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Showing posts from August, 2018

Book Review: Sea Prayer by Khaled Hosseini

Khaled Hosseini's books are known for evoking emotions and breaking heart as they are so powerful with their themes and stories. The author shot into fame immediately after his first novel 'The Kite Runner' that delves deep into the political and cultural landscape of Afghanistan. That book took us to that time when this small country, laced with natural beauty and peace-loving people was dragged into the battlefield by Soviet first and then it was Taliban that robbed whatever seemed to be left out. The nation is still in pain and humanity seems like a joke over there, in fact wherever there is war humanity goes for toss.

Subsequently, in his later books, 'A Thousand Splendid Suns' and 'And the Mountains Echoed', the persistent theme that we see is the lives of Afghani people. He has well-represented the plight of his people.
Now coming to his fourth book, that recently got released, Sea Prayer is about the pain and suffering of refugees from war-torn Syri…

Book Review: Zidd by Hetansh Desai

Zidd by Hetansh Desai is a coming-of-age (Bildungsroman) novel about two boys hailing from contrasting backgrounds who meet later to change the equations of fate.

A close look reveals that the novel doesn’t get into any specific skin of genre that readers come across every day, for example, sci-fi, adventure, chic-lit, history, romance (though it is partially). On a plus side, the novel has various themes and layers and the author has limelighted them one by one in a fantastic way.
The story opens with winter of 1999 that time our lead character Vihaan is just nine years old and is traveling on a train with his tiny family. Vihaan comes from a better-off family. His father runs a departmental store in Rajkot in Gujarat. Mainly the backdrop in the novel is of Gujarat. While on journey, his father is worried about the sale of kites in the coming festival. Vihaan suggests an idea and it worked miraculously for his father. His father is of the opinion that one should be able to think big…

Book Review: DareDreamers by Kartik Sharma & Ravi ‘Nirmal’ Sharma

DareDreamers by Kartik Sharma and Ravi ‘Nirmal’ Sharma starts with Rasiq, an IIT and IIM graduate, who initially is obsessed with leading the rat race. He works as an investment banker in Mumbai and receives fat salary. According to the rat race, he has everything he could think of i.e. growing financially strong, sheds off the education loan, buys a luxury cruise bike, lives in a posh flat in Mumbai, and also has a girlfriend named Ruchika, and most importantly his parents are happy with him.

The other side of the coin is that in achieving this he lost himself. His relationship with Ruchika goes sour because of lack of time for her. Also, in between to the current time, runs a story of France. He went to France for three months on a cultural exchange program when he was a student in IIT Delhi. That tour instilled a change within him but probably he didn’t know it or kept it suppressed because of the rat race. So far, you guys believed that this is a story of Rasiq, he is the protagon…

Book Review: The Summer of the Beautiful White Horse by William Saroyan

The Summer of the Beautiful White Horse by William Saroyan is a short story highlighting the importance of honesty and trust even in the face of greed and hedonism. The story features two Armenian boys named Aram and his elder cousin Mourad. They belong to Garoghlanian tribe which is, across the world, famous for honesty and trustworthiness.

One early morning when the world is still asleep, Mourad appears at the window of Aram with a beautiful white horse. Aram cannot believe his eyes, as he loves horses and to ride a horse is his life’s most precious dream. Well, the problem is that their tribe is too poor to afford any kind of horse and above it the tribe is also famous for honesty and rectitude. Thus, there are no possible ways that they can steal such a beautiful horse. Their tribe can be made to do any wretched crime but stealing.
Mourad is aware that Aram loves horse riding. Thus they both move on the horse into the wild remote vineyards. Aram soon finds out that Mourad has stol…

Book Review: Ranga’s Marriage by Masti Venkatesh Iyengar

Ranga’s Marriage by Masti Venkatesh Iyengar is a short story based on child marriage ideology. The story takes place in an unknown village named Hoshali in the state of Mysore. Initially the narrator spins tales about his village – he talks as why his village is hidden from the world and the British government workers as well as Indian Babus don’t care a bit to make it appear on the map.

