#review Against All Odds

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Author : Danielle Steel

Publisher : Macmillan

Publication date : 19 May, 2017

Language : English

Book length :  400 pages

Genre : Fiction

Synopsis :

Taking chances is part of life, but when you bet your future against the odds, it’s a high-risk game.

Kate Madison’s stylish second-hand clothing shop has been a big success in New York, supporting her and her four kids since her husband’s untimely death. Now, her children have grown up and are ready to forge lives of their own. They all choose to play against all odds, much to their mother’s dismay . . .

Isabelle, a dedicated attorney, is in line to make partner at her Wall Street firm when she falls for a client who she represents in a criminal case. She tells herself she can make a life with him – but can she? Julie,  a young designer, meets a man who seems too good to be true and falls under his spell. She marries him quickly, gives up her job and moves to LA to be at his side. Is all what it seems? Justin is a struggling writer who pushes his partner for children before they’re financially or emotionally ready. Will the strain on the relationship take too high a toll? Willie, the youngest, a tech expert, makes a choice that shocks them all, with a woman fifteen years older . . .

Kate – loving, supportive and outspoken – can’t keep her children from playing against the odds. Can the odds be beaten? Not often – as her children have to learn for themselves. For Kate, the hardest lesson will be that she can’t protect the children she loves from the choices they make –  but can only love them as they make them.

Rating : 4/5

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Review :

Before I begin my review I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the book in exchange of an honest and unbiased review.

Against All Odds is the second book that I have read by Danielle Steel, the first being Dangerous Games. The first book was a thing of great interest and you can head back a few posts to read my full review. Well, since I had enjoyed reading it, I was very much looking forward to the second one and I must say, though Against All Odds has a very different story line than Dangerous Games, the author maintains her skillful art of narration through the beautiful handling of words.

Now, Against All Odds tells us the story of Kate Madison, a successful owner of a retail clothing shop. She is known all over the place because of her keen eyes for exquisite sense of fashion and her store is the favourite spot for well known celebrities. But her being this much successful was not something she had planned or ever imagined from the very beginning of her career. She got herself married at a very young age without the consent of her parents, her husband being a law student still. She soon became a mother of 2 boys and 2 girl, eldest one – Isabelle, the twins – Julie and Justin and the last one Willie. However, Willie sadly didn’t have the luck to meet his father who, though was an amazing husband and caring father, could not live long. With his death, Kate was devastated but was determined to stay strong and work hard for her children. Her mother, Louis was a great help as she took up the responsibility of looking after the children while Kate was out working. Kate with the help of her best friend, Liam, opened her own retail store after working in another store, thus being well informed and equipped with the ways and necessities of fashion. She knew the demand of the market and soon gained name. However, this didn’t stop her from being close to her children. in fact she was very close to them and though the boys sometimes felt the absence and need of a father, she was more than enough for all of them and they were always very caring and involved in each others’ lives.

All four of the siblings, though well off on their own, never forgot to contact each and meet up with Kate and Louis. Julie shares Kate’s passion for fashion and was a fashion designer herself with an excellent taste. She often visited her mother’s shop because she believed it was a great place for inspiration and new ideas. Justin, a struggling writer, lived with his boyfriend Richard and Kate was very kind and loving to both of the boys. Isabelle was the serious one in the family and a successful lawyer. Willie was the “child” of the family and was pampered a lot. He was a tech expert and never was into a serious relationship.

All was well but, as is obvious, children do not remain children for ever and once established they find it hard to agree more with parents than accepting their own mistakes and mishaps. The cool of the family went upside down with each child of the family taking a strange, jaw dropping decision one after the other and Kate becomes worried for their future and is sure they can’t win against all odds. It starts with Isabelle. After a broken engagement, she had sworn to never marry again. Well, that’s what she kept on telling everyone but deep inside she was just an wounded soul. Her family was surprised, rather shocked when she brought Zach, her previous client & supposed boyfriend, to meet them and Kate could clearly see the hell and heaven difference between the two. She was certain that it was a bad match and tried her best to pour some sense into Isabelle, but as persistent as she was, she dismissed her mother’s worries. She moves ahead marrying him while Kate could not help but bless her though she was still uncertain of their commitment. Justin and Richard decide on becoming parents and inform the family of their plan of using a surrogate mother of which Kate and Isabelle strongly disapprove of. Kate feels the young couple are not yet ready for parenthood and Isabelle doesn’t believe in surrogacy. this highly disappoints Justin but he decides to go along with their plan without interruption. If that was not enough, Julie, the shy little girl of the huge loving family falls in love with Peter, a man with a character quite opposite of Zach. While the whole family warms up to him, Kate has this unnerving feeling of something odd about this too-good-to-be-true man.

