Friday, 31 October 2014

Review of 'Rainbow' by 'Aman Jassal'

Blurb:Love = Sex? Love+Sex=? Love-Sex=??? Sex-Love=????
This is not a book to teach you about love or how to get a beautiful girl to bed, rather it reveals how bad things can get if you don't set your priorities right. It's a story about the most explored life aspect ' Love' 'Sex'.
YUVI, a pleasure seeking boy, falls victim to the same notorious life facet called love. Simran's beauty sweeps him off from his feet and he leaves no stone unturned to seek her special attention.
As he falls in love, he also sleeps around with all the erroneous girls, and when his fate threatens to take his love down, he promises himself to stop all of this and come out of the wreckage … But then, his past deeds come back to his present, and that tears his life apart. What follows is an uneasy course of getting his love back on board.
The story reveals the life of today's youth, their friendships, feelings, priorities, and ineptitude to handle relationships while not forgetting their turmoil between the two critical facets of life: LOVE & SEX.
Love makes the world go round … Or is it Sex? Based on real life experiences and tea time gossips.

Verdict: ‘Rainbow – the shades of love’ is the first literary work of Aman Jassal. This book is a light read and is written in a youth’s perspective. The famous unanswered question was raised again in this book, is it love that keeps a relationship going or is it sex?

The cover design is ordinary and simple. The readers might ignore this book for its not-so-glorious cover among the n numbers gorgeous covers in this genre. The name sounds good but doesn’t go with the story. Though the author had tried to resonate the name at the end of the story but that is not enough and I would say there was lot more scope to do the same. The back blurb was not that exciting too and one can put the book after reading that. In short, the first impression of the book was not impressive.

The story is about a guy, Yuvi, a stud and an efficient flirt, who can score on every given chance. After his numerous flings and night stands, Yuvi falls for Simran, and the story goes on like that. Even after committing in the relationship with Simran, Yuvi doesn’t stop scoring and sleeps with every girl who gives him a chance from Simran’s cousin to his boss’s wife. After realizing the mistake and being pushed by the guilt inside it Yuvi decided to confess his past to Simran when the story takes a drastic turn and Yuvi has to face the wrath. To know what happens next, one should read the story.

The likable part of the story is the realistic characters. The author hasn’t tried to make them artistic and the mistakes they made or the way those characters converses are very much relatable. I would like to mention those chats while drinking is very much common among boys and would definitely attract youths. But the book lacks the surprise element. The end was good but predictable.
The narrating style of the book is simple and very much in the trend. The simple usage of words and the nice description of scenes can drag the reader’s attention. The contradiction in the protagonist’s head is also shown in a similar efficient manner. Though there are few scenes where the author had the scope to create the magic with his narrating style which was missing and the scenes became dull. I feel the story line was good but can be framed and told in a better way.

A better edited version of the book will surely hook more readers.  I would suggest the author to concentrate more on framing the story and the editing errors to make the novel presentable to the readers. I would recommend this book to those who can try their luck with a not so different light read.

Final Words: The realistic characterization and the simple narrating style gives the book a fresh feel. I appreciate the author for the attempt to convey a credible storyline with an unusual ending.

Title: Rainbow – The shades of love
Author: AmanJassal
Publisher: Teenage Publisher
Page Count:
My Rating: 3/5

Available at –

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Review of 'God is a Gamer' by 'Ravi Subramanian'

Blurb: Aditya runs a gaming company that is struggling to break even. A banker slips off a
highrise building, plunging to her death. The finance minister has made some promises
that he is finding hard to keep. The LTTE has unleashed terror in America that sends
the FBI on a wild goose chase, bringing them to Mumbai.
Enter Varun, parttime drug dealer and fulltime genius. He turns around the gaming
company before disaster strikes. Meanwhile, the investigators plunge headlong into
the shady world of bitcoins and the Dark Net, websites that only exist for illegal
transactions—drugs, sex and money. God Is a Gamer culminates in a stunning climax
where money means nothing, assassination is taught by the ancient Greeks, and nothing
is as it seems.

Verdict: ‘God is a Gamer’ is the first bitcoin thriller written by Ravi Subramanian. Being Indian’s one famous thriller writer, the author has presented a crime thriller covering a vast area from banking, gaming to ATM heist and bitcoin frauds.

The cover looks stunning and will automatically turn heads of the readers. As almost half of the incident takes place in the US, the white house in the cover seems relatable. Unlike Ravi Subramanian’s earlier books, this doesn’t have a mention of bank in the name. The name sounds interesting and the readers will appreciate the author at the end for the game he has played with the readers mind. ‘Indian’s No. 1 thriller writer’ tag in the cover will raise the expectation amongst the readers. The blurb was good and interesting too but doesn’t say anything about the story line.

The book starts with the heads of MasterCard and Visa, seeking help from an American Politician to avoid their loss in the Russian Market. As soon as the reader starts the book, they will understand that this book is also set with the back drop of a bank, just the name doesn’t have the term. The murder of a close aide of the US president will keep the readers hooked from the beginning. Loads of incidents follow, a top banker commits suicide, an ATM heist happens in New York openly and a senior banker dies in an incident. A few more similar incidents follows in the frequent chapters which will keep the reader busy and one question will linger in their head repeatedly, how are the incidents linked?

The bitcoin was mentioned in the first half of the book and has been described wonderfully. Even those who have never heard of the term, would easily go with the flow. The mention of the originals names of people from the CEO of Apple, the RBI Governor to the President of America gives the book a realistic touch. The author has quite efficiently harmed the plot and disclosed the exact amount of details which will keep the readers guessing till the end. As the book heads towards the end, it picks the speed and the readers can very well intercept that something big is coming their way at the end.

