in India follows the same technique to attract people and make a fool out of them.

The book has its own twists and turns, keeping me hooked till the very end, but there was no surprise element in the end, at least to me. This book is a quick read. I took two hours to complete the book and one hour to write this review.

If you are looking for a humorous storyline to free yourself from all the stress, then read this book to laugh continuously.

What I liked?

The storyline of the book is very impressive. The author has taken up a challenging subject and passed colourfully.

What I disliked?

There’s nothing I disliked in this book.

Why should one read this book?

The reality. The story of us. The market and the management concepts behind this book.

Rating:
Blurb: 5/5
Description: 5/5
Writing Style: 5/5
Editing: 4.5/5
Excerpt: 5/5
Book Cover: 3.5/5
Overall Rating: 5/5

Book Details:
Title: A Dog Eat Dog-Food World
Author: Suresh Chandrasekaran
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Fablery
Language: English
Pages: 91
Year of Publication: 2016
Price: 150 INR
Buy on Amazon: Paperback | Kindle Edition
Follow on Goodreads: Book | Author

Stars… To this fantastic read, I give a five-star rating.

A Dog Eat Dog-Food World is a is a true bestseller to me. Wish the publisher launches this book in all possible locations and help the author reach people. A ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Book! Recommended to all. No second thoughts!

I own a copy of this book. The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a five-star rating on Goodreads and Amazon as I felt nothing less or more than that would be fair.

Gone With The Bullet by Sheeja Jose

This book is going to be an amazing read, will keep you curious and thoughtful throughout!

The Blurb:

She last saw her father when she was eight months old. Now, 18 years later, she is going to meet him.

There is something strange about the man she meets. Is he really her father? Or a stranger who may be her father’s killer?

What happens when a perfect plan turns around the next nine days into a spine-chilling race to kill and to stay alive?

Love. Lies. Deceit.

Twists. Turns. Murder.

It’s just the beginning. Because, every story has an untold truth.

An answer to a gun is another gun. Answer to deceit is love….

An eventful journey of a middle aged, hardcore, lonely shooter with a multi-million task falls in love with the teenage daughter of the man whom he has brutally killed. He has a past…his present changes the history…his future is in her hand…

A girl who landed up in his life from nowhere, changes him and his fate forever. Secrets will throw them into the whirlpool of illusions, which going to test the purity of the reality!!! Their amazing journey brings the unusual tale of love, and race against time to to kill and stay alive.

Will it break them or bring back them together???

A crime thriller with an extra-ordinary end….

Quote:

‘So you are not leaving me, right?’ She put her arms around him.
Mark said, ‘Happiness can wait. You have to be alive for that.’

‘It was time to go, feel better, where no memories and tears haunted her. She saw black…’

‘The end justifies the fear and the struggle.’

‘…giving her a roof above her head and the name wasn’t the only responsibility of the father…’

About The Author:

Sheeja Jose is a daydreamer. She believes in a world beyond religion, love movies and stories. She remember the stories told by her grandma, and remember the books read by her mother and her siblings. She loved the world existed only in imaginations and thus she chose to become a story teller over her studies. Hence a runaway student became an assistant director in Bollywood, turned creative director turned author and that’s her – Sheeja Jose – in short.

Sheeja was Born and brought up in ‘God’s own country’ Kerala, did psychology in ‘God’s own city’ Mumbai. Writing wasn’t a cakewalk for sure, however she do enjoy it, over everything…

You can contact her: sheejasthoughts@gmail.com

Synopsis:

The story has been very craftily woven in the present and past, which unfolds at a very appropriate pace. It starts quite unexpectedly with a duel between two assassins, one of them walks alive only to land up in a trouble of meeting the daughter of the other. The destiny has its own plans, wherein the girl, Nimisha aka Bomber Girl and the survivor, Mark teams up to kill the PM of India. Arjun, a cop has been assigned the duty of saving the Indian Prime Minister. They all set out on their respective missions, escaping their deaths, trying to survive. But remember, the truth is not what you see, game is not lost till the last move has been played. Not revealing any other details, I’d say something unpredictable awaits you.

The Reviewer’s Heart…

I generally keep targets for finishing a book, and I kept 7 days for finishing this one. I started it late night and the story was so intriguing and interesting at the same time, that I finished it in less than 7 hours (PS I’m not at all exaggerating). The book tells us about ‘Karma’, with a hidden moral of ‘what goes around comes back’. The language of the book is lucid yet compelling, author has created an aura which binds the author with the plot of the book and there is no breaking of link anywhere in the book. Being an emotional guy, I’d add some part of the book did moisten my eyes, and I believe the author wanted just that. The author has done a very neat job in transitions that the plot as well as individual characters take. Readers are busy throughout the book, as the characters’ perception keeps on changing, while a character maybe shown in bright light in one part; the same character would be shown in dark light by cheekily providing some addition information that creates an illusion in front of the readers.

This novel has been very well narrated and the story unfolds in quite suspenseful manner, which glues the reader as it is more like a rollercoaster ride where you don’t know what may come next and you enjoy as you get along with it.

What I liked?

I liked the simple language and strong plot of the book which entertains the reader throughout the course of the adventure. I’d also appreciate the author’s research regarding this book, making it as close to reality as possible.

I simply loved the character of Arjun, the cop, who was a great professional. In a situation where even the stone hearted people gave up to their emotions, Arjun remained committed to his duty, he knew how to create a balance between the professional and personal life, though he struggled in between but everyone had a trust in him that he would manage, and at the end he really did.

What I disliked?

There is simply nothing that is lacking in this thriller. It’s a complete package with lots of twists and turns which are expected by murder thrillers and keeps the reader entertained and puzzled till the very end.

Why should one read this book?

Though the book does give out a hidden message about the karma and completing of the circle of life, this book should be read for the thrill it offers. The book is one of the few books you can take on a long train journey, or can read on a chilly night to give you a spine-chilling experience.

