#review Murder in Paharganj

D61212C5-E16F-4A99-B94D-CDFD16D9F2F8.jpegAuthor : Kulpreet Yadav

Publisher : Bloomsbury India

Publication date : 10 Oct, 2017

Book length : 278 pages

Language : English

Genre : Fiction/ Thriller

367B8836-AC0C-4E74-9921-7374593211E6Synopsis :

On a cold December morning, a white woman is found murdered in a cheap hotel in Paharganj, New Delhi.

Vicks Menon, an out-of-work journalist, is tipped off by the hotel’s receptionist and is the first to arrive at the crime scene, where he discovers a lead. It’s the bus ticket used by the dead woman two days earlier. But Vicks is battling personal trouble. He has no money, an alcohol problem, and a nearly broken relationship with Tonya, his estranged live-in partner, a clinical psychologist who specializes in profiling hardened criminals.
Moving in and out of the shadows, Vicks pushes his investigation harder as it takes him from Udaipur to Bangkok. On his side, for resources, he has a nameless intelligence operative, and to read minds, a lover who is beginning to trust him again. But above all, his instinct to stay inches ahead of death will be the key to his survival.
If Vicks lives, this is one story that will change his life forever.

37F97D06-2DC9-4C22-8DD6-F74E5D0C93FA.jpegRating : 4.5/5

Review :

Thanks to the publishers for sending me the book in exchange of an honest and unbiased review.

AE15FAC9-2990-4ABD-9AB3-9B676CD4ACD2“THE DEAD WOMAN lay face-up on the bed, her hands at her side.” The very first line of the book is enough to grab the attention of a reader. I, like so many other bibliophiles, have read a large number of story books because of which I have come to notice there are three types of thrillers :

  • The one which creates an atmosphere of thrill and excitement from the very beginning of the book and continues the same till the very end.
  • The one which though seems exciting in the beginning, loses its spark somewhere in the middle without a certainty of bringing it back while nearing the end.
  • The one which although doesn’t seem much of a deal or thrill suddenly punches excitement right into the reader leaving one wanting more.

This book falls in the first category. The very beginning pumps up curiosity over the questions – Who is the dead woman? Why was she killed? And we all know this very well, Curiosity is a boon. It feeds the hunger to know more and more. Murder in Paharganj never gave me a chance to put it down except the times when I really needed to do the necessary daily life things, you know and attending college. The most important characteristic feature of the book is how it highlights present Indian conditions where people are afraid to have faith and belief in the police. It shows how politicians take advantage of the lack of information of common people to insert false ideals and fear in the name of betterment. The book fearlessly points out how due to the ill behaviour of some policemen both in the outside world and also in their own homes, the policemen who try their best to restore justice face mistrust and anger from the common mass.

Everytime I read a good book I am left fascinated by the fact how an author has the power to influence readers through words. We, the commoners, are kept in dark of the clever and dangerous happenings of the ruling powers. We can barely understand the up and down occuping deep inside the country while the only unresting effects brushing our senses are given the name of necessities in the path of  development. This book goes into the depth of these curious, unimaginable, dangerous happening through the eyes and mind of a crime journalist, fired by his boss because of his overpowering habit of drinking. The      urge of getting back both the job and his love who left him tired of his alcoholism, as soon as he gets the wind of a crime taking he runs to the location before the police. He moves fast and hungrily towards the  truth but he ends up inside the Vortex thus he runs for both his life and story. Will he finally be able to locate the killer? What is this Vortex? Will he be able to finally get out of it?  

I am very satisfied with Tonya’s character. Being the girlfriend of the main man of the book, her identity is not stuck to that alone. She was a clinical psychologist working part time at the government run all India Institute of medical science. She has been described as an independent, intelligent, witty and extraordinary woman. She is tough and soft at the very same time. Though talented she is not a flawless human and this fact probably makes the reader understand the realistic character of a human, irrespective of man or woman.

