Friday, 29 August 2014

Essence of Eternal Happiness: a review

Having this book in my hands, I did what I usually do when I have any book that is flip through the pages. Not really reading anything but looking out for something interesting. The quotations used at the beginning of all the pages, sketches in the beginning of a few caught my glance. Since poetry has always been my weakness, I started with this one…

Abhik Shome in The Perennial Abyss has very well described us what is the position of the world now. How life is nothing but a matter of papers.

Ashish Sharma in An Artist has made it a point of articulating ‘God’ in a beautiful way. Dale Carnegie’s opening quote suits the poem to the fullest.

A wonderful poem written by Awa Chigoze titled Where I want to be. One writer from abroad among the lot, I specifically liked the simple language he used to pen his feelings about what and where he wants to be.

A man, who through few words speaketh the world, Bernard D’sa has done his best through his poem Journey of Eternal Happiness. The beginning quote by Mahatma Gandhi uplifts the flavor of happiness. One of the best in the book.

Binduu Chopra through Bliss has proved to us how one can stand, fight and live through all the unhappiness in life and finally emerge victorious. A truly inspiring tale.

A world where everyone is everyone’s friend, where no one is a foe. The love will then give everyone a chance to go on and on. But the choice is ours. Through the Promise of the Messiah, Debashish Mishra has shown just that.

Till now, the first ‘love’ poem I read in this book. O Mate- Your love I breathe by Gaurav Sharma still catches the eyes. In a very easy to relate language, it is just what the words of heart mean.

As the poet has clearly mentioned in his poet bio, his poems are surely words in motion, depicting the pain and sufferings. He uses words, which stay in the heart for a long time. Rajat Kumar, through I am not me, is here to say.

Meena Nair’s Child Labour has been a genuine effort by the writer and that shows in her writing style. Filled with varied emotions, readers are bound to make the most of this poem. But somehow I felt a few errors were there, which couldn’t been improved.

Those blissful eyes by Mohd Faizan give us a lot about love. The description has been nicely etched. Opening lines by James Oppenheim mark their place in the poem. A few more lines would’ve made it perfect.

To be or not to be! by Monroe Gogoi truly accentuates the real meaning of captivity and freedom. What it means to be free or be in captive. It tells us that only we are the people who have the power of letting live or letting go. A motivating read.

After a wonderful weekend, we all curse the Monday. Monday is the most dreaded day of the week. Ain’t it? Payel Pasha through Monday Blues has described what Monday actually brings to us. The responsibility it takes on its shoulders. A nice read.

The first thing that caught my eye when I turned the page, was the poets bio. Then when I turned the page, the beginning of the poem and I started liking it from that very instant. Piyush Nagpal in Once eternity and I has written about what’s happening in the world, why and the answers; this poem is one wonderful read.

We all have imagined a fairy godmother for us. One who will be with us forever, for us. In this poem, Pranjal Pandey has beautifully described how it to have An eternal bliss from heaven is. Read it with a smile on your face and you will love it.

Another very motivating poem by Promilla Qazi named Freedom at last. It tells us that it is us who have the answers to everything and it is we who questions too. I really liked the presentation though a bit rhyming would’ve perfected it.

Radha Krishna, the definition about love by Rachna Seth has been all about love, about what Radha and Krishna means to the world and to each other. The devotion shows in the poem. But if compared to the other poems of the book; I felt a bit slow on this one. A few mistakes were also spotted. But overall, a nice read.

For any person, from the day they are born, the first and only person who is the closest to him/her is another. A mother being a weakness and the strength for every person. Sadanand Shenoy, in his poem Mother- my first love has experienced this feeling beautifully through his words.

The two sonnets written by Sadia Riaz Sehole titled To time and Fate have been written in a wonderful language. The language is such that catches a poem lovers’ eye at first glance. To admit it, the poems surely motivated me a lot and it will, to every reader.

A halcyon companion by Sagher is a beautiful exchange between a father and his son, where the father gives the son his piece of advice about surviving in the world. A very motivating read.

The Red Apple by Sangeeta Suneja has a ‘wonder touch’ in her writings. A wonderfully knitted well versed poem kept the feelings intact. The only hitch was that there were a few grammatical errors.

Essence of life by Sashu Gopidas, describes happiness in its purest form. The simple language used while describing happiness in a smile, the morning sun and the moon. And a very small but wonderful form of happiness is chosen here. A thought provoking poem.

Shital D’Rozario in When I saw you has written wonderfully about the love of one’s life. A wonderland of words is something I would like to term the poem. Though there were a few mistakes, but they are avoidable.

Me and You by Sonali Kalra has written about love; and the writing style has been wonderful. Though simple, it had an air of delicacy throughout. I believe; use of a bit articulated words would’ve made this more wonderful.

