Giveaway: Hooked, Lined and Single by Rashmi Kumar & Love Stories Around Us by Shades Publications

About the Book: Hooked, Lined and Single

Sometimes I lie awake at night, and I ask God, ‘Where have I gone wrong?’ Then a voice says to me, ‘This is going to take more than one night…’

So you’re a woman, you’re 30-something and living in India? So what’s the big deal about it? Well, if you’re all of the above and still unmarried or married previously and you just don’t seem to find the ”right” man, you suddenly acquire a tragically special status as being cynical, demanding, impractical and chronically single or ambitious.

In Hooked, Lined & Single, Alafia Singh meets a similar fate on her journey to find a husband using somewhat more traditional methods.

Title: Hooked, Lined & Single
Author: Rashmi Kumar
Genre: Fiction
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Srishti Publishers & Distributors
Language: English
Pages: 188
Year of Publication: 2014
Price: 150 Rs.
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About the Book: Love Stories Around Us

World is full of love, and stories related to it…. just close your eyes and you will find too many love stories around us.

Have we wondered how these relationships are made? What connects people around the world? What is it that bind us together?

Love, sentiments and feelings keep us linked to each other, till our feelings are alive, our relationships are alive; our love is alive. No one can teach you this emotion, except life. And with every couple, there is a story. Shades brings you few of the love stories around us.

Title: Love Stories Around Us
Authors: Atika Srivastava, Saravana Kumar Murugan, Ritika Raj, Anisha Mohata, Rafia Jafri, Debasish Mishra, Nilakshi Pathak , Shravya Gunipudi, Divya Bandodkar, Vibha Sharma, Elora Rath, Akash Shrivastav, Varina Rasquinha, Nidhi, Kavya Shah, Pavitra Singh, Mahesh Sowani, Arjun Bhattacharyya, Biswadeep Ghosh Hazra, Abhilash Patel, Lipsa Padhi, Prakash Guru, Ankit Jain, Barun bajracharya, Gayatri Sailaxmi
Genre: Fiction
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Shades Publications
Language: English
Pages: 250
Year of Publication: 2015
Price: 150 Rs.
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Book Review: Without You by Preethi Venugopala

This book is a perfect read during journey.

The Blurb:

When Ananya, a bubbly twenty-year-old engineering student, reaches her Grandmother’s house in Sreepuram on a month long vacation, romance is the last thing on her mind. However, she meets Dr. Arjun there and falls head over heels in love.

As it often happens, the path of true love never runs smooth. Circumstances force them apart even though they were madly in love. She becomes a victim of depression. When everything fails to return her to normalcy, help arrives from an unexpected source. Will she ever find happiness again? Will time allow her heart to heal and forget Arjun? What indeed is true love?

Travel with Ananya to the picturesque Sreepuram, face the chaos of Bengaluru, and relish the warmth of magical Dubai in this heartwarming tale of love, betrayal, friendship and miracles.


From the very first time, I had heard about Arjun, my heart had become partial to him. As though it had recognized destiny’s cue that he was not just a glorified stranger. After meeting him, my heart had become obsessed with him. It convinced me that he was someone who wouldn’t let me down, someone who wouldn’t hurt me. Like building a sandcastle with loose, dry sand, which had in its destiny only failure, I was yearning to be connected with him without waiting for time to induce love. Oh, how I wished he would fall in love with me.

About the Author:

Preethi Venugopala is a Civil Engineer by education and an avid blogger, artist by passion. After working in many prestigious civil engineering projects for more than a decade, she quit her job to become a full time mother. Meanwhile, she took a Masters Degree in English Literature to complete her dream of studying English literature. She tried her hand successfully at crafts, crocheting, portraiture and painting before venturing into writing.

She has been published in two anthologies, ‘The Second Life’ and ‘Blank Space ‘. Another anthology ‘Á Little Chorus of Love’ is to be published soon. She is a regular contributor to many online magazines and websites. She strongly believes that storytellers are healers in the present world as they can change the outlook of people through the stories they tell.

My Review:

A book which help you to bask into the ocean of pure love, beautiful friendship and will make you believe that,“ When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”

– Paulo Coelho 

The reader’s heart…
Without You by Preethi Venugopala takes you on an exciting venture of Ananya’s love story. During her vacation to Sreepuram on her grandmother, Ammamma’s home she meet Arjun and falls in love with him. She holds a soft corner for Arjun and leave no opportunity to make him feel special. The story takes a sweet turn when Arjun expresses his love for Ananya, unexpectedly. We believe in testing everything- friends, relations and family. Here it is no exception. On an occasion when Arjun instead of shielding Ananya respond unassertive, it break Ananya’s believe apart and every expectation she had from Arjun’s side. She decides to end it then and there. She leaves for Bangalore, back to her paternal home with her broken heart and shattered dreams. The emotional trauma turns her life upside down but her best friends, Khushi and Poornima leave no stone un-turn to bring back the bubbly, perky and happy go Ananya. By the time she overcome the pain of betrayal but her love and memories with Arjun remain fresh as ever. Did Arjun ever loved her sincerely? Why he didn’t stand in protection of Ananya when she needed him the most? Will he ever return in Ananya’s life again or will remain just a sweet-bitter past? Will Ananya be able to forgive him if ever he confronts her?