Rating:
Blurb: 5/5
Description: 4/5
Writing Style: 5/5
Excerpt: 5/5
Book Cover: 5/5
Overall Rating: 5/5

Book Details:
Title: Gone With The Bullet
Author: Sheeja Jose
Genre: Thriller
Type: Paperback
Publisher: White Wall Publishers
Language: English
Pages: 318
Year of Publication: 2015
Price: 195 INR
Buy Paperback: Flipkart | Amazon

Stars… To this fantastic reading ride full of suspense and thrill with an exceptionally moving narration; I give a five-star rating.

Gone With The Bullet will stand up to your expectations with an exceptionally moving narration. Main characters of the story appear so real and alive to have you moved along with themselves. This book weave a magic with the sword of words. A ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Book that will keep you mesmerized for a long time. Highly recommended for all. A must read. No second thoughts!

This book was given to me by author in exchange for an honest review. I am glad to read and review it. The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a five-star rating on Goodreads and FlipKart as I nothing less than that would be fair.

About the Reviewer: Shashank Tyagi, an undergraduate student at BML Munjal University, loves to read and question. A passionate quizzer, who has participated in various national level quizzes at school and aspires to do good in college quizzing as well. He is a self-proclaimed sports geek and a secular nationalist, (pardon the oxymoron). A bibliophile, with special love for poetry though he spends his free time answering or framing questions.

Book Review: Monsoon Masala by Sulagna Chaudhury

This book is un-put-down-able!

The Blurb:

Siddharth Chatterjee – Mr Playboy…high flying career, parties, hot girls and loads of booze. Life can’t get better than this or can it?

Akanksha Dutta – Miss Perfectionist, who has fought against all odds and emerged as a winner, who detests the word “relationship” and wants to live life on her own terms only.

Welcome to Monsoon Masala, the whacky love story about the madness and magic in the lives of two individuals, Akanksha and Siddharth. Multiple times they meet, they ditch and they separate. And then, on 8th June 2004, Venus is in transit for the first time since 1882. Astrologers predict that this “celestial once in a lifetime” event will lead to the making of some great love stories. Does it mean something “surreal” for these 2 strong individuals as well?

Excerpt:

To catch a bus I needed to cross the busy junction at Park Street. He promptly came forward and caught my hand saying that he would help me cross the road. I looked at him and said, ”You know Sid, over the last few years, I have been commuting all by myself. I am not a damsel in distress. I can cross my roads. I think I have more than proved my point on this through my life. Not that I want you to feel bad but you didn’t even stand up as a friend when I needed one desperately, right?

So, don’t do all this, it really doesn’t matter. And please don’t hold my hand ever again.

About The Author:

With over 15 years of experience, Sulagna Chaudhury at present works with a reputed MNC as a client services and sales professional.

She is the owner of a contemporary dance group ”Jhankar Beatz” and in her free time doubles as a MC doing a corporate as well as public shows. Here is a multi-faceted career that also encompasses stints as a lecturer and a banker while living her ”radio” passion and ruling as a popular RJ across cities and radio stations for more than a decade.

She is an active blogger who loves penning her thoughts on diverse topics and proudly lives her mantra of ”Life is all about moments… it is you who decides to make it large.” She currently resides in Bangalore, India, with her husband and her 5 year old daughter.

The Review:

Every love story has its own essence and beauty of the feelings that people in it share. Not all of those stories go smooth and like the ones all of us dream about. Many a times it takes years to realize that there is a love…a strong one which persists behind anger, ignorance and million little fights.

According to me, letting go a sincere love is the biggest loss one can have because not all love is true. After reading ‘Monsoon Masala’ I realized it even better.

The Reviewer’s Heart…

Monsoon Masala by Sulagna Chaudhury is a complete set of adventure and drama with much needed masala for its readers to savor. The story revolves around a very beautiful, diligent, talented and intelligent girl, Akanksha Dutta and equally opposite to her, Siddharth Chatterjee (Sid). The story starts with the childhood days of Akanksha, her little anecdotes and about her family. Then comes an interesting twist when Sid’s childhood days begin. Both of them despite having a childhood together what they share is a complete contrast of each other. If it’s Akanksha, you would want to pat on her back for being an ideal child and if it’s Siddharth’s, you would wish to return to your childhood days to make it awesome like his. The Bengali culture has been beautifully described throughout the book.

Since both of them had the same class and the culture it was quite obvious that traits of Sid was compared to Akanksha. The author has well depicted one of the most common traits found in parents, especially in India. Akanksha is an all-rounder. She is good in studies, well mannered, a winner of AIR (All India Radio) singing competition and to add a cherry on the top, a very pretty girl. Whereas, Sid is smart in everything except for studies. He listens none but his heart. In short, he is a spoiled brat, thanks to his dad for fulfilling all his demands. His favorite past time is irritating Akanksha who has an image of a perfectionist; not out of jealousy but revenge because she be there in his ”everything”, an ideal for all to whom he desperately wants to put out of his life. There is a clash for sure; every time they come across each other.

There is an instance when Sid’s family approach Akanksha’s for match making with Sid’s elder brother. Somehow, it seems wrong to Sid. He feels pained with the fact and convince his brother to reject Akanksha. Sid gets a decent job in Gurgaon. With his good performance at workplace he gets a chance to work in abroad. Sid is sure that he is in love with Akanksha. He writes her a long mail; expressing his desire to be with her. On the other side, Akanksha is getting married to Raghav, a highly educated and well settled. There is a big secret about Raghav that can change Akanksha’s life forever.

Will Akanksha read Sid’s mail? Would Raghav be able to cheat Akanksha and make her life a living hell? or Will Akanksha reject Sid’s proposal? Read Monsoon Masala to find it out.

What I liked?

It was interesting to see how tactfully and naturally the author got into the shoes of Sid and Akanksha and connected the dots neatly. Both of their parts were interesting, equally. Each character was well developed, this shows that the author has given a good time for writing each chapter. The book is well edited. Also, I liked the paperback quality.

What I disliked?

At some point of time the pace of the story became too slow and monotonous. Also, I felt that the book cover could have been better. In the end, like always when I try connecting the book title and the story; this time the duo didn’t work together.