In all these events, one can clearly see how Kate always treats her children as teenage kids, never letting go of them and never wanting them to get even a little bit hurt. While her children become irritated by that, they themselves have this feeling of their mother being right to some extent. As story moves forward, it is clearly seen how right Kate had been in all the cases.

This book is quite a teacher on it’s own. It gives an insight to the mental struggles of a mother, the regretful events of life, the mistaken decisions of humans. What I find odd about the book is how easily people fall in love here, if not easily then within a very short period of time. All the love affair seem to be rather fast pacing and wrong. The book shows how the six sense of a mother is too strong.

It is a tale of love, desire, pain, trust, effects of a sociopath, mother’s never ending love and anxiety. It a tale of never giving up what it worthy of fighting and of giving up what isn’t worth the pain.

#review Deceived

Author : Heena Rathore P

Publisher : Citrus Publishers

Publication Date : 1 Jan, 2017

Language : English

Book Length : 350 pages

Genre : Fiction/ Psychological Thriller

Synopsis :

How well do you know your loved ones? A girl struggling to cope with the murders of her mother and five-year-old brother. A journalist chasing the ghost of a potential serial killer. A thirteen-year-old girl who slaughtered her parents. And a revenge-driven psychopath who is about to destroy everyone’s life. After 9 years, a young writer is still coping with the brutal murders of her mother and five-year-old brother, as she moves into a house of horrors, to start a new life with her lover. Will friends and family be able to redeem Ally out of the impending doom in time? Will her infallible love become the key to the destruction of her already fragile world? Will madness prevail over love; true love over revenge? Deceived is a gripping psychological thriller that mazes through the deepest, darkest emotions of human mind through the story of a vulnerable girl who treads in the mist of deception bred from a long unforgiven betrayal.

Rating : 4/5

Review :

I would firstly like to thank the publisher for providing me with an ARC of the book for review.

I have always held a special place in my heart for the never ending love for Psychological thrillers. It thrills the core of my entire being how much this little mind of us, humans have such immense amount of complex ideas, some stored for a long time, some manufacturing with time while some still in the making. Psychological thrillers, I find, are the perfect mediums to look into this various sides of the human mind.

Deceived by Heena Rathore P. is a psychological thriller revolving around the life of Allison, a young writer desperately struggling to get over the gruesome murders of her Mother and five-year-old brother. Though she still has terrifying nightmares every night ever since their murders, she finds her peace of mind in her little, faithful companion dog, Max and her best friend n roommate Samantha, in short Sam. But also, she didn’t force herself not to fall in love and was deeply, immensely in love with one hell of a Greek God ( i.e., according to Ally), Danny as in Daniel. She believes him to be a perfect match for her. Well, the book contains a lot many characters let us take a look at each of them for a better understanding.

  • Allison (Ally) : Some parts of her life have already been mentioned before. Adding to the fact is that, despite of the fact that she and Danny had been dating for not more then 4-5 months, she seems to be blindly and certainly in love with him. She doesn’t hesitate to say YES, when Danny ask hers to go live with him in his house. What I feel of the character is that having so less people in her life and such a frightening past, she doesn’t want to loos anyone else dear and near to her. She sense and fear of loss has nurtured her mind to think this way. To her, Danny is the home she desperately needed in order to bring an end to her nightmares.
  • Max : Well, Max is Ally’s beloved pet dog who has always been by her side as long as she remembers. She loves and takes care of him like her own baby. Max is very protective of Ally. However, a surprising fact is that Max holds a very noticeable dislike towards Danny from the very first time they have met and turns extra protective of Ally when he is around. Now I had once read somewhere that dogs are very sensitive animals. They can sense the situation and mood AND then react according to it. So him hating Danny  makes one think twice about the perfectly flawless human.
  • Samantha (Sam) : Ally’s best friend and roommate has always been at her side when no one else was. She and Max are always there to protect Ally. And their similarity lies also in their mutual dislike for Danny. Sam always has this uncanny, troubling feeling about Danny being with Ally and though she tries to be friends with him for Ally’s sake, she always ends up disliking him. 
  • Stephen Stone : Ally’s father, Stephen is a well known lawyer and also is loyal & kind. His wife’s and son’s deaths have made him perhaps more emotional and sentimental with passing time. Both he and Ally share the common love for books. 
  • Steve : Steve Thompson, Ally’s cousin, is back in town after long years of being apart from the Stone family. He has however come with a purpose, the crime journalist has come back to investive the murders of the Stones.
  • Danny : Daniel is Ally’s boyfriend whose appearance, according to her, is like a Greek  God. He is a man of few words, just the type she likes. Danny seems to be peculiarly hated by Max, felt to be oddly dissatisfying to Sam and Steve as well thought something to be off about that guy on their very meet. 