Without You is a racy promising love tale. The author has brilliantly worked on each character with a well planned plot. Intriguing narration and beautiful description will make you hooked to the story till the end. The cover of the book looks decent with a girl’s back side image, lost in thoughts. I find the book title very apt. Without You, depicts life of Arjun and Ananya without each other.     

What I liked?
Without You assures of an enduring love in its purest form. I especially loved Colonel RS Nair’s character as his revelation brings the wanted crux of the suspense. Ammamma, Ananya’s grandmother is an open minded lady with a loving heart. Her sweetness and simplicity won my heart. The best part is, story-line doesn’t get predictable at all.

Why should one read this book?
Without You runs on a realistic line, a part of which each of us come across at some point of time, those raw emotions. If you believe in true love then this book promise to make your believe stronger.

To this romantic reading ride that will compel you to smile, laugh and cry with its characters, I give this book a five- star rating.

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

Book Details:
Title: Without You
Author: Preethi Venugopala
Genre: Fiction/ Romance
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Write India
Language: English
Pages: 198
Year of Publication: 2015
Price: 150 INR

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Without You will stand up to your expectations with strong story line and un-put-down-able narration. A ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Book that will refresh your mood. This light-romantic book is a perfect read during journey. Highly recommended for all romantic hearts, No second thoughts!

I self-bought 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 FlipKart as I felt nothing less than that would be fair.

Book Review: Metro Diaries by Namrata

This book is a perfect night read!

“Will you let me chase as I firmly hold your hand?
Will you hold me tight as I take a flight to explore my dreams?
Will you stand by my side as I take a stride in this big bad world?
Will you be the wind below my wings I soar towards the unknown?
Will you allow me to fall as I learn to find my feet?
Will you act as a shield as I fight my own battles?
Will you wipe a tear as I hold your hand in fear?
Will you look into my eyes and see me through as I confess my love for you?
Will you feel my love as I may bare my soul?
Will you be my sky if I promise to be your sunshine – together forever?”

Ah! Such a beautiful poem can be read in once in a lifetime. This book, Metro Diaries, is a collection of twenty classical love stories, has many such beautiful poems and it’s just un-put-down-able!

I am a keen observer. The first thing I notice is the cover of the book, and it certainly has an amazing cover – splendiferous in all ways!

The Blurb:

Love is one of the most amazing feelings on this earth, one that makes you the most powerful person or the most helpless person in a split second. These stories capture those feelings of despair, longing, love, lust, desire, want, dejection and admiration to create deja vu. Hold onto your hearts as you flip through these pages and take a walk down the memory lane as “Metro Diaries” will revive your innermost feelings and imbibe in you the magic of love. Touching, amusing and deeply moving, Metro Diaries – Love Classics are tales that will hold you from start till end.


From one of the stories called A secret revealed: One glance and I knew this is it. You showered your unconditional love on me in such a way that I had no option but to get drenched in it. I was glowing both from inside and outside as finally my heart had found its true calling. You wanted to take me to your world with a new identity. You urged me to leave my past behind and embrace a wonderful future with you. I was scared and confused as I felt all this was a mirage. But as they say love truly finds it way. And it did. It entered through my heart, melted my fears, strengthened my thoughts, weakened my doubts and hugged my dreams. Finally I realized the day of freedom from this curse is not far.

About the Author:

Namrata is a prolific blogger known by the name Privy Trifles in the blogosphere who romances life through her writings and aspires to make love the universal language. She dons various hats between that of a contributing author to 6 anthologies a reviewer for leading publishing houses an editor to various books and a columnist. Apart from that she is also the editor for an online magazine called Writer’s Ezine. Having mastered the nuances of finance till recently she also held the title of an investment banker closely to let it go to embrace her love for writing fully.

My Review:

It’s rare to find a book written in classical English with a perfect blend of poetry. This book is a perfect collection of short stories, all of which revolves around the most beautiful four-letter-word – Love. Each story is best in a unique way and can make you feel loved.

1. Once in a lifetime: Ah! Only once or twice in a lifetime you can read such wonderful stories. The author, Namrata, started this book with a splendiferous story. Nitya, the lead character of the story, falls in love with Ansh, whose love entered her heart, melted her fears, strengthened her thoughts, weakened her doubts and hugged her dreams, as she finally found the shores she was looking for! Truly purely romantic!