Why should one read this book?

For all those who are planning for a light read or looking for a book which opens a door for you to anticipate the next possibility only to read a twist… then it’s a right book to go for.

Rating:
Blurb: 3/5
Description: 3.5/5
Writing Style: 4/5
Editing: 4/5
Excerpt: 3/5
Book Cover: 2.5/5
Overall Rating: 3.5/5

Book Details:
Title: Monsoon Masala
Author: Sulagna Chaudhury
Genre: Fiction
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Frog Books
Language: English
Pages: 294
Year of Publication: 2015
Price: 275 INR
Buy Paperback: Flipkart | Amazon

Stars… To this light read with unexpected twists I give a 3.5 star rating.

Monsoon Masala is a light read. Those who firmly believe in love should must read. Love makes you do things you had never thought of. A ★★★½ Book! Recommended to all!

This book was given to me by the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. I am glad to read and review it. The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a 3.5 star rating on Goodreads and FlipKart as I felt nothing less than that would be fair.

Book Review: Going Underground by L. N. Denison

This book is un-put-down-able!

The Blurb:

The year is 2044. A decree is put into effect that brings about a new era—a revived holocaust against mixed-lineage humans. Being of non-pure blood, Jen Cole has been forced to live under the oppressive government’s radar.

Myron Cutter, Jen’s professed nemesis, one day requests an uneasy alliance with Jen to support conspiracy theorist and rabble-rouser, Oscar Saracen. Incarceration is only the beginning of Jen’s problems when she’s caught conspiring against the government, while Myron is sent to military training by his powerful father as punishment for his part in her deception.

Yet when Jen ends up in the same labour camp as Oscar Saracen, escape becomes palpable as serendipity reunites her with Myron, and hope looms on the horizon. As Jen uncovers treasonous plans, she heads underground—the only safe place for her now, and where she can continue her pursuit of the dark truths enveloping the world she once knew.

Packed with political turbulence and a chilling existence, Going Underground is a hauntingly thrilling journey of a troupe of misfits in a fight to win back their freedoms. December 31, 2046, would be a day to remember. The new Independence Day. But who will win the battle?

Excerpt:

The reason for Lavinia’s hatred towards Jen was unjustified. It wasn’t Jen’s fault that Lavinia had been chased out of her own village, or that she had been ostracised by her family for having a child out of wedlock. When it was brought to light that the father of the child was English, Lavinia was given two choices: she could face the consequences of her actions, or leave the serenity of her village. Lavinia preferred the latter to what was planned for her had she stayed.

Punishments for sinful acts were almost archaic in nature; the sin that Lavinia had committed was punishable by stoning. She preferred to take her chances onthe outside, living in filth and degradation, rather than facing the prospect of a painful death at the hands of people she had thought loved her.

Her brother drove Lavinia as far as North London and left her there with her luggage in one hand and two-year-old Jen in the other. After an agonising journey to the heart of London, they finally made their home under Waterloo Bridge, a temporary stopgap until Lavinia could find work and somewhere a little more suitable to live.

From the moment of their arrival, life would become one big struggle. As the war between England and Scotland escalated, so did the English government’s need to rid itself of the minority groups: namely, people such as Lavinia and the others under the bridge—non-pure bloods, as they were known. Social standing meant nothing, as the people under the bridge had proved. Each one had, at some point, been an integral part of society—at least two had been members.

Parliament before the witch-hunts began, forcing them into hiding. Lists of known non-pure bloods had been posted in all the patrol stations across the Southeast, and one by one they were rounded up and placed into labour camps. There were five such camps, all situated dangerously close to the main battle areas along the North-South divide. Lavinia could count herself lucky—nobody, apart from the people under the bridge, knew that she or Jen existed. So, for a while, they were safe from harm. Lavinia had to learn how not to be so Scottish, trying desperately hard to pick up the English dialect and rid herself of her broad accent. This was a necessity before she could even consider going to look for work. She practised every chance she had, and with anyone who would listen to her.

About The Author:

I’m 44 years of age and live in rural Kent, where I have been for the last 25 years. I have been writing this novel on and off for the past 15 years, I now have something that I can be proud of. It has been tweaked many times over, and it is now where I want it to be. I generally write for fun, poetry and short stories. It is something that I enjoy doing. I am currently writing a post-apocalyptic piece, called Cavers, which is penned for release the middle of next year. That is my ultimate goal.

The Review:

The scenario these days is strange, unforeseen and unheard of. Notwithstanding the proud proclamation of being civilized, developed and sophisticated, we still brood the hatred, repugnance and discrimination about class, creed, race. If we don’t put an end to this insanity, years apart we would be in ground zero, back to point one. Authoress tried to, say, foresee, what will happen after 29 years. The book is an adult fantasy.

The Reader’s Heart…

From now onwards, I would not say that I am not much into fantasy since I have been reading quite a lot of fantasy books lately and Going Underground nailed me. The story revolves around Myron and Jen. The ups and downs in their relation, right from the enemity, to friendship, fights and finally love is an undercurrent of the story. Due to the circumstances, they are dragged into the labor camps arranged by the government to put down the impure blood and the protestors. The cruelties in the camp will make anyone cringe with fear, pain, and repugnance. Finally the join hands with Oscar Saracen, and fight the double standards of the government. Will they succeed?

What I liked?

Authoress has adapted a tight narrative style, which keep up with the storyline. With the right meter of words and imagery, authoress succeeded in engaging the readers till the end of the book. Not even for a second we feel that what we read is fiction. The story has been pulled off with utmost conviction. Lately, I was quite disturbed about an unnecessary surge of erotica in almost all the story with a tinge of romance. But, Going Undeground proves that erotica is not needed to convey the depth of a relation. Thank You Layla for showing a platonic love and a fact that she showed it as that happens in 2044 proves that there are still chances for pure love in future as well. The atrocities in the labor camp remined me of what I read about the way fighters were treated during freedom struggle, emergency, world war and situations alike.

Characters are all crafted well, with required importance to each character at each point of time.