But the end was not that grand and not up to the expectation. The author has proficiently made the readers believe that they have found the culprit and the book is going to end the way the readers have anticipated. But the readers couldn’t find the answer of the question asked in the cover of the book, ‘Is revenge a crime’ until they read the very last page.

The frequent distribution of the chapters makes the book crisp but could also confuse the readers because of the frequent jump of scenes. I felt the author has introduced too many characters and couldn’t connect all the dots till the end. There were few unanswered questions and loose ends. After the initial introduction at the first half the bitcoin takes a back seat in the middle and hardly played any crucial part at the end. So the story line couldn’t match up with the tag bitcoin thriller.

Final Words: Ravi Subramanian has done it again with his new thriller and have mesmerized the readers from the core with his experienced writing. The speed of the plot, the vast area of crime it has covered and the unanticipated thrill towards the end, makes it a hit.

Title: God is a Gamer
Author: Ravi Subramanian
Publisher: Penguin
Page Count: 310
My Rating: 4.25/5

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Monday, 27 October 2014

Review of 'Ri - Homeland of Uncertainty' by 'Paulami Dutta Gupta'

Blurb: Ri – Homeland of Uncertainity – “People from this state sacrificed their lives for the sake of freedom for India but who knows about them? These selected chronicles of selected parts of the country, India, has always excluded us, and it hasn’t become self-sufficient yet. For half a century, independent India has only waited for some miracle to happen… and you still have hope?”
Trapped in the limbo between ideology and conscience, Manbha finds himself part of a terror outfit. An unexpected opportunity, anger, squalor and disillusionment –followed by armed combat and injury lead to the soul – searching that form the substance of this moving tale.

Verdict: ‘Ri – Homeland of Uncertainty’ is the adaptation of the national award winning film Khasi flim RI, written by Paulami Dutta Gupta. This book has no desperate attempts to make it entertaining and the authoress has concentrated on maintaining the theme strictly.

The cover has been taken from the movie poster where the faces of the main two leads with their uncertain impression indicate the dark content. The whole black color on the cover creates the perfect atmosphere for the reader to start a book like that. The word ‘Ri’ is a Khasi word, which means Homeland and this book says only about it. Nothing can suit the book better than this name.

The book is small and can easily be completed in one go. It starts very wonderfully with the description of the North east which maximum of us are still unaware of. From the beauty of the states in the north eastern region to the growing amount of terrorism in those states gives the book a head start. The book tells about a character Manbha, a talented young blood, who is leading a terrorist group for a mission which is assigned to him by his boss Steve, to free Meghalaya as a separate state from India. There is one more character Kyndiah, a dedicated police officer, who has sacrificed his family to serve his country.

Framed in the backdrop of a terror struck Meghalaya and the Bangladesh-India border, this story goes around the contradiction on the philosophy of Manbha and that of Emika, a journalist, in whose house Manbha was hiding after getting ditched by one of his team mates. The way the author has written the whole conversation is commendable. This book will force the readers to think from a terrorist’s point of view. The readers will certainly find their answers at the end which might throw them in a state of shock and will love the message lying inside the story.

The narrating style is lucid and effortless. Though I feel, some more descriptions at a few scenes will make this book more interesting. The chosen words are effective yet simple and helps to maintain the flow.

I loved the characterizations that will definitely take this story to a new level. But I felt that the author could have concentrated more on describing the characters. Those who have not seen the movie would surely face a hard time visualizing Manbha, Kyndiah or Emika. Though their characteristics are very much visible from their ongoing conversations which is a sign of a matured writer. The rich content will undoubtedly reach the hearts of the readers but the to the point descriptions might not entertain the mass.

Final Words: The author has done a creditable job in highlighting the life in the north eastern region and have penned down a gripping tale which will leave a lasting message amongst the readers.

Title: Ri – Homeland of Uncertainty
Author: Paulami Dutta Gupta
Publisher: Fablery
Page Count: 127
My Rating: 4/5

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Sunday, 26 October 2014

Review of 'Operation Mom' by 'Reenita Malhotra Hora'

Blurb: When you try to set your mom’s life right, be prepared to have your own turned upside down.
Seventeen-year-old Ila Islam has serious problems. There’s the angst of being an Ali Zafar groupie, for one. Then there are the extra layers of fat she owes to her Punjabi roots. Add to this, parents who have separated; an enthusiastic best friend whose idea of variety is dating three guys at the same time; and her mom’s best friend, Aunty Maleeka, whose good intentions and savvy ways throw up more problems than solutions – and Ila’s got her hands quite full.
When her mother flips out over her plans to stalk Ali Zafar, Ila decides she has had enough and sets out to create a few distractions to keep her mom busy. With a little help from BFF Deepali, Aunty Maleeka and Dev of the inviting chocolate pool eyes, Ila will have to brave everything from and OKCupid profiles to meeting handlebar-moustache colonels and middle-ages psychos, as she tries to set up the perfect parent trap for her unsuspecting mother.

Verdict: ‘Operation Mom’ is the third book by the author Reenita Malhotra Hora. The tag line of the book perfectly indicates that this book is going to be one fresh read.

The first thing that escaped my mouth after holding the book is gorgeous. Call it the color combination or the delightful design the cover looks affluent. The name seems perfect to me and the tag line, as I said earlier gives a hint of the story. After reading the blurb one can easily say that this book is going to be different and hilariously interesting. I can’t skip to mention the attendance of the famous application icons in the cover will definitely attract its user and mark it as a trendy book.

The characterizations are real, not literally but one can easily feel that those are not fictional but exists around us. From the names to the way they converse and the way the author has presented her characters, they will feel real to the readers. No unnecessary characters to confuse the readers neither any boring character which can affect the flow of the story. In short this author has used her experience in writing efficiently in creating jolly and feel-real characters.