Okay. So these people are the main characters of the present situation. But every present is the outcome of past. When Ally’s starts getting strange phone calls and starts seeing a man very alike Danny after having moved to his house, she geta terrified to the very core of her heart but she had no clue what was happening and what it was going to follow to. 

    The story takes place in two sections. One talking all about Ally’s present and the other, about a strange girl named Elizabeth from a date of the past. It tells the story of how that little 13 years old girl slaughtered both of her parents and ran away in the deep forest where all other people thought she had died. But did she really die? Then again how is she related to Ally’s present? What purpose does Elizabeth’s story have in Ally’s troublesome, chaotic life? 

    Deceived points out the most important questions that we all humans face almost every passing time in our lives but are always afraid to find out the answers. The simple questions of – Whom to trust? How much do we know our loved ones? How much are we aware of the past?

    A cruel, cold-blooded killer with a past one can’t help but feel pity for. An imvident that one might wish to have never happened thus avoiding the birth of a murderer. The ending of the book is frightening, horrifying and utterly curious.

    A spine chilling, heart wrenching tale of endless suffering and pain. A story of deep love, cruelty, unforgivable betrayal, obsession, friendship, nightmares and rebondings. A tale so gripping and fast pacing that one cannot help but not put down the book till the very end. 

    To have been able to put down such an amazing story is an achievement worth applauding for a debut novelist. I look forward to reading more of her works in future. If you haven’t picked it up yet, I urge you, rather responsibly force you to get hold of it. 

    Unboxing of Reader’s Spot July Chip Box

    So I had mentioned in my last post I was selected as the July rep of an Indian book subscription box and guess what? It came about some weeks ago!!!! But due to rain and exams I couldn’t take photos of all the items in one go and upload my blog. Anyway.. it’s unboxing time… Yay!!

    This beautiful logo belongs to none other than the Reader’s Spot bookbox as you can already see and the design on the box… I can’t get enough of it.

    So the July theme of the bookbox was GOT – Games Of Thrones and here is a list of the contents :

    1. Customised handmade dragon egg (Green in my case)

    2. GOT necklace (my favourite)

    3. GOT letter with red wax seal

    4. Little scroll ×2

    5. GOT postcards

    6. Westeros and the free cities Map

    7. The mystery book

    NOW, let’s take a close look on all the items startin with –

    Customized handmade Dragon Egg : 

    Isn’t it simply unique and a very helpful prop for book pictures?  Crazy bibliophiles like me will know.

    Second is –

    The Necklace :

    This item is my absolute favourite one. It is a true sight to behold!!

    Third on line is –

    GOT Letter with Wax Seal :

    This is such a laborious, smart, uni8, beautiful letter. I mean look at the writing. It’s so beautiful!! The owner of the bokk subscription made this one herself. :*

    Fourth –

    Little Scrolls :

    Inside the box were two little scrolls which opened up into strong quotes written beautifully. I didn’t want to open those scrolls. I am upload the photo of one the scrolls. 

    Fifth up are –

    The GOT postcards :

    All of these are so attractive but I love one of  them. 

    This one☝!!!!! 

    Sixth item in the list of contents –

    Westeros and the free cities Map :

    Ok so since I am yet to read or watch GOT, I have no idea about the importance and role of the map but I find it very cool and photographic.

    LAST But not the LEAST, in fact the MOST important item inside the box –

    The Mystery Book :

    It was beautifully wrapped with caring hands in brown paper.

    The book inside is something I am very eager to read!! 

    THE Lair by Emily McKay

    These were the items inside the bookbox. Every item is highly satisfying and definitely worth the money.  So here I ask all my fellow Indian bibliophile to try this amazing book subscription and you won’t regret. 