Jamie, on the other hand represents a very important role I believe. It is not unknown to any corner of rhe world how Islam is on several occasions referred to as a violent region and that they promote terrorism and mass killing. What I personally believer and the book also suggests is that it’s not essentially Islam which spreads terror but the powers working underneath it in the name of justice and faith. Young muslims are often misguided by power hungry, wrathful leaders and corrupted believers of region who instead of truly unearthing the fertile riches of a region, it’s wisdom and knowledge, concentrate on destruction and filthy ideals. Jamie i.e, Jalaluddin was one of those young people with passion and patriotism boiling in his veins, blindly believe that whatever his boss would make him believe. He took up different identities in different places just to fulfil his missions. He had become a blind worshipper of preached Islamic faith. He was from Iran has, hiding in India, working on a mission which required him to make Siri Bing fall in love with him only to realise soon the team self was falling in love to. I find it difficult to express the numerical number of emotions that arise with me when I try to understand the gym. This is the author’s extraordinary skill to have painted over canvas of words, a story so bold, so strong, so painful, so aggressive and so realistic.

There is still some more to the story some more to say but I fear the more I speak, the more I might reveal that the contents of the book. This book is something that should be read throughly, thoroughly and one I would not want to give spoilers of.

The storyline is realistic, extraordinary, thrilling, impacting and powerful. The book was very fast pacing. The power of storytelling of the author had that were mesmerising visionary effect. It was as if the fictional characters have been transformed into real life characters. While reading the book I could feel myself going deeper and deeper into it and I could clearly see myself living and experiencing it all, I could see Vicks running here and there for his life, his report, dodging the stalkers, fighting his fear and alcoholism . I could see the dead woman’s body lying still on the bed staring at the ceiling as if she would wake up just the next moment. I could see Tonya’s stress, tension, love for Vicks. The book was a nerve wrecking, mind-boggling, heart pumping experience for me. The suspense the book created with every stepping stone was exciting. It made my heart skip a bit everytime I learned a new fact about the story.

Would I recommend you to read it? Absolutely! Obviously! Like just go and read it now!! I am looking forward to reads more of Vicks Menon’s thrilling adventures in the risky and exciting profession of being a crime journalist. 

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#review Served with Love

9789352644032Author : Priyanka Menon

Publisher : Harlequin

Publication date : 15 May, 2017

Book length : 176 pages

Language : English

Genre : Fiction/ Romance

img_2253Synopsis :

Abhimanyu Dev, orphaned early and brought up by a doting grandfather, has his life chalked out. He is forty-two years old and single, and intends to stay that way. And he runs a hotel with all the care he might have devoted to a home. In walks Pakhi, taking charge of the hotel kitchen. A guardian to her niece Abhithi, Pakhi is passionate and opinionated, and focused on the little girl and on work. Abhi and Pakhi rarely see eye to eye. Sparks fly and tempers fray. Yet there are two things that bind them – gourmet meals and their love for Abhithi. The little girl’s affection and innocence draw Abhi out of his shell in a manner he had not anticipated. As for Pakhi, her niece is the very centre of her life. When Abhithi is kidnapped, it brings Abhi and Pakhi together as they follow her trail to Mumbai. Will they find Abhithi and each other in time? Served with Love is a mature romance for a new age.

Rating : 3.5/5

img_2005Review :

I received a copy from the publishers in exchange of an honest and unbiased review.

As soon as my eyes rested on the book, it’s chocolaty sweet cover and delicious title “Served with Love” gave me that I-should-have-brought-a-pastry-to-eat-while-reading-this-one feeling. Okay it sounds quite strange . . . But guys!! It’s so damn true. Like I couldn’t find anything more suitable to describe it!! The cover gives off that spicy, sweet and bitter vibe of the story-line.

The only reason of me describing so much of the cover is because it sits perfectly in the story. The story has a sweet atmosphere while deep beneath it lies the bitterness of sad incidents and losses. It has that spicy chemistry between the lead characters – Abhimanyu and Pakhi, a prosperous head chef and his sous chef. However we have a supporting actress here!! Pakhi’s little niece, Abhithi, an adorable little human who is a ball of happiness and dearest to her aunt. Together the trio set out on delicious adventures intertwined with the delicate strings of pure love, raw emotions and thrilling trails of life. The never ending love of an aunt is challenged when Pakhi’s past barges into their lives, threatening to take away Abhithi from her and she starts doubting herself as a worthy guardian for the child.