The narrating style is trendy and entertaining. No reader can feel bored in any part of the story. From the very beginning the author is able to catch the perfect atmosphere for the book that will definitely help to hook the readers. At times I felt the narrating style a bit girlish, or a girl will find the narrating style more likable than a boy because the author has described about how a girl thinks in situations or reacts is situations. But I enjoyed the book thoroughly and laughed at the sense of humor of the author many times.

The story line is different and fresh. Being in the genre of young adult this book will surely entertain the young more. The story revolves around a girl named Ila who tries to add a bit masala in her mother’s life with the help of a friend and that is how starts the Operation Mom. In this quest they  finds some information which will shock them to the core and will turn Ila’s life upside down. The story line is uncommon but could have been framed in a more interesting way. The story ends in a happy note and will definitely bring a lasting smile on the readers face.

The narrating style is so strong that the readers are bound to ignore the flaws of the book. The author’s efficient sense of humor will entertain the readers till the end. If the narrating style has something more for the boys and if the twist in the end was a bit different I would call this book perfect.

Final Words: The mature narrating style, the hilarious conversations, the perky characters and the enjoyable story line will entertain the youth till the end. A must read for the young.

Title: Operation Mom – How I got my mother a life … and a man
Author: Reenita Malhotra Hora
Publisher: HarperCollins
Page Count: 234
My Rating: 4.5/5

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Saturday, 25 October 2014

Review of 'Fraudster' by 'R V Raman'

Blurb: There are people who will do anything to silence the ones who come in their way, those who will stop at nothing, including murder.

A young banker is found dead a day after she deposes before a commission investigating large-scale financial fraud...
A doyen of corporate India falls to his death from his south Bombay flat...
A high-security server room of a multinational accounting firm is hacked and the hackers aren't looking for just company secrets...

Illicit finance, high-stakes crime and vicious manipulation come together in this story of corruption, greed and treachery among corporate India's black sheep. Arresting, fast-paced and written by an insider from the corporate world, Fraudster will keep you on your toes till the very end.

Verdict: ‘Fraudster’ is the debut novel of R V Raman. Among very few corporate thrillers in India, this book would definitely set a mark for itself. The blurb is so interesting that any reader can pick this book for the arresting blurb.

The cover looks interesting and reminds me of a similar series by Ravi Subramanian. Being in the same genre and the same sort of target audience this cover will surely help the author. The name perfectly goes with the content where the whole story revolves around a fraudster. As I earlier said the blurb was so interesting that one can not drop the book after reading it.

The plot is a corporate thriller and revolves around higher corporate circles and renowned banks. Where properties are overvalued at 4 or 5 times and loans have been given on those properties.  The book starts with a murder of a girl, one of the bankers, which was toppled by the commission created to deal with the fraud. This gives the book a head start and the following two murders of two highly respected personalities of the corporate sectors, who are somehow related with the commission will keep the suspense alive. Inspector Ranade and Varsha’s (one of the protagonist) quest to connect the dots and find the fraudster and the killer is how the rest of the story goes.

The second half of the book was more interesting and the surprising elements in the end like the crazy car chase and kidnappings will give the readers a thrilling read. The narrating style is simple and goes with the flow of the story. The inside details of the corporate field and the hacking part is described wonderfully and anyone without prior knowledge of banking transaction or loans can easily enjoy the story.

The characterization was pretty ordinary and was unable to give a lasting effect to the readers. From Varsha to inspector Ranade, all characters seems pretty ordinary and straight to the point and it was the narrating style of the author which will keep the audience hooked. If the vision of the culprit was a bit clearer and if the author had concentrated on the description of the motive a bit more, I would have called it a perfect read. The author has very efficiently left all the clues open to the readers to keep the guessing game going on and one will definitely appreciate the author for framing such an enjoyable climax.

Overall this book has a good plot and a trendy narrating style which will keep the suspense alive till the end without dropping the speed except few places where the author has exaggerated the description of the corporate details.

Final Words: Author R V Raman has done a commendable job in his first corporate thriller and will entertain all sorts of thriller lovers with this book. It is certainly one of the best corporate thriller I have ever read and would give Ravi Subramanian a run for the money.

Title: Fraudster
Author: R V Raman
Publisher: Hachette
Page Count: 289
My Rating: 4/5

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Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Review of 'I was there' by 'Saptadeep & Mamta'

Blurb: Maansi, a simple village girl, trapped within the boundaries of family and honour, is in search for the answers to the queries that haunt her life. Reyaz, a medical intern, living under the burden of a complex relation, tries to understand a world that has failed to understand him.
Their paths cross, but so do their stars and death seems the only escape.
But what if death isn’t the end, but just the beginning of a journey that changes everything you know about yourself.
Unfold the pages to embark on a soul-stirring journey of love, magic, hatred and spiritualism that winds its way through the dusty lanes of Haryana, leaving behind answers that humanity have always sought for.

Verdict: ‘I was there’ is the first work of fiction by Saptadeep and Mamta. This book came to me as a bolt of fresh air. Kudos to the author for choosing such a less traveled path to start their literary journey. Writing a spiritual fiction for their debut novel is not a cake walk but they have proved their worth.

The cover looks simple and very much ordinary compared to the books of the same genre available in the market. If the cover was catchier or maybe designed in a better way, the wonderful content would've reached more readers. The title sounds different and gave a hint of the different content which I think is appreciable. The blurb seems interesting too.

I was quite shocked after reading the very first chapter because it was never expected. A girl, named Maansi, was unveiling her journey after death. The gate of heavens, the judgment, the unanswered questions, everything was fresh and new. The story revolves around Maansi, who was incidentally born as a girl in an uncouth Hariyana family and had to face the wrath for being a girl. Her life takes the worst turn when she falls for a young medical intern. The story goes juggling with her life after death and before death.

