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“I wanted to tell the story of a woman who went away, and explore why, despite her life seeming so perfect on the surface of it, she never came back.” – Kiran Manral

Today on our blog guest post we have with us the multi-talented and award winning SKP_1568author Kiran Manral, the author of Saving Maya and The Face at the Window besides several other books. Her recent release,  Missing, Presumed Dead, is getting rave reviews from critics and readers alike. Let’s find out what this book is all about.

What is the inspiration behind your recent release, Missing, Presumed Dead?

Many a times, inspiration strikes you when you least expect it. You don’t even think of it as inspiration. At others it marinates within you, settling deep within your brains, snaking its tentacles around your thoughts until you can’t help but write the story that demands to be written.

For me, Missing, Presumed Dead was the second. It all began, I think with the Chinese whispers of a woman of distant acquaintance, who one fine day out of the blue, upped and left home. She never returned. She was never found, nor did the husband attempt to find her. No missing person’s complaint was filed. She left behind two children, both rather young. The son was a toddler, the girl was older. The grandparents moved in to take care of the children, the husband didn’t get married again. Of course, we moved away from that neighbourhood, and that story went the way all stories go, into the filing cabinet of my brain. It wasn’t until much later, when I was married and had a child of my own that one fine day I thought about what must have compelled a woman to go away and leave her children behind. It was something incomprehensible to me. What made living with her husband and children so unbearable that she would rather disappear to never be found again, what was her story, why was there no attempt to track her, was there something, we, the onlookers didn’t know, was it an amicable separation, was it a loveless marriage, was there sexual incompatibility, was there emotional abuse, or was there someone else she loved and went away with.

Women’s stories are often secondary in a marriage. Their stories are told through the prism of being a wife, a mother. I wanted to tell the story of a woman who went away, and explore why, despite her life seeming so perfect on the surface of it, she never came back.

That’s what happens with my protagonist Aisha, she goes away, unwittingly, and never comes back. Her husband doesn’t file a missing person’s complaint for her. Her children, bewildered at the loss of a mother, pick themselves up and try to cope the best they can. What compelled Aisha to stay away, why did she never come back, how marriages can become stifling cages, her battle with mental illness, these and more make up the book, Missing, Presumed Dead.

missingpresumeddeadfrontcover (1)

 

PRESS RELEASE

oAWLWdXIpresents

a must read psychological thriller

Missing, Presumed Dead

by

Kiran Manral

“A gripping and sinister tale. Kiran Manral holds you with every page.”

– Ashwin Sanghi

 

Missing, Presumed Dead is a disturbing look into a broken marriage that has been torn apart by emotional distance and mental illness. The book takes us down scary pathways where we are forced to reckon with ugly truths about love and death, and the loss of everything we hold dear—including ourselves. The novel is a mystery cum drama, packed with all the elements that make a thriller.

 

The reader is left to keep guessing till the very last page!

 

Blurb:

 

In a dysfunctional marriage, it may seem convenient when the wife commits suicide, but things aren’t always what they seem…

Battling both a fractured marriage and the monsters in her cranium, Aisha leads a sequestered life on the outskirts of a bustling tourist town in the hills of North India. She struggles to stay functional, and tries to wean herself off the pills that keep her from tipping over the edge. Prithvi, the husband she loved once, seems as eager to be rid of her, as she is to flee from him. Only her children keep her tethered to her hearth.

One rainy afternoon, the last thing Aisha expects to see is a younger version of herself at the door. It is Aisha’s half sister, Heer, her father’s illegitimate daughter from another woman. Despite her misgivings, Aisha lets her into the house, and she stays over. Two days later, Aisha goes into town and never returns. Seemingly unperturbed, Heer slips into her missing sister’s shoes effortlessly, taking charge of the house, the kids, and even Prithvi, who responds to her overtures willingly.

A note found in Aisha’s wallet states that she has taken her own life, though strange happenings leave plenty of room for doubt. But, if she is not dead, where is Aisha? Is she really dead? Did she commit suicide as the note found in her wallet states? Has she been abducted, run away or in hiding? Why does Prithvi not grieve for his deceased wife? And why does Heer walk out of the house one fine day, leaving no forwarding address?

As it examines the destruction a dystopian marriage and mental illness leave in their wake, Missing, Presumed Dead brings us face to face with the fragility of relationships, the ugly truths about love and death, and the horrifying loss of everything we hold dear, including ourselves.