What I loved about the book was the bond between an aunt and niece, the journey of a selfless love. The success of an Indian woman is what attracts me the most. The way how Pakhi portrays a working woman is important. Pakhi is a human who does not stand ill behaviour, who loves her niece more than anything, who is knowledgeable, self-dependent, loving, caring, bright and happy. She has the aura in her that attracts the reader to want to know more about her, to want to be like her.

Abhimanyu on the other hand perfectly plays the role of a stubborn, hot headed, professional guy who believes love is not for him. Whereas, deep within, he is a passionate, food loving, caring and responsible guy.

Abhithi is a little bright soul who binds the two adults together. Though she has been snatched away from her parents through a fatal accident, has been scared forever, Abhithi never forgets to smile. She is a surviving example of hope, happiness, delight and innocence.

Altogether, if you ask me for a recommendation of a light, sweet and bitter read, the one you can enjoy on a rainy day, sitting alone in the balcony over a cup of tea, I would definitely say, “Why don’t you try reading Served with Love?”

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About the Author :

priyanka menon

Priyanka Menon is a romance writer and spoken word poet. Her love for romance novels goes back almost two decades, when she was gifted her first romance novel for clearing her 10th board exams. Priyanka has come a long way since then, having finally written her first book, The One That Got Away (Harlequin). She credits her writing powers to red velvet pastries and white chocolate mochas at Starbucks. This is her second novel. When she is not penning love stories or writing poetry, Priyanka teaches advertising to college students. You can write to her at priyankamenon.author@gmail.com

#review Awaken

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Author : Ashok K. Banker

Publisher : Pan Macmillan

Publication date : 13 September 2017

Book length : 192 pages

Language : English

Genre : Fiction / Fantasy

img_2151Synopsis :

The Haters are coming to destroy all life on Earth. It is not a question of if, but when.

The Brahmaand has already rung the warning bell and the awakening of the Preservers has begun. Kiara unexpectedly finds her skin covered with golden fur and her sense of smell extraordinarily enhanced; Saumya is suddenly able to go from Ahmedabad to New York in just a step; and Sia’s songs have the power to do things she had never imagined possible.

First in the thrilling Shakti Trilogy set in contemporary India, Ashok Banker’s action-packed and brilliantly imagined Awaken introduces our unlikely heroes who must discover and harness their superpowers before they can protect and preserve the Earth from the wrath of a menacing alien invasion.

Rating : 3/5

img_0967Review :

I received this book from the publishers in exchange of an honest and unbiased review.

Before I start taking about the insides of the book, I would like to share how I read all through the book in a day. So the past week of my days was marked by helping parents and idling around. It so happened that our house needed some repair and fresh coats of paint. Thus resulting in me and my parents shifting things from one room to another and then enjoy leisure hours. Then I though why not read something cause that’s the only thing I love doing. I picked up Awaken from my shelf and started reading. Oh boy! what a fast read it was. I finished reading it within an hour or two and was left with the urge to read the next part of it. This wanting is what is expecting from the first book of a series.

Now, back to the inside of the book. The story is penned in three separate parts – the lives of three Indian girls, Kiara, Saumya and Sia. Three different stories that come together at the end.

Kaira, was like any other girl, enjoying her youth and secretly in love with her geeky friend. All was NORMAL except the fact that her mother had passed away leaving with her some little fragments of memories, remembrance of caring touch, and long nights of missing. If that was not enough to take, she one morning wakes up to herself being covered in fur from head to toe and she seems to have no clue what made this happen. Incidents occur one after another. And before she understand what might possibly be happening, she is torn apart from her father, her only family, her crush, dearest friend. What might have happened?

