Every Seventh Wave

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It is the sequel to the novel Love Virtually. Readers of that first installment will know that we were left wondering what would happen with Emmi and Leo, two protagonists, at the end of that book. Once again Emmi and Leo are corresponding with each other via email. The format of the novel, written totally in emails just like the first book, is a very effective idea and it is very well executed by the author. The exchanges are very often short and fast, the conversation zipping back and forth; this makes for quick and dramatic reading. Without seeing each other’s faces, there is always room for misinterpretation and doubt; there’s a risk that one turn of phrase or sentence that is perhaps not quite clear in meaning could be misconstrued and thereby damage the bond that they share.

The words in the emails that Emmi and Leo exchange enable a strong impression of each of the two characters to form in the reader’s mind. I loved revisiting these two characters, and reading their exchanges once again; they are at times very witty and funny, at other times full of anxiety and uncertainty, and sometimes so beautiful and passionate, but always with that very strong emotional connection between them. I felt by turns sad, delighted, anxious, frustrated and more by the two of them as I read.

The author has created two characters with a strong dynamic between them that makes for compelling reading. The way the idea of what happens with ‘every seventh wave’ is incorporated into the story line is lyrical and apt. A word on the translation; it is beautifully done, I couldn’t fault it. If you read and enjoyed Love Virtually, I would definitely recommend reading Every Seventh Wave and continuing the journey alongside Emmi and Leo.

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Love Virtually

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I discovered ‘Love Virtually’ by Daniel Glattauer in Landmark’s romance section (I usually don’t browse books of this category, may be because I am always into thrillers). The way these browsing sessions yield up treasures is amazing!

It begins by chance: Leo receives e-mails in error from an unknown woman called Emmi. Being polite he replies, and Emmi writes back. A few brief exchanges are all it takes to spark a mutual interest in each other, and soon Emmi and Leo are sharing their innermost secrets and desires. The erotic tension simmers, and it seems only a matter of time before they will meet in person. But they keep putting off the moment – the prospect both excites and unsettles them. And after all, Emmi is happily married. Will their feelings for each other survive the test of a real-life encounter? And if so, what then?

‘Love virtually’ is a novel which is composed entirely of emails. I have heard of novels based on emails before but ‘Love Virtually’ is a novel which touches more on the romantic side of the internet world, on people becoming friends with strangers whom they meet online and falling in love with them. It is about two people who meet accidentally over email and how they become friends and talk about anything and everything, how they start playfully flirting with each other and how things start moving closer after that. In some ways it is a novel of modern times, a novel of our age, where people have more Email / Facebook / Twitter friends than real-world friends and the dividing line between the real-world and the virtual world is getting blurred and is disappearing. The conversations between Leo and Emmi, the two main characters, are interesting and in some places quite fascinating. The ending of the book was surprising. If you are an internet / email person, you will be able to identify with this book and you will love it. I did.

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The kite flyers

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 Blurb: A humane tale of childhood friendships, painful severance and soaring, joyful redemption.  Kumar and Raman are champion kite flyers, and Lakshmi makes superb barfis. The friends live and play together in the idyllic environs on the shores of the Kaveri river, learning about life from the friendly peanut seller. Till a small mistake shatters their idyllic childhood and alters the course of their lives. The story follows the three friends through the Tamil Nadu of the 1970s, with its politics and society on the boil thanks to the language agitation orchestrated by the ADMK and its charismatic leader MGR, and brings alive the era while addressing universal issues of politics, caste and gender.

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About the author: Dr. Sharad P. Paul was born in England, and grew up in India. He runs a busy medical practice specializing in skin cancer surgery and divides his time between Australia and New Zealand. Sharad holds senior academic positions in skin cancer surgery at the universities of Queensland and Auckland. He has received several commendations for his work in the field of cutaneous surgery and skin cancer surgery. Sharad writes both fiction and nonfiction (recently, a widely acclaimed book on skin titled, SKIN, a biography); his previous works of fiction are Cool Cut (2007) and To Kill a Snow Dragonfly (2012) and The Kite Flyers (2013).