Wake up Seed by Shonali Dey is undoubtedly one of the best of the book. I personally loved the way it has been written and more so; the real meaning behind this poem. I loved the punch line – ‘Wake up Seed’. A job well done by the poetess.

A sword in today’s time is the pen. No one fights with swords, but the pen has become a medium now. My favorite pen by Armitunum is one very sweet poem. A smile plays on the lips when any reader reads this poem. A wonderful read.

Word of Soul by Dr. Tina Gulzar is surely the words of soul. If the world would’ve followed it would’ve been something really different. Very true words, simply written and presented have made it one of the best.

Sue Chamoun; another poet from abroad in this book, has written a very motivating poem titled Crossing Over. It shows which path to travel is our choice and what happens when we choose what we chose. A poem, which I had to read and re-read.

The end to this beauty of a book has been with My Journey written by Younis Mustafa Khan. The most beautiful part of this poem apart from the wonderful presentation was the line ‘My Journey to spirit of life had come’. I believe, this book couldn’t have had a better end.


To the compilers of the book, I applause cause this is also one of the finest Poetry books I have read so far. There is a faint wish coming from my heart that it could’ve been made into a book for students to read too. Inspiration, happiness and motivation are the base of the book and that makes this book stand out from the crowd. Giving it 4.25 out of 5, I would wish to read an error free version of this book soon.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Re-doing my home and Re-defining my life ...!!

It’s another Sunday, holding my favorite cup of coffee and Paulo Coelho resting peacefully beside me; I think of the world. The never stopping, ever running world. The internet has become a source of news, a source of knowing the well being of loved ones and to know such, I start surfing through the internet, while doing so, I stumbled upon BlogAdda, who took an initiative of giving us a chance to re-do our house the way we want to. Well, I call it re-doing because I feel that at least writing can be an initiative to do something. I have very recently re-colored my home; it’s in a very light cream color now and with that color, the best way to re-do my home was to add a trace of Ethnicity in it!

I want it in the ethnic way, cause I believe Ethnicity defines me. I am what my friends call a jhalli who doesn’t care about the world and does what she feels. A dash of color is my type. Since I am also into books, being an editor and reviewer by profession, I always want a whole room full of books, my personalized library. As my mom, doesn’t allow me for using up a room for it, the best thing I could use is this wonderful Shelf. A corner shelf in wooden colors, which would help bring all my favorite books at one place, matching with the colors of the walls of my home, giving it a bright yet subtle look.

Another thing I am very fond of is preserving memories. I love clicking pictures (selfies..? well that too) of people, places, events, get-togethers. I love being clicked too. I believe, in the rollercoaster named life, one moves ahead of everything and has nothing to turn back and look at. So as to not regret any moment, not forget any moment, I love capturing it in my camera. Along with a room full of books, I also want a wall full of pictures.

Pictures, defining me; the people close to me, the moments I enjoyed the most with my favorite people or at least group pictures. Photo Frames being the most needed thing in such cases. This particular wall hanging picture frame cause it is eye grabbing, it has place for my favorite people together. It speaks what my heart speaks. No, I am not mad that I am listening to words being spoken from photo frames, but this one appeals me. A family pic and a pic with my friends and my love will surely accentuate the flavor of this particular one.

You must have noticed that just a few moments back, I have termed life as a roller coaster ride. Well, in the time when we can’t afford to sit down comfortably for some time, where we aren’t able to cope up with time, where every second is costly, and we even don’t want to compromise with our personal time, I fell in love with this particular clock. It is, according to me, the best way to remind people, that Time is Money.
A table clock with the National Emblem and the INR sign on it, just defines what has life become now a days. It does so many things, at one place. It shows us the time, it brings upon us the sense of patriotism whenever we look at it and it also shows us that along with time and patriotism, money is a very important factor. One on my desk would surely be a motivating thing for me and I am sure, for everyone who will see it sitting there, with pride.



I am sure you all might think that my choice is ‘ajeeb’ maybe, but trust me; all these things, means a lot to me and I bet to you all too. These stuff, in my home will not only motivate me to move on, it will not only give me the sense of love; it will also give me a sense of being cozy around my loved ones; a sense of being looked after them; watched by them; blessed by them. It will give me the power to work on; it will give me the happiness that everyone seeks.

To end it, I would like to thank BlogAdda, for this wonderful opportunity that you gave me to write about how to make my house a home. And as I post this for you to read, my dear readers… Allow me, to go back… to the world of books!!