The narrating style was something that attracted me the most. The way these debutant authors had described each feelings of Maansi when she was facing the agony in her childhood or what was going on her mind when she was on the verge of meeting the God for her answers. The delicate yet philosophical way of narrating scenes takes this book to a new height. I appreciate the author’s imagination power because of the way they have described each and every details of  heaven, the way to the God or the how God actually looks. The chosen words are a treat to the reader’s eyes.

 The answers that Maansi seeks after her death will leave a lasting effect on the readers even after completing the book. The decision that Maansi takes or the questions that Maansi asks can easily be related to the reality and the readers will love the words of wisdom from the Almighty.

There were some loose ends which should have been tied up till the end and there were a few scenes where the stretched descriptions drops the flow of the story. Few editing errors are also spotted which can be ignored. Being a first timer I would say this two debutant authors have done a commendable job.

Final Words: This debut book of Saptadeep and Mamta will definitely enlighten the readers to the core and will answer many questions which we often seek from the God. The flawless  narrating style and the delightful message at the end makes this one of the best in its genre.

Title: I was there
Author: Saptadeep & Mamta
Publisher: Pen Point Publication
Page Count: 156
My Rating: 4.25/5

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Saturday, 18 October 2014

Giveaway of Operation Mom by Reenita Malhotra Hora

Timid Fingers with The Word Bite presents giveaway #3 | A copy of Operation Mom by Reenita Malhotra Hora

                                                            • Summary of the Book

Published by Harper Collins India, Operation Mom - How I got my mother a life and a man is the story of a Mumbai young adult who embarks on a mission to get her single mother dating again.

Ila Isham has a lot to worry about - the angst of being an Ali Zafar groupie and the extra layers of fat she has inherited from her Punjabi lineage. Add to this separated parents,an enthusiastic best friend, Deepali, whose idea of variety means dating three guys at the same time and Aunty Maleeka, mom's BFF, whose savvy skills throw up more problems than solutions.

Ila's life takes an exciting turn when she decides to hunt for the perfect partner for her mother. With a little help from Deepali, Aunty Maleeka and Dev of the inviting chocolate-pool eyes, she'll have to brave it all - from and Ok-cupid profiles to handlebar-moustache colonels and middle-aged psychos, if she wants to succeed in her quest!

                                                                • About the author

Reenita Malhotra Hora is a prolific journalist, Hora family concierge and fish taco connoisseur. Native Mumbai, she is currently based in Hong Kong where she presents Radia Television Hong Kong's award-winning storytelling show, Asian Threads, on RTHK Radio 3. Reenita is the author of 'Forever Young, Inner Beauty' and 'Ayurveda: The Ancient Medicine of India'

Participate in this competition. 
Follow the link embedded in the beginning of the post.
A lucky winner will be chosen and will be gifted a copy of the book 'Operation Mom' by Reenita Malhotra Hora published by Harper Collins

Friday, 17 October 2014

Review of 'An Ideal Wife' by 'Sanjay Grover'

Blurb: An Ideal Wife ---- Beware of what you wish for.
What happens when the technology savvy Dwarf God, one the driver of the Biggest God in Heaven, sets out to find an ideal Wife for a man on earth?
Seems like a simple thing for a god to handle, right? But there is the catch – God has never created a girl with all the qualities this man, Sameer, wants in his Ideal Wife. And now, to make matter worse, Dwarf God has to do it without using his divine powers.
Will he be able to find the girl? Will she be an Ideal Wife for Sameer?

Disclaimer: You can’t blame the author if you get married after reading this.

Verdict: ‘An Ideal Wife’ is the debut novel of Sanjay Grover. Can you imagine a man is writing a book named Ideal Wife but this author has chosen this subject for his debut work. The name in itself gives the hint that this book is going to be interesting because how can a Wife be ideal and that also for a man.

The cover looks bright with the perfect color combination of gorgeous yellow and soothing blue. The funky font on the cover gives the book the perfect flavor needed for a humorous book like this. I love the first appearance of the book which will definitely create an urge among the readers to know what the author has to offer.

The story is a brilliant outcome of the author’s imagination. The story starts in heaven where a Dwarf God played his story of how he earned respect after getting the post of god on his retirement day in front of aspiring gods. The dwarf god came in to earth to help one of his atheist devotee name Sameer to help him find his Ideal Wife and trapped himself in a promise.

Sameer, basically a good guy gained a habit of winning bets and landed himself in a bet with one of his colleague to find his Ideal Wife within a year. The list that contains the quality needed in his Ideal Wife make the technology shrewdness Dwarf God gasp for breath. But he has to find the girl for Sameer because God cannot break his promise. The story takes an interesting turn when Sameer gets married to his Ideal Wife and makes another bet to be happy for one more year with his wife. Why the author uses the tagline of ‘Beware what you wish for’? How can a god be landed up in jail? And did Sameer finally win the bet? To know these answer one must read this book.

The author has adopted a funny narrating style. His one liners and efficiently written anecdotes will make the readers enjoy the whole journey of searching the ideal Wife for Sameer. The characterization was good but I felt a few more descriptions will help them become visible to the readers.

I felt the end can be a bit more interesting and has been written in a hurry. The way the book started and goes till the end, the reader’s expectation will grow for the ending. But the ending was not up to the mark. Few editing errors are also spotted here and there which can disturb the flow of the story. Overall I enjoyed reading it because of its different plot and funny writing style.

Final Words:Sanjay Grover in his debut work has presented a different plot which will definitely attract the readers. I appreciate the author for offering such a wonderful message through such a humorous storyline.

Title: An Ideal Wife
Author: Sanjay Grover
Publisher: Good Times Books
Page Count: 175
My Rating: 4/5

Available At –

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

'Operation Mom' - a stunningly different story with a catchy name...