The second part of the story features Ranga (full name Rangappa) and his ideology towards marriage. The story is set when India wasn’t independent and the culture of English-speaking was negligible. Well, the story goes back by ten years. Then, Ranga – the village accountant clerk’s son is sent to Bangalore for studies. When he returns home after six months, people gather around his home to see changes in him. Well, they don’t find any changes, thus leave disappointed. The narrator is neighbor to Ranga’s house. Ranga does not forget his manners – he says Namaskar to the narrator. Later one day, Ranga…

Book Review: The Bicycle by Dash Benhur

During school time many students, one generation after another, must have gone through a very popular story about called The Tribute, in which Babuli passes his inherited land to his elder brother as a tribute. Well, many might not still know that the writer of that story was Dash Benhur. The name sounds foreign, but he is an Indian writer. His real name is Jitendra Narayan Dash, but he writes under the pseudonym of Dash Benhur.

There is another famous story by the same story, widely read in the Indian schools. The name of the story is ‘The Bicycle’. The story is about an eleven-year-old school-going boy named Mike. He lives with his parents, the family is happy despite being poor. Mike’s father works as a carpenter and his mother as a homemaker.
Mike hikes for around one mile every day to reach his school. Not knowing much about his parents financial limits, Mike asks for a bicycle on his approaching birthday. On that bicycle he can go to school, saving his as well as his father’s t…

Author Highlight: Medha Nagur Discusses her New Book ‘The Last Seychelles Flame’ and Stories from her Life

We are back with another author interview. Today, with us, we have Medha Nagur – the author of ‘The Last Seychelles Flame’. In this interview, Medha talks about her writing aspirations, the route to getting her book published, and her inclination towards romance. Stay on...while we chat with her.
What motivates you to write? To be frank, seeing my name on the book cover itself is the biggest driving force! But on a serious note, the stories that have been resting in my mind needs to be grubbed out effectively time-to-time to have peace of mind. Yes, it’s always a difficult task to keep yourself motivated to sit down and write your heart out on daily basis, but I guess if you have the zeal within then you can’t really find excuses. How do you handle the response of this book? So far the response has been amazing. In fact, it’s overwhelming to see my book being accepted both by critics and readers with open hearts. However, I have received a couple of reviews wherein the book has been …

Poem Summary: Rain on the Roof by Coates Kinney

Rain on the Roof by Coates Kinney is a beautifully written poem about the beauty of nature i.e. the magical effect of rain on one’s mind. In this poem, the poet brings alive the effect of rain’s pitter-pattering on his mind and heart, as well as old memories of his life when he was a child. Let’s read and analyze the poem stanza by stanza.

When the humid shadows hover Over all the starry spheres, And the melancholy darkness Gently weeps in rainy tears, What a joy to press the pillow Of a cottage-chamber bed, And to listen to the patter Of the soft rain overhead!
Through this stanza, the poet describes the rain scene at night. In the starry night when dark clouds gather for rain, at night (referred as melancholy darkness) rain falls on the earth softly. For a poet, the sound of the rain is a source of joy, thus he presses his face to the pillow and listens to the heart-soothing pitter-patter of the rain falling on the roof of his small cottage.
Every tinkle on the shingles Has an echo in the he…

Author Highlight: Samura Discusses his New Book ‘Semmaari (A Lamb’s Gamble)’ and Stories from his Life

We are back with another author interview. Today, with us, we have Samura – the author of ‘Semmaari’. In this interview, Samura talks about his writing aspirations, the route to getting his book published, and his inclination towards cultural heritage. Stay on...while we chat with him.
What motivates you to write? Death of our beloved APJ Abdul Kalam moved me to write. I have always been keen on creative writing. I used to write small poems in whenever I feel like writing and I used to not focusing much on it. Like any Indian youth, I pursued my engineering and have completed 20 years now. But, the death of APJ stuck my inner side and questioned my existence on earth and how I wasted my creative talent. His simplicity and impactful speeches moved me and set fire inside me. I decided to do something before I die. That’s how my writer chapter has started. How do you handle the response of this book? I look at them as tool to sharpen my writing axe. I have received good, constructive a…