Review: A painful human tale of severance, soaring and joyful redemption showcasing the politics of caste, gender, and language, set in a small village along the Kaveri river in Tamil Nadu sets the theme of young NRI writer Sharad P Paul’s The Kite Flyers. The novel explores the threatened decline of ancient Tamil culture and language through eyes and lives of three young villagers – Kumar, Raman and Lakshmi. The novel’s highlight is that it also explores the lives of Eunuchs, the ‘third gender’, who are seen both as sources of good luck and misfortune. The story portrays life in Tamil Nadu, series of incidents that moved people of the state, their fight for anti-Hindi agitation. The novel is set in an idyllic surrounding where friendship blossoms between three youngsters through their shared love of kite flying, but they succumb to fate which throws each of them into their painful and dark world. With the presence of Eunuchs in the novel, author has made his characters more interesting.

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I got this book as a free review copy through a joint initiative of Harper Collins and Indiblogger.

Working from home

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From the beginning I have only thought about money, being financially independent.

I started earning officially in 2008 as a freelance writer. My first pay of Rs 500 is still pending, the publication house NEVER bothered to pay and I never bothered to stay there.

I should call it my BAD LUCK because wherever I worked turned defaulters on most of their bills, and paid me after 6 months of quitting the job. The money which freelance writing gives is not LUXURY but definitely essential for the expenses.

I always thought I got patience in genetics but no I was so WRONG. The companies for which I worked and didn’t pay me for months together are the REAL people behind the loads of patience I have now in me. Waiting and I go hand in hand.

I don’t even now remember when was the LAST time I took money from my parents for my use. I have my brother (RICH is his prefix) who is always ready to help me but I can’t keep asking him for money, because I am someone who has been paddling my own boat CLOSE to 5 years+.

I thank my STARS I don’t have to pay house rent, or my car loan because these 2 very basic requirements of life are my OWN. I never had a credit card, because credit card companies don’t offer their cards to people with no fixed income and I never took their calls anytime. I live on my debit card, and so, I am never in arrears. My banker never forces me to have a compulsory balance as I don’t have an account in any international or private bank. Nationalized Indian banks are fine with Rs 1000 as minimum balance which I always endeavor to have.

Working from home has its own perks than an office life. I work in my shorts or pajamas, I don’t have to bother about my looks, it’s not obligatory to be presentable. I don’t have to think about etiquettes. The amount of freedom and time which is REALLY important to me is agreeable but you’ll get screwed up with the money. PEANUTS I must say.

I don’t regret quitting my full time job as an assistant editor, all I was told to do was to write thank you emails to subscribers, event producers and financial supporters. This was NOT the kind of work I was looking forward to do in the position of editorial assistant.

I am ALWAYS in search for new writing/editing projects, anyone who needs help, is reading this; please don’t shilly-shally to get in touch with me.

A God in Every Stone

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Blurb: July 1914. A young English woman, Vivian Rose Spencer is running up a mountain side in an ancient land. She picks up a fig and holds it to her nose. Around her is a maze of broken columns, taller than the tallest of men. Nearby is the familiar lean form of her father’s old friend, Tahsin Bey, an archaeologist. Viv is about to discover the Temple of Zeus, the call of adventure and the ecstasy of love. July, 1915. An Englishwoman and an Indian man meet on a train to Peshawar. Viv Spencer is following a cryptic message sent to her by the man she loves, from whom she has been separated by war. Qayyum Gul is returning home after losing an eye at Ypres while fighting for the British Indian army, his allegiances in tatters. When they disembark the train at Peshawar they are unaware that a connection is about to be forged between their lives – one of which they will be unaware until fifteen years later when anti-colonial resistance, an ancient artifact and a mysterious green-eyed woman will bring them together again over seventy-two hours of heartbreak, frayed loyalties and hope.

About the author: Kamila Shamsie is the author of five novels, including Burnt Shadows which was shortlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction, and has been translated into over 20 languages. She has also written a work of non-fiction, Offence: The Muslim Case. A trustee of Free Word and English Pen, she grew up in Karachi and now lives in London.

