Category Archives: Book Review

Book Review ~ Love.exe by Manju Nambiar

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Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 790 KB
Print Length: 384 pages
ASIN: B07F911NYB

 
 

A bumpy pathway to that sweet emotion named love, ‘Love.exe’ is a page-turner that sees the reader sport a smile all along the ride. At the end of it, there is not a hair out of place, nor a wrinkle to mar the face. However, get ready to see your sides split with laughter.

A coming of age romance novel with fulsome entertainment, ‘Love.exe’ sees the protagonist Nitya rebel, regale, and resolve the issues in her love life which is far from being a roller coaster ride. On the way, she encounters negative emotions like hate, anger, jealousy, and sadness all of which tend to make her life miserable. However, with a loving family, a bit of intrigue, and some wonderful friends around she finally manages to weather the negative emotions and salvage the joy (read love) that had been giving her many a sleepless night.
 
 

VERDICT

A sweet and simple tale that prompts one to look inward and search for true love, love that does not make one weak, but instead motivates one to stay strong, dream, and follow it up to make it a reality.
 
 

Interested?

To read the blurb click HERE


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Book Review: Murder In The Chowdhury Palace By Sharmishtha Shenoy

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Format: Kindle Edition
ISBN: B086L7MYD9
 


 
 

When love blossoms in Durga’s heart it paves the way for the fulfillment of a dream long cherished. A difficult childhood and the accompanying sense of insecurity become things of the past that is until widowhood overshadows her joy. Trying to come to terms with the bitter truth of Deb’s demise, Durga finds herself surrounded by a maze of intrigue, a maze that pulls her deep into a vortex from which only one person can help her emerge unscathed. Yet, can she trust Nag?…………Only a read of this latest offering from the desk of Sharmishtha Shenoy will let you into the answer.

A thriller that weaves within its fabric umpteen twists and turns including some paranormal sightings, ‘Murder in the Chowdhury Palace’ has an array of characters each an enigma. To unravel them, their quirkiness and ultimately the mystery that is woven into the story is a task that will leave you baffled.

The climax?

Icing on the cake. 🙂 I as a reader generally see the Sherlock Holmes in me sit upright when I read a murder mystery/ thriller and take out my lens, filter through evidence that comes my way and often unravel the mystery before the end. However here I must admit I failed. Not only that , some of the revelations towards the end were indeed startling, revelations regarding which top secrecy has been maintained all along.

So is there something that made me say, ‘Oops!’
Yes just one thing and that was this feeling that the story was a bit drawn out. I personally felt that it could have been wound up with a few pages less. The length would be less but the impact would have been more.

VERDICT

An engrossing read that.

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Book Review ~ Love, Marriage, and Other Disasters by Shilpa Suraj

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Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 1152 KB
Print Length: 164 pages
ASIN: B0865L2N6J
 

BLURB @


 
 

Life for a divorcee can be quite taxing especially in a conservative society like the Indian one. However, if you have an understanding family half the battle is won. Alisha Rana the protagonist of Shilpa Suraj’s latest book ‘Love, Marriage, and Other Disasters’ is a divorcee on the wrong side of thirty. Having gone through hell in her arranged marriage Alisha is now not ready to settle down with anyone unless she feels the ‘squiggle.’ So what is this all- elusive ‘squiggle?’ :0 Well, it is that special flutter one feels within the chest. It is that ‘Kuch, kuch hota hai’ feeling. So does Alisha finally experience the ‘squiggle’……? To know that and much more about Alisha Rana the strong and determined woman, the woman who battles through odds and is not ready to be cowed down, you will have to pick up the book.

A breezy read that has all the elements of romance, passion, fun, and family bonding ‘Love, Marriage, and Disasters’ has an element of suspense too. Office politics and the vamp factor too give it a twist. However, what makes the book appealing is the easy flow with which the story progresses, and the way the characters are fleshed out.
 
 

Verdict

A page- turner that will see you sport a smile till the end ‘ Love, Marriage and Disasters’ score a 4 on a scale of 5.

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Book Review ~ The Little Book of Everything by Ruskin Bond

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Hardcover: 96 pages
Publisher: Penguin Viking (1 January 2020)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0670093815
ISBN-13: 978-0670093816
 

Pure Joy!

