Monday, April 28, 2014

Review: End of Story by Arjun Shekhar

Murder mysteries with their usual approach have been plenty in the market. While some manage to capture the attention but some just go off track. Author Arjun Shekhar in his book "End of Story" takes readers for a spin in a never before style. So will he be able to capture the readers attention? Let's find out. 

End of Story is about Shukrat Ali, a news anchor at a tabloid current affairs channel, Khulasa, is presently unemployed. Due to the Supreme Court's ban on all electronic advertising, all TV channels across the country have been temporarily shut down. An investigation is on regarding a new form of advertisements, which uses subliminal messages to play with people's minds and influence their actions. The story progresses into Shukrat's struggle to move on with his career, and how he is summoned to the court to testify in the trial concerning the murder of his ex-boss, Satya Saachi Sengupta. Satya Sachi was a mentor to Shukrat, but his involvement with the mind manipulation scheme cannot be a secret anymore. What will Shukrat do to escape from this situation?

First look at the title and the cover and the readers will not able to unravel the whole idea behind the book. The cover image has television and a strange looking title. It's dull and pale but intrigues. The blurb talks about a media person and his whole life which is in turmoil. A precise summary of the book quirks up a lot of things for the readers. 

The story is of Shukarat Ali who works with Khulasa and is embroiled in a controversy. His boss has been murdered and he is under the scanner. But there are a lot of complications in this media hyped story where no one can be trusted and what is there in front of the eyes is an eyewash. So how will Shukarat along with his wife Siyahi handle it? What role his boss plays and eventually ends up as dead? What will happen to the case? That's what the story is all about. 

A promising murder mystery which projects the events in dark and shed light. It goes in circles which makes head spin time and again. It baffles time and again and leaves a lot on guess work. The story's narration is simple yet unusual. The book has a lot of flavour in it and has some gasping moments which makes readers scratch their heads. The second half takes for a spin as it plays with the mind of the readers time and again. Suspense is available in the right mix in the plot. 

The downside of the book is it's dull first half. The build up to the whole lot of events is quite sluggish and the initial start doesn't connects the dots properly. The loose ends in the story in the middle too creates a divide between the suspense and entertainment.  

All in all the book has a different touch and feel to it. With it's unusual appearance and confusing story line it has all to grip the readers mind. It might not start off at the desired pace but gradually gets back on track and spells good lessons for the readers. The book could have been cut down on some unnecessary exaggeration but has some good elements in it which makes it a definite read for the readers. A promising murder mystery in a unique shape. 


3 OUT OF 5  

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Review: I would rather be his than hers by Amit Kumar Singh

Love has no definition. It happens either suddenly or with time. But it's up to a person to hold on to it and care for it. Author Amit Kumar Singh in his debut work " I would rather be his than hers" tries to charm the readers with a love saga. So what different he puts to the table for the readers? Let's find out. 

Life turns beautiful when you learn to accept that there is no failure in love. Love is not an exam to pass and not a race to win. If some person ditches you, just consider him/her an omen who made you understand that you deserve better.This is the tale of Aman, who meets different shades of love at different phases of life. Love had fluctuating definitions when he goes across different ladies as he grows up. At the mean time the story focuses on the life of Alex, a victim of sex abuse from a very tender age. His life was nothing but painful episode of rape, humility and ignorance. When he grew up, he discovers that his situations devilishly molded him to a gay. The story beautifully narrates Alex’s fights against the absurd rules of our society and sexual discrimination and his struggle for identity and where his quest for love ends.Let us go through the story and experience the crests and troughs in the graph of both of their turbulent lives. Let us find out if ever love succeeds in finding its way to Aman and Alex’s life.

First look at the title and the cover and the book shouts and shouts loud that it's a romance book. The cover image has been done tastefully and innocent faces add up to the whole book set up. The title rather long but has a hidden meaning to it which will be deciphered in time. The blurb talks about a young man and his life and all his love endeavours which help him in maturing as a man. The blurb is quite long and gives out a few bits of the story which could have been left out easily. 