Review:  A God in Every Stone, story set in Peshawar is about sides of British Indian rule and 1930’s Pakhtun uprising. The story is behind an artefact (a precious silver coronet), which is attempted to unearth in Peshawar by British archaeologist Vivian Spencer. Although the artefact is not discovered, Najeeb Gul Peshawari protégé does discover it. The story revolves around Vivian, Najeeb and his elder brother Qayyum.

Kamila’s novel is a page-turner in a classy sense of the word. The book is divided into two parts

1) The first is set in Britain and then Peshawar 1915

2) And the second half takes place in 1930.

I felt there was a legendary quality to her writing. Social responsibility and personal conscience pulled the author towards meticulously describing the struggle of subcontinent’s proudest people, against the British. Kamila Shamsie is a mature writer, her character development proves it. I liked the personality of Vivian Spencer who remains rational and surprising conception. For it is through Vivian we get a genuinely sympathetic view of the plight of the Pakhtuns, and the indifference of the British. Positioned during Mahatma Gandhi’s non-cooperation movement the novel is balanced, but frankly sensible, when it comes to critiquing the British. I hoped that this book would be a thriller but surprisingly it turned out to be strands of ancient history with a modern twist with discoveries. Not a disappointment for me. Shamsie’s authorial concerns are far nobler and more moral than that, and the reader can for that reason look forward to startling rewards.

4

Oh my smelly friend!!

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If you’ve got a friend with offensive body odour, how are you supposed to deal it? I used to have this friend, a girl in her 20’s, named Priya. When I first met her, I noticed a slight unpleasant smell, but I did not think much about it. It’s easy for me to sack and excuse these smelly public infractions because it is a common problem. Priya’s smell required no hyper caution. It got a little worse each time I met her, until it was a bad sour cloud of smell travelling with all the time.

I decided to meet up Priya for some coffee and cinema as she forced me for it. Priya surprised me by turning up in the afternoon; she asked if she could sleep on my bed as she worked the previous night till morning. I made a lame excuse, and felt like a jerk about it. I’m just not that kind of lie-teller, game-player; I’d rather just shoot straight. But I didn’t want to hurt her feelings, and I didn’t want my one decent piece of bedroom furniture contaminated with that awful smell and it was awful. It made me think of decomposing vegetables, and the smell of certain varieties of baby food. No, not in my bed.

We both went to the coffee shop in her bike, I sat behind her, and the disgusting odour was stomach-turning. And I meant this exactly.  I could feel it crowding around me like a lecherous ghost, clinging and stifling, licking at me, laying upon my skin. I wondered if I’d carry it with me into the coffee shop, wondered if people would smell it and think it was me. I felt the urge to vomit rising from those deep pink trenches under my tongue, and I swallowed hard. The mall was only five minutes away — I could hold it.

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At this rate, I didn’t think I could tolerate being around her again. She suggested subsequent get-togethers. I made more dishonest excuses, and couldn’t bear doing it. I talked the situation over with others. If I tell her she smells bad, her feelings are going to be hurt. There’s just no way they won’t be. Besides the fact that almost nobody likes to smell bad, I thought Priya might be especially sensitive to the issue, because she’s obese. She was already self-conscious about the size and shape of her body — I didn’t want to add another layer of shame.

I sent my life’s kindest e-mail my heart could compose. I told her I couldn’t stand the thought of hurting her feelings, and how hard it had been for me to broach the subject. I told her I was worried that the smell might be a symptom of something internal gone awry. I reminded her that as a fellow woman, I was mindful of keeping certain fleshy places clean and dry, powdering under breasts and bellies and such, and that I understood how some places on the body might be difficult to reach if you were obese. I offered her links to web sites that offered extra-long back brushes and other grooming products for large people. I reminded her that I wanted her for my friend. I told her I wanted her to have every opportunity for friendship and employment in her new community, and that I would hate to imagine anyone being distracted from her wonderful qualities by a mere smell that might be easy to take care of.