More about the author

 

Kiran Manral published her first book, The Reluctant Detective, in 2011. Since then, she has published eight books across genres till date. Her books include romance and chicklit with Once Upon A Crush, All Aboard, Saving Maya; horror with The Face at the Window and nonfiction with Karmic Kids, A Boy’s Guide to Growing Up and True Love Stories. Her short stories have been published on Juggernaut, in magazines like Verve and Cosmopolitan, and have been part of anthologies like Chicken Soup for the Soul, Have a Safe Journey and Boo.

She was shortlisted for the Femina Women Awards 2017 for Literary Contribution. She is a TEDx speaker and was a mentor with Vital Voices Global Mentoring Walk 2017. The Indian Council of UN Relations (ICUNR) supported by the Ministry for Women and Child Development, Government of India, awarded her the International Women’s Day Award 2018 for excellence in the field of writing. Her novella, Saving Maya, was long listed for the 2018 Saboteur Awards, UK, supported by the Arts Council England.

 

For interviews, reviews and excerpts please call or email:

Megha Parmar, 9711404608, meghaparmar@manjulindia.com

 

PB | Fiction | 268 pp | Rs 350

Buying Links

 

 

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Book Trailer Coming Soon : The Clockmaker

Paromita Goswami

While my book is with the editor I have something to share with you all.

Book Trailer COMING SOON!

Book Title: The Clockmaker (The Jungle Series Book 1)

Genre: #Paranormal #Supernatural

Releasing date:  Sep 2018

Follow the book facebook page for updates

the clock Maker

The Clockmaker

Read an excerpt

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Izhaar: The Expression of Love (Hindi Poem)

Paromita Goswami

When eyes speak more than words it becomes necessary to express your love .

izhaar

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Bombay_Heights

Title : Bombay Heights

Author : Adite Banerjie

Genre : Contemporary Romance

Blurb:

A FEEL-GOOD ROMANTIC COMEDY

Small town girl Sanjana Kale wants a fresh start in Mumbai. A challenging job and some much needed distance from her ludicrously over-protective family could get her life under control.

Forced to team up with video game designer Ashwin Deo, who is too attractive for his own good, she finds life becoming a whole lot more complicated when he turns out to be her new neighbour.  How can she maintain a professional distance with this charming troublemaker who believes in getting up close and personal?

To make matters worse, her ex tries to manipulate her loved ones to work his way back into her life. Hysterical siblings, a cantankerous client, an ex who will not take no for an answer, and a blow hot blow cold neighbour… Sanjana is sleepless in the City of Dreams! Can she do what Ashwin dares her to–create a few ripples even if it upsets her family?

 

Excerpt:

The promenade in front of the beach was chock-a-block with morning walkers, joggers and yoga enthusiasts. The Laughing Club members were at it—raising their arms to heaven and laughing their guts out.

Ashwin Deo gazed lazily at the sight around him. If it weren’t for Dumbass, he would be sleeping off his dreadful hangover.  The dratted critter gave two sharp yelps. Good God! He had been saddled with a mind reading dog? The Lhasa Apso was peering at him with brown soulful eyes that would melt the hardest of hearts.

“Okay. I got you here, right? Do me a favour and do what you need to.”

The dog gave a massive tug on his leash and Ashwin lurched forward, nearly crashing into a woman in canary yellow yoga pants and matching T-shirt. His eyes hurt at the bright colours and he mumbled an apology before being dragged ahead by the dog.

“Dumbass!” he yelled firmly. And the dog came to a halt.

“That’s more like it.” He lowered himself on his haunches and peered into the mutt’s eyes. “Let’s get this straight. We keep it civilized. You walk calmly, do your thing and we go back home. Got it?”

The dog’s tongue lolled out from the side of his mouth as he gave Ashwin a beseeching look following it up with a quick lick on his bare knee.

“Right. So, slow and easy. No pulling, okay?”

Another swift lick.

“Thanks, bro. I think we got a deal. Let’s go.”

Ashwin raised his towering six foot frame and taking deep breaths kept moving along, his eyes narrowing painfully as the hangover continued to hammer away at his head.

Barely had they walked a few paces when Dumbass broke into a series of high-pitched yelps and tugged. Before Ashwin had figured out what was going on, Dumbass gave a mighty yank. The strap tore out of his hand and the dog was hurtling down the promenade at top speed.

“Goddammit! Stop, Dumbass!”

Walkers turned around to give Ashwin funny looks as he took off after the dog.