What I disliked?

Even if with a tinge of reality that happened in the past, the cruelties in the labor camp became over the top towards the end, which made the readers tired of the sufferings of the protagonists. Yes, this has happened earlier but it is difficult to even read through.

Why should one read this book?

Do you think that the cast, creed, and race discrimination would surface and engulf us in the future? Do you think that Science would bite us back like a Frankenstein Monster? Do you feel a surge of adrenaline seeing the political double standards? Moreover, Do you love Adult Fantasy? Then you should read this.

Rating:
Blurb: 4/5
Description: 4/5
Writing Style: 4/5
Editing: 3/5
Excerpt: 4/5
Book Cover: 4/5
Overall Rating: 4/5

Book Details:
Title: Going Underground
Author: L. N. Denison
Type: Kindle Edition
Publisher: Createspace
Language: English
Pages: 390
Year of Publication: 2015
Price: 0.99 $
Buy on Amazon
Follow on: Goodreads
Follow Author on Twitter | Goodreads

Stars… For this exciting work of fantasy, I would give four stars. Thank you Layla for making me a lover of Adult Fantasy.

Going Underground is an exciting read. It made me a lover of Adult Fantasy. A ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Book! Recommended to all. No second thoughts!

The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a four-star rating on Goodreads and Amazon as I felt nothing less or more than that would be fair.

Book Review: The Bestseller She Wrote By Ravi Subramanian

This book is un-put-down-able!

The Blurb:

He was a bestseller She wanted him to make her one.

Paperback king, Aditya Kapoor life is straight out of a modern man’s fantasy. His literary stardom is perfectly balanced by a loving wife and a spectacular career.

With everything he touches turning to gold, Aditya is on a winning streak.

Shreya Kaushik is a student with a heart full of ambition. Young, beautiful and reckless, Shreya speaks her mind and obsessively chases after what she wants. And what she wants is to be a bestselling author.

What happens when their worlds collide? Is it possible to love two people at the same time? Can real ambition come in the way of blind passion? Can trust once broken, be regained?

Master storyteller Ravi Subramanian, delves into the glitzy world of bestsellers and uncovers a risky dalliance between a superstar novelist and his alluring protege.

The Bestseller She Wrote is a combustible cocktail of love, betrayal and redemption.

Excerpt:

The whole auditorium resonated with applause. Aditya Kapoor, who had been standing in one corner of the stage, walked up to the podium. Holding the stem of the mic, he pulled it closer to his mouth. The emcee who had been using the microphone earlier was a good ten inches shorter than Aditya’s six-foot-something frame. He cleared his throat, an act which he had rehearsed a number of times in the past and spoke into the microphone: ‘Good Evening.’

His deep baritone could make many a woman go weak in the knees. ‘It feels good to be back after fifteen years,’ Aditya carried on. There was an awed silence in the auditorium. ‘Isn’t it surprising that IIM Bengaluru has never invited me to talk about my professional exploits, something for which this institute trained me, prepared me? Instead, you have given me the honour and privilege of speaking to all of you about what I have achieved by pursuing my passion, my dreams.’

He paused and looked around the room. ‘I am here to speak not about what I have achieved, but about what I have enjoyed. Someone once said, “Find what makes you happy and go for it with all your heart. It will be hard, but I promise it will be worth it.” The fact that I am standing here in front of all of you, talking about my exploits, only goes to show that it is, in fact,’ and he again paused and looked around the room, ‘. . . that it is, in fact, truly worth every single minute that I spent pursuing my dream.’

Aditya continued, ‘When I began writing in 2008, it was for my own self. I became a writer, not only to tell a story but to broaden my own perspective. I don’t know whether readers took away any message from my books or not, but for me, writing was a process which left me intellectually enhanced. It transformed my personality completely.’

There was another round of applause.

A confident orator, Aditya went on to talk about his books, the writing process and getting published. The audience listened to him in rapt attention as he talked about his experiences and how he was able to differentiate himself in a crowded marketplace.

‘Every author puts in a fair bit of effort when he or she writes a book. But not everyone markets it well. Remember the easiest part about writing a book is . . . writing the book. The hard work starts once the book is written. The task of marketing the book and bringing the product to the reader is . . .’

‘Product? Rubbish!’ someone in the gathering exclaimed. The voice was loud enough for at least a few in the room to have heard it. Aditya heard it too. Stopping for just a brief moment, he glanced around before moving on. He had been in such situations before. The person who had made that remark was in the minority and could be ignored.

‘Marketing the book and bringing the product to the reader is a very critical task in the entire product life cycle. If you don’t get the product into the buyers’ consideration subset, how will he or she buy it? Isn’t that what they teach you in your two years at management school? In my case, the book is the product and the readers are our consumers.’

‘Balls!’ This time the voice was louder. It sounded out like a whipcrack. ‘It’s a book for god’s sake, not a product.’

Aditya stopped as heads turned. The sound had come from the right hand corner of the auditorium. If anyone had missed it the first time, they were sure to have heard it now.

From where the sound had emanated, stood two young girls. One of them looked quite embarrassed, which was enough for Aditya to confirm that it was the other one who had spoken.

‘Sorry?’ he questioned, upset at being rudely interrupted. ‘What was that?’ The girl had been a bit too loud. Maybe she didn’t realise it, but now, for him, it was a matter of his fragile male pride.

Neither of the girls responded to Aditya’s question. After what seemed like thirty seconds of uncomfortable silence, the girl who had made the comment stood up. All eyes were on her, including those of the outraged academics sitting in the front row.

‘Pardon me, Mr Kapoor, but a book is not a product,’ she spoke up. Despite her ostensible apology for her impropriety, she didn’t need any coaxing to stand up and speak. ‘A book is an expression of an author’s creativity. Do not demean it by calling it a “product”. We respect you as a good writer, as a successful professional and as a senior from our campus, but that does not mean that anything goes.’

A few whispers went up in the auditorium, gradually escalating into chatter.

‘Young lady,’ Aditya began, the quiver in his voice quite apparent. Camouflaging his thoughts had never been his strength. His face had gone red with anger. He was not going to be shown up by a young kid.