Priya did not take it well. She said she felt humiliated. She even remarked that it was ironic I should say these things to her, considering I did so much fat writing. Fat or thin, if you smell insufferably nasty, I’m going to tell you so I don’t have to lie about why I’m not hanging around with you anymore.

I might be really uncomfortable if someone told me I smelled. But if they delivered the message as kindly as I had, I imagine I’d sooner or later get over it and be able to face my friend again. If you don’t tell a person they smell, then they’re left to think poorly of you when you suddenly stop spending time with them.

It turned like a no-win situation, but there was a potential positive outcome. The message was heard, and Priya started doing things to eliminate her smell problem to make it possible that she wins in the long run.

This is written as a part of a contest conducted by Racold and Indiblogger. 

Well, That Stinks, All You Smelly People

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 I have had the unpleasant experience of working in close proximity to a co-worker who smelled terribly. In our group, I worked with a guy ‘Rahul’, who had a multitude of problems which never got addressed. He used to come into work dressed for the day, but then he began stockpiling the dirty smells.  I often felt shouting whenever he was around ‘What’s that smell boss’. He started showing up to work looking like he’s barely showered and wearing tattered, cranky clothes you’d save for painting a house. No one ever said anything to him which irked all of us but figured it wasn’t something to gripe about and that management would speak with him.

Worst started when he brought his clothes changing habit to office. This became extremely uncomfortable for the rest of us in the office, especially because we are all women. The office started to smell, and he has tons of button downs, pants, and scrubs that he hoards in there and we have never seen him take a bath or fresh up. He was lazy to clean himself as well as his clothes. He wasted a fair portion of his day dressed in his irritable unwashed clothes and sometimes even walked barefoot around.  This had been brought to our management when they did not do anything.

We women took the matter into our hands to solve the ‘smelly problem’. We anonymously sent a pack of soaps, deodorants, lotions and perfumes to his home as a first step which would have the dual effect of communicating the problem to him and enabling him to begin solving it. We began burning incense sticks (agarbati) in our work area on the pretext of daily prayers.  We kept a jar of Vicks VapoRub on our desks and (in) conspicuously dabbed it whenever he was around.  It took time but Rahul did change seeing our attitudes towards him. Needless to say, it was rude for us to do all this which turned out be quite overstated or obvious but we were happy it worked in everyone’s favor.

I am sure that the majority of people have faced it and if you have never had a co-worker, who stinks to high heaven or at least smells somewhat strangely, consider yourself extremely fortunate.

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This is written as a part of a contest conducted by Racold and Indiblogger. 

 

A click that changed my life!!!

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1997

I was never interested but it was my father and classmates who harassed me to create an email id. I hated computers as a subject it was a big insult if you didn’t use the computer. Internet arrived in 1995 but came to my house only in 1997 ending.

 1998

I created my first ever email id at hotmail.com. There were no social networking websites, but e-pal forums. I was quite famous in school so when I left I was asked by my juniors and the school staff for my email to keep in touch. Irony is that I never received an email from anyone who took my email id.

 1999

I lost my hotmail password and created a new account in Yahoo and chatting in Yahoo Messenger was a big craze. Chatting through internet was so costly that time. 50 Rs per hour/- .

 2000-2003

Google became my best friend during that era that taught me commerce. I don’t really remember doing anything else during that phase except learning more and more about / from internet resources. I was talking only to people on my email contact list, chat friends list.

 2004

I got introduced to Buddyzone, met my very dear friend Shrey (with whom I am still friends). I was invited by my very senior school contact to join Orkut which needed introduction and once I joined that place, I made new friends, got in touch with old ones. Orkut made me forget my long and eventful association with Yahoo.

 2005-2009

I met Vineeth, my brother through a forum in Orkut. He is someone I like a lot and I am proud to be his sister. I have seen him grow. He was a kid and now he’s an artist, singer, performer, naval architect. The same year, I closed all my yahoo accounts and shifted my email account to Gmail.

 2009

This year saw my debut on Facebook and exit from Orkut.

 2011

I made my first appearance in Twitter, the most influential network, with everyone I knew was here and I got really lured to experience the 140 character journey.