     

    #review Dangerous Games

    IMG_20170603_084859_808.jpgAuthor : Danielle Steel
    Publisher : Pan Books
    Publication date : 9 Mar, 2017
    Book length : 320 pages
    Language : English
    Genre : Fiction
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    Synopsis :
    Television correspondent Alix Phillips dodges bullets and breaks rules to bring the most important news to the world from riots in America to protests on the streets of Tehran. With her daughter in college, and working alongside cameraman Ben Chapman, a deeply private ex-Navy SEAL, Alix revels in the risks and whirlwind pace of her work. But her latest assignment puts her at the center of an explosive story that will reshape many lives, including her own: investigating damning allegations involving the vice president of the United States, Tony Clark.
    Alix starts with a nationally revered woman who may be the key to exposing frightening secrets. Olympia Foster is the fragile, reclusive widow of America’s most admired senator, who had been destined for the presidency before an assassin’s bullet felled him. Since then, Olympia has found emotional support from Clark, who once wanted her as his wife and now stands as her protector and confidant. When Alix begins to dig deeper, federal agents pick up the trail. Then the threats begin.
    As the stakes rise in this dangerous game, Alix needs Ben’s help as never before. And soon they realize they are grappling with an adversary far more sinister than they had imagined.
    Rating : 4/5
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    Review :
    This book was provided to me by the publishers for review. But I am hear to shape out my own opinions. The book is absolutely​ exciting​. The story, the characters, the writing everything is perfect.
    The story revolves around Alix, a strong willed, independent, fearless, trustworthy television correspondent. In the time when women are reaching unimaginable heights of success in the fields previously dominated by men, she is the ideal representation of women stronghold. She makes us all realise how nothing is impossible for a woman and that she when given a chance can do anything.
    Her already dangerously adventurous life, thanks to her profession, becomes more interesting when her senior producer, Felix Winters gives a hunch that the currently popular, soon to be President, Vice- President, Tony Clark is not who he advertises himself to be. Alex knows how clean a record Tony holds and finds it impossible for him to be trying to do anything to make his position come crashing down. But both she and her alongside cameraman, ex-Navy SEAL, Ben Chapman know, the Vice President is too good to be true. Also, Felix’s hunches had never till date turned out to be wrong.
    As she digs into Tony, sinister secrets fall apart and she notices how Olympia, widow of America’s most admired senator who was destined to the President before his assassination, had been manipulate by him to stay behind closed doors. But soon every woman will rise for she is too powerful to hold back.
    My first read of Danielle Steel and am absolutely in love.
    I have been taking a long time gap between posting each reviews. My exams are coming closer. So please put up with this talkative girl a little long till she is back with regular review.
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    #review The Village that Banned Science

    Author : Sangeeta Mulay

    Publisher : Groggy Eyes

    Publication date : 17 May, 2017

    Book length : 132 pages

    Language : English

    Genre : Fiction​

    Rating : 3/5

    Review :

    I was provided a free copy of the book by the author for reviewing.
    If asked to rate the book based on the perspective of a child, I would give it a 4/5.

    I seldom take up the troubling task of reading an e-book. Troubling why? Because I have issues. Ebooks hurt my eyes and give me frequent headaches. So whenever I do decide to read one, I always hope it is worth all the stress. And have never till date been upset of my decision. Whatever e-book I choose to take in remains short, so as to not cause much headache, and is well written.

    This book was exactly the same. Short, precise, interesting and well written. The book is a suitable read for children and is very educative.

    The story is about a small village in the forgotten part of India, Rampur where the government had forgotten to introduce science. As a result, it was still under the complete grasp of superstitions and beliefs of magic. It was run by a greedy and power loving Sarpanch and a holy Baba of the similar personality. The villagers believed deeply in the Baba’s speeches and buzzard solutions to whatever problems the villagers brought to his attention. They never questioned nor encountered his solutions but ladened him with gifts, food and other offerings. The Sarpanch saw to it that he also got a part of such mouthwatering offerings. Together the duo ruled over the village. The village doctor was never paid a visit to and was abundant, forgotten. The village doctor was never paid a visit to and was left forgotten. There was just one little girl, Jumbhula, who was always full of unbound curiousity over everything.  But found no one to answer her questions to.

    Suddenly, events took turn with the government finally noticing the village and sending a Science teacher, Mr. Harish, to educate the children as well as the adults of the unfamiliar, unknown subject – Science. The villagers were all excited to learn something new. 