 PS- This post is a part of Makemyhome activity at BlogAdda.com





Saturday, 23 August 2014

Secrets and Second chances by Anita Shirodkar: a review

The magnificent photograph along with the effects and design teamed up with the title, makes debutante authoress Anita Shirodkar’s book Secrets and Second Chances is an instant hit. To those, who have been tired of reading male character centered books this book seems like a breath of fresh air. The blurb of the book, just acts as the cherry on the cake.

On the back cover- Suddenly, the world was upside down, and there was only one person who could set it straight. But Nandita was not sure if he wanted to… Nandita Dharkar, a strikingly beautiful and talented architect, relocates to Mumbai from Delhi, seeking new horizons and compelling explanations about ghosts from her mother’s past. As she revels in her newfound independence and forges new friendships, her job at a prestigious architect firm brings suave hotelier Aryan Rai into her life- and she falls hopelessly in love with him. But when her best friends, the carelessly handsome Aditya Arora, suddenly lands on her doorstep, Nandita realized how fickle the heart can be. In the midst of it all, she is unable to forget the mysterious letter she had discovered in her mother’s jewellery box. When she embarks on a quest to find out the identity of the letter writer shocking secrets about her mother’s past come to the forefront. Will this shatter Nandita or will she heal through forgiveness? Tender, bittersweet and moving, Secrets and Second chances examines the fragile threads that bind a mother and a daughter, and the brave choices a woman makes to follow her heart.

To just go about it, it would be best if I say that this book to me to an emotional rollercoaster ride through the help of the characters that the book holds for the readers. Reading the blurb, for many (At least it did for me) it might feel that it is a normal Mills and Boons story but coming to read it, it is much more than that.

The characters, whether centralized ones like Nandita-Aditya-Amrita-Aryan-Abhimanyu or side ones that keep coming and going like the too familiar aunty next door, or maybe the too frustrated colleague at work everything has maintained its balance between low to high making them entering and exiting at just the perfect places.

The best part of it is that the after effect of all the characters stays with the readers for a long time. While the blurb also makes the readers think (at first glance) as the book to be only Nandita’s story or her tryst but upon going about it, it has everything in it and it has much more than Nandita to do in the story.

For the beginning, I felt was a bit slow but as the other characters start showing up, I found myself particularly being fond of the book and the story; its progress. There have been parts in the story where the readers might think that they have cracked the mystery but the mystery remains so till the end of the book.

Again, the readers might just think why a character isn’t doing something which is most obvious at that moment but then again the character does that in the most unexpected place. The story also leads on to revelations that bring both smiles in the lips and tears in the eyes. The end though seems to be one very ‘looking forward to’ situation and probably the best part of the book.


For me, if only the beginning would’ve been a bit speedier (if that’s the word) and if the story had a bit more romance; then it would’ve been a wonderful book. As of yet, to this one hell of a journey I would like to give it 4.5 out of 5.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

“More than the deal the feeling of seeing your name on the spine of the book is euphoric”, says Vikrant Khanna, a best-selling author in a conversation with Vanya’s Notebook.

Vikrant Khanna, a merchant navy Captain is an author of three books. For this merchant navy Captain, just as the ship leaves the port and sets to sail, he feels like he has touched the deep waters of his creative being. So far he has written from the seas (while on board), but in his latest book “Love Lasts Forever", for the first time he writes about the sea. Read on to find more about this ‘Sailing Author’ and his tryst on the sea…

Vanya’s Notebook- Can you take us back to those days when you thought of writing a novel?
Vikrant-- Being a sailor, I have all the time in the world, both literally and metaphorically. Once during a long voyage crossing the Pacific, I thought of giving a shot at writing, since I have always admired the art of good storytelling. The first draft of my first book was completed in that one month voyage. That is what fuelled my interest in writing. But those days I never thought of getting the book published, it just happened!

Vanya’s Notebook- What was your feeling when you signed a book deal?
Vikrant-- Marvelous. More than the deal, the feeling of seeing your name on the spine of the book is euphoric.

Vanya’s Notebook- Why should one read your book? Anything that you want to tell a potential reader that the blurb of “Love lasts forever” doesn’t tell him/her?
Vikrant-- One should read the book because it offers an unique and different story line. It’s a love story at its heart with the piracy element interspersed with it making it an engrossing and exciting read. 

Vanya’s Notebook- Everyone wants to tell a story, but rarely do people start writing. Can you tell us how difficult it is to write the first book?

Vikrant-- Writing a book is a lot of hard work. What I tell young writers is you should write a story not because you want to, but because you have to. And then just keep at it, don’t stop, the characters will guide you.

Vanya’s Notebook- Any issue regarding Indian publishing or readership which you strongly feel about and why?
Vikrant-- The Indian publishing industry still needs to open to varied genres as in the West like fantasy, horror, paranormal romance, etc.