‘You are correct, but only partly. A book is not a product when an author is writing it. At that moment it is a dream. It is the purpose of existence for the author. But the moment you put a price tag on it and place it on a shelf in a bookstore, it becomes a product.’

He looked at the others in the audience and after an intentional pause, added, ‘Otherwise why even bother to sell it? Give it away for free.’

The Review:

I wish I had not written this review…

The Reviewer’s Heart…

“The Bestseller She Wrote”, failed to impress me, especially after the huge expectations I have from the author after reading his previous works. The first impression after reading the blurb was, this book is going to be a good read, but the very thought changed after reading the first chapter. The next few chapters clearly conveyed that Aditya is going to fall for Shreya, despite being a married man and having a lovely son. It did not surprise me, when Aditya kissed Shreya, or Shreya invited Aditya for a “steamy” romance. Well the romance did not appear steamy to me, it was more of a let down.

The chat conversation between the two, the way Shreya played along in the middle chapters were good. The worst part of the book was to make Aditya’s wife suffer from the dreadful disease Ebola and getting cured with the help of Canadian Vaccine. I wonder from when vaccines started curing diseases! Though the climax was bit delayed, still I loved the way the author wrote it.

The story had its own twists and turns, keeping me hooked till the end, but there was no surprise element, at least to me. This book is a quick read. I took three hours to complete the book and one hour to write this review. If you are looking for a quick decent read, then read this book to enjoy the character “Shreya”, whom the author created powerfully.

What I liked?

It was “Shreya” who drove me into the story and kept me hooked till the end. The chat conversation between Aditya and Shreya, the way Shreya played along in the middle chapters, particularly the chapters when she really made Aditya go mad for her, impressed me.

When I read TOI’s prompt from the author, I liked it, and it suited the story well.

What I disliked?

The reader’s heart would tell the story!

Why should one read this book?

If you are looking for a quick decent read, then read this book to enjoy the character “Shreya”, whom the author created powerfully. This book is a perfect script for a Bollywood Movie!

Rating:
Blurb: 3/5
Description: 3/5
Writing Style: 3/5
Editing: 4/5
Excerpt: 2/5
Book Cover: 4/5
Overall Rating: 3/5

Book Details:
Title: The Bestseller She Wrote
Author: Ravi Subramanian
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Westland
Language: English
Pages: 391
Year of Publication: 2015
Price: 295 INR
Buy Paperback: Flipkart | Amazon
Follow on: Facebook | Goodreads
Follow Author on Facebook | Goodreads

Stars… To this not so thrilling read, I give a three-star rating.

The Bestseller She Wrote is a quick read. Perfect Bollywood Material! If you are interested to know the publishing industry and its background with a bit of romance, you are welcome to read this book. A ☆ ☆ ☆ Book! Recommended to all. No second thoughts!

I am reviewing ‘The Bestseller She Wrote’ by Ravi Subramanian as a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now to get free books! The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a three-star rating on Goodreads, Amazon and FlipKart as I felt nothing less or more than that would be fair.

#25 Book Review: Postcards From Memory by Samir Satam

This book is a bag full of memories that will mesmerize, as you read them!

The Blurb:

Every moment that passes is not coming back. Yes, there might be moments in future, like the one you just experienced. But it’s not going to be the same again. The one that was, was one like itself. It cannot be replaced. It’s gone… Long gone… Dissolved in this crazy tasting, highly intoxicating drink of life. In an attempt to capture these bits and pieces that keep dissolving to give their distinct flavors to this colorful cocktail, I end up scribbling on my pad. This book is a bouquet of such moments that started with my mindless scribbling and ended up in verses. Sweet, Bitter, Sour, Sublime… Each piece has a taste of its own.

Excerpt:

Last night,
It remained unsaid,
That’s what I regret,
Only if I could have garnered the courage,
To say what I felt,
It might have brought a smile to your face,
Like it once used to…
But again,
The smile part is my assumption…
Poem title: Last Night, Page: 80

About The Author:

Samir Satam,- lives in Bombay where he works as a Software Engineer in one of the multi-national IT companies. He is an avid reader, a serious cinema lover and an individualist by nature. At an early age, he started writing his diary in verses and thus developed his passion for poetry. Postcards from Memory is his first book of poetry.

The Review:

It’s the first time I am reviewing a poetry book, which is easy not at all. In a novel, you go with the flow of events but in a poetry book every time there is a fresh tale, a new scar and an unknown healer. The book title was catchy enough to attract my attention. Being poetic at heart I was curious to read it, thanks to First Step Publishing for providing me a review copy.

The Reviewer’s Heart…

“Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words.” -Robert Frost

This is exactly I felt reading “Postcards From Memory” by Samir Satam. I liked the opening quote of the book which says, “Life is a large waiting room, Everybody seems to be waiting for something.” It instantly did set my mood to read it further. The book has been divided into ten different segments like; longing, stolen moments, ramblings, love, life and a little nostalgia, a point of view, lost moments, one for the road, flirting with death, temptations and idle mornings. The poet has very artfully brought up the raw emotions that we come across in our day to day or least at some point of our lives. Each of them has a story to tell. I could connect myself to many of his poems and some of them were so ideally tempting that I wish experiencing them. I would love to mention about the poems which I found exceptionally good. In the poem “A Lost Thought”, the protagonist longs to meet his girl and express his feelings. He imagines and prepares himself but as the day progresses, that thought seeps into the corner of his mind. And finally when he meets her in the evening, looking breathtakingly beautiful; he forgets all he had prepared to say. Doesn’t that happen with all of us? We wish to speak but words deny to spill out. “Villain”, talks about the hidden demon within all of us; to which when profess from outside gets evoked but… within a shield of heroism. “Reading”, I could so much resonate to this poem. It is a sweet treat for all the book lovers. “Silent Telephone”, when you end up fighting with your dear one and the ego take its seat in the first place. Grudges is what you hold on and the bond is what you lose on.

What I liked?