    With the coming of Mr. Harish and his spending of enlightenment in the village, the villagers soon realised the useless tricks the Baba had played on them. There were still some who blindly believed in the Baba but majority turned against him. They all started questioning Baba hilarious remedies and soon the village doctor was remembered. Jambhula always ran to Mr.Harish who helped her get answers to all curious questions and experiments. The villagers started discussing and experimenting science. However, the altering effect on the Baba and the Sarpanch made then wrathful. Soon, when the village experienced an earthquake, they blamed it on Mr.Harish and the practice on science and announced to chop of the tiny toes of anyone found studying or practicing science. Though they all were angry, the villagers feared of their toes and kept silent. But Jambhula was not a girl to give up. With the help of Mr.Harish, she decided upon participating in an Annual village science competition for children in Seetapur with her solar cooker experiment. In midst of all these, when the village is struck by another natural calamity they decide to protest against the ban of Science. It was decided that the protest would be brought to the government’s notice.

    But, was Jambhula able to attend the competition despite the heavy guard of the Sarpanch and his goons? Could she successfully present the experiment? Did she win? What happened of the protest? Could they bring back Science to the village? Did the government help? 

    To get answers to all these questions all you have to pick up this short read and enjoy each and every aspect of it.

    The book is simply written yet packed with great lessons. In India there are many villages which despite the country prospering daily, are very much behind. They remain deprived of proper education and enlightenment. Superstition and belief in magic hovers around those villages. The powerful people take complete control of everything and often the people face hard times. The book is an eye opener of how, when given proper notice and education to a village, numerous lives and dreams are saved from those greedy, powerful, superstitious clutches. Every human must have the right to get proper education. A country wide prosper only when no corner of it is left unnoticed. As the saying goes –

    Diamonds are found only in the black, dirty depths of coal mines.

    Who knows what precious talents lay hidden and wasted due to the lack of proper education. 

    Another interesting fact about the book is the insertion of little experiments absolutely interest grabbing for children. This book is an educational book with humour, curiousity, struggle, understanding, enlightenment and Science.

    An adult should read this book as well. For it’s never too old to be young.

    #review The Fray Theory : The Harbinger (Book 1.1)

    IMG_20170508_155731_302Author : Nelou Keramati

    Publisher : Finch Hill

    Publication date : 1 March, 2017

    Book length : 160 pages

    Language : English

    Genre : Fiction

    IMG_20170401_201426_577Synopsis :

    ~What happened three years ago?~

    Dylan Sterling is an anomaly who dreams of events before they happen. But over the years, this peculiar gift has transformed into a curse. A dark curse in the form of a strange man who haunts him. Hunts him. Kills him.

    But unlike other people, even once Dylan has awakened from a nightmare, the agony of torture clings to his skin. The horror of his own brutal murder continues to resonate with him. Pain, it seems, has long become the status quo. That is until a recurring nightmare reveals a clue that might help him unveil the truth of his ‘condition’.

    The race against time has begun, and with each passing day, the boundaries between dream and reality are becoming more and more muddled. And unless he can solve this mystery, he’ll stand to lose even more than he thought possible.

    Rating : 4/5

    IMG_20170402_163715_419Review :

    The next book of The Fray Theory series by Nelou Keramati, The Harbinger is indeed well written, which is very much expected from such a talented author. I had read the book a week or two back but had been unable to post a review. Well, the reason being, I have a huge to-be-reviewed list and I am confused most of the times which book’s review to post first. (*Laughing like a nervous wreck)

    Before I present any opinion on this book, I would request every viewer of this post to go back towards the beginning of my reviews and look into my review of The Resonance, first book of this series. It is very essential to know about the first book before reading the opinion of the second.

    Now, starting with this book, the author never fails to prove how fascinating her writing is. The theories she puts forward, the incidents she arranges, the characters she brings out are beautiful and attention grabbing. This book, to be put into simple words, is a flashback to the past lives and what had happened in the first book.

    As found in the previous book, Dylan, his best friend, Romer and his girlfriend, Neve are stuck in a life and death situation. All through the book, they struggle through threats and disasters building up their long broken bond. But what caused this situations? Why had their bond been broken? What was the beginning?

    This book answers it all. It takes back to the time when Dylan was a child, when the incidents and nightmares began. Though the book, Dylan travels from childhood to adulthood, his closest people being Romer and Neve always. But a situation arises that forces him to leave his two favourite people and go into hiding. Neve feels betrayed and hurt.

    I would say, I had a tough time trying to read the book at some points because it was making me confused. The continuous alteration of time and place made it sometimes hard to locate the story’s current situation. Though I loved the book, the first book was far more interesting, if you ask me. Maybe I have had a huge gap between reading the two books. I suggest you all to read the two books simultaneously without a large gap. That way it will help one to complete understand the story and it will turn out to be far more interesting and addictive.