Story Summary: In the Kingdom of Fools by A.K. Ramanujan

In the Kingdom of Fools by A.K. Ramanujan is a popular Kannada folk tale. The story is about a strange kingdom where its king and ministers act as fools profoundly. In comparison to other nearby kingdoms, their working methods and operations were child-like and foolish in nature. Once they decided to go against the phenomenal of day & night. They passed the order of calling day as night and vice versa. And people of the kingdom were forced to work at night and sleep during daylight.

Once a guru and his greedy disciple arrived to the kingdom, they found it weird that in the daylight people were fast asleep and the streets were deserted. Also in the city, they found that everything cost same, be it food or clothing. They both enjoyed sumptuous food for some days together. Well, one day the guru took leave by saying that this is the kingdom of fools and anything can happen here. You cannot really trust fools. While the disciple, being greedy about food, did not heed his words and de…

Author Highlight: Viswanatha Discusses his New Book ‘Life Know-How: Sensible Advice to Live Life to the Fullest’ and Stories from his Life

We are back with another author interview. Today, with us, we have Viswanatha– the author of ‘Life Know-How: Sensible Advice to Live Life to the Fullest’. In this interview, Viswanatha talks about his writing aspirations, the route to getting his book published, and his inclination towards self-help guides. Stay on...while we chat with him.
What motivates you to write? I like to help others and writing a book is one way of helping people.I also feel writing is therapeutic to me. How do you handle the response of this book? I am grateful to everyone who understands the advice given in the book and applies it in real life. I will be thankful for the feedback. Why did you choose to write a self-help book? Isn’t it challenging for you? I started writing some notes on important life topics for my daughter.The notes looked good enough to me and I decided to share it as a book for others. That is how the self-help book came into existence. It was challenging to find the important topics t…

Book Review: Life Know-How: Sensible Advice to Live Life to the Fullest by Viswanatha Reddy Thalakola

Life Know-How: Sensible Advice to Live Life to the Fullest by Viswanatha Reddy Thalakola is a handy self-help book. This book stands out from other self-help book because of its friendly and casual tone – while reading it you may feel that a friend of yours is sitting around you and giving valuable advice to you about how to proceed in life.

If you are into self-help books reading, you will surely realize that it’s not a warts and all book which relentlessly advocate readers to pursue happiness, success and wealth; in fact this book, unlike others, provides another stance at achieving a good and valuable life.
According to the gist of the book, living life to the fullest should be a basic proposition for every human. Ironically, it is not, and we humans spend all our life to this cause – sometimes it seems like an eternal quest. Well, if you ask someone what stopped you from living a good and meaningful life? The answers will differ from person to person, because every individual on t…

Author Highlight: Manini Discusses her New Book ‘Mandodari’ and Stories from her Life

We are back with another author interview. Today, with us, we have Manini – the author of ‘Mandodari’. In this interview, Manini talks about her writing aspirations, the route to getting her book published, and her inclination towards mythology. Stay on...while we chat with her.
What motivates you to write? Writing to me is a gift of expression. At times when I write, I put down a strong notion which I didn’t know I had in me. The characters from my book start speaking in my mind and in my case they motivate me to write. How do you handle the response of your new book, ‘Mandodari’? The response to the book has been positive so far. It is going to be a month since it got published and I am waiting for more reviews to come in. ‘Mandodari’ being my debut, I am learning the dynamics involved in post- publishing. Why did you choose to write a mythological novel? I come from a family where we discuss literature, history and mythology with our morning tea. In my family, almost everyone h…