Saumya’s house never felt like home to her. She never could find that comfortable air to breathe in while inside those four walls. Her parents made it quite unbearable for her for she could always hear resentment in their voices while referring to the fact that their only child is a girl. In present time, there are still some regions all over the world where the birth of a girl child is not acceptable. Though every nation has taken every possible step to prevent that, human behavior cannot be changed so easily. In a group of 10 people there are always that secret and unknown no.which do not agree into having a girl child. It’s both hurtful and an insult to humanity. Saumya’s part of story shows that dark side of humans. Then again, one day suddenly, with all her frustrations building up inside and a ever long desire to run away to New York, she found herself lifted from Ahmedabad and placed in New York. She soon realized she had the ability to travel from one place to another in just a few seconds just by imagining the place to reach. She found her little secret method of escaping from her house at times of pain and distress. However, not every happy time leads to a happy ending. As she found herself trapped inside her parents’ house with a strange looking man, all of them anxious of her new powers. The circumstances resulted in her having to run away from them all. What made her run for her life? How did she end up with her powers? Who was the strange looking man? What happened to her in the end? Was she successful in running away?

Sia, a beautiful character indeed, has a unique power of her own, the one she nurtures everyday silently without any expectations of acknowledgement – the power to sing, an ability so strong that she finds peace and a sort of completion of self. However, her life is not as alluring as it seems to be. There are several parts of her being that face hardship. The author also through her portrays the amount of trouble a North-East Indian has to face, adding up to the fact that she is from the Naga clan. The author boldly points out the deadly, cruel and unjustified torture over them. And Sia rises as the hero, unaware of her own ability, just with the desire to sing. When she and her friends fall in the hands of torture, the only thing he can think of doing is singing to ease the pain, her song suddenly appears to be inaudible to the normal human eye and destroys every single soldier who were attacking them unfairly. She bedazzled herself and the others over such supernatural incidents for neither of them had any clue what was happening or what might have led to this. Where from did Sia gain such power? What happened when she began to sing? Did her mother know about it all?

All these questions having put forward to you, is my approach in trying to make you understand how very interesting the book is and how thrilling the answers are. All these three women have a want for independence in them. The book, though is easily present to be a fantasy, has meanings far important and eye opening, lying deep within. The book points out the present society, the ever revolutionary youth and their evolutionary minds. The book pokes a finger at the corruption of power, the lack of understanding, the period of identity crisis of the criticized youth.

The fantasy that the writer weaves with his clean and understandable way of story telling is fascinating, intriguing, emotional and has a depth of sense and responsibility. Although I do not fancy the other two girls much, Sia is a very different person as portrait-ed in the book. When I say I do not fancy the other two much, it’s not because their part of story lacked the air of importance but due to the fact that they lacked their own depth of personality. They did not present themselves as strong characters or truly passionate about something of their own. Sia, though had to face struggle, she always had one passion, that of music and she never forgot to hold onto it. To revolt against the world in the name of gaining independence and wanting their thoughts to be heard is something very different from holding onto something you have faith in and show your independence through your works and speech.

This was my first read by Ashok K. Banker and I am looking forward to reading the next book of the series coming out sometime at the end of this very year.

 

#review You Never Know

img_1990Author : Akash Verma

Publisher : Penguin Random House India

Publication date : 18 Sep, 2017

Book length : 240 pages 

Language: English

Genre : Fiction/ Romance

 

Synopsis :
There will be times when you feel you have the best relationship, ever There will be times when it will be the worst that has happened to you There will be times when you know you are getting into something terrible; something that will not stop till it destroys you And yet . . . You will be pulled into it so inextricably, unstoppably . . . Dhruv knew Anuradha was his true love. So, despite being married with kids, he still went ahead with their affair. He hid it from his wife and his colleagues. He told lies so he could be with her-it was that amazing! But he couldn’t save himself from the dark secret she was keeping. It pulled him into a vortex of danger so deep that he lost all he had. It happened to him and if you think it can’t happen to you-think again.