Yes, that’s what this little book of everything is all about. Traversing through the street of life one comes across moments of pure ecstasy as well as times sad and depressing. However, like Ruskin Bond says,
“Let us be GRATEFUL that thorns have ROSES.”
Here Roses stand the beauty of life and Thorns for those sad moments that we encounter while traversing it. Instead of complaining about the thorns let us look at the brighter side of life, its beauty and be grateful for the same.

Traversing through the pages of this little book was like taking a relook at life, reminiscing moments of joy, of cynicism, of despair and trying to see things in a different light. In short, it was like looking at life with its myriad shades and picking up each and every little pebble that came my way, each thorn that hurt my hands, and trying to find the beauty hidden in it. And as I searched for this beauty I saw love in the little things of life, found courage in the most unusual places, and found empathy flowing within me towards even the most insignificant.

A book of random thoughts scribbled down over the years by one of literature’s favourite, this one sees the philosophical side of the author at its best. It ensures that one turns page after page without a break and sports a smile till the very end.

Sharing a few nuggets of wisdom from the book

“Yes, we must have secret places
Not in order to hide from the world, but simply in order to be with oneself for a change – to get to know oneself little, because in the hurly-burly of life we can easily become strangers to ourselves.”

“Bad times are good times to prepare for better times.”

“Life is not something to put up with, but a gift to be enjoyed with zest.”

VERDICT

A book of few words encasing myriad shades of life within it, this one is a Collector’s Delight.


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Book Review : Love in Agartha by Sundari Venkataraman

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Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 2569 KB
Print Length: 213 pages
Publisher: Flaming Sun (Indie published)
ASIN: B083G8HHW5

 
 

Is ‘Love in Agartha’ just a romance fiction, a fantasy novel or a bundle of both? Well, it is definitely a bundle of romance and fantasy but…… But? The description does not stop there for in fact ‘Love in Agartha’ offers its readers something that’s way beyond what both romance and fantasy can offer, a journey into our inner realms.

The story of Naavya Batra and Sanat Kumara is actually the story of each individual. It is the story of love, hatred, ego, and self- realization. It is the story of discovering the inner self. All earthlings though born and brought up in the third dimension i.e. Earth, travel through the fourth (Narak) and fifth dimension (Agartha) at some point in their life. While the fourth dimension sees them fret and fume and allow their egoistic and cruel side to come to the fore, the fifth dimension (Agartha) sees them shine in the light of love and accept everything and everyone for what they are. Here the positive side of the individual stands tall and gives birth to deeds that define their core values. It is the seat of love and peace, compassion and harmony, a seat where the soul encounters ultimate bliss.

Cleverly crafted and widely researched, ‘Love in Agartha’ is Author Sundari Venkatraman’s debut foray into the world of fantasy- romance. A prolific writer with many best selling romance fictions to her credit, Sundari has once again proved that she is second to none where creativity and versatility are concerned. Hope to see her dabbling more often in this genre i.e. fantasy.
 
 
VERDICT

A refreshing read that will not only see you enter Agartha with ease, but will also give you the jitters if you accidentally happen to fall into the fourth dimension i.e. Narak. However, fear not for there is always a Sanat Kumara waiting to retrieve you from there the only condition being that you recognize him and willingly seek his help.
 
 


For Blurb & More Reviews Of The Book Do Visit

👇
 

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Book Review ~ The Treasure Syndicate by Jatin Kuberkar

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Formats : Paperback & Kindle
ISBN-10: 9388424743
ISBN-13: 978-9388424745
ASIN: B082PR3GGK

 
 

A compelling mix of suspense, action and fantasy ’The Treasure Syndicate’ will see you ride on the crest of curiosity right till the end. Well crafted and beautifully narrated this story of a treasure hunt involving a motley group of five is unique in that each of its members stands for different attributes required to see the mission through. While Acharya Agnihotri as the ‘Nidhi-Palak’ stands for vision and fare-sightedness, Dr. Mahesh his nephew is the man who finances his missions secretly. He is the financier-cum-treasurer. Kumar an ordinary taxi driver has unfathomable luck on his side that’s needed to see a mission as secretive and dangerous as this one through without a hitch, and Jabbar is the man who with his uncanny ability as a master digger executes the job. Srikanth the odd man out though a common man holds the key to the success of the mission with his questioning mentality and foresight. Together they embark on a treasure hunt in a locality notorious for its granite quarries and accompanying mafia. With a failed mission that cost him dear behind his back the Acharya banks on luck and his crew to see him sail through this one and achieve success. Narrated in riveting style ‘The Treasure Syndicate’ is all about intelligence, foresight, team work and determination. It is the story of a mission undertaken for Lok kalyan.