 2012

Blog happened to be one of the most beautiful things in my online life. I strongly needed an outlet of emotions, expressions, views but who would care to listen patiently if I speak all these things? Blog was an instant answer. I started this with the very idea of putting out everything that goes on in my mind. This is the place which is till date acting as my my best-friend, who can listen to anything about me patiently without feeling bored and today I feel content that there are few people who like to read what I write here.

 From 2014 – To the future

I quit Facebook. FB is something I didn’t get along till recently due to my loyalty towards twitter. Today, life is more on just 140 characters. 4600 tweets I don’t believe the count, a few years back I didn’t even have 10 of them. It’s something which keeps you connected to the happenings, first-hand information, better than Google search, it’s the biggest source of entertainment and news and it’s here to stay.

Yes I learnt more today from Google, Wiki, and many more websites than what I learnt in school or college. I came to know few of them better through Buddyzone, Orkut, Facebook & Twitter than I know them personally.

Spread Love & Happiness

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I often ask myself what is happiness? I can actually count how many times I’ve been genuinely happy.

Loving without condition, talking without intention, and giving without reason, caring without expectation is this happiness?

Sounds very bookish, but it works.

Attitude is not about being rude and arrogant. It’s influencing others with your words, actions, gestures.

I was very short tempered and often labelled that I have attitude and upbringing problem. This brought in my parents which was wrong for me. Nobody deserves to bear the brunt of my ill behavior, whatever mood I may be its mine and I am to be blamed for it. Ego, arrogance, and self pride I never had them in my life but I still don’t understand why was I so short tempered?

Circumstances, situations differ from day to day and person to person. The way everybody reacts or responds is different. When I can have so much of mood differences why cannot others and I accept everybody on their face value though I have not many people around me.

I got negative suggestions, still get them and will keep on getting them but I know what to accept and what not to. These suggestions actually made me realize who is the real one who actually cares for me.

I don’t believe in revenge because it doesn’t help anybody. You can hit the person but will that heal your bruises? No, never. Apart from lack of complaint I think I am blessed with quality of pardoning everyone who has done wrong to me. I actually remember every that person who has injured me mentally and whom I have forgiven and forgotten their pierces on me.

I feel I was born romantic just because first three alphabets of my name with word ‘romantic’ are same.

My permanent love – my mum, brother and my hero. I respect them and love them.

I care a lot no matter if that person cares for me or not. I don’t leave a single chance to express my care. I belong to the clan of people who believe in expressing love not just once but all the time. I don’t feel love is staged, exaggerated. Love is endless, eternal, and everlasting. It’s addictive.

I know I can’t change anyone by writing a few words here and I don’t expect anyone to follow all these immediately. But if you read the post and reached here, that means you did agree with what I wrote.

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Random Note

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T-shirt, kurta, shirt or whatever I wear, my hands are now full of bangles. I have them put on while eating, typing, cooking, earlier I used to remove them but now they are back in my hands like forever.

The Sitara Grand, a little way beyond my apartment complex, is this restaurant, which has home delivery too. Excellent, excellent oil free chicken biryani and coal cooked kababs. Food at pretty realistic prices with 10% discount through the year.

Yesterday was April fool’s Day. It reminded of the times in school, when we got great pleasure out of tricking fellow classmates.

I take in the summer has kicked into wholly and it’s time for me to be on a fruit and curd diet.

Google searche does lead to my blog page well.

Tofu paneer and soymilk contains plant estrogens called phytoestrogens, which compete with natural estrogen. This can throw off a woman’s natural ovulation cycle, cause damage to the uterus and hurt your unborn child.  YES, soy in any form can damage your unborn, so don’t eat anything which has soy.  (I just had a mental picture of it, awful vision of seeing a part of you getting harmed)

AND I totally have distaste to soy products.