Reenita Malhotra Hora has again proved through her words that she is awesome in whatever she does. Be it journalism or be it any kind of fictional writing. Operation Mom has been another milestone in her life. Given the amount of readers who are used to reading chick-lit, Reenita has done a wonderful job in targeting them and winner their love with this perky story. Not exactly a love story but a very sweet mom-daughter story, much of today’s time gives this book its much needed charm.

The back cover says: Published by Harper Collins India, Operation Mom - How I got my mother a life and a man is the story of a Mumbai young adult who embarks on a mission to get her single mother dating again. 

Ila Isham has a lot to worry about - the angst of being an Ali Zafar groupie and the extra layers of fat she has inherited from her Punjabi lineage. Add to this separated parents,an enthusiastic best friend, Deepali, whose idea of variety means dating three guys at the same time and Aunty Maleeka, mom's BFF, whose savvy skills throw up more problems than solutions.

Ila's life takes an exciting turn when she decides to hunt for the perfect partner for her mother. With a little help from Deepali, Aunty Maleeka and Dev of the inviting chocolate-pool eyes, she'll have to brave it all - from and Ok-cupid profiles to handlebar-moustache colonels and middle-aged psychos, if she wants to succeed in her quest!

After writing about Forever Young, Ayurveda the authoress has taken a nice leap with a jump of genre to Operation Mom which has made this book a really nice and quirky read. The story of a seventeen year old daughter Ila and her single mother has been put in a very unique way which will keep the readers bound to the book for a very long time. Along with the punky cover, the subtitle of the book also gives this book a wonder charm. ‘How I got my mother a life… and a man’, the subtitle gives the book a magnetic effect which makes it an instant grab of the teenage girls.

Not only for girls, for their mothers also can this book do nice. Cause in a way, I felt that the book can help mothers of the ‘now’ era to know more about how the thought process of their children go and how far can they think which might help the mothers to know their children more closely. Written in a very ‘cute’ way this book is an instant connect with the readers of all thought process. And to congratulate the authoress for having put her journalistic field of mind for working out this piece of fiction.

To tell all, I would like to say that this book is a must read for all mothers and daughters alike to know both their psychologies well.

Available at -

Flipkart -

Amazon -

Connect with the author -

Twitter: @reenymal

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Interview of 'Reenita Malhotra Hora' writer of 'Operation Mom'

Timid Fingers: First of all, Loads of congratulations for your book Operation Mom. How does it feel to hold the book in your hands? I know, you are not new to the feeling but still, I am sure it feels new every time.

Reenita Malhotra: It always feel fabulous! It was my birthday recently and for a birthday greeting, my daughter who is in the US, posted a picture of me holding her when she was a brand new baby. Needless to say, when you look at a photo like that it brings on a rush of emotions, memory and pride. That's exactly what it feels like to hold your book in your hands. After all , it's also your baby.

TF: Operation Mom! Quite a unique name to the book. So, how did this idea come into your mind?

Reenita: RTHK (Radio Television Hong Kong) where I work, runs a charity called 'Operation Santa Claus' each year in Nov/Dec. I guess that's where I (partially)got the idea for the name of the book. In my household, no project comes easy. Everything  requires major consensus and work because every family member's agenda is always foremost. Kind of like what happens during Operation Santa Claus with my colleagues. Hence, 'operation' is a more utilized word in my life than 'project.' It worked perfectly for this story – Operation Mom – a Mumbai teen's mission to get her single mother dating again.

TF: And how is the response you are getting from the book?

Reenita: The response is great. This is the first Young Adult book of its kind both in terms of writing style and genre. The story is definitely a little out of the box for Indian readers but that's what I wanted to do – shake things up a bit, make people laugh. There was one review by Shubham Kumar on Flipkart that really delighted me. He called it “top-notch intellect” and said Albeit it’s a female oriented book but it holds good entertainment value for both the genders.” I was particularly happy about this because even though it is female-centric, I know that a lot of male readers will enjoy it because they will identify these characters with females from their life.
            Shubham also said “I feel that Operation Mom is a top rated season of a famous TV show. It’s finely divided into different episodes, with each one taking the story further. It never felt like I was reading a book. It was more of watching a TV program that would be telecasted on weekends.” Once you’re into the story, you feel like you’ve known the characters for quite some time. Whatever they say, whatever they do, is completely justified.”
            More and more, people reject reading in favor of TV. I know how I love binge-watching my favorite TV shows. How great is it then to bring people a book that make them feel like they are watching their favorite TV show instead!

TF: What about you’re previous works? Could you please give us an insight about what your previous works were about?

Reenita: Previous to this I have written three books about Ayurveda – Inner Beauty, Ayurveda – the Ancient Medicine of India and Forever Young - Unleashing the Magic of Ayurveda. There is also The Chronicles of Arya, another Young Adult book which I wrote before Operation Mom but is yet to be published.

TF: I have seen that the way you have penned your ‘acknowledgement’ section was really very new and interesting. Was it the way you write? Or was it to maintain the flow of the whole story?

Reenita: No that's definitely the way I write. To be honest, much as I love reading, there is a lot of material out there that is boring and in this age of ADHD, it is really hard to grab someone's attention and entice them into reading your book. I find most acknowledgement sections boring in the way they are written so I like to spice up mine with something much more interesting. And this might sound crazy but I also find many author presentations boring. So if I am invited to speak as an author, I make mine as lively as possibly – it's more of a standup comedy show than a classical book reading.

TF: Any of it related to your real life? I mean, setting up your mom etc?

Reenita: Goodness no! In fact my own mom made it a point to stand up at my book readings in Mumbai and make this known to the crowd. She's anything but divorced – a good old Punju lady who's been married 62 years.
The story premise is completely fictional but there are real life anecdotes that I have cut and paste into the book. The story about stalking George Michael for instance, which is something I did as a teen. Or the description of the scenes in the spinning class or flamenco dance class for example – those are lifted from my own experiences.