Packed with suspense the story has its fair measure of twists and turns that are enough to keep the reader hooked. The characters each one, are well articulated and one can easily identify them with their strengths and weaknesses by entering their mind via the imagery created by the author. Each one of them takes the story forward in his/ her style thereby making it unique.

While the pace is steady, the language is crisp and devoid of unnecessary jargon that can spoil the mood. It helps maintain the flow that is crucial to the success of a story like this one.

VERDICT

A treasure hunt thriller that will leave you craving for more. Hope to read the next in the series for I believe there is one considering how the book ended, soon.


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Book Review ~ Something Old, Something New

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Format: Kindle Edition
ASIN: B084T22BKM

 
 

An anthology that holds within its pages a rainbow in the form of seven short novellas ‘Something Old, Something New’ sees seven authors known for their different styles of writing and totally different creative bend of the mind get together to explore a theme that’s dear to many a romantic at heart – second chances. While love is divine, deceit is damaging. While all love stories may not end in happily ever after, all failures in love need not be written off completely. ‘Something Old, Something New’ sees hearts battling against ego, fear, and guilt. Passions run high, and at times one can actually feel the heat of their anger, their ire. Will the protagonists in each of these seven novellas give love a second chance or will they turn their face away is a question only the authors and their stories can answer.
 

THE NOVELLAS
 
 

No Other Love by Aarti V Raman

When ego and jealousy overcrowd the mind, relationships turn sour and love takes a beating. To compound an already shaky relationship if you have overbearing parents too, then God alone can save you. ‘No Other Love’ by Aarti V Raman sees two souls born and brought up in two entirely different worlds see their relationship hit rock bottom and end up in a divorce. Will they be able to salvage their marriage or will they go their separate ways is a question that only a reading of this short and sweet novella can answer. 

Peppered with emotions like fun, frolic, passion, and despair in right measures, ‘No Other Love’ also saw my eyes go moist at one place. Though the story is all about giving love a second chance, it also sees the author address the issue of the delicate balance that needs to be maintained by every member of a family to see relationships survive and thrive albeit indirectly. A fine example of the adage opposites attract ‘No Other Love’ is riveting.

Never Stopped Loving You by Ruchi Singh

True to her nature author Ruchi Singh takes her readers on a ride on the crest of romance combined with suspense. She strikes right where it matters most the heart and the brain, a deadly combination when you consider that sometimes when the two get together they are liable to wreak havoc in the lives of the innocent and unsuspecting.

When the handsome and suave Arjun Singh Tomar and his ex-wife Radhika come face-to-face at a restaurant in Mumbai little do they foresee the upheaval the same is going to cause in their already complicated lives. The meeting an unsavory one that sees Radhika throw a glass of wine right into Arjun’s face, culminates in the opening of the proverbial Pandora’s Box. Truths both savory and unsavory tumble out of the box. Love seeks another chance, but will the deceit of the past allow it to succeed? Will ego give way to humility, and will the scars of the wronged one be ready to forgive and forget?………Only a reading of this intense and racy romantic thriller will reveal the truth.

My Warmest Sorrow by Preethi Venugopala

Religion and social status have always played spoilsport where matters of the heart are concerned. ‘My Warmest Sorrow’ by Preethi Venugopala sees the beautiful and petite Diana and the young and handsome Ajay Menon hit it off right from the day they meet. However, by the time they realize that they are made for each other fate intervenes. Diana ditches Ajay for another. Does Ajay go the Devadas way or does he strike back with vengeance? Will Diana ever forgive herself or will she forget and move on in life?……. ‘My Warmest Sorrow’ alone has the answers.

An absorbing read, ‘My Warmest Sorrow’ shows how one wrong move can wreck lives, and how one right move can spread light. Along with dealing with societal evils ruled by religious fanaticism and false notions about status standings, the story emphasizes the need for family support to overcome the dark phase in one’s life arising out of anxiety and depression albeit indirectly. It also addresses the need to talk and sort out things instead of making assumptions and arriving at conclusions that are likely to aggravate situations and make matters worse.