2. Then, Now and Forever: Ah! This story reminded me of my favourite book – The Notebook. But this story is a letter written by Ron’s Grandpa to his Grandma, which made him realise the true value of love. Old-gold story, it is!

3. Love thy dreams: “Love thy dreams and one day they will love you back!” That said, this is a story of love and dreams, which makes you feel wonderful. Love & Dreams, it is!

4. The Wait: This is a heart-breaking love story! Read it to feel it!

5. A secret revealed: “I do. And with your kiss you will make me free!” This is the story of a girl who fought with life until she found the true love. (This is a fantastic story – Ssshhh…this is a secret)

6. A promise of a lifetime: Two individuals meet after years in a friend’s wedding, where they exchange smiles with each other at first, later he proposes her, turning the day into an extraordinary day!

7. Will you?: This is a fantastic story based on conversations between a boy and a girl. Great promise, it is!

8. Love beyond words: This is love beyond words in the form of letters. From & To, part was just exceptional! Magical story, it is!

9. Imperfectly Perfect: Perfection is a boon or ban? This is a feel good story which will surely mesmerize the readers. Perfect Read!

10. A thing called love: I wished that this story ended positively. But that doesn’t take away any of the credits I’ve to give to this perfect story!

11. The Sole Soul mate: This story starts with a break-up and ends with love. Sweetest cutest warmest story of the book!

12. The Yellowed Diary: This is yet another heart-breaking story. One of my favourites!

13. You, me and love: This is an exceptional story about love capturing the beautiful moments in life. If someone can celebrate their fifth anniversary like this, then he/she is the soul to the other. Best of all the stories!

14. Unlocked: This story was unlocked finally with a beautiful poem at the end! Blissful!

15. Memories: Yet another painful story painting the memories etched in a picture. Truly painful!

16. A message of love: You + Me = We! Read this story to feel the message of love. Soulful!

17. Her: A perfect simple sweet story to fall in love with!

18. Love Revisited: We’ve many Rhea in this world. This is painful, yet beautiful!

19. Last Letter: This story just touched my heart. The letter, the build-up and the hope. Wow! What a story!

20. You & I: A perfect story to close the book!

Overall Rating:
Plots: 4/5
Characters: 4.5/5
Writing Style: 5/5
Twists: 4/5
Book Cover: 5/5
Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Book Details:
Title: Metro Diaries – LOVE Classics
Author: Namrata
Genre: Romance
Type: Paperback
Publisher: Revelation House Books
Language: English
Pages: 162
ISBN: 9381841616
Year of Publication: 2014
Price: 295 Rs.

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Namrata did a splendiferous job. This book, Metro Diaries by Namrata, is a collection of beautiful, soulful, and meaningful short stories. A ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Book, Highly Recommended for all the Romantic Lovers who believe in the four-letter-magical-word – Love, No Second Thoughts!

This book was given to me for review by Namrata. The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a five-star rating on Goodreads as I felt nothing less than that would be fair.

Book Review: Sorry… Again? by Amit Singh

This is a fantastic evening read!

I believe, there are only a few things in this universe which God creates himself, for everything else he recruited management trainees. While I was an abhorrent work of an inexperienced yet overburdened trainee, I was watching at one of the God’s own creation, even God must have felt proud of her beauty after creating her.’ – Amit Singh, Sorry…Again?

Can you beat this phrase while appreciating a woman’s beauty? Sorry…Again? is a romantic thriller written by Amit Singh with a gripping story-line.

The Blurb:

Sid is the inevitable effect of what a small town upbringing brings to the city life. A self-confessed “unromantic”, somewhere in his simple exterior lies a weak preacher, whose yardsticks of life change radically when the unpredictability of life starts experimenting with him. Anushka, armed with her unselfconscious beauty and poisons imbued into her life, has declared war on the world of men from a young age.

Their romance, even after her protest, is ignited by a train robbery that becomes unforgettable for reasons other than the robbery, catches the warmth because of an adolescent romance that reaches consummation, but remains within the periphery because of a live-in relationship that is on the verge of break-up.

They fall in love, but somebody is not happy with their relationship. Sid is threatened. Will he rise above his fear this time?