Every stride sent pain shooting up into his head which threatened to split wide open. The cacophony of screeching tyres, frightened squeals of onlookers and a dashing ball of fur brought him to a standstill.

He bounded on to the street and came to a halt at the sight of Dumbass lying prone in the middle of the road, his lead tangled under the car tyre.

Oh no!

He heard the car door open and someone step out, yelling loudly, “Why in God’s name can’t you control your dog?”

As Ashwin inched forward to pick up the dog, he heard a woman’s lilting voice, “That was close. The leash got tangled under the tyre but he doesn’t seem to be hurt.”

Ashwin let out the breath he was holding and reached out to pick up Dumbass. The mutt was winded but breathing. There was no blood and as soon as he touched him, Dumbass leaped into his arms and did his lickety-spit number.

“You gave me the fright of my life,” he muttered as he got up and turned around.

The driver was only too glad that the creature was alive and kicking. Getting into the car, he ranted about irresponsible dog owners and drove off.

The woman whose voice he had heard said, “Poor thing must have gotten such a fright!”

That’s when he noticed her. She looked like a college student with her long waist-length hair tied casually with a silk scarf. Her big, dark eyes shone with compassion as she leaned slightly towards him to pet Dumbass and a fruity perfume assailed him. Her thick eyelashes swept up and she turned her gaze on him.

“Never been so scared.” He gave her his best hangdog look.

“I was talking about him!”

“Dumbass.”

“Excuse me? Did you just call me, Dumbass?” Her eyes sparkled with annoyance and he came back to his senses with a start.

“No…his name.”

He cursed his blasted headache which made talking such a goddamn effort. She looked at him as if he had some kind of mental disability.

He smiled with effort.  “Perfect name for a dog with no sense of self preservation, right?”

She glared back at him. “What about the owner who thinks he has no responsibility for his dog’s welfare?”

He took a few deep breaths. “I can explain.”

“Never mind. Just make sure you take him to a vet. There might be some internal injury.”

She gave Dumbass a last pat, bestowed a dirty glare on him and jogged away.

—-

Buy Links:

IN: www.amazon.in/Bombay-Heights

US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07FC2JGK1

About the Author

Adite Banerjie discovered the wonderful world of books at an early age which sparked her interest in writing. After a fulfilling and exciting career as a business journalist she turned her attention to fiction.

Three of her books have been published by Harlequin/Harper Collins India. She is now committed to being an indie author.

She also writes screenplays and in 2017 one of her scripts made it to the semi-finals of the prestigious Academy Nicholl Fellowships.

When she is not grappling with her current work-in-progress, she enjoys spending time with her husband and watching back-to-back movies.

She loves to connect with her readers at:

Website | Amazon    |Facebook | Twitter |Goodreads

 

Hisaab : The Tally (Hindi Poem)

Paromita Goswami

Life is short yet we are so engrossed in making it better. And in the run we forget to LIVE it altogether until it is time to say goodbye.

hisab

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Kasoor : Fault (Hindi Poem)

Paromita Goswami

When friends becomes foes due to some misunderstanding…

kasoor

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Killer Moves
by
Varsha Dixit
 
 
 
Blurb
Everyone has a secret. Aisha Khatri has many! 



Aisha’s life is seemingly mundane on the surface-she writes for television and takes care of her niece Kiara and her retired father. But when Kiara’s life is threatened during a modeling assignment for the famous Kabir Rana, once a suspect for his wife’s murder, the only way Aisha can save Kiara is by accepting the unique ability she has aggressively resisted all her life. 



But Aisha is not the only one with secrets. There are others who have secrets and will kill to keep them. Aisha is determined to protect Kiara even if it means placing herself in the crosshairs of a depraved killer who butchers beautiful girls and leaves them as grotesque displays. 



Is Kiara a target of a serial killer or is the killer closer to home-and Aisha’s heart? 



Who is Kabir Rana? An elusive and moody fashion photographer burdened with a dark past or a murderer who got away? 



How will Aisha save Kiara from a killer who is several steps ahead of an entire city’s police force? When the dead come calling, will Aisha answer? 



From the bustling streets of Goa to the beautiful palaces of Sirsa, Killer Moves is a fast-paced, gripping, romantic suspense tale with strong thriller and supernatural elements. 