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Letters & Notes

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The year was 2003 when I started to write handwritten letters. I never had any pen pal and I still do not fancy the idea of having one.  My love affair with hand written letters and notes started when I entered the world of writing essays and debates.  This was the time when sending your articles by email were not in fashion. I had to write pages of essays and debates on white plain sheets and send them to the magazine houses for publication. I was in college doing my BCOM when I received my first handwritten letter from a far place called Kathua in Jammu. I had an off white colored post box at home (still in use) and used to check it every day when I returned from college. Not that there was mail for me, but still it was fun looking.

I was the only girl in my class who had interest in stationery and my kit was (and still is) pretty purple colored with bright yellow papers, teddy bears and bright orange and pink envelopes, sparkly stickers. Weekends were letter writing days for me. I used to receive at least 3 letters weekly as a response towards my essays and debates. It would be right to call them as my FANS. Replying these letters was joy as I loved reading what people felt after reading my work. I was just 19 and appreciation and fame at this age was never expected.

I have a deep inclination for anything which is handwritten. I still write my essays (drafts) on paper/notepad before I finalise them and type them out in my laptop. Handwriting is such a torch into someone’s individuality and state of mind. Mine has been quite readable and easy to identify.

Handwriting talks a lot about an individual’s personality. Not knowing my handwriting is not knowing:-

1. That I can’t write straight lines on an un-ruled paper

2. How my fingers move across a page

3. Where I began and where I end

4. The way I see letters in my head

5. The I’s, S’s, M’s, and Y’s

I love pens, but only one pen at once. I change my pens almost every week but my uniball pen has been with me since long though I change colours – sometimes blue, black, red, pink, and orange. I don’t know how or when I first encountered the brand. It doesn’t skip, fade or smudge. It’s smooth to the touch, both in your hands and on the page. And most importantly, it looks good.

I equally love my notebooks, my present one is Shakespeare Personality Journal by Nightingale. It is my gifted partner in writing. The notebook and I are always together.

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It is atypical to receive any sort of handwritten letter these days’; my FANS have now turned e-savvy; instead of letters they send emails. The reply is now being typed rather than handwritten. Oh I miss writing notes and letters.

I personally love the genuineness of a hand-written note. There is something so special about not only receiving one but also writing one. But sadly, Thank you notes have been pushed to the wayside with tweets, wall posts, texts and emails.

Today I would like to thank all my blog readers with a personal thank you note which would make you all familiar with my handwriting and also give me the happiness of writing a personal handwritten note.

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Prisoner Jailor Prime Minister

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Blurb: India has a new Prime Minister but is Siddhartha Tagore the product of his genius or of his dangerous mind? India is on edge, as a subversive internal revolt against the Constitution and the threat of Jehadi terror of an unthinkable level, are looming on the horizon. Ringing Shivas damaru in and out of Parliament, a  sudden turn of karma catapults outsider Siddhartha Tagore – a conflicted genius, music maestro and prodigal son, with forceful views on China and Pakistan into national prominence as the head of the Opposition Alliance and finally as the newly elected Prime Minister of a disturbed nation. But buried secrets are being resurrected and threaten to expose the past. Twisted within the double helix of menacing politics and hidden lust, Prisoner, Jailor, Prime Minister is a scorching account of Siddhartha Tagore’s fascinating journey from Harvard to 7 Race Course  Road

About the author: Tabrik C is an Author & Political enthusiast. He is also a perfumer and internet entrepreneur. He has a post-graduate degree in History from St. Stephens College Delhi, where he was the president of the student’s union. His special interest lies in observing, analyzing, predicting and debating the rise and fall of political personalities and their influence on the destiny of nations and individuals.

Review: This is my year’s first political thriller written by an author unknown to me Tabrik. The story is a fast paced political thriller which kept me hooked to the book till the end. I liked the personality and character of Siddhartha Tagore, the protagonist that one can actually connect with him easily. The book turned out to be a page turner for me, with an expert plot applicable with today’s condition of the country with solemn ideas and assumptions. It created a multifaceted and terrifying world that didn’t let me out of the story till the last word of the last page. Tabrik’s writing style and narrative is worth the appreciation. I did not feel I am reading a debutant. Nicely researched and structured book. Tabrik’s Prisoner Jailor Prime Minister is undoubtedly one of the most sharp, level-headed and thrilling piece of literary debuts and I highly suggest it to the others.