The poet has preferred simple language and yet his writing style has an intriguing touch to keep reader’s interest and attention. I liked the variety of themes he chose to write on, that saved the book from a monotonous read. The book cover goes perfect with the book title.

What I disliked?

I wish if only the book could have been edited a little better. Also, I felt the book ended so quickly as I wanted to read more 🙂

Why should one read this book?

If you are planning to read a good poetry book or if you aspire to start writing poems on your own then, this book could inspire you to hold your pen and dig down to your power of imagination. A wonderful read for all the poetry lovers.

Rating:
Blurb: 4/5
Description: 4/5
Writing Style: 3.5/5
Editing: 4/5
Excerpt: 4/5
Book Cover: 4/5
Overall Rating: 4/5

Book Details:
Title: Postcards from Memory
Authors: Samir Satam
Type: Paperback
Publisher: First Step Publishing
Language: English
Pages: 132
Year of Publication: 2014
Price: 195 INR
Buy Paperback: Flipkart | Amazon
Follow on: Facebook | Goodreads
Follow Author on Facebook | Goodreads

Stars… To this inspiring poetry book, I give a four-star rating. Keep writing, Samir!

Postcards From Memory is a bag full of memories that will mesmerize, as you read them!! This book will inspire you to hold your pen and dig down to your power of imagination and write! A ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Book! Highly recommended to all the Poetry Lovers. No second thoughts!

This book was given to me by the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. I am glad to read and review it. The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a four-star rating on Goodreads and FlipKart as I felt nothing less than that would be fair.

Book Review: Seeking Redemption by Madhu Vajpayee

This book is a nice decent read!

The Blurb:

Story of a girl Meera, who is unwittingly drawn into a conflict from where she finds it difficult to emerge unscathed. It’s her journey from being a simple, medical graduate belonging to a middle class family to the uncharted territories of corruption and caste-based politics. Her path is crossed by two men, both compelling yet completely contrasting characters, who are going to change her life forever. If it is Aman Sharma who can challenge her ideals, defy her resolves and make her the person she finally becomes, it is Abhay Bharti’s sublime love which enables her to go through the vicissitudes of life. It’s also the story of her loss as well as triumph against her own demons to find her true self.

Excerpt:

All of them busy cheering their friends and exchanging pleasantries. Optimism was at its peak. She always loved the energy and undying spirit. An announcement was going on for today‟s final dress rehearsal program. Students were advised to segregate according to the degree they were receiving. She proceeded to join the MBBS batch with her friends Priya and Kiran Mala.

MBBS graduates were asked to stand alphabetically. Meera was taking her position when she sensed from the corner of her eye that someone was intensely watching her. Before she knew it, a tall and handsome man, with a whitish complexion, sharp chiseled features and deep dark brown eyes, wearing jeans and sky blue t-shirt was approaching her.

“Can I talk to you for a moment?” He asked her. Meera was perturbed by this sudden intrusion.

“Hi! I am Aman … Dr Aman Sharma, MD Medicine. And I guess you are….” he trailed off.

“I am Meera Mishra. I‟ve just finished my MBBS.” Meera finished the sentence.

“I would like to meet you sometime.” Aman said. There were no preliminary talks, not much introduction, it was simply a command. She, still unable to get a grip over the situation, replied, “I will see.” He then vanished in the crowd as quickly as he had appeared.Her eyes tried to follow him in the auditorium while rehearsal was going on. Aman Sharma had a demeanor, which reflected a kind of aloofness. His face had an arrogant look about it and there was an aura of aristocratic upbringing.

About The Author:

Dr. Madhu Vajpayee,- the writer was born somewhere in those hospital corridors where she has spent the last two decades of her life. Witnessing life at such close quarters pushed her to capture its enigma in her words and slowly it became her passion. After writing several scientific papers and chapters in books, this book is her first step in literary world.

Having done her graduation, MBBS from King Georges Medical University (KGMU), Lucknow she went ahead to pursue her post-graduation, MD from AIIMS, New Delhi. She was a consultant at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi having been associated with management of patients living with HIV/AIDS. She is now settled in Melbourne, Australia with her family, where she is devoting most of her time to writing, the passion that she couldn’t pursue earlier because of the demands of medical profession and commitment it requires. When not creating stories, Madhu enjoys reading and travelling.

The Review:

When a country’s political system starts taking a toll on the lives of innocent people. So much, as to nearly threaten all aspirations, opportunities, rights and even peace from their lives. Their only mistake is being a part of that vicious cycle. But then, from a league of common people only, there are revolutionaries too. Who courage to rebel and fight against the system. Has sacrifice been that easy? Yes. Only when your dream and sacrifice are entwined together, adding will and perseverance to it.

Simran’s Desk…

Seeking Redemption by Madhu Vajpayee is a deliberately written book in context to social issue which still persists strongly in the roots of contemporary society and that is – a combination of politics and increase in the number of reservation quota for backward class.

The story revolves around Meera Mishra, a charismatic, intelligent, diligent and courageous doctor, who earns her M.B.B.S degree despite all the odds that her family face in terms of financial condition. Her mother constantly probe her to get married in a well-to do family whereas, her father be there to support her during all her ups and downs. He believes in Meera’s capability and encourages her to apply for post-graduation. Aman Sharma, who is pursuing MD in medicine from the same college admire Meera’s beauty and falls in love with her. He starts contacting her and seek ways to meet but Meera being goal oriented ignore him. Though he is arrogant and demanding but gradually, she starts liking and accepts the way he is. Unfortunately, Meera being hard working and intelligent fails to qualify the post-graduation medical entrance exam whereas, her best friends Priya and Kiran Mala who are comparatively less deserving candidates clear the entrance with the help of reservation quota. Meera is surprised and bewildered thinking what destiny holds for her in future and suddenly, her father gets terribly hit by an attack which paralyzes one side of his body. He is the sole earning member in the family. Meera’s younger brother, Raghav is an average student who aspires to study engineering. He doesn’t qualify entrance for a government engineering college but his mother pesters to get him admitted to a private college instead, that are expensive. In parallel to this, the government and the officials such as Prof. Rajaram, Samir Saxena, Rajesh Kumar and Rahul supports increase in number of reservation quota for their own benefits and agenda of winning votes whereas, on the other side, Aman, his father, Dr. Sanjeev and Dr. Abhay Bharti are against it, as they believe the gap between lower and upper castes has been filled and there is no more need of privilege. Meera, even after scoring well in her M.B.B.S doesn’t get to work in her own college which she should have had got it by default. That’s when she realize, the vicious cycle of politics and the system that runs blindly solely for its own benefits.