      Vanya’s Notebook- How do you feel about the response that the book has generated? Satisfied? Or could have been better?
Vikrant-- I get a lot of mails and messages from my readers and there is a common thread running in all of it – “You’ve given love and relationships a new meaning.”
That sort of a response is very overwhelming. So, coming back to your question, yes, I’m satisfied.

     Vanya’s Notebook- Who was your inspiration in this writing journey?
Vikrant-- Has to be Agatha Christie for writing extraordinary stories in the most ordinary way.

   
    Vanya’s Notebook- Amidst all those positive replies and fan mails all throughout the days when your first book was being appreciated, was there any bit of advice that you got from anyone, for your work, which you have emulated thereafter?
Vikrant-- A good advice was to ensure any character in the book, howsoever insignificant, shouldn’t be superficial.

         Vanya’s Notebook- Can you give us a little sneak peak of your upcoming books? What are you been working on?
Vikrant-- It’s a YA romance set in Shimla.


       Vanya’s Notebook- What do you see doing other than writing books in near future?
Vikrant-- Perhaps writing TV shows.
       Vanya’s Notebook- Thank You Vikrant for this beautiful interview, we wish you all the success for Love Lasts Forever.
Vikrant-- Thank you very much and keep reading good books J

You can also contact the author at—

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/vikrant.khanna.948?fref=ts                                                   Twitter : twitter.com/@_VikrantKhanna                                                                                                            Mail : viks.khanna@gmail.com                                                                                                                                      Website :http://www.vikrantkhanna.com/

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Cheer up! The worst is yet to come by Ila Garg: a review

When life says cheer up that means the worst is yet to come. Debutante author Ila Garg has portrayed this message in her novel and that too beautifully. The catchy cover and the vibrant title will definitely turn heads and become an instant hit among all the readers. The reader friendly size of the book also acts as a positive point.

On the back cover - Ishani, a young, pretty and multi-talented girl with a carefree attitude, lives in a world of her own. A girl with small, little dreams; she carries a happy-go-lucky nature. Always surrounded by friends, she loves to help people and is a quick learner. When she gradually tries to find a place in this messed up world, everyone around her starts to lure her, as she trusts easily and can't discriminate between right and wrong. She often falls for masked personalities and camouflaged individuals but it is life, right? It has its own ways to teach its disciples. She makes efforts to bring a smile on every face and wishes someone would do the same for her. Things come to a halt when she falls in love with an over-possessive guy, Abhay. They part and they meet again. In the meantime, she forms a bond with another girl. Her sole respite is her best friend, Armaan, but then, she has already been hurt, deceived and broken beyond repair. This book is all about her journey of love and friendship; a story of innocence, guilt, pleasure, mistakes, break-ups, success, failure and frustration. Can a completely broken girl emerge as a winner at the end? Will she be able to unveil the masks? What does it take to judge right from wrong? What surprises life holds in its box for her? Is it ever going to be easy for her to choose or will she continue to stay in her dilemmas?

The main prospective of this story is to show how to retain the hope alive even in the toughest situation. After reading this book the readers will definitely learn a lot from the struggle of the protagonist. I would also like to term it to be an inspiriting book.

The story is about a girl named Ishani. From the very beginning of the book the authoress had shown that Ishani is a happy go lucky girl who seemed to enjoy her days in college with her new found friends until Abhay enters into the story and changes everything.

Simple is the only word that can describe the narrating style of this author. From describing the characters to describing the scenes, everything had a flavor of a similar innocence throughout. The innocence in it also gave rise to a certain flow of the book, making it interesting to read.

The readers might feel that the story line could have been articulated in a better way or scenes could have been written in a more framed way. Though all the efforts made by the authoress are visible, I would’ve loved it if it were presented in any other way. All in all, I would like to rate it 3.75 out of 5 waiting for more to come from the authoress.

Saturday, 16 August 2014

Metamorphing by Kunal Pancholi: a review

Have you ever been fascinated by murders? How crime takes place? Ever been humiliated in front of the whole school because you were shorter than the shortest girl in your school? Or maybe woke up one day only to find out that you have no idea who you are or where you are from? Kunal Pancholi, in his debut fiction shares just that.

According to the back cover- 28th April, 2000 Flight No. 9*876 bound to Srinagar has crash landed into the Everest base Camp. Unconfirmed reports suggest that the flight mysteriously went off the radar for few minutes and missed its landing. All passengers are feared dead… except for three bodies that are yet to be recovered. 8th December, 2050 this without doubt is the most gruesome murder in recent times. Early this morning, an unidentified woman was found mutilated at the western gates of the abandoned Victoria Terminus station in Mumbai. Authorities report her head was.. Well.. Semi-decapitated and she was drained of all her blood. The shocking part- the crime scene was devoid of any signs of blood spatter…

After reading the blurb, any reader can feel the heat rising as he/she is forced to read the story at one go. Talking about the characters, well; the characters of Rudra and Rohan has been very well thought of and written in a wonderful way such that the readers get to the flow of the story automatically.