Coming Home by Andaleeb Wajid

Ditched by his love, Jahangir turns out to be an embittered man. Years later when fate intervenes in the form of his aunt’s illness Jahangir sees a closed chapter of his life open up once again. How will Jahangir react when he comes face to face with Meesha his ex-lover? Will bitterness overshadow good sense? Will Meesha still have the power to ignite the flame of love within him?……. Coming Home holds the answers.

Written in lucid language ‘Coming Home’ is a story of childhood love crushed before time due to parental pressure. It is also the story of a single mother’s struggle to keep not only the home and hearth warm, but also provide psychological support to her son who finds it difficult to come to terms with the fact that his father has abandoned him forever. It is the story of broken hearts and a broken home. Replete with emotions like love and regret, ‘Coming Home’ is a breezy read with a little bit of twist in the form of Natasha. Now, who is Natasha?……..Find out for yourself ;).

My Heart’s Regret by Shilpa Suraj

When Chief Officer Raghav Cherukuri returns home after years of self- banishment, he has no intention to cause an upheaval in the feisty Samaira Reddy’s life. He just wants to ensure that his parents lead the rest of their life in peace and for that he plans to take them away from the Hyderabad to Chennai. But fate has other plans both for him and his parents. Misunderstandings cleared, old flames are rekindled, but the path ahead is a rough one full of thorns. Family honour plays spoilsport and sees ex- lover’s partway once again. Will a day come when they will re- unite or will they pine for each other throughout their lives is a question that only a reading of the novella can answer.

A cleverly crafted story ‘My Heart’s Regret’ sees humiliation give way to fury, and misunderstanding lead the way to loss.

Paper Hearts and Promises by Devika Fernando

Broken hearts and broken promises lead to bitterness that’s not easy to forget. ‘Paper Hearts and Promises’ sees an embittered Luke accidentally come across his ex-flame. What follows is a story vivid with imagery that is sure to keep the reader hooked. The how, what, and why of Luke and Taara’s relationship is delivered by the author in lucid language that sees each little expression be it the twitch of a muscle or a grimace delivered flawlessly, making it easy for the reader to relate with the feelings of the characters, their situations, and their dilemma with ease.

If one were to ask me what is unique about this story, and what sets it apart from the rest six then I’d say that the characters drawn from two different continents with diverse cultures makes it unique, and it is the imagery and style of narration that sets it apart from the other novellas in the anthology.

Blood Red Love by Neil D’Silva

A unique take on second chances, ‘Blood Red Love’ by Neil D’Silva stands out in that it has a Pakshin as its protagonist and is a combination of romance, horror, and fantasy.

When the determined Vimal Kapoor falls for Yamini little does he realize that he is playing with fire, a fire that has the power to annihilate him. However, a determined Vimal is bent on making her his. So once he learns about the secret that Yamini is desperate to hide from the world, he makes it his mission to help her out. Success comes knocking on his door in the form of Tapish, a quiet young one, but the price he pays for the services he enrolls him for, is something he has not reckoned with.

A story of love, loss and the supernatural ‘Blood Red Love’ has the power to send a chill down the spine and is laced with a twist that turns out to be the icing in the cake (read story).


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Book Review ~ The Patriots’ Legacy: Forbidden Treasure by Apurva Bhuta

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Paperback: 308 pages
Publisher: Apurva Bhuta
ISBN-10: 9389058147
ISBN-13: 978-9389058147

 
 
Riveting to the core, ‘Forbidden Treasure’ is unique in that

(1) the plot sees not a motley group of ordinary treasure hunters with personal reasons set out to secure a treasure said to be buried somewhere, but a secret group of architects and archaeologists drawn from the four corners of the world, and with a history that connects them to the Kingdom of Allegiance, set out on this daunting task with the sole aim of securing it from the evil eyes.
(2) The hunt sees them take the help of some highly sophisticated gadgets to decode the clues, which I’m sure have not been developed t0 date. 🙂

Packed with suspense and a lot of twists and turns, the story sees the Patriots struggle with a lot of anxious moments, deceit, and unforgettable adventure that have the ability to see the reader sit on the edge. As one travels from one end of the world to the other with the Patriots, one also gets a glimpse into the history of that particular region. This aspect combined with the element of suspense makes the book a worthy read not only in terms of entertainment but also from the perspective of knowledge sharing.

