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Showing posts from August, 2019

Book Review: The Madness of the Monk by Anuj Tikku

The Madness of the Monk by Anuj Tikku is a short book that reveals seven secrets of life. Don’t worry it is not based around The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma. Rather, it is an interesting book. The story kicks off when the author Anuj Tikku is stationed at Dharamshala, a famous tourist place in North India, also famous for Tibet migrants who live in India.

There, in hope of meeting the head Lama, Anuj stumbles upon Tenzing, a monk. By all means, Tenzing looks strange but when their encounters turn into meetings and gossips, Tikku learns a lot about life. There are seven secrets, it is better if you read the book to get all the secrets. This book review will not open up the secrets, yes they are based on life, and if taken seriously one can achieve much more than just being extraordinary.
Another aspect of the book is exploring the nooks and corners of Dharamshala. The author has taken time to explore places with various people. Also, one political fact comes out that as …

Author Highlight: Shashank Sharma Discusses his New Book ‘Poetic Howl 2’ and Stories from his Life

We are back with another author interview. Today, with us, we have Shashank Sharma – the author of ‘Poetic Howl 2’. Here, he talks about his journey as a poet since young age and his latest collection of poetry. He would also be offering some great insights and tips into writing poetry.
Shashank, what attracted you to poetry? As it's a trend among new young writers to write more about love and college stories?What made you to choose something different? I have always been attracted to simplicity and poetry, of all, is an art of putting forth the deepest and most complex philosophies in the simplest words. Hence, I have been in love with the idea of writing poetry since childhood.
And I do write love poetry but not often as I feel it’s an over-explored topic by almost every writer out there. I am more into writing about life and it’s thousand other shades. Do you read poetry? Is there any poet who influenced you heavily? Yes, I do read poetry mostly to improve myself and to learn …

Book Review: The Missing Husband by Vijay Medtia

The Missing Husband seems like an apt title for a crime thriller, and when I first took up this book I thought that it is going to be another 'The Silkworm' show, where I had met my famous fictional detective spy, Cormoran Strike. Well, lucky this time, got to meet someone as Byzantine as Strike.

Well, this novel by Vijay has an Indian detective (Personal investigator) Abhay Chauhan. He sounds everything but grave. Well before getting into detective line, he was in the Mumbai police force, but left it, as he believed that he was a wrong fit there. He deemed them as donkeys.
Like many international crime thriller bestsellers, this novel's hero, too, is full of some basic aspects needed to sound an interesting spy. For all those reasons, he is handsome, well-built, had dull childhood, orphaned, unmarried, and rude. I am sure you will love him for his rudeness.
The story kicks off with a not-so-big issue. A big business family in Bombay: Fernandez’s. The time is 1995, the ti…

Book Review: Travelthon Tales by Anuj Tikku

Travelthon Tales by Anuj Tikku is an interesting read. More precisely, it is not a boring travelogue or travel diary of a random tourist, rather, a book with stories of varied backdrops. The collection, in all, has 13 riveting short stories that the author heard or came across while travelling around the world.


As you begin drowning in the book, one fact ossifies that Anuj Tikku is a well-travelled celebrity. Through these stories, Anuj just not takes his readers to places but also introduces them to the reality, history, and life insights of others that we do not get to see when we are confined in our homes.
In the story, 'A Tour Guide's Day', he exposes the everyday struggle of a tour guide of Chittorgarh. How that guide was excited to have a big client for the day so that he can pay the school fee for his daughters. On the back of the Rajput history, and with mean traits, the guide puts all efforts to bewitch his client of the day. On the other hand, the traveler gets …

Book Review: Poetic Howl 2 by Shashank Sharma

Poetic Howl 2 is a lengthy and healthy book on poems and prose. Generally, poets or prose writers express themselves in one language, well this time Shashank Sharma has thrown himself out of his comfort zone by writing this collection, with equal élan, in two languages simultaneously – Hindi and English. That’s a commendable job he has done. The book is presented into two segments – short poems 30 seconds read, and short stories in & as poetry (2 minutes read). In total there are around 60 poems and prose.

Shashank Sharma’s talent for contemporary poetry and puzzled prose is undoubtedly best in the country. If this work presented on social media in a serialized form, he is sure to fetch a great fan following. As the book claims ‘fresh collection’ – indeed the content of the book is so relatable and fresh in its approach that as a reader, you would be compelled to steal some of the content for your personal glory on WhatsApp or FB.
The collection is thematically aligned, from pers…

Book Review: Shhh! Don’t Talk About Mental Health by Arjun Gupta

Before getting into ‘its and buts’ and ‘sneak peaks’, let us announce that ‘Shhh! Don’t Talk About Mental Health’ by Arjun Gupta is a powerful psychology book. It is not a self-help book. Mental health is the core of all sorrows and happiness in our lives. It is like the main engine of the train. But, sadly, in India and in many underdeveloped or developing countries, mental health is not taken in good spirit. It is discarded as something unusual and unwanted. This proposition, alone, makes the sufferer go wild and down and dull in all spheres of life.