Rating : 4/5

Review :

The first time I read the blurb, the book gave me that Savdhan India (Beware India) feels. It’s a show which airs negative incidents happening all over India, acted out by different actors to make India aware of the different ways some people can burn down your peaceful, happy life while some can save and at the end of the show the narrator gives a speech on how to stay alert and prevent such incidents. Well, I do not fancy watching such shows but my mom is prone to watching them mainly because I stay long hours outside and watching this she gives me lectures on how to stay safe. Though I scold her for building high tension watching all these, she is a sweetheart.

Now, back to the story. When I first started reading the story, I realized one thing. I was finding the whole idea of falling in love with your own office’s junior while till then you were happily married to a super talented and caring wife, once your girlfriend, and have two children, a little bit disturbing. All right . . . Not little, very much disturbing. But then again I cannot possibly blame the author for thinking of such a story because it happens all the time and is so true.


The story is about how Dhruv, happily married to his once girlfriend – Shalini, falls in love with this new girl in office, Anuradha. From the first moment he saw her he found himself getting drawn towards her; he knew for sure, she was his true love. He fell deeper and deeper into the dark and dangerous game of extra marital affair. He always had this feeling of Anuradha being sad at times. Soon he came to know the reason – her boyfriend had committed suicide, living her all alone and lovelorn. Dhruv couldn’t help but get closer & closer to her. They end up making love and then when problems dawn into his life. If lying to his “beloved” wife and children wasn’t enough, he is blackmailed to bring a secret video which is believed to be with Anuradha. All these leads to Dhruv ending up in the place where Sid, Anuradha’s dead boyfriend, had committed suicide and then he learns of a spine chilling secret which changes their relationship forever. 

Who were the blackmailers? What video were they looking for? Why did Dhruv end up in Sid’s suicide site? What was the secret Dhruv came to know? What happened to their relationship? Lastly, why did he do such injustice to Shalini? 

To uncover all these questions, all you have to do is pick up the book. 

I must say I enjoyed every bit of the book. Though it was disturbing and frustrating at times, I couldn’t just put it down. I had to read on and on till I reached the very end. This whole idea about finding “true love” seems very thoughtful. Maybe Anuradha was that other half of his incomplete wholeness which he had never noticed till meeting her. Maybe that’s why he felt so complete when with her. Then again, was it right? No. To lie to Shalini, to keep her in dark, to make himself understand that he loves both the women, it sounds wrong. Dhruv sounds like that idiotic guy who is bound with his wife out of long familiarity and responsibilities while he is in love with another woman. I would have loved if the author had given a further insight to Shalini’s character and how she understood whatever was happening and how she felt about it. I liked the ending but then again it seems Dhruv was that desperate guy who though showed he felt guilty towards his wife, he really was not at all that much sorry and till the very end all he could think about was Anuradha. 


The writing pattern is skillful and form of story telling, very much attention grabbing. The writer has the great ability to give visual effects to the reader.

I received a copy from Writersmelon in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

About the Author :


Akash Verma is an entrepreneur. He is the co-founder of two internet start-ups in the fashion and food sectors. Prior to this, he was in the corporate sector, in organizations such as Coca-Cola, Big FM and Red FM. His work has taken him across the country and he uses this experience to give context to his stories. He has authored three books till now: It Happened That Night, Three Times Loser and A Broken Man. Akash is currently based out of Gurgaon, India. He is also interested cinema, literature, history and travel.

#review The Lost Boy by Greg Ruth

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Author : Greg Ruth

Publisher : Graphix

Publication date : 27 August 2013

Book length : 192 pages

Language : English

Genre : Fiction / Graphic novel

Synopsis :

Some mysteries are too dangerous to leave alone . . .

Nate’s not happy about his family moving to a new house in a new town. After all, nobody asked him if he wanted to move in the first place. But when he discovers a tape recorder and note addressed to him under the floorboards of his bedroom, Nate is thrust into a dark mystery about a boy who went missing many, many years ago. Now, as strange happenings and weird creatures begin to track Nate, he must partner with Tabitha, a local girl, to find out what they want with him. But time is running out, for a powerful force is gathering strength in the woods at the edge of town, and before long Nate and Tabitha will be forced to confront a terrifying foe, and uncover the truth about the Lost Boy.