    Thanks to the lovely author for sending me the book for review. You are always amazing and I am ready to take in more of the trio.

    #review Rhysand candle by @whisperingflames

    IMG_20170512_180759_412So, this time I am not here to post a book’s review but that of a candle. Because this is the first time I have bought myself a bookish candle and I must say it was worth the buy.

    Living in India, where you do not find much of bookish merchandise, specially soycandles, forces one, absolutely dying to get hands on that, to buy it online from foreign contries. US possibly has the highest no.of bookish merchandise production but I may also be wrong, correct me for that.

    For us Indians, the prices seem too high and adding along the shipping charges makes it impossible for a majority to buy all those, me being one of them.

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    So, here comes the solution to that problem. Afia has opened a bookish soy candle on Instagram for all Indians eager to buy.

    The instagram handle is –

    https://www.instagram.com/whisperingflames/

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    She makes 4oz candles, each for ₹200 excluding shipping charges, which is added after you give the address, she will send you a detailed information of your order. Each candle is made with 100% soy wax, handpoured and smell amazing. The payment is to be done through PayTM and within when, that you can just learn from her. Moreover she added in two beautiful bookish matchboxes, each for ₹20, based on the month’s theme which was the amazing series of The Court of Thorns and Roses & Throne of Glass. Maybe next time when she adds more candles to her shop, more matchboxes will be added as well. This month being her first selling month, she had posted a list of candles available on Instagram. They were –

    • Rhysand
    • Feyre
    • Velaris
    • The Spring Court
    • Amelia
    • Rowan

    Well, since this was the first ever time that I had decided to buy myself bookish merchandise, I took up the courage to order a single one – Rhysand and bought along with it a matchbox based on A Court of Mist and Fury. 

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    Rhysand candle – 4oz; A Court of Mist and Fury Matchbox with quote

    And now having both of them in my hand, I believe they are perfect.

    The moment I opened the candle jar, the first thing I saw was smooth clean purple candle with little dots of a darker shade. And I came up with the though that in less light it would look like slight representation of night sky, the High Lord of Night Court, Rhysand’s favourite view. Then the wave on scent hit me.

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    She also added a cute note with it and am really thankful.

    I smelled many thing. I do not know specifically what scents she added but I have come up with my version of it.

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    The first thing that came into my mind was, this one smells like Rhysand, sexy, flirty High Lord, powerful yet king. The scent is strong yet so soothing. It smells like the wind – free and light, rain – earthly, clean and mistifying, salt and something citrus – a little ting of it. As also it smells like foam. It smells like the Night.

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    Don’t know how much justification I have really done to the candle but I have tried explaining it in my own way. I can’t wait to buy more from her.

    To all Indian bookworms out there who would love to buy amazing bookish soy candles, don’t miss this dear lady and visit her Instagram account soon.

    I wish you all the luck @whisperingflames and hope your hard work pays off well and good.

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    #review Graveyard Shift

    IMG_20170514_071030_219.jpgAuthor : Manish Mahajan

    Publisher : Half Baked Beans

    Publication date : 13 April, 2017

    Book length : 182 pages

    Language : English

    Genre : Fiction/ Horror

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    Synopsis :

    At around midnight, I woke up suddenly. A strange sound was coming from somewhere outside in the passage. I sat up dazed. The curtains were a little ajar letting the moonlight to streak in. I got up to investigate where that noise was coming from. The passageway was almost dark, just a single lamp was left switched on for the night. The sound seemed to be coming from one of the rooms. That was strange, I thought, as there was no one else staying on this floor. All of a sudden, something moved behind me. Turning around I got the shock of my life. Some distance away, in that dreary passageway, stood a figure dressed in flowing white robes, staring hard at me.

    Rating : 3/5

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    Review :

    The book consists of 7 short stories and a poem, all based on ghosts and paranormal activities. I have mixed feelings about this book. Some stories I found very interesting and some I didn’t like much. So I found out a way to express it all. I will be writing about each story in the book separately. So first thing first. Let me put down the list first.

    • The Appointment
    • Honey, ‘m Back!
    • Tales in the Train
    • A Night in the Hastings House
    • A Doll named Wendy
    • The Last Wish 
    • The Apartment on the Tenth Floor
    • Betal Pachisi

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    The Appointment –

    Well this is the first chapter of the book and the only poem.  The poem narrates the tale of a promised appointment.  A promise between dear friends are meant to be kept no matter what. But on what circumstances? Does he have to fulfil his promise even after death? Read through the poem to know it all.