So if you think that mental health is just a combination of two words and it can be gauzed and described in one simple definition, you have a wrong perception about it. It is way beyond and holds far-reaching effects on our minds and hearts. The book opens up with the story of Yashasvi, a young student in Bangalore, something unexpected has had happened with him and he is down in the alley of critical depression. He comes out of that …

Author Highlight: Famous BJP Spokesperson Sanju Verma Discusses her New Book ‘Truth & Dare – The Modi Dynamic’ and Stories from her Life

We are back with another author interview. Well, today, we just not have an author but also a dynamic, multi-faceted and a popular TV personality, where she actively participates as BJP spokesperson. Recently, she has written a brilliant book on Modinomics. In this interview, she talks about her book, ‘Truth & Dare – The Modi Dynamic’ and some interesting facts about the current political facts. Stay on...while we chat with her.


What would you like to convey through this documentary kind of book on Modinomics? The main aim is not to simply convey the message of Modinomics to the present-day generation or the millennials and neo-millennials, also to make sure that there is an all-inclusive book that captures all the achievements of the Modi government in last five years. Someone had to tell the motivating story of Modinomics, which is a model that is both unique and revolutionary in its approach. Therefore, I decided, that someone had to be me – as I am an economist and an ardent …

Book Review: A Village in Garhwal by Ruskin Bond

There is no one better than Ruskin Bond to give you deep insights about the life in the Himalayan foothills. He lives in Mussoorie and thus knows the up and down of the hills, nearby and the farthest. You must have read many Ruskin Bond stories on the lives and culture of the Himalayan people living in Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh. Well, this short story, A Village in Garhwal, takes you into Manjari village of Garhwal region. The author spends four days in the village, he was taken there by one of his friends Gajadhar. This village Manjari is located twenty-five miles away from Lansdown, a famous tourist place and center of Garhwal Rifles.

It takes two days to reach this village from the author’s native place. One needs to travel first by bus from Lansdown and then walk for five miles. The village is situated up the Nayar River – a tributary of the Ganges. One morning the author wakes up to the loud vociferous sound of Cicada. This sound reminds him of factory buzzer. The author …

Story Summary: Gopal and the Hilsa Fish

Gopal and the Hilsa Fish is a short story covered in the NCERT Class 7 English Textbook Honeycomb. The story is funny in its tone and nature, and presented in the comic form, not in PDF or simple word format.

Before you get into the realms of the story, you must know that Hilsa is a popular fish, found in rivers of India. It's mostly sold during monsoon season. In the story, the season is probably of monsoon. In the kingdom, everyone seems talking about the Hilsa fish.
Fishermen catching no other fish in particular, but only focusing on Hilsa fish. Even in the market, fish merchants selling Hilsa in great gusto. They are offering even discounts and other hacks to lure customers. The height of popularity reaches inside the king’s palace, even the ministers and courtiers found gossiping and discussing Hilsa fish. It is like, Hilsa fish seems to be an important topic over other state affairs.
So much stupidity all around. This angers the king. He wants that to be stopped. The king i…

Author Highlight: Dr. Sarika Jain Discusses her New Book ‘SHE’ and Stories from her Life

We are back with another author interview. Today, with us, we have Dr. Sarika Jain– the author of ‘SHE’. In this interview, she talks about her writing aspirations and the route to getting her books published. Stay on...while we chat with her.
How did you choose the title? I always wanted to write something on girls and women, as I get to read every day in the newspaper that in India and across the world females are raped and are killed before birth. They are tortured and are burnt for dowry. Many girl children are forcefully married and are compelled to sacrifice their dreams at an early age. They become the victims of honour killings and domestic violence everywhere. Girls and women are always discriminated, broken, ill-treated, hurt, belittled, and abused in their daily lives, so I chose the title for my debut book as – SHE; where SHE is described as ‘Stop Hurting Me Every Day’. I chose the same because whenever I wondered about the pains and sufferings of girls and women, I thoug…

Character Sketch of Nakoo in the Cricket for the Crocodile by Ruskin Bond

Nakoo is a famous animal character from Ruskin Bond’s story ‘Cricket for the Crocodile’. Since the crocodile Nakoo has been shown an integral part of the ambience and setting of the story, it is better to refer it like a human. Though in the story, he does not speak or converse with other animals and humans, but he is well capable of thinking. He is able to think about what is bad and good for him.