TF: You really are in love with the people you are always with and it is evident from the way you have used real names in your book. Was it intentional or you just wanted to dedicate it?

Reenita: Wow – you picked up on that!
You know one of the oldest truths that comes out of Vedic philosophy is that whatever is topmost on your agenda today will eventually be reduced to dust and swept away by the winds of time. I think the fear of being forgotten might be one of our greatest and most basic fears. John Green highlighted this so well in his book 'Fault in our Stars' through his character, Augustus who feared inevitable oblivion.
I don't fear oblivion but I do think that through the writing process, an author gets to participate in creating a lasting memory with a timestamp through his/her work. So why not immortalize some of your most cherished relationships and moments through your fiction?

My characters and settings are heavily inspired by my own life scenes so people who know me are always looking to relate a particular character to one of my family members or friends. And while there is plenty overlap with things that have been, as a fiction writer you have the luxury of twisting situations and characters into what you want them to be. It's a great way to immortalize those you walks you always wanted to take down the wild side or seek revenge on those who left you in the lurch somehow.
I'd say, none of my characters are truly one person but more an amalgamation of different people I have come across at different times of my life. In many ways I myself identify with the plight of Ila and her mom, Veena, but the wild and wanton Aunty Maleeka is heavily inspired by a crazy classmate of the same name. She and Deepali, her younger reincarnation, buck the trends of the traditional Punjabi 'isms' that I have dealt with throughout my life and in many ways they are who Veena and Ila live vicariously through. Truth is, I think we all need a bit of Aunty Maleeka or Deepali in our lives!

TF: You are a prolific journalist and you have written so many books. Which profession do you idealize? Being a journalist or being an author?

Reenita: It's not necessarily so different because I look at both as story-telling. So in fact what I am is a story-teller. I use fiction and non-fiction to do that. I use print, radio and multimedia to do both.
 I think that no matter who you are,  the greatest thing you have to offer to the world is your stories. Everyone has terrific stories submerged within the depths of their subconsciousness but sometimes, it can be hard to dig in discover those stories, much less bring them to conscious realms and then disburse them to the rest of the world.
This is probably why I take my role as a story-teller very seriously. Whether it is through my books – both fiction and non-fiction, or radio shows or public appearances, I filter those untold stories, not just the ones that originate from me but the ones that come from you too...the readers, the listeners, the players.

TF: I am sure fame doesn’t touch much of you cause you must be accustomed to it. But still, did being an authoress help your fame of being a journalist or being a journalist played catalyst in bringing fame to your books?

Reenita: To be honest I am not sure what fame is. The nature of my work in journalism requires me to meet a lot of people, talk to them, interview them. They recognize my voice from radio or tweet me when they read one of my articles. Does that make me famous? Perhaps if I did that on TV.  I love the medium of radio because I am the most casual person on earth – my life is a pair of sweats physically and metaphorically. I get to live that life to full capacity on radio and still have people identify with my voice and stories. Is that fame or is it just a matter of running away from TV?!
I certainly have not enjoyed the JK Rowling experience of having throngs of  people line up outside the bookstore to buy my book the day of release. That might bring me to true fame. Something I would absolutely love...not so much for the fame but for the thrill of knowing that people so badly want to read my story. What author doesn't want to write a best-seller?

TF: Really sorry to have bored you so much but for the parting words, I would like to request you to say a few words for my blog and for your readers.

Reenita: As storyteller is always looking for stories so suffice it to say that the world is my inspiration. That means you readers.  So please do stay in touch and bring me your stories too in any way that you can. 

My website: or email me at Or social media – and Twitter - @reenymal

Saturday, 11 October 2014

Review of 'Chronicle of Urban Nomads' by various author

Blurb: The Chronicles of Urban Nomads, is a collection of fast-paced stories, exciting enough to compel you to read them all at one go! Romance, drama, action, thrill, and mystery abound, meticulously crafted by twenty emerging stars of the literary world, and edited by a seasoned hand from the industry.
These stories were chosen through a nationwide hunt by Readomania, combined with the opinions of emerging authors, seasoned editors and established authors. The result is a potpourri that will force you to think beyond the ordinary.

Even as a bewitchingly beautiful saree narrates her story, a girl tries to deal with a dilemma in her arranged marriage. While riot-struck children walk alongside conscience-driven saviours, characters play hide and seek through a book, even as lovers ‘book’ a date with destiny. There is a flicker of hope, of a mother who has lost her child, as well as the agony of a friend who cannot forget her past life. Fear nudges your soul, even as aspirations drive you up the tallest wall; on one occasion, a game of heart and mind will tempt you to choose, while in another, an engagement ring will engage with its tale of choosing duty over desire. Here, even as a child’s innocence creates a strong relation in a new life, a man builds a bond with death’s absolute finality; we see hopes of revival in a worn out relationship, even as someone embarks on a quest to find a lost identity.

This melange of characters, situations, attitudes and emotions brings to life an exciting realm of fiction that you definitely wouldn’t want to miss. Readomania welcomes you to be a part of a literary journey to a realm of the superlative where pages turn, hearts beat, and the mind gleefully wanders to places you might have never been before.
Section I: Imagine

Confession of a Benarasi Sari Ayan Pal
The name is such intriguing that one can’t stop himself from reading the story at one go. Ayan Pal has narrated the feelings of a bewitchingly beautiful Benarasi Sari in delightful words. The way the whole story is portrayed through the eye of a Benarasi Sari, is just wonderful. Being a Bengali, I can very well understand the perspective of writing this story and can easily say that this story will entertain all types of readers.

The Blue Slippers – Krithi Jayakumar
The second story in the category of Imagine does complete justice to its genre. Being one of the shortest story of the book this story conveys the feeling of two friends and the happiness surrounding Blue Slippers. My favorite part was the end which will definitely give the readers goose bumps.