The concept of the story has been wonderfully sketched out. A person who has a height complex, who suffers from a plane crash and returns to his normal life after being in a state of delusion for 5 years, only to see everything has changed, yet not much. 

A person who suddenly wakes up one day and notices that he has forgotten everything related to his past. He gets back to his life after a fingerprint test which tells him who he is and where he stays and he goes with the flow, only to be getting more and more revelations on the way.

The narrating style of the author, jumping from Rohan’s life to Rudra’s life and back again piques up the readers interest as it gains momentum; arousing the readers to read the complete book at one go.
The book, however; has a very slow start. After quite some time, the readers might feel a bit bored owing to the scenes being stretched so much; but the ‘climax’ of the book or rather of the story gains the readers’ trust at the perfect point and re-emerges as a promising read.


As for the grammatical mistakes were concerned, there weren’t much and the last few pages were OMG! For me, I loved Rudra’s parts the most; he being my favorite character. And so, to end it; I would like to rate this book 3.75 out of 5 expecting more from the author in the future.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Rhythm of Love by Rahul Prasad Kanu: a review

Quoting a line from the blurb “For a very few, it beats, beats and beats, the count becomes meaningless…..” Rhythm of Love by debut writer Rahul Prasad Kanu brings about this aspect of heartbeats in a whole new way! With an attracting title for the book, it becomes one very attracting book among the others in this category at first glance

On the back cover- Everyone has a heart, an organ which pumps blood. For more heads, it beats 72 times a minute but for a very few, it beats, beats and beats, the count becomes meaningless the moment you feel the ‘Rhythm is not yours’. You are mesmerized!!! And when I say you cannot die at will. I mean it. God decides your day. Dorji is in love with Angel. Destiny writes their fate to meet in college. Dorji is ready to take his chances but when chances are for glances, you deserve to be in trouble. This is the story of Dorji- a warrior. This is his journey of falling in love and adoring love intricately entwining college, friendship, drugs and passion for love. Will Dorji succeed in his quest for Angel? Can honest endeavor unfold the path to glory and the difference between loving and being loved? Will his dream meet his desires? This is the story from ‘The Land of Thunder Dragons’ Bhutan. The chase of Dorji is on, Lub Dub, Lub Dub!!!

Characters- To begin with, I found the characters of Dorji, Namgay, Mr.Purbha, Angel to be very crisp and well maintained. From the very beginning of the book till the very end, the author has done his best in maintaining the flow of the characters and keeping the characteristics intact. At one point I felt that there were a bit too many characters introduced but then the author was able to manage the whole scenario in a very nice way.

Coming to the story, the way the writer has framed the story makes a direct impact on the readers as they join Dorji on his journey of love. The incidents and ambience created by the author was well thought of making the readers feel as if they are a witness to the scene which added to the star studded feature of the book.

Even though the name of the characters and places (the native of Bhutan) seem to be attracting the readers at every point, it also seem to be standing as a downfall of the book because for readers who are not familiar with the Bhutanese names may seem to fumble with the names at points creating a break at some points of the read.


The narrating style, according to me, could’ve been articulated a bit more which could’ve resulted in a more interesting read for every reader. At a few places I felt that scenes are a bit stretched unnecessarily or the scene could’ve been written in a better way. All these small mistakes here and there made the readers read very slowly reducing the rating of the book. The end was pretty nice as compared to the whole book, giving a strong message with it! To this book, a onetime read, I would like to give a 3.5.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Fusion a mingled flavor mocktail: a review

Fusion- a mingled flavor mocktail. What does the first impression say? Well, to me, the book at first glance surely tells us what the constituents of the best mocktail should be. A blend of classic 25 spices and condiments, it surely leaves a tangy taste all over the mouth even after finishing it. Yes, we drink a mocktail by only judging the garnishing and look of it; the book does its best in the presentation too…

The book begins by adding the first flavor to the mocktail with Ranuka Vishvanathan’s The Heir. A wonderful start to the book, this story not only talks about a father and his son but it is also one eye-opener for the society. A perfect blend of emotions, a bit more descriptions could’ve made it perfect.

Shreya Kumar’s Dance of life follows the fleet of wonderful writing in the book. To this story, I am confused what to name it as, Ayesha’s story or Dr. Pearl’s story? To me, being a girl, this story is a story for every girl, dutifully giving us another spice in the mocktail and teaching us the dance of life.