Will Meera be able to get a job and continue her studies or would be married off to someone? Will her parents would agree Aman- Meera relationship? Will she be able to arrange funds for family and expense for her brother’s higher education? Will Abhay Bharti and other rebellions get justice or will the vicious cycle would get stronger? Read the book to find it out.

What I liked?

The author has well defined all the characters in the story. She has nicely narrated the story and has put almost every aspect of the situation (reality) very wisely. The story goes on more like a debate which I found interesting. The ending is quite justified and has not been hurried.

What I disliked?

Repetition of dialogues and grammatical/spelling errors were a bit irritating. Other than that, I felt the story lacked surprise element and it was a slow read.

Why should one read this book?

Are you too against the reservation system? Have you too been deprived of opportunities because of the ongoing reservation system? If yes, then it’s a book you can relate yourself and realize how deeply it’s affecting so many dreams and lives.

******

Sarav’s Desk…

First of all, a very big congratulation to Madhu Vajypayee for addressing a social issue that’s in the roots of our society – reservation and the politics involved in it. Keep writing and good luck for your future.

How often we read a book on social issues these days? The answer would be a single digit I guess. This book, Seeking Redemption by Madhu Vajpayee, is one of its kinds – a mixture of reservation, privatisation of medical colleges, ugly politics, and the people in power deciding the fate of everything. Just like how it happens in reality. I appreciate Madhu for attempting to write in this genre.

This book had a promising plot, which later got mixed up with too many subplots that diluted the concentration of the book. The first few chapters drew me into the story, made me travel with the characters, only to read a diluted plot. For example, when Meera said YES to Aman, I expected to read a few romantic chapters, but what I offered was a complete let down. When the author wrote about anti-reservation movements, what lacked were the details, the complete setup, and facts to believe it. To be true, I was bit disappointed reading the final few chapters.

The story had its own twists and turns, keeping me hooked till the end, but there was no surprise element. Still, this was a good decent read. I took three hours to complete reading the book and one hour to write this review. If you are against reservation, then read this book to know the ugly politics involved in medicine industry, which the author penned wonderfully.

What I liked?

Only a few people know where to tell and where to show, I believe Madhu has done a decent job in this area. Her impeccable narration is what kept me hooked till the end. The plot and the characters are wonderfully plotted. The quick turn of events, the so-called good-luck factor, are well used in this book. Overall, this is a different decent read!

What I disliked?

Love and romance… the book lacked love and romance in those candid conversations between Meera and Aman, overuse of the words “Reservation” and “Caste”, lack of details or the setup of the subplots, repetition of the dialogues and grammatical errors.

Why should one read this book?

If you are against reservation, then read this book to know the ugly politics involved in medicine industry, which the author wonderfully penned. If you are victim of these ugly politics, for sure you will relate and applaud the author for plotting a decent read!

Rating:
Blurb: 4/5
Description: 4/5
Writing Style: 5/5
Editing: 4/5
Excerpt: 4/5
Book Cover: 3/5
Overall Rating: 4/5

Book Details:
Title: Seeking Redemption
Authors: Madhu Vajpayee
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Half Baked Beans
Language: English
Pages: 176
Year of Publication: 2015
Price: 199 INR
Buy Paperback: Flipkart | Amazon
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Follow Author on Blog | Twitter | Goodreads

Stars…

Simran, the talented reviewer of our team, gave this book a three-star rating. While Vidhya and I, gave this book a four-star rating, to applaud the author’s brave attempt to write about a social issue that’s in the roots of our society. Keep writing, Madhu!

Seeking Redemption is a decent read! This book is against reservation, highlighting the ugly politics involved in medicine industry, will make you applaud the author for plotting a decent read! A ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Book that will keep you hooked till the very end! Highly recommended to all who are against reservation. No second thoughts!

The author has opted for a promotional package and our services. We are glad to read and review it. The opinions expressed in the review are from the reviewers heart and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. We have given a four-star rating on Goodreads and we will on FlipKart and Amazon as we felt nothing less than that would be fair.

Book Review: Humbling And Humility by Rian Nejar

This book shakes the prejudices through a grave, touching, and harmonious background story

Buy on Amazon: Paperback | Paperback

The Blurb:

“Humbling and Humility” is an intense, detailed narrative of an Indian-American father and husband’s struggle with betrayal by his spouse and its consequences upon himself and his children.

Including a critical view of state intervention into domestic discord in families in America, the narrative explores this father’s attempts to mitigate harm and accommodate disruptive life changes in non-violent ways, both in his family and in other families in similar predicaments.

In raw and honest discussions, with no pretense of holding back, the author delves into culture and gender differences, and the many challenges immigrants face in America.

Excerpt:
The wagon rolled out of 4th Ave., and I was grateful to see some sunlight through the tiny window. We stopped at a holding facility in another part of the metropolis, where a young, stocky fellow, no more than a year or two above twenty, with a large black patch of what seemed like dead skin on the underside of one of his forearms, joined me in my side of the dog wagon.

He seemed chatty, and given my brief exposure to sunlight, I conversed with him permanent black skin patch through MRSA gathered from unclothed contact with surfaces inside many jail cells he’d been in. MRSA is a bacterial strain highly resistant to treatment. It is quite common in the holding cells and incarceration facilities of the state. He was hospitalized by the state due to the severity of his bacterial infection. They’d managed to stop it, but not before the starkly visible damage. He seemed dismissive of it, but I wasn’t so sure that I would, at my age that was twice his, survive such bacterial infection.