The story is of Aman and his journey from school to manhood. His love shy nature suddenly turning around and as he experiences the subtle as well as wild aspects of love he becomes more mature. But there are repercussion and he too suffers at the hands of fate. Unceremonious end to his love trysts make him fall out of favour of everyone's eyes and a failed marriage adds up to it.  So will he be able to make amends in his life? Will love survive in his life? Will their be light in darkness? That's what the story is all about. 

The book works on love and romance both wild and subtle aspects and weaves his magic step by step. It works up it's pace and then gradually there is a shift in momentum and it steadies the ship out of the rough. The varied emotions talk freely and boldly and the protagonist's frustrations and wildness works in the facour of the story line. The social message towards the end is a nice finish to the story. 

The downside of the book is editing and the unusual length of chapters and paragraphs. Proper editing would have reflected the book in a proper shape. The sex part was way above the requirement and could have been cut down easily. The end looks abrupt and could have been polished off better. 

All in all the book carries off the burden of a love saga up to a good extent. The failures and success in love makes up for the excitement which is found wanting at times. The book leaves a good impression and makes headways but then it has not been given the befitting treatment. A story with spice, drama and a journey which can be related to realism of the society. 


3 OUT OF 5

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Review: The Son by Jo Nesbo

Crime thriller always have that an air of excitement which tags along with the book. Most of the times the story enchants and mesmerises and grips in to the mind of the readers. Author Jo Nesbo in his latest offering "The Son" tries to weave his magic again with a new idea. So does this idea works and blends right in to the veins of the readers? Let's find out. 

Sonny is a model prisoner. He listens to the confessions of other inmates, and absolves them of their sins.
But then one prisoner's confession changes everything. He knows something about Sonny's disgraced father.
He needs to break out of prison and make those responsible pay for their crimes.

First look at the title and the cover and it creates a stir in the mind of the readers. A hand holding a gun and simple yet powerful titles delivers the goods and creates an exact set up for a crime thriller. The blurb is very short and talks about a man who has cut lose from the confines and is ready for payback. The blurb is dull and has nothing to cherish about and gives away too much in a few sentences. 

The story is of Sonny and his dreaded past. His father a police inspector committed suicide but was it really a suicide or a murder only few people know? Sonny is inside the prison doing time for some of the crimes he has committed or not no one knows except for him. Silence his best friend for the time being. But the time is not far when he picks his spot and starts taking down those who are responsible for his miserable life. What role Simon Kefas has to play in this whole story? What lies in the past which will alter the future of many? Will Sonny get revenge? That's what the story is all about. 

The story is a crime thriller which can be guessed easily by the readers. It lends voice to the sufferings of a man and in a dramatic manner. The intensity manages to be there in the entire book. The plot has few moments to savour for a crime thriller fanatic. 

The downside of the book is it's lack of freshness. The dull second half, the predictable story line, the monotonous set up and a plain jane end that kills all the excitement surrounding the book. The plot leaks and leaks badly with nothing to cherish about. The hype of the protagonist dies down pretty quickly and the Inspector's role doesn't lives up to the expectations. Some pieces and characters don't fit in the book at all and leaves a lot to be desired. 

All in all the book lacks witty and suspense two key elements to bind the crime thriller together. The weak and plethora of characters add to the misery. The brief respite vanishes and it's again back to square one with nothing to cherish about in the story line. The story is a plain bland recipe served too cold. 


2 OUT OF 5

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Review: Some Silent Steps by Jitender Rishi Parmar

Many times life becomes a learning curve for a person. You fall down and gather yourself from the initial shock and then move on to achieve greater heights. Author Jitender Rishi Parmar in his book "Some Silent Steps" takes some long and positive strides to create a balance of both heart and mind in order to get the best out for yourself. So has he succeeded in his deliverance? Let's find out. 