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Rating : 4/5

Review :

I have never much read graphic novels. To be very much truthful, The Lost Boy is my first proper graphic novel read and I guess I am pretty please with myself for picking it up. Actually it’s not me though who bought the book but my younger brother. I saw the artwork and it was pretty amazing so I gave it a try. And boy! such talented a man the author is. The story-line and artwork, both are awe-striking. Since the graphic is a short read and the synopsis alone gives away the most spoiler free inside idea of the story, I will not go into describing it any further for it might the mysterious atmosphere thus created by the synopsis. I will thus go on complimenting on the book itself.

The story-line is interesting, catchy and well thought. The artwork is . . . EVERYTHING! I literally would give anything to have such skillful hands. I feel I would  have enjoyed the book more if I had been a little younger and thoughts were less complex. But what I experienced was a box full of thoughts forming in my head. The one thought I had after reading (thanks to my overthinking mind) is perhaps that lost boy was not really lost in a different world but inside the darkness of his mind. Perhaps his life background forced him to run away from the ever changing and dominating world where his words were unheard of. The darkness slowly, gradually manifested his mind and instead of using the good of it, he chose to drown in it’s unknown depths. Nate was probably nothing but a medium to cleanse the accumulating layer of anger and rage stuck on the skin of the Lost Boy. The different world was perhaps the hidden society comprising of people who chose to differ from the destructing outside world.

The story made me dive further in the depth of human consciousness. The lost boy, when freed from the ugly form covering him up, it is said that he is found to have remained of the same age as at time of his disappearance. Perhaps it is not his physical age but the mental one that had remained unchanged. For, he was but living in darkness for so long, his mind feeding on rage, hunger of power and dark thoughts, that he had missed out the growing of mental age, the gradual feeling of dawning maturity. He had been till now thriving on the thin string of hope attaching him to the world.

I would like to stop my theories here as I find loss of words to express the rest of my thoughts. But I am satisfied with how much I could write down. Write down in the comments where you approve of my theories or not. Thank you for taking out time enough to read the constant talkativeness of my mind.

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#review Sacrifice 

Author : Ameya Kale

Pulisher : Frog Books

Publication date :  12 Dec, 2016

Book length : 298 pages

Language : English 

Genre : Fiction / Sci-fi


Synopsis :

Henry Ashford works as a top virologist and toxicologist at his office facility. He has a good life in the suburbs; a loving wife and friendly neighbors. Deciding to take some time off, he plans a surprise vacation for him and his wife to Rome. Tragedy strikes as Henry’s life is completely turned around by a series of incidents. Coming face to face with the persons who perpetrated these horrors, he swears revenge and is prepared to fight. Little does he know that what is about to happen will change his life again. Henry is thrown into a spiral of physics, philosophy and history. He begins to uncover secrets. Secrets about the human race. Secrets that are paradigm shifting. The people he is talking to are passionate about only one thing: to save mankind. And apparently, only Henry can do it. But this time, the only way to save mankind is to destroy it first.


Rating : 3.5/5

Review : 

I received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

The first thing that attracted me was the story line which sounded quite mysterious and interesting. And as I set out on a journey to discover the book, the whole concept, that the author had the capability to think thoroughly and construct precisely, blew my mind. 

The story revolves around Henry Ashford, a top virologist and toxicologist who leads a happy life with his loving wife, Juliette. He has suddenly found his interests circling over architectural history, questioning their origins. He seems to be blissful and contented with his life. While he and Juliette both become excited for their trip to Rome, Henry has not a bit idea how some rapid and drastic incidents will change his life forever. It so happens that one night someone breaks into his house and knocks him unconscious. The next thing he knows – his wife is dead, he doesn’t understand why they were attacked, he is alone now. But what shocks the reader is that he shows indifference to his wife’s death and goes on living his daily life, though at some points of time he misses her truly, he can’t help but reach an understanding with the fact that he is not attached to anyone or any responsibilities anymore. But, not everything ends the way it was supposed to be. The story doesn’t end here. It has just begun.