The Wait – Ashay Abbhi
The most interesting thing about this story is the protagonist who is narrating the story. The readers will definitely become bewildered just like me after finding the narrator of the story. The pain was described in exact words and the name also seems perfect for a story like this. After reading the third story, I understand why the category is named Imagine.

My Soulmate – Janneker Lawrence
The word Soul Mate denotes a lot of connotations. The author have very efficiently hid the identity of the soul mate of Kumar (the main protagonist) till the end and when it discloses, the readers will appreciate the skill of the author. The story is executed in a different way which I am sure will hook the readers.

The Masterpiece – Rounak Nayak
I would say the name is perfect because this story is indeed a masterpiece. I loved the story thoroughly. Again to do justice to the genre, here the narrator is a diary. At first the frequent juggling of the scenes seems to be a bit confusing but the way the end is written will undeniably bring tears in 
the reader’s eyes. My personal favorite in this genre.

A Vicious Battle – Aravind Sampath
This story is about the most famous battle that we all witnessed at some past of our life, between our own heart and mind. This story revolves around KK, a boxing champion who have to choose between his heart and his mind inside in the boxing ring. The story has a wonderful message for the readers at the end but comparing to the previous stories, this could have been written in a better way. To know why KK had to made the choice inside the ring, one must read the story.

An Engagement Ring – Purnima Verma
This story follows the previous stream and here the story teller is an engagement ring. This story is simple and have been written wonderfully. The story has a very strong story line but the author was somehow carried away with the flow of the story and at places the ring lacked the limelight. Overall a nice story with a nice ending.

A Little Nugget of Fear – Deepti Menon
The beauty of this story is the wonderfully chosen words and the way of describing the scenes. The readers are going to love the way the author portrays the whole story through the eyes of an inner self. The rich content and the flawless narrating style makes this story one of the best of its series.

EFIL – Bhaswar Mukherjee
The story has an essence of its own and will make the readers cherish the flavor. The different content perfectly suits the different name. I appreciate the author for creating such a unique character and his ability to keep readers hooked from the very beginning with his narrating style. I can easily say the readers are going to love the ending which brings the harshest truth of the story.

Section II: Musing

The Last Letter – Dipankar Mukherjee
The name of the story sounds familiar and common but the content isn’t the same. The story is short and compelling. The narrating style is so strong that within these four pages the readers will break into tears. This is how a short story should be written, short, distracting and intriguing.

The Face on the Canvas – Pradeep Moitra
A nice name for a story like this. The narrating style is simple and will help the readers to visualize it in a better way. I believe this story will become more gorgeous if the start was a bit different or improvised. The end makes up for the flaws and will keep the readers thinking even after completing the story.

Arranged Marriage – Japneet Boyal
This is the story of Kashish and Rohan and how an unborn child removes the invisible wall between them. The start of the story is very good and the fluent narrating style will force the readers to complete the story in one go. The author has a wonderful skill of describing the feeling of the protagonists which will definitely reach the hearts.

Bachelor and Baby – Jagdish Nadanalli
This story is the best one can get from the second section. When a reader buys an anthology, I am sure, they always search for a story like this which have a flawless and simple language, interesting and motivating storyline and which will leave a lasting effect on them. Kudos to the author for framing such a delightful story.

Hopes and Promises – Rahul Biswas
This story is from the author who wrote the most interesting author bio. It tells us about a second chance, about keeping hope alive, about keeping promises and that is why I say the name is perfect. I felt the frequent jumping from scenes disturbs the flow of the story and the end could have been framed in a different way which would have attracted the readers more.

A Shackled Destiny – Sharavya Gunipudi
Again a very compelling story with a strong narrative. The feeling of a mother who has lost her child has been portrayed wonderfully. Without dragging scenes the author has very efficiently described the affection a mother holds for her son. The truth at the end brought tears in my eyes.

Rendezvous – Shloka Shankar
The author has chosen quite an uncommon name for her story and it suits the content perfectly. The narrating style is the main and the only beauty of the story and the delightful describing power of the author makes up for the simple content.  Comparing to the earlier stories I found this story a bit weak of the series.

Hide and Seek – Niranjan Navalgund
A different story from a talented individual. After completing the story, the first thought which crosses my mind is that this author knows how to play with words. The way he has framed the whole story and the way he draws the end will leave the readers gasping for more. The narrating style supports the storyline perfectly and keeps the whole story effortless.

Mandira – Anupama Jain
Here the name of the main protagonist is Mandira and the whole story revolves around her. The powerfully described scenes will make the readers think of the phase the protagonist was going through. I would have liked the story more if the author had drawn the end in a distinctive manner. The end was not that good as the intriguing beginning.

Finding Mia – Roopa Raveendran Menon
This is possibly the best way to end a book like this. I loved the way the author has focused on the details and has dragged out the beauty by placing perfect words at exact scenes. The story line might have been a bit simple but the story telling skill of the author makes up for that. Again a beautiful ending of an unfussy story.

This book is undoubtedly one of the best anthology released this year. Each and every story has focused on different aspects of life and will make the readers think, though I loved the Imagine part more than the Musing part. My two favorite stories in Section I is The Masterpiece by Rounak Nayak and A Little Nugget of Fear by Deepti Menon; my two favorite stories in Section II is The Last Letter by Dipankar Mukherjee and Bachelor and Baby by Jagadish Nadanalli.

Title: Chronicles of Urban Nomads
Publisher: Readomania
Page Count: 175
My Rating: 4.5/5

Available at –

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Review of 'Killing Ashish Karve' by 'Salil Desai'

Blurb: Senior Inspector Saralkar is back at his desk after spending a rather annoying week at a Secrets of Living course, especially for police officers and he is itching for some action now. Luckily, an exciting new case turns up right away!