To be in love is an amazing feeling. You find yourself floating in the air of dreams even without the wings of patience. This delightful state of mind needs to be preserved in the happy house of our memories and here is the preserved particle of this mesmerized experience. Unlike an autobiographical narrative, 'Some Silent Steps' demonstrates our present time lovers and the terrible state they are in. In this modern day romance, where youth lingers between breakup and commitment, even if you choose to abide by a committed relationship, still there are certain inhibitions in your way to success.What if your commitment is contested by the family? What if there is a threat to your life in the name of honour killing? Read about the people who devised an escape route to attain fulfilment in love.Rishi went to Nai Sarak in Delhi to buy some second-hand books of English Literature. The random lines written in two books blazed his senses. Ritika Rohatgi and Shagun Yadav both were associated with the single guy, Ambuj Sharma. Inside the pages of those books was breathing a mysterious story of love, longing and fulfilment. There is a bed-ridden girlfriend, a dead beloved and a disillusioned friend. But true love never dies; it just sinks deep inside the heart. And it was dug up by Rishi. A beautiful story of friendship, courtship and romance was lying there. And the discovery begins. We meet Ritika, the symbol of pure love. Would she be able to maintain the purity of her love? We meet Shagun, the symbol of longing. Would her longing find an end? And we finally meet life which is interfered by societal norms, not sure on which track to move on? Bruised by the brutal act of Honor killing. All this cannot be left on time. We need to strive and follow some silent steps to attain fulfilment in love.The greatest act of disobedience to father was the Original Sin that our ancestors, Adam and Eve, committed. But still God did not kill them. They were just banished from the home. Who gave us right then to kill our offspring? How can we be so stone hearted? Are we greater than God??

First look at the title and the cover and a lot can be said and discussed about the story. It hints at being a love story filled with both joy and despair as the image suggests. The title adds a soothing and a calm effect to the book. The blurb is very lengthy and could have been kept short talks about some people and how they play a perfect part in each other's lives. 

The story is of few friends namely Ambuj, Vikrant, Aparna, Nitin, Jyoti and Ritika. Their journey starting from the college campus with lots of twists and turns and a bond so strong which cannot do them apart. But life has some more challenges up it's sleeve as all of them are tested under various circumstances from time to time. While some succumb but few prefer to fight till the very end. So what happens when all of them get together to give themselves a perfect life? Will  they be able to survive the test of time? What's there to lose and what is to be gained in this entire tale of friendship and love? That's what the story is all about. 

It's a tale of love and friendship and takes long strides in giving each and every character a space of it's own. No character feels neglected and most of them have been sketched well to keep the story up and running. The flow smooth, the emotions a roller coaster and the ride never easy gives good momentum to the entire set up. The plot has some surprises in it's second half which have dealt with the complexities of life with good command. The lows and highs when it comes to emotions compliment each other and make the story lively. The story is nasty and intense at the same time. 

The downside of the book is it's first half where the monotonous college romance leaves a lot to be desired. The college tale doesn't excites much and remains  a regular feature for a very long time in the book. There are few spelling mistakes too in the book which could have been easily avoided. 

All in all the story be it love or friendship delivers the idea to the reader with a great timing and equal fervour. Disappointment of the first part is quickly resolved in the second and the book flies off to a new high. The pitch and tone undermined with quality of words and ever changing emotions and perceptions. Life has been given a full view in the story and gives a lot to cheer and ponder about for the readers. A book with an mixed emotions. 


3 OUT OF 5  

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Review: The Untold Story of Arundhati and the Black Emperor by Rashmi Singh

History has a huge bearing on the mind of the readers. It's not only about wars but also about some timeless love moments which leave many enchanted. Author Rashmi Singh in her book "The Untold Story of Arundhati and the Black Emperor" traverses a journey which has some elements of it's own. Will it create a stir in the mind of the curious readers? Let's find out. 

This is the story of sluttish play of time which loves to stay with rich, famous and powerful and deserts the weak and poor!

A magical, mystical, passionate and sinful love story which played havoc with history-a story which was buried in the banks of Krishna River or somewhere amongst the mountainous valley of the Vindhyas in 7th century A.D.
This tale is intricately woven around Chalukya Parameshwara or The Black Emperor, Pulkasein II, (610A.D-643A.D.) of Western Chalukya dynasty, his untamed passion for wars and his unusual desire for the forgotten enigmatic beauty, Arundhati! The story also traverses the immortal love life of Pulkasein II’s contemporary, Narsimhavarman I of Pallava dynasty and his beloved Sivagami.
“But you shall shine more bright in these contents than unswept stone besmear'd with sluttish time.” ~William Shakespeare

First look at the title and the cover and some wild guesses can be made about the story line. The cover image not a pleasant one. A lavish representation of the theme and genre was required. The title a long one but making headway in to the mind of the readers. 