Crisp and lucid, the narration is flawless and leaves the reader craving for more such gems from the author.

VERDICT

A cleverly crafted story that weaves history into its fabric with ease. 🙂


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Book Review ~ Lipstick by Vish Dhamija

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Lipstick by Vish Dhamija

 

Paperback
ISBN-10: 9353572835
ISBN-13: 978-9353572839
Kindle Edition
ASIN: B07ZS9S7W4
Publisher
HarperCollins India
 

A Rita Ferreira thriller ‘Lipstick’ is the story of a psychotic serial killer, one with a dual personality. Meticulous to the core, ‘The Lipstick Killer’ as he is named by the media, sees the best of Mumbai Police sweat it out to nab him. Always one step ahead of them, he is proud of his exploits till……. To know more you will have to pick up the book.

When three murders identical in nature take place, Rita Ferriera the super cop finds herself faced with a dilemma of sorts. The MO is identical, but while the first two victims share an identical background, the third one is from an entirely different one. Added to this is the fact that the killer shares no definite pattern regarding the interval between two hits and / or location. It all seems random. To compound the problem we have an overactive media that is out to conduct a public trial of sorts, dish out hypothetical theories and come to a conclusion even before the culprit is identified, just for the sake of TRP. Lipstick sees a clash of identities and reasoning but makes sure that emotions don’t run high. One is introduced to the killer right from the word ‘go’, and finds it easy to understand the motivation behind his crimes. Then what is it that makes the book a thriller, and adds an element of suspense to a plot that reveals the criminal? …….It is the identity of the perverted mind behind the gory deaths. Gory? Yes, gory are the scenes of crime, and gorier is the modus operandi of the killer. One can feel goosebumps and also a shade of disgust build up when one envisages it from the narration, such is the skill of the author in creating the scene of the crime. If there is anything that proved as a dampener then it is the investigation part. Felt as though it was lacking in that element that is known as a twist and turns. There was nothing out of the ordinary there. The end too appeared to be rushed through.

VERDICT

A psychological thriller that gives an insight into how childhood scars tend to shape one’s personality, Lipstick scores a three on a scale of five.

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Disclaimer

A copy of the book was provided via Writersmelon in exchange for an honest review. The thoughts, opinions & feelings expressed in the review are therefore, my own and have not been influenced by either the author or the publishing house in any manner

Book Review: The Mahāsiddha Field (The Mahāsiddha Series Book 1) by Dwai Lahiri

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Edition: Kindle
File Size: 1427 KB
Print Length: 284 pages
ASIN: B081SPR24B

Edition: Paperback
Publisher: G.J. Salutation (2019)
ISBN-10: 8193660277
ISBN-13: 978-8193660270

 
 

When the sleepy village of Srirangapura welcomes an old man of 5’8” with a ripped kurta and patched dhoti one dusk, little did it realize that this was the beginning of a quest strange. Bhadramanu the old one knew not what it was that awaited him here and the villagers of Srirangapuram in their turn were mystified by this man who had a magnetic aura around him.

The village was witness to some gory incidents since some time. With the arrival of Bhadramanu, the plot thickens and the banyan tree behind the village temple throws up something interesting. What?…….To know that, one will have to pick up this cleverly crafted book replete with insights into the connection between the asuras, danavas, manushyas, and devas.

A mytho sci-fi fiction, ‘The Mahāsiddha Field’ is a psychological- cum- spiritual thriller of sorts which sees a Siddha holed up high in the Himalayas astrally communicate with a disparate set of people and bring them together to execute a mission that baffles them, a mission they find hard to believe given that they are all rational thinkers and look upon supernatural sightings and stories of devas and asuras just as a figment of the imagination, a myth. What they achieve and how in this heart- stopping thriller, makes the book a unique read.

Peppered with insights into some of the martial arts, and the relationship between asuras and the danavas, the book also addresses the problems facing the present world albeit in an indirect way.

The footnotes at the end of the book are a bonus in that they offer an explanation to some of the terms that readers may not be familiar with, and help enhance one’s understanding of the story/ situations, etc, clearly.

VERDICT

Gripping to the core, ‘The Mahāsiddha Field’ will leave you craving for the second in the series.


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