    About the poem, I found the tale interesting. But it seemed as if the poet was trying hard to bring the poet into a rhyme form and pushed it to the limits. However, the poet is well equipped with a good stock of words and thus makes the poem enjoyable.

    Honey, ‘m Back! –

    Bow this tale was quite interesting. But not very striking. I found the story very common one. The same – young, ambitious, beautiful, man hunter seducing an olg rich man; marrying him and after that slowly planing for his murder so that she becomes the direct owner of it all.

    Here, the woman’s name is Riya, who has succeeded in making her husband agree to go for a short trip. So there they were, away from locality and into the arms of nature. There she tried and fails twothree times before successfully killing her husband on the night when the resort was completely empty expect the two of them.

    However, things turn upside down with him coming back….. How is not upto me  to reveal to the ones who haven’t read it yet. What caught my attention was the ending of the story. It ended with a ting of sexuality in a kind of vulgar, intense and spooky way.

    Next up is

    Tales in the Train –

    Now about this one, the story revolves around a train compartment where 5 people sit down to tell tales of ghosts and ghostly activities. To reveal names the characters and their relations each other is something I am willing holding. The reason being, giving away the maximum details of a short story. The story being short, to talk in details will leave nothing more of interest to look up to reading on your own.

    Back on track, each person goes around sharing their own paranormal experiences and ghost stories they have across. The stories are interesting but not well “staged“. The used that particular word because I felt that the manner in which the stories have been narrated does not arouse much of the reader’s interest. But that doesn’t mean the stories are boring. You know what I mean right?

    However, similar to the previous short story, I found the ending eye catching but bizzard to a great extent. But ghost stories are supposed to be bizzard right? Yet, somehow the entire thing sounded off and not quite ..let’s say “intimidating for the readers to feel awestruck”.

    A Night in the Hastings House –

    I have often heard of groups, gangs, societies or anything a wuite handful of people researching on paranormal activities. It maybe be officially approved or sponsored or something they themselves built up. They are well equipped with instruments for tracking and summoning spirits.

    Here, the story is about one of these so mentioned groups on one of their missions, which is visiting Hastings House, known for it being haunted by Hastings’ spirit and look into it.

    The story gives a detailed look inside the world of these researchers and how they work it all out. The hunt turns out to be very thrilling and interesting. But once again, the representation of the story had almost chalked out any enthusiasm in continuing till the end.

    A Doll named Wendy –

    Nowadays, almost everyday we encounter deaths happening as a result of mechanical failure in car while speed driving. Such a heartbreaking accident took place in the story where a young couple losses their only child, apple of their eyes, little Tara.

    However, she had a little doll Wendy which was very dear to her and after her tragic death, her mother one day found inside the room, a thin almost transparent figure, playing with the doll. It seemed as if even after dying she couldn’t give up on Wendy and thus came to play with it.

    Uptil this point the story was fine but after that there certain turns of events which made me lose interest on the story.

    The Last Wish –

    The story is about a man who under official work had to visit Chauhans’ Palace. There he is kept well and enjoys care and hospitality. However, at night while resting in the room provided for him to stay, he hears wears noises and when out for investigation over it, encounters a ghost. The story continues with Chauhan explaining him the causes of the incidents.

    So this story is absolutely bizzard. I didn’t the story much . The conclusion drawn dis not please me at all.

    The Apartment on the Tenth Floor –

    This story is rather interesting.

    The story revolves around a particular apartment and the spectator of that, a little boy, from the balcony of him room on a different building. The boy saw every midnight certain spine chilling death scenes in that peculiar apartment on the tenth floor which kept on displaying each night till the day the deaths took place somewhere else. When gone to enquire about that apartment with his best friend, they found that room unfinished and thus deserted.

    He was a sleepwalker and that brought in an incident that left all his dear ones broken forever. What was the incident? What was the secret of that ghastly apartment? To know, all you have to do is pick up the book.

    What I found disturbing the lack of justified closure to the story. I find it unfinished. As also, the last scene shown in the apartment is quite impossible to imagine. It’s out of place.

    Betal Pachisi –

    All who have read Vikram & Betal already know that story. It is a shortened version of the whole tale. I do not understand quite, the need to add a shortened story of a pre existing work in between a book of a writer’s own works. I found it out the place and very disturbing.

    So here ends my thoughts on each story of the book. And having said so much already I don’t think I need to add anything more to it.  