The story is of Chalukyan and Pallava dynasty and their popular kings Pulakesin II and Narsimhavarman I respectively. Their conquests, wars, animosity, diplomacy, supremacy, the quest to rule south and a factor which later on paves way in to the life of both at different junctures but makes or breaks their lives i.e love. The story is also of Arundhati one of the most beautiful woman in those eras and her heart yearning for Pulakesin II and her dreams of becoming the queen. Also it's about Sivagami the beloved of Narsimhavarman I but both the woman leading contrasting lives and suffering at the hands of their fate. So what will happen to both the dynasties? Will the cunning Pulakesin II rule the south or Narsimhavarman will decimate and establish his prowess? Who will gain and who will lose in this war of love, ruthlessness and emotions? That's what the story is all about. 

There are a lot of questions about history and there are not many answers. This book answers few of them and has intricately wove a charm around the readers with it's uncanny story line. The historical fiction turns out to be a love story and a hate story too in equal fervour. The essence never lost in the tussle. The majestic descriptions and the contrasting personalities of the two kings and their kingdoms adding glory to the story. The emotions present in the right mix and making the heart yearn for more. The book with it's back and forth pull makes the story line more complex but interesting. 

The downside of the story are some characters which have been sidelined after getting space in the story. The editing blemishes leak their way through out the narration. The end not grand enough to create the same ripple effect as one would expect. Some incidents pretty abrupt and giving blues to the readers in an already complex narration. 

All in all the both history and love join hands to tell a tale so vivid and heartless that even readers can't fathom it's intensity. It touches the heart and at the same time creates hatred in the mind too. It hits at the right spots and then leave an impression of its own. The book with it's audacity and loud story telling makes it a worthwhile effort. It lacks some fine touches but gives enough for the readers to relish and cherish. 


3 OUT OF 5

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Review: Crossroads: It's About Time by Preeti Singh

There's always a story behind one's life. Right from the time you are born till the time you die everything is a story. There are moments some to be savoured and some forgettable. It's up to a person whether they want others to be a part of it. Author Preeti Singh in her latest book "Crossroads: It's About Time" takes the readers on a journey from adolescence to maturity. So does it clicks with the readers? Let's find out. 

In the journey of life we see dreams, we fall in love, we experience bliss but yet we often fall, never to rise again. But Kavita is a fighter. From marrying the man she loves, to becoming a protective mother, to tolerating abuse and emerging stronger from it, her life is not different from just another Indian woman. For how long can she take the domestic violence and humiliation? Does she leave her abusive husband Rajiv, in search of greener pastures with Mihir, or does she succumb to a passionate moment with a youngster, Abhinash. Don?t we all have a right to make our identity, alone, or is marriage the only bond where one must adjust to find happiness. Is Kavita doing anything wrong by following her heart. If it takes two to tango, where did she go wrong. Can she pamper the child in her, defy the world and live life on her own terms? Or does life give her a chance to make amends and save her precious bonds. She is standing at the crossroads of her life and wondering which path she should follow to get some peace, something we all are seeking. Why don?t YOU, my reader hold her hand and guide her. It?s about time.

First look at the title and the cover and the thought of dilemmas crosses the mind instantly. The cover image has been kept realistic and makes it worthwhile for a reader. The title adds up to the curiosity as what to expect from the book. The blurb talks about a woman and her journey as she treads on a path full of roses with thorns. It's a lengthy blurb which could have been kept short and the main agenda of the story could have been kept under wraps. 