 
Grab your copy @
 
 
About the author
 
 
Varsha Dixit, the best selling author of six successful contemporary romance books. Her debut book, Right Fit Wrong Shoe was a national bestseller for the year 2010. Varsha was a part of the Indian Television Industry and worked as an assistant director and online editor. She considers herself a dreamer who thinks deep but writes light. Even though creativity is gender free,Varsha feels blessed and enriched to be a woman.Currently, with her family, Varsha resides in CA, USA.
You can stalk her @
 
          

 

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We Promote So That You Can Write 
 

 

 

51BpO6wT5fL

 

A Princess in love with a Bollywood Superstar

Saketh Rao aka SR, India’s latest Bollywood heartthrob, has bagged the role of a lifetime: to play Hari Varman, the doomed royal scion.

When he arrives at Sravanapura Palace with his director friend Rajeev Ratnam, little does he know that his life is about to change forever!

Princess Kritika is overjoyed that Saketh Rao will play the role of her ancestor. But when she comes face to face with the arrogant superstar she is determined to scuttle the project.

Fate, however, has different plans for them. The feisty couple is soon head over heels in love with each other.

As they uncover the secrets of Hari Varman’s life, Saketh makes a discovery that can rip them apart and their new-found love.

Will the secrets and lies of the past deny them a future together? Or will they overcome the obstacles to true love?

 

Get the book from Amazon by clicking here

Excerpt

Kritika checked the time. It was nearing seven thirty. She was a bit late than usual. But she still had plenty of time to pamper herself and get ready to meet the superstar, who seemed to have won hearts all over the world if she were to believe the fan videos posted on YouTube and various blogs. Yes, she had shamelessly checked the many YouTube videos about him to know more about him. It seemed perfectly normal to stalk his Twitter and Facebook page. He had come across as a friendly and warm person who retweeted his fans often and replied to interesting comments on his FB Page.

She knew half of his persona online was created by his PR team. His social media profiles might be maintained by dedicated teams who would present only the best aspects about him to the public. The real Saketh Rao might turn out to be a total jerk. Yet, she was looking forward to meeting the star in person and decide for herself.

When she stepped on to the road that led to the residential wing of the palace, she was surprised to hear the horn of a car. She whirled around and watched as a silver Mercedes Benz came around a bend in the road and raced towards her.

Vijay had renovated a number of unused rooms in the palace and turned them into luxury hotel suites, thus creating one more gem in his hotel business chain. The only snag in the entire setup was that guests often sneaked into the palace’s residential areas, even though they were marked as no entry zones and had to be turned away by the palace guards. And it irked her very much. She wondered how this car had escaped the scrutiny of the guards. She needed to talk with the head of security. But for now, she would tackle this herself.

She gripped the straps of her backpack and stood in the middle of the road facing the car that seemed to have no intention of slowing down. It came to halt at a mere metre in front of her and she heard the driver swear. She narrowed her eyes and continued to stare at the car, daring the occupants to come out and face her. The passenger door of the car opened and a handsome youth, who looked as though he was jet-lagged and badly in need of a leisurely bath and sleep, got out. He seemed vaguely familiar, but she couldn’t place him immediately.

“Please, miss. May I know why you are blocking our path?” he asked, his mellow tone bringing Kritika’s anger a few notches down.

“This road leads to the residential areas of the palace and is not accessible for guests at the hotel. Kindly turn around and go away.”

“But miss-”

“Enough, no need to explain.” Kritika raised her right hand to stop him from talking any further and snapped at him. The fact that he was trying to justify his action, brought her anger back.

“But we are-”

“As I said, I don’t want to hear any further explanation. Instruct your driver to reverse the car and get the hell out of here.”

The driver of the car opened his door and got out. Kritika’s jaw dropped and her mouth formed an O because she recognised the driver instantly. Saketh Rao, clean shaven, casually attired in a t-shirt and jeans, all six feet two inches of male glory. He removed his sunglasses and walked towards her, his lips curved into his characteristic lopsided smile. He was clearly enjoying her distress. And then the last piece of the puzzle fell into place when she recognised the handsome youth with him as Rajeev Ratnam. Kritika felt her heart racing. If Saketh came near her now, her excited heart would undergo a heart attack.

“Who are you to block our path? We have the adequate permission papers and we were let in by the guards. Move your heavy butt out of our way and allow us to pass.”

His arrogant talk snapped Kritika out of the trance she was falling into. The arrogant snob.

And he had made a personal comment. About her butt!

“Mr! Watch your language.”

“Are you going to get in? Why are you listening to this annoying, attention seeking female?” Saketh was ignoring her outright and addressing his friend.

“How dare you?” Kritika took a step forward and slapped