Ayaan Basu, in the Telephone has devotedly made his way as the third flavor of the mocktail. Talking of a rainy day in Kolkata, yes, the story made me look outside and cherish the aroma of it. A perfect idea with perfectly balanced pure emotions, this story surely gives you a feeling of melancholy as you read it. I particularly loved the story writing style of the author. A few errors were avoidable.

The book continues with Strings by Mehek Bassi as its fourth flavor. For me, this story is one of the best stories of the entire book. The story, about a girl, her deaf and dumb mother and their connection is something that brought tears in my eyes. Throughout the story I thought a hundred ways of the meaning of strings in the story, but the end left me flabbergasted. A wonderful read.

The fifth flavor to the mocktail is Affair @ online by Neelam Chandra Saxena. The story is mostly a written account of the cons of trusting each and everyone in social networking sites. It surely is another tale which would keep the reader engrossed in it till the end f the story. A more interesting storyline would’ve done the work to make it perfect.

Twilight by Purba Chakraborty gives us the sixth flavor of the mocktail. The flavor of love. A flavor which remains the same even after years of distance. Through the tale of Anand and Shalini, the authoress has done her best in showing this flavor to the readers. A bit more description was felt the lack of.

The seventh flavor comprises of the The Red Lahori Dupatta by Paromita Bordoloi. Love in all its shades is the perfect definition to call a mocktail. In this story, the writer has done her best in describing what a woman feels when she loses the person she loves. The simple usage of words and the narrating style with the end brought a faint trace of tears in my eyes and for everyone it would be the same. A story well told with precise characters, it has done the best in its work.

Nehali Lalwani through Love- a vague puzzle gives the mocktail its eighth flavor. If compared to the other flavors of the mocktail, this story seemed a bit off note. The story was a wonderful one. But for me, it would be a bit more gracious presentation. Love, in its purest from being defined here leaves a smile on the faces of the readers.

The ninth flavor is given by Arjun Pereira’s how to kill boredom, A different story with a different narrating style, this story keeps the flow going throughout. Though I felt it could’ve been presented in a better way. This story is a nice-light read.

Swarupa, through unsaid words gives the mocktail its tenth flavor. Love that wasn’t meant to be. Yes, this would be the exact way to define the story. The story actually had me thinking of ‘unsaid words’. The story of Raksha; those unsaid words. A fine narrating style just added to the experience.

The housewife and the goon by Renu Sethi form the eleventh flavor of the mocktail. Like the last story, even the story of Rajbeer was very unique and new retaining the flavor of love. The feeling inside the story did its best in buying the same in the reader’s heart. A bit more sharpened from would’ve taken it to be a whole new level.

The twelfth flavor of the mocktail is given by Heena Ahuja, through slaves of soul. Another very unique tale written in an interesting way. I personally loved the moral of the story. How good prevails over evil. The fight was justice and injustice. Though the whole scene could’ve been articulated a bit, the story is a nice read.

Shalini Katyal, through The Blind Fold, gives the thirteenth flavor of the mocktail. The blind fold of love, if that’s what I can term this story. It also has a message of friendship hidden in it. Showing what blind love can result into, I liked the presentation. A few mistakes are avoidable.

Manshi Bhateja gives the fourteenth flavor through Anaesthesia. Akshay and Nikita. What happens when a lonely girl meets someone on facebook? A girl who never got any ‘male’ support getting sudden appreciation from a handsome talented young man? You need to read their story for that. The use of certain words and wrong punctuations couldn’t stop the story from reaching readers. A job well done.

Ishita Bhown’s The Angel gave the mocktail its flavor. I believe the story written here could be Kuntal’s could be anyone’s. A sudden turn of events turning someone’s life upside down. I personally loved the way writer has written the story. Another eye-opener of a story. A nice narrating style keeps the reader entertained.

Sixteenth flavor with itself brings Nikhil Chandwani’s stone cold. I would like to call it the master stroke of the book. Written in a wonderful way. I actually read and re-read it again and again. The pain, the feeling is clearly visible in the story. To know what the story is about, one needs to read the whole thing, for me, penning it down, would be tough.

Elora Rath surely gives that unexpected encounter the seventeenth flavor of the mocktail. No matter what the situation thinks of us. What the situations turn out to be, first love is always the last love. The story of Ankit and Arnav is an example of one such story. A victim of circumstances, they had to part ways but what happened next is something the story will reveal. With very less characters, the story has been well thought of. A few grammatical errors were avoidable.

The eighteenth flavor of the mocktail is sprinkled by its forever… Its love by Vinita Bali. Yet another story on love. A very short and crisp story filled with emotions, I was left wide-eyed at the end of the story. But something, I felt, was amiss entirely. I guess a bit described plot would’ve done the trick.