The story revolves around Kavita an epileptic but a bubbly and a lively girl. She is ignorant about the concept of love but sparks fly and soon Rajiv a handsome man enters her life. A whirlwind romance hits them both and soon it takes the shape of marital vows. But problems galore after their marriage when the true colors of a man are experienced by Kavita. The humiliation and the beatings, the sufferings and the sorrows and the never stopping taunts make lifer miserable for her. So will she be able to gather herself and pick up the broken pieces? Will there be peace in her life? What role will others play in her life? Will Kavita be happy or will sadness will dominate her life? That's what the story is all about. 

The story with it's realistic touch and roller coaster emotions make way in to the heart and mind of the readers. With every page there is a new challenge and with every word there is an emotion which livens up the book. Right from the bliss to the gloom it traverses a path which many have tread upon and faltered. It churns out the best and the worst out of human psyche. The characters involvement fills up all the necessary spaces to bind the story together. The bold approach and the complete idea works and makes it useful for the readers too. 

The book has no downside whatsoever in it's entire narration. 

All in all the story out of the blue comes hard and fast and hit at the right places. The pace varies but the lingering effect makes it a gem of a story. There are no ifs and buts and flaws are hard to point out. It inspires and conspires, the reality and the fake rendition and the dilemma of the mind and the heart, the love and the anger, the innocence and the savagery it has all and ever more to it. The book renders the best of what one expects in a story line. It walks the talk and works as a source of strength for many. It's a masses story. 


5 OUT OF 5 

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Review: Passionate Love by Shivangi Ramsay

Love stories are made in heavens. Some just happen too soon and sudden and some just take it's time to evolve into a bright relationship. Author Shivangi Ramsay in her book "Passionate Love" takes the readers on a ride of passion filled love from where it's a picture perfect world. So has she stirred some emotions? Let's find out. 

Rising lifestyle journalist Ambika Rana is known as a hopeless nerd, and a poor old maid among her friends and colleagues. Having absolutely no luck with men, she buries herself in her work, counting on a Pulitzer win that would set her on the road to stardom.Ayaan Ramsay is her exact opposite. He is India’s most eligible bachelor and a successful entrepreneur who built his fortune from nothing. He has everything yet he feels a void in his life that only true love could fill.So when her boss Shalini Sawhney asks Ambika to photograph the reclusive Ayaan for their popular lifestyle magazine Agaaz, Ambika takes it up as another boring assignment oblivious of the fact that love is about to sweep her off her feat.Will Ayaan and Ambika get their happily ever after?

First look at the title and the cover and it invokes a lot of sensual desires inside a readers heart. The passion is felt in the book image and the title justifies so. The heart rendering cover image just adds up to the excitement of the readers. The blurb talks about two people and how their lives get entwined in time. It's a good blurb hiding the story line from the penetrating eyes of the hopeless romantics. 

The story is of a lifestyle journalist Ambika Rana and a young upcoming entrepreneur Ayaan Ramsay. An assignment involving Ayaan leaves Ambika in a dilemma as it becomes tough for her to get hold of him. But a chance encounter changes all as it runs an entirely different course which none of them thought of even in their wildest dreams. But soon it all falls in place for them. So will Ayaan and Ambika ever be together? Will Ambika live her dream? Will Ayaan get what he wishes for? That's what the story is all about. 

The passion and the desire and the longing and craving for love in the story makes the readers heart ache. The book with it's fun filled and chirpy narration has a lot to offer when it comes to romance, love and some imagination leading to it. The dreamy sequences, the choicest narratives and some exchanges are worthwhile reading in the book. The plethora of emotions and the playful yet committed love story which develops as the pages turn makes it all the more interesting for the readers. 

The downside of the book is it's sudden and abrupt nature especially towards the end. It goes off the hook and disappoints with it's "twist in the tale" look. An expansion of sorts was required to make it more noteworthy for the readers. Also a lot of thought process happened to the characters in the book which could have been converted into some real time exchanges. 

All in all the book has an appeal and the right mix of characters and story to make reading experience interesting for readers. The book can be loved for it's direct approach and dreamy eyed details. Though it falls short towards the end but still holds on to the binding factor i.e excitement. It hits at the right places and catches the right nerve . A book with lots of love and a dream and a desire of every person who is in love or imagines love this way. 


3 OUT OF 5