He lives in a shallow river, which is near or adjacent to a playground where often children and their fathers play with other teams. Two prominent teams that often play there are the village and the town team.
Nakoo is often referred as Nakooji by many children and others who come there to play. It means people respected him. But in reality, people feared him. Nakoo is bored with eating fish, he now longs to have juicy human flesh. Often he eyes to grab one or two human fielding near the river. But in the story, we see no such instance that he literally attacked any human in greed. He seem…

Book Review: Until You Come Home by Mridula Bajpai

Until You Come Home by Mridula Bajpai is a powerful novel about love, war tales, family bonding, and sentiments and memories of lost ones. The narrative of the novel is done by a single voice. However, at its core, the novel covers two different stories and they are connected in more than one ways.

As the novel kicks off, we keep seeing the mentioning of Capt. Uday Sharma. The main narrator of the novel is Mrinalini Sharma. Well, Capt. Uday Sharma was the ‘Mama’ of the author. She lovingly refers him as Uday Mama. The strange fact is that Mrinalini never came across Uday. Why? But still, she keeps him throughout the narration.
Capt. Uday Sharma was very young when he joined the Indian army as an officer. Just after passing out from the academy, he was sent to fight the Chinese Army at Se-La Pass, in northeast. The time was of 1962 war with China. Unfortunately, due to some reasons, he could not come back home. What were the real reasons that he couldn’t come back can be known only an…

Author Highlight: Saurabh Kudesia Discusses his New Book ‘Aahvan’ and Stories from his Life

We are back with another author interview. Today, with us, we have Saurabh Kudesia – the author of ‘Aahvan’. In this interview, he talks about his writing aspirations and the route to getting his books published. Stay on...while we chat with him.
What made you to write a novel in Hindi?I started writing Aahvan in English as early as 2009. After spending more than 8 months and completing almost 30-40% of the book, I realized that I am not able to express the ancient characters in their true colors particularly when using Sanskrit text/references. The difference in the impact was so profound that I decided to junk the English version completely and switched over to Hindi. What inspired you to write this book? Any tales to tell…I was always fascinated by the art of writing and its ever-lasting impression on the readers. It was my deep curiosity about the Mahabharata that triggered the whole idea of this book series in 2003. It took me another 15 years to research the subject, collect the …

Book Review: 14 Works by a 14 Year Old by Nikhita Makam

14 Works by a 14 Year Old by Nikhita Makam is an inspiring work. As the title indicates both – the number of pieces in the book and the age of the author. Nikhita is a school-going author and at this age coming up with a well-written book is a thing to note and appreciate. This book consists of 14 pieces – a mix of short stories, poems, and prose.

Whether it is a story, poem, or prose; the author tried to convey some or other message successfully. The story about an unusual dream of a girl manages to stir elements of horror in the story. And the prose about that unsatisfied tree is something that represents us in current times. No matter what we get, we forget to show gratitude. That's a bad virtue.
The poem about the wind was beautiful and it shows how the wind is related to us in various sorts of circumstances. It helps in spreading a lot about one another silently. That was an amazing piece of work. Writing and editing are fantastic. However, a close look will make you underst…

Book Review: Love in Siesta by Avik Gangopadhyay

Love in Siesta by Avik Gangopadhyay offers a different set of short stories. Throughout the anthology, which consists of eight stories, the author has tried to delve deep into some terrific and profound human feelings and traits that are often associated with love, lust, betrayal, and passion.

Some of the stories have primitive backdrop, the days of clan and tribe, but love was everywhere, and at all times. This collection strongly points out that love is not a modern theme, ever since the humans have gained access to their feelings, love and passion have been consistently driving their desires. Love is the strongest desire a human can ever have. It will be wrong to say that only love is the strongest feeling – however as you read initial stories, like ‘The Lost Yearn from the Charnel House’ and ‘The Primeval Lust’ – it evidently becomes clear that for the possession of the love a lover can go to any extent of zenith and nadir.
These stories are not that we get to listen now and then…

Author Highlight: Preeti Pathak Discusses her New Book ‘Enrich Life’ and Stories from her Life

We are back with another author interview. Today, with us, we have Preeti Pathak – the author of ‘Enrich Life’. Preeti Pathak, the founder of Empyreal, is well known for her soul-stirring debut book, 25 Essentials To Happy Living. She is a force to reckon when it comes to mentoring and counselling people for enriching their lives. Today, she talks about her journey as a writer and about her second book, Enrich Life. Stay tuned…while we chat with her.
Do you mind if you could tell our audience a bit about your organization Empyreal? Through my journey of life, I realized that life is not complicated but we complicate it by our own self for the Self as well as for others. Being a people’s person, from an early age, it gave me immense satisfaction to guide and facilitate people to see the obvious and not-so-obvious for a balanced, happy and enriched life. With this vision, Empyreal was formed. To help all – empower their real self through my blogs, books, and interactive sessions & …