After two months, that man, his wife’s killer kidnaps him and bring him to an unknown place. There he faces Michael who drops news one after the other on him like atom bombs, destroying and torturing the very core of his senses. First, Michael breaks the news that Henry’s wife is indeed alive!! 

And then comes the moment of bewilderment when he asks Henry just one question which later gives rise to unimaginable theories. The sinple question of – “What if it’s all a lie? ……… “This thing called consciousness.” Michael furthur on proceeds on explaining how the consciousness of we humans is not our own but put into our hears by an outer, superior source. What if the only way to save the human race, an end to all all corruption, pain, disorientation, was by destroying the Humans only??!! If that was not enough Henry is given visual proof! Wanna know how? Why don’t just pick it up already? 

To have been brought into paper from the minds of a young debut novelist, this book is absolutely praiseworthy. The storyline is genius, the reasoning is very intimidating and believing. I do not read Sci-fi as much as other genres but books like these make me realise how much more there is to that one genre and how I absolutely must read them more. 


But I do have a few concerns. This things dropped my rating for the book. The book would have more attracting effect only if the writing style is refined some more. The writing is clean and without errors. But it lacks a bit of that spine chilling, giving goosebumps and thrilling effect. Also I believe the mention of time period in each chapter is very confusing. It would be much more efficient and enjoyable if the time period is mentioned only once in the beginning of that chapter when the present shifts to the past and vise versa. And let the story continue in chapter only to mention of time in it’s change. 

Would I recommend this book? Absolutely. If we don’t encourage such bright minds and amazing ideas, who would? 

About the Author : 


Ameya Kale

The debutant author, Ameya Kale lives with his parents in Pune. An engineering student at Marathwada Mitramandal’s College of Engineering, Pune; Ameya is also working on his next thriller.

COVER REVEAL + SYNOPSIS of “Awaken” by Ashok Banker

Hi, very excited to present Book 1 in the AWAKEN: Shakti Trilogy by Ashok Banker. PanMacmillan India has always been my favourite spot for promising reads. And the coming month they are publishing this powerfully gorgeous book.

RELEASING 1ST SEPTEMBER

Present-day avatars of mythic heroes defending the world against an alien invasion

#girlpower  #superhero

#scifi             #fantasy               

#alieninvasion

AWAKEN
Ashok K. Banker

THE SHAKTI TRILOGY BOOK I 

IMG_20170709_115015_433

9789386215161 | Paperback | Rs 299

 

The Haters are coming to destroy all life on Earth. It is not a question of if, but when. 

The Brahmaand has already rung the warning bell and the awakening of the Preservers has begun. Kiara unexpectedly finds her skin covered with golden fur and her sense of smell extraordinarily enhanced; Saumya is suddenly able to go from Ahmedabad to New York in just a step; and Sia’s songs have the power to do things she had never imagined possible.

First in the thrilling Shakti Trilogy set in contemporary India, Ashok Banker’s action-packed and brilliantly imaginedAwaken introduces our unlikely heroes who must discover and harness their superpowers before they can protect and preserve the Earth from the wrath of a menacing alien invasion.

 

Ashok Banker is the internationally acclaimed author of over sixty published books which have sold over three million copies in twenty-one languages and sixty-one countries. He has been credited as the pioneer of Indian crime fiction in English and with launching the genre of mythological retellings, India’s biggest-selling publishing category. As a journalist, he broke front-page news for Times of India, Outlook and The Week. As a screenwriter, he created and wrote India’s first TV series in English, A Mouthful of Sky. Ashok is of Irish-Portuguese-Sri Lankan-Indian parentage, and lived in India for over fifty-one years before migrating permanently to the United States. Awaken is the first book in the Shakti Trilogy.

 

The Shakti Trilogy continues with Book II ASSEMBLE (November 2017) and Book III ARISE (January 2018).

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 The storyline sounds amazing and an absolute in present time. Women power at it’s best. So do not forget to grab this book next month.

#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. 

    #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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