Simplicity by Col.Mahip Chadha gives the mocktail the nineteenth flavor. In the midst of all these strong stories, this story was about the Kanchas. One of the simplest people of the place. They don’t leave their simplicity wherever they go and this story is an account of just that. I, personally, felt that the story was a tad too simple and could’ve been written in a better way.

The twentieth flavor is sparkled by Warishree Pant’s Born under Bad Sign. Homosexuality, a boon or a curse, well this question keeps with me always. To all ‘homophobic’ people, this story is an eye-opening. Written in a very sweet way. I admire the writer for taking such a step and writing about it.

Roshan Kumar, through Play 4 change, gives the mocktail the twenty-first flavor. Linking politics to music and the concept of Play 4 change was very innovative. The moral to the story or rather the last line that music can do all brings a sense of smile on everyone’s lips. I liked the narrating style but most interesting plot could’ve kept the reader interested.

The twenty-second flavor is given by Surabhi Thukral’s this was written. Pain, hurt, regret, love, separation. Yes, this WAS written. The story of Sarthak and Anu, their lives their friendship was really nice to watch. Written in a very sweet language a few punctuation errors were avoidable.

Love, lust and lost by Anjali Vaswani gives the twenty-third flavor. What happens when business tycoon Viren dies all so suddenly? Is it a normal death or a well-planned murder? The story is that much more. The interesting way the story has been written keeps the reader interested. Though I felt that the ending could’ve been articulated a bit more.

The twenty-fourth flavor will be Will You Cross the Skies for me? By Neha Zahir. If someone asks me, then for me, the star attraction in the story was the poem and the writing style. I won’t let out what is in it, cause for that you got to read it, I can just guarantee you, this is one of the finest read ever.

The last flavor is sprinkled by Simson Biswal through his story Menaka- the lost Apshara. A perfect end to a wonderful mocktail. The end leaves a smile on everyone’s lips. Prostitution, what? And Why? All answers are answered here in simple words. A wonderful take on the whole scenario. I loved the way it was written.


Given all the flavors of this wonderful and taste enriching mocktail, I would like to term this book a Valley. A valley, because, the definition of a valley suits this book to its best! Uphill, downhill and then continuing to another uphill. A wonderful start, a very beautiful end, Collection of beautiful flavors, a bit sharpened stories could’ve made it just perfect. Almost coming towards the expectations, this book deserves 3.75 out of 5. Wishing all the contributing writers all the best!

Friday, 8 August 2014

The Sales Room by RT Manu Ramesh: a review

To begin with, how many of you have an idea of The Sales Room? Or maybe how many of you have been into the sales room? Especially of a startup? This book by RT Manu Ramesh surely speaks about the Sales room and everything in detail through the example of his time at a startup firm. The cover does its best in describing what the book is all about and so does the blurb…

On the back cover- Rajesh Iyer, a young, ambitious salesperson, returns to “The Sales Room” of Oregon Software technologies after an aborted attempt at getting into a business school in the US, only to notice the metamorphosis of the software start-up which he had earlier been an integral part of. What used to be a rat-infested hole in the midst of a vegetable market is now a swanky, state of art facility owned by an upcoming Bollywood star. The enthusiastic and compact team firing on all cylinders is replaces by a sclerotic and bureaucratic setup. Sales review meetings, once rife with passionate discussions, are now replete with profanities. The ill tempered angel investor’s scream can be heard all the way from his villa in New York. Rajesh, now shunted into an innocuous role finds every effort made to alleviate the condition of the demoralized sales team, met with resistance. As revenues dwindle and tempers rise, Rajesh realized he is running out of time and options. He either toes the CEO, Venky’s line and becomes party to a sham or quits citing a host of plausible reasons. This hilarious narrative takes the reader from plush corporate boardrooms of Bangalore to the seedy hotels of Delhi as Oregon meanders in search of illusory customer wins. Rajesh meets several interesting characters ranging from the busty Polish graphics designer to the loquacious pimp masquerading as a taxi driver.

Told through the eyes of Rajesh Iyer, the book is a testimony of what an ideal Sales Room is like. Likeminded people sharing topics ranging from anything to everything. It’s totally a visual of what a typical sales room is or rather what it should be.

Written in a quirky yet fun narrative, the author does his best in describing the scenes and giving it an interesting feel. The way the author, throughout the book, has interacted with the readers makes the reader’s feel that even they are a part of the book.

Typical guys discussing about stuff not related to the work is also well thought of, which gives the readers a feeling of reality. The usages of very easy English along with colloquially used Hindi words also make the book reader friendly. I would call this book a very interesting comedy which gives every reader an idea about life at the sales room of a software startup.