As we were led into the civic center in Dilbut that housed the courts, through back doors into a holding area, I saw the same cop who’d mocked my request for toiletries at the 4th Ave. intake line. This Hispanic member of law enforcement– from his name, Carillo– seemed to enjoy playing sadistically with the emotions of those in the state’s unrelenting grip, presumed innocent or not. His face had all the refinement of a Halloween mask. It was a face not even a mother could love.
who’d mocked my request for toiletries at the 4th Ave. intake line. This Hispanic member of law enforcement– from his name, Carillo– seemed to enjoy playing sadistically with the emotions of those in the state’s unrelenting grip, presumed innocent or not. His face had all the refinement of a Halloween mask. It was a face not even a mother could love.

In time, an officer came in to inform us that a female judge had put in an appearance, and the sadistic cop changed his slant to discussing how she’d been making bail release determinations. It’s rather redundant to indicate that he worked at raising our hopes, with claims that the judge had, just the past week, let many in arraignment leave without bail, right from the courtroom, on their own recognizance. It is also not hard to now see why those arrested and subjugated by law enforcement refer to them as pigs, which I hardly think stands for ‘people in government service,’ though you may again be forgiven for such a gentle assumption.

A short walk, and a climb up a spiral staircase, led us directly and surprisingly into a courtroom. There, we were all gathered in the jury section, some gloriously attired in overalls of white with wide black stripes, and all with handcuffs on. There was only the judge and two cops present in the room. She went through each person’s situation, setting bail at significant amounts for each and every one of us. Some she would not release at all, and had to resign themselves to going back to the holding facilities or to Waspoia’s tent camps.

About The Author:

Rian Nejar is a mid-60’s child from India. He trained and worked as an engineer in India, lived briefly in the Middle East, and arrived in America in the early 90’s. After a Master’s in electrical engineering in America, he worked as an academic instructor, engineer, entrepreneur, and technical writer over the two decades since. Humbling and Humility (HnH) is the first heartfelt written expression of his varied life experiences. He lives in the Southwest United States, and writes on the social and human condition.

The Review:

Humbling and humility is predominantly an account of author’s take on the eastern and western culture.

The reader’s heart

We have always been complaining that the system in India is dormant and takes forever to reach a decision but Humbling and humility tells us a different story; the repercussions of a fast action. In a context of the humiliation of Indian Diplomat Priyavani, author unravels a dirty world where the facilities to the convicts or presumed guilty are menial. Author shocks the reader with the stories of unhygienic cells, which carries bacterial infections to the inmates of the prison. The protagonist ends up in an intervention center as a result of a bogus complaint filed by his wife. In spite of the sufferings from his spouse, the protagonist is the one who is convicted due to the indiscretion of the legal system and bureaucracy. In an unrelenting effort to make sure that the wrongdoer is punished, innocent people are becoming scapegoats. Protagonist is a first generation immigrant from India, who is struggling to adjust himself in the western culture. The dilemma, pain and frustration of the protagonist is conveyed well to the readers. Surprisingly name of the protagonist or his spouse if not mentioned anywhere in the book; or I missed it. While trying to put to light the inconsistency of marital lives in Western culture, author has portrayed a well to do family of his friends John and Parvathy, which shows that it is not an impossible task to inculcate two cultures but as the protagonist’s counsellor in the intervention center says, the Pendulum keep on swaying and at a point where it stops, things will work out. Protagonist’s life takes a turn when more people enter his life.

What I liked?

The language and craft of the story is solid. It is more of a monologue of the protagonists but yes, there are conversations but in a lesser number. Nevertheless, readers would not be bored. Author is absorbed seamless into the protagonist that at some points, I kept on wondering if I am reading an autobiography. Author touched so many topics, which are matters of concern for the protagonist. Through the stories of people whom the protagonists meet at the intervention center, readers are subject to revelations of unexpected happenings in a system that is considered secured, perfect and spotless. Last but not the least, the book is an eye opener about the misuse of Domestic Violence prevention measures. The editing is also done with finesse.

“Punishment for something I’d done, I can accept, but a beating, just because you are angry, is not okay.”

“This pendulum was not only an unstable system; it was, in the hands of a ruthless and single-minded collection of authorities, a hammer of social injustice and repression.”

What I disliked?

While we are half way through the book, the pace drops a little bit but takes momentum once Giddu, Guddy and Monty come to picture. A wave of anti- female feeling could be felt but it could be the protagonist’s perspective. The book cover design is simple when compared to the gravity of the topic.

Why should one read this book?

To know the sugar coated, quasi-perfectionism of a system which we look up to, one should read this book.

******

Rating:
Blurb: 4/5
Description: 4.5/5
Writing Style: 5/5
Excerpt: 5/5
Book Cover: 3/5
Overall Rating: 4/5

Book Details:
Title: Humbling and Humility
Author: Rian Nejar
Genre: Fiction
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Anasim Books
Language: English
Pages: 310
Year of Publication: 2014
Price: 933 INR
Buy on Amazon: Paperback | Paperback
Follow on Goodreads:  Book | Author

Stars…

To this enlightening journey of words, I give a four-star rating.

“Humbling and Humility” is a sugar coated, quasi-perfectionism of a system which we look up to, one should read this book. A ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Book that will keep you hooked till the last page. Highly recommended for all. A must read. No second thoughts!

Disclosure of Material Connection: This book was given to me by author in exchange for an honest review. I am glad to read and review it. The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a four-star rating on Goodreads as I felt nothing less than that would be fair.

About the Reviewer: Rakhi was born in a small town in Kerala. Born and brought up as a quintessential small town girl, she had always been ambitious and goal-oriented. After her masters in Biotechnology and Business Administration, she joined as an HR recruiter in a consulting firm. Her eight-year-old love life blossomed into marriage in 2010 and she joined her husband's family business. Blessed with two children, she is a full time mother and an author. Her passion for literature made her the author of the poetry collection Un-assuaged- The blossoms of my imaginations. She started writing her blog Outset- Rakhi Jayashankar.