The body of Ashish Karve, a local businessman has been found in the back seat of his car. To PSI Motkar, Saralkar's diminutive assistant, it seems to be a straightforward case of suicide. But Saralkar's sharp mind is agog with the dark possibility of murder. As the case unfolds Saralkar finds enough motives for people, be it Ashishs business partner, his wife, his brother, his friend, his brother-in-law or even strangers to want to do away with him!
Is the senior inspector becoming too fanciful in his imagination or is he on the right track in assuming that Ashish was killed?

Delve into this deliciously thrilling whodunit and walk along with Senior Inspector Saralkar and PSI Motkar as they set out to sift the truth from lies and half-truths.

Verdict: ‘Killing Ashish Karve’ is one of the two crime novels written by Salil Desai. This book can be called as a perfect murder mystery, written in a perfect way and the suspense was alive till the last page of the book.

This book was previously published by the name ‘The Body in the back seat’ but the author correctly changed the name in its new edition which sounds more interesting and will definitely drag more readers towards it. The cover is exceptionally designed and one of the best cover design I have seen in murder mysteries. The blood, the body on the back seat, everything looks perfect and I can feel the author saying after seeing the cover, ‘just the way I want it.’

Like any other Indian thrillers or murder mysteries, this book also have been written in a very simple language which can attract a vast number of audience. The author have the capability to turn things with his narrating skills. The sarcastic comments made by the main protagonist or by his assistant and the ghoulish humor injected by the author only makes the book all the more entertaining. I appreciate the author for choosing such a narrating style which helps him describing every scenes in details without revealing much. Though I felt few characters can be described in a more detailed way but then in a murder mystery the author can’t describe everything.

The characters were planted very efficiently and made very delicate according to the story line. The reader can never feel that there is one single character who doesn't have a vital role to play in this story. Unlike other thrillers, which often introduce numerous characters to confuse the readers, this story have limited number of characters and one can very well start his own investigation based on the given information without missing one. As I said earlier if there was a bit more description about the characters, it will help the readers to visualize more clearly.

The storyline is very well framed and described in a similar disciplined manner. The author hasn't lost any time and have jumped into the main course from the very first page of the book without giving the readers much room. Once the main protagonist Inspector Saralkar and his assistant PSI Motkar starts their investigation one can’t put the book down. At one time I felt that all the characters in this story have the motive to murder Ashish Karve, where I think the author is successful. Kudos to the author for choosing such uncommon names which sounds familiar in this particular scenario.

The narrating style is very smooth and will help the readers to go with the flow without noticing any flaws. But after knowing the culprit at the end, I felt this a bit unacceptable and disappointed but the motive is though genuine and can lead to murder. May be if the culprit was someone else the ending would have been more thrilling. The book has a much maintained speed and the author was effortless in keeping the twist till the end. Apart from these minor draw backs I loved the book.

Final Words:  As the title suggest, this book is one unique murder mystery novel which will give the readers a nail-biting experience till the last page and will also keep them entertained all through the journey (read investigation).

Title: Killing Ashish Karve – An Inspector Saralkar Mystery
Author: Salil Desai
Publisher: Fingerprint
Page Count: 259
My Rating: 4.25/5

Available at –

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Review of 'Bucket List of a Traveloholic' by 'Sarika Pandit'

Blurb: While her B-School batch mates are busy scrambling for top jobs and grades, a restless Sarika dreams of putting on her running shoes and having all the pages of her passport stamped by the age of thirty.

What follows is a frenzied quest of not just collecting stamps but ticking off items off her ever-expanding bucket list: From learning the local language in Spain to an alcohol trail through Greece; from a tryst with Shakespeare and Jane Austen in the United Kingdom to an encounter with the Vampire in Romania; from straddling the border between two countries in the Middle East to a road trip through Morocco to the Sahara; each experience bringing her just a little closer to reaching that final destination on her passport.

A journey of falling in love with globetrotting--this one promises to be one of the best roller-coaster reading experiences you will have this year.

Verdict: ‘Bucket List of a Traveloholic’ is the first novel by the avid traveler Sarika Pandit. This is one unique book which will drag the hidden traveloholic among the readers and will make them see the places through the eyes of the author.

One look at the book and the readers knows that this book is not a fiction but a travel book. The name, the cover everything fits perfect in the genre of this book. Even the back cover features some interesting photographs, which will definitely make the readers sneak a peek inside the book.
I always thought that travel books are boring, just because they don’t have a story to tell. But this book turned my thoughts upside down and after completing this book, I became a fan of this genre. 

Each and every chapter have a new story to tell and a new scene to show. The name of the chapters are make those all the more exotic. After reading first two chapters I turned the pages and started to discover through the index, which countries or how many cities I would visit through this book.

Being a non-fiction book the author haven’t care a lot on the narrating style and go on telling her experiences which I think the best thing of the book. One can feel by reading this that these incidents are true and these words are original. There are cities which we have seen in movies, read in books and there are few which are not. From learning Spanish in Spain, to trying chocolate in Brussels, from testing alcohol in Greece to the wonder country Slovenia, each and every chapter is so beautiful that the readers can literally feel the atmosphere. I envy the boss of Sarika and her luck of finding the perfect partner every time. My favorite chapters or places was United Kingdome and Florence. The clicked pictures at the end of every chapters completes everything.

I loved the way the author described each secnes with perfect amount of humor but I couldn’t deny the fact that there is few chapters also which are not that interesting. May be the place was not so interesting or can be described in a better way. Apart from those few boring chapters this book is roller coaster ride and the more important thing is this book will entertain everyone without caring for age.

Final Words: Being my first in the genre of travel this book made me a fan of this genre. I felt if I could see more places through the eyes of the author, after completing the book. This book will definitely drag out the traveloholic inside you.

Title: Bucket List of a Traveloholic
Author: Sarika Pandit
Publisher: Fingerprint
Page Count: 240
My Rating: 4.5/5

Available at –