To say about the facts I didn’t like about the book is that it had too many characters which, at a point of time, can confuse the readers to an extent. Apart from that, the fact that the writer could’ve written it in a more strong way, with a more important storyline, stayed with me till the end of the book.


Yes, there were spelling and grammar mistakes too but the other facts topped over it. The end of the book was quite nice. All in all, enjoying the book till the very last line and waiting to read more of the writer, I would like to rate the book 3.75 out of 5.

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Take Vanya's Word on- Love lasts Forever by Vikrant Khanna

Vikrant Khanna, in his third successive book, has written about something we face in everyday life and even feel frustrated bur according to us, which has no solution. He later on, contradicts his own statement and tells us that yes! There is a solution to the problem. Love lasts forever…. Only if you don’t marry your love; the title and the subtitle clearly explain my above statement.

The journey on the river of Somalia then the hijack goes on but along with it, teamed up very interestingly are the stories of the Captain Shekhar and a sailor Ronit. It’s about their respective lives, especially love lives; their courtship period prior to marriage and then finally marriage… What happens that they split up and what exactly happens to them after the ship is hijacked are the main highlights of the book.

The narrating style of the author is such that the readers are kept engaged in it for a very long time and the chapter division and chapter names add to the interesting bit of the story. The concept of writing two stories at a time has been used for quite some time now but the way the writer has written this seemed like a new style.

So you think your love can last forever…? Get married! Eighteen-year old Ronit falls madly in love with Aisha the moment he meets her at his graduation day from a naval college. He believes he has found his perfect soul mate, and come what may; his love for her will last forever. Seven years later, he gets married to her. Big mistake! A week later, he completely hates her and believes she has turned into a devil. But his perception about love and life change when he hears the poignant love story of Shekhar, his captian, on a ship that later gets hijacked by the pirates of Somalia. As they are left fighting for their lives they confront if love truly can last forever…? But does it get too late?

The author, in himself, has grown up a lot as far as the writing is concerned. For, I would also term this book as one of his best works till date. Among all these wonderful elements of the book, the book also has its flaws. At places, the speed at which the story moves seems very slow or maybe too fast; ruining the speed at which a reader reads and grasps a story.

The author has been always known for giving fresh air to the readership market arranging for something new and interesting to offer and he doesn’t disappoint at all. Instead, he does his best in redefining love in the hearts of the readers. For this wonderful concept and wonderful writing style, I am sure for this book and the author going long ways.

If this is the way an author improves, I would love to wait for more from the author and wish the author loads of luck. And to all you guys, reading this article right now, go and grab the book and his previous ones from the bookstores!!


Love lasts forever by Vikrant Khanna: a review

A bestselling author of two novels, this being his third; the title itself gives a tangy feeling of a tale of marriage! Marriage? Well! The title says- ‘Love lasts forever…only if you don’t marry your love’, now does that give you a hint of anything? Vikrant Khanna, in his third novel pens down something different, something interesting as he welcomes you all to the world of Love!

On the back cover- So you think your love can last forever…? Get married! Eighteen-year old Ronit falls madly in love with Aisha the moment he meets her at his graduation day from a naval college. He believes he has found his perfect soul mate, and come what may; his love for her will last forever. Seven years later, he gets married to her. Big mistake! A week later, he completely hates her and believes she has turned into a devil. But his perception about love and life change when he hears the poignant love story of Shekhar, his captian, on a ship that later gets hijacked by the pirates of Somalia. As they are left fighting for their lives they confront if love truly can last forever…? But does it get too late?

Characters- Talking about the characters, couples Ronit-Aisha; Shekhar-Sikha, friends Joe Singh, Rajiv and Swati and a brother, pestering family and everything gave the book its flavor. The author has done his best in describing his characters and giving clear importance to all. Bringing and exiting them at much needed places giving the book its exact needed pace.

The atmosphere inside the book was quite nice. Turning from a grey sky and soothing winds, to a fiery hot sun and then the winter. The author has described all these moods in perfect way which made the book an interesting read for all the readers. The cover of the book, giving out a soothing green color teamed up with the title makes this book an attraction.

When the story starts, one’s interest gets piqued up and they get eager to know what is to happen next in the story. The chapter division was also perfect and the author has very efficiently named the chapters with the date and place. The travelling from past and present has been very smooth too.

But the only hitch with the book seemed to be the pace of the story. At places, though the fact that the story was interesting, it felt that the author has stretched a few things. Fiction was a tad too much (according to me) that some scenes seemed to be over exaggerated as compared to the reality.


The smooth transition, the story plot and the end surely keeps the reader interested though they feel slow at points. A few twists and a fast pace would’ve taken the book to a whole new level. As of now, I would rate the book 3.75 out of 5.