My Review:

Having read Amit Singh’s interesting tales on his blog, I read this book with a lot of expectation, and I must say that he did a wonderful job in this book. The story opens at an unearthly hour of 3 a.m. Sid locks the main door of his flat in Kolkata, where he spent most of the part of his life, moves to Bangalore. For a moment he looks at the opposite door hoping she (Madhumita) would open the door and come rushing him, but she did not. He gets into the cab. His transfer to Bangalore means, his designation “Sales Manager” gets added with a new word “Area”, he could meet his best friend Aakash, and above all, he can bring out the “Old Sid”. Sid and Aakash, like before, they had fun in Aakash’s apartment, at the cost of his live-in relationship with Neha. Sid meets the mystery girl Mallika again in a food court. The story then moves into Sid’s past, on how he met the most beautiful God’s creation in a train journey, the haunting memories of the journey to Delhi, and the eyes that always puzzled him. Sid also realises the hindrance he brought in his friend love life, and does the repair work, which brought him close to the mystery girl Mallika. Nope. Anushka. Will he express his love to her, despite threatens he received from an unknown retired army man. Or his visit to Kolkata in search of the army man at the cost of his career helped him to settle the scores? What happened to Madhumita? Did he purge his sins?

Unfold the answers by reading this book. My verdict is…It was a great read! Unlike other fiction novels, this had a real life touch to it, which kept me engrossed. The plot is very well woven and presented well. The only negative point, which I felt while reading the book, was too many sub-plots to decipher. And at a point of time, I felt when this is going to end, but then the author brought back Madhumita’s episode again and did justice to it. Overall, I liked the book except for the cover. I felt that it could have been done better, but then that doesn’t take away any of the accolades, I have to give to this fantabulous book. I give this book a four-star rating.

Overall Rating:
Plots: 4/5
Characters: 4/5
Writing Style: 4/5
Twists: 4/5
Book Cover: 3/5
Overall Rating: 4/5

Book Details:
Title: Sorry…Again?
Author: Amit Singh
Genre: Romance
Type: Kindle Edition
Pages: 202
Publisher: Self-published via Amazon
Price: 69 Rs.

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This book was given to me for review by Amit Singh and not a paid review. 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 than that would be fair.

Book Review: The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks

This is surely a love story to end all love stories!

“I am nothing special, of this I am sure. I am a common man with common thoughts and I’ve led a common life. There are no monuments dedicated to me and my name will soon be forgotten, but I’ve loved another with all my heart and soul and to me, this has always been enough…” – Nicholas Sparks, The Notebook!

What a beautiful quote to start the novel! The Notebook is a romantic novel that tells a story of young love. Noah and Allie, live in the author’s words. Being a fan of Mr Sparks writing, this novel is just a splendiferous piece. It’s just un-put-down-able!

I am a keen observer. The first thing I notice is the cover of the book, and it certainly has an amazing cover that of the movie – splendiferous in all ways!

The Blurb:

Set amid the austere beauty of the North Carolina coast, The Notebook begins with the story of Noah Calhoun, a rural Southerner recently returned from the Second World War. Noah is restoring a plantation home to its former glory, and he is haunted by images of the beautiful girl he met fourteen years earlier, a girl he loved like no other. Unable to find her, yet unwilling to forget the summer they spent together, Noah is content to live with only memories…until she unexpectedly returns to his town to see him once again.

Like a puzzle within a puzzle, the story of Noah and Allie is just the beginning. As it unfolds, their tale miraculously becomes something different, with much higher stakes. The result is a deeply moving portrait of love itself, the tender moments and the fundamental changes that affect us all. It is a story of miracles and emotions that will stay with you forever.

My Review:

The Notebook is a story of young love. Noah and Allie, fall for each other one summer, in a most beautiful way, and on one evening they make love to each other in a plantation home that of Noah’s, but then they come from different worlds where their love is forbidden.

Noah, a rural Southerner, joins Gus to fight in Second World War, where Gus passes away. After returning from Second World War, Noah is restoring his plantation home. After a 14-year separation, Allie sees the newspaper ad of a young man (Noah) with a house for sale. She visits him, which surprised Noah and they spend a couple of days together, and the recreated the magic they had between them 14 years ago. Allie decides to leave, as she was engaged to Lon. Standing in the crossroads of life, Allie makes her best choice.

The book is a written in a way that an old man reads The Notebook to a patient who is suffering my Alzheimer’s disease. In a way, the old man tries to defeat the disease by love. Will he succeed? Will Noah and Allie marry?

Read a classic tale of love, love lost and regained after many years, and is a truly romantic story. If you are a person with romantic heart, then this is a must read for you!

Overall Rating:
Plot: 4/5
Characters: 5/5
Writing Style: 5/5
Twists: 5/5
Book Cover: 4/5
Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Book Details:
Title: The Notebook
Author: Nicholas Sparks
Genre: Romance
Type: Paperback
Pages: 214
ISBN: 0553816713
ISBN13: 9780553816716
Publisher: BANTAM

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This book was purchased by me. This is not a paid review. The opinions expressed in the review are my own, and remain unbiased and uninfluenced. I have given a five-star rating on Goodreads as I felt, nothing less than that would be fair.