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    #review The Mother

    IMG_20170421_073823_357Author : Yvvette Edwards
    Publisher : Pan Macmillan UK
    Publication date : 22 Feb, 2017
    Book length : 256 pages
    Language : English
    Genre : Fiction
    Synopsis :

    Today, Marcia is heading to the Old Bailey. She’s going there to do something no mother should ever have to do: attend the trial of the boy accused of her son’s murder.

    She’s not meant to be that woman; Ryan, her son, wasn’t that kind of boy. But Tyson Manley is that kind of a boy and, as his trial unfolds, it becomes clear that Marcia’s greatest hope for closure lies with Manley’s girlfriend, Sweetie. But can Sweetie be trusted?

    Rating : 4/5
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    Review :
    I have been taking so many breaks in between posting reviews that I turn out to be detached from it for a long time. But I have picked myself up again because I have read some great books which I believe have the right to be reviewed. SO HERE IT IS…The first book I read in the middle of last month – The Mother.This book had me all emotional.
    The story is about a mother, Marcia, whose child, Ryan has been snatced away from her cruely. As a result, her calm, polite husband has become frail and weak, his self confidence lowering gradually, their marriage collapsing. She desperately wants to know the reason that forced her dear son to get mudered. He was a sweetheart, who couldn’t imagine even hurting anyone. Then why? Where did it all go wrong?
    The story captured her journey towards the truth. As time passes and secrets unravel, the girl, Sweetie, whom she never approvedfor her boy, turns out to be not that rough, spoilt, cheap one she used to seem but someone for whom Marcia develops a liking. And moreover, Sweetie mother’s a child whose father could possibly be Ryan’s and this little speck of hope.
    They all fight their way through the rough path and face the murderer, Tyson. A story that will break the reader’s heart but will again pick up the pieces and give a new meaning to become stronger.
    The story is one which teaches lessons worth remembering. Have you ever felt you emotions going numb? Feeling nothing? This book breaks that wall, makes the heart ache, makes one want to cry. A journey of hope, pain, numbness, wrath, love and new beginnings.
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    #review No Plain Rebel (No Ordinary Star #2)

    Author : M.C.Frank
    Publisher :  CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

    Publication date : 16 July, 2016

    Book length : 204 pages

    Language :  English

    Genre : Fiction/ Sci-fi

    Synopsis :

    A soldier is summoned to the North Pole, days before the year changes, told to fix a the great Clock for a celebration. He has no idea what to do.

    A girl, hunted for the crime of being born, almost dies out on the ice. She is rescued by the last polar bear left alive.

    A library waits for them both, a library built over a span of a hundred years, forgotten in the basement of an ice shack.

    The world hasn’t known hunger or sickness in hundreds of years. It has also forgotten love and beauty.

    The year is 2525.

    Inspired by the short stories of Ray Bradbury, this futuristic novel is set in a world where Christmas -among other things- is obsolete and a Clock is what keeps the fragile balance of peace.
    Written in three installments, this is the breathtaking and sensual story of how two unlikely people change the world, and each other, one book at a time.
    Immerse yourself into the icy cold world of this scorching hot new novel.
    In No Plain Rebel, Felix finds out the truth.
    Or so he thinks. He’s trying to come to terms with that, as well as with the fact that the Clockmaster’s shack has been discovered by his fellow-soldiers, but he can’t exactly concentrate. The match girl’s fiery curls appear before his eyes every ten seconds, distracting him, and then he starts talking to her in his head.

    Because she’s no longer there.

    The Stadium is looming in the distance.

    It’s ten heartbeats to midnight.

     Rating : 4½/5

    Review :
    The moment the finished reading NOS, the thrill and excitement of what is going to happen next urged me to not waste a moment and dig into NPB. And,yes! I was so very pleased at the time to start reading No Plain Rebel.

    After having realised how inhumane the system is, Felix decided to bring about a change and save the earthling from their terrible fate. However, as the relationship between him and Astra seem to develop on a sweet note, things crumble down with Astra leaving without any notice. But, she seems to have left a clue for Felix and he knows what to do next. He gathers up this subordinates and plans to bring an end to destruction. It all depends on Felix and The Clock.

    Will he be able to save them all? What clue had Astra left for Felix? What purpose does the Clock serve in saving them all? Will his subordinates break the laws and stand by his side?

    The series is very promising and interesting. It keeps one glued till the end. The chemistry that slowly develops between Astra and Felix, between a girl fucked of emotions and a boy devoid of it all, is beautiful. At some point it does as though the book is an awakening of feeling, a rebirth of the happiness and love.