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This review is a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now to get free books!

The other side

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Blurb: From a honeymoon in the hill that goes horribly wrong to an obsessed lover who wants his first love in life and in death; From a mentally deranged man who collects body parts of various women to stitch together his dream girl to a skeptic who enters a mansion of horrors to win a bet and much more, this book is filled with scenarios that are guaranteed to give you goosebumps and sleepless nights. ‘The Other Side’ is a collection of thirteen tales of the paranormal; a world that our eyes refuse to see, our ears deny hearing and our senses ignore the feel of. This is a book for someone who is brave enough to take up this invitation to journey through uncharted waters along with the authors, who were inspired by some bizarre experiences to pen down this work where the lines of reality have been blurred by the footsteps of imagination.

About the authors:  

The winner of the 2013 National Debut Youth Fiction Award and also the recipient of the YCOF National Excellence award in Creative Writing apart from being the first Indian author to win the coveted ‘Best Debut (Romance)’ title at the international Goodreads choice awards, Faraaz Kazi has been tagged as the ‘Nicholas Sparks of India’ by many and is rated amongst the top male romance writers in the country.

A pediatrician by profession, Vivek Banerjee is an author by accident.He lives in Saharanpur with his parents, obstetrician wife and two children. The pressures of his profession leave him with little leisure but he still finds time for his varied interests. An avid traveller, he has covered the length and breadth of the country in real life and the rest of the world in his imagination. A voracious reader, music lover, self-confessed geek and an amateur ornithologist, he would rather walk the road less traveled, given the time and opportunity.

Review: Thanks to Faraaz Kazi for the review copy in exchange of honest review. The Other side is an anthology by Faraz Kazi & Vivek Banerjee. The book consists of 13 horror stories which are supposed to blow your mind. The book is quite interesting with different stories on different concepts. The tales are about unforeseen events that happen around us. No doubt the authors were moved by strange experiences to write these 13 tales of varying paranormal incidences. Faraz Kaazi has done a good job of writing the epilogue and preface. The way he has told his own story kept me stuck to the book. Every story was not shocking, some had some twists, touch of reality and a few stories had comical endings. The stories are parallel to ghostlike incidents heard from elders and in villages.  I don’t prefer horror fiction as I hold an opinion that the usual horror movies seem all the same, I did not want to waste time in reading it. But I am glad to say that this book was astoundingly well written, it did not dishearten me. I welcome both the authors for creating a complete world, full of gloom and unspoken souls in this read. If you enjoy frightening stories, then you should read it and fright yourself with these 13 stories.

4

I am

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“Do not compare yourself to others. If you do so, you are insulting yourself.” ― Adolf Hitler

I am my own favorite. An individual who makes mistakes, laughs, cries, hurts smiles and loves. I am who I am through my joys, sorrows, heartbreaks, happiness and my loses. I climb a new step everyday in my life. Every good or bad, happy or sad teaches me familiarity of life. I am a student throughout life, not just in the classroom. Knowledge is all around me, waiting for me to learn new things and process new in sequence that will teach me during the balance years of my life. I am a person who had made many mistakes, but has the courtesy to learn from them. I am a person who laughs so hard that I have tears running down my cheeks. I am an emotional fool.

I like reading The Time, and watching romantic comedies. I like T20 format of cricket, eating breadsticks, and writing and have a big time crush on David Beckham. I value honesty and commitment in all relationships. I have mixed feelings about religion. I don’t have a name or form of my god but I communicate with him daily- he’s my father, my guardian, my light. I dislike saying “I am trying to find myself” because my identity is not lost, it just needs more exposure. Luckily for me, what I love to do and want to be helps me discover more about myself. I want to be a published author. I am not worried that I don’t know everything about myself. I am sure as I get older, I’ll figure it out.

You can tell me anything, I won’t act shocked and even if I am, and I will never betray your secret. I can see the difference between a fake smile and the real one. I easily turn snubbed if something I don’t like happens around. I am devoted and passionate about all that which is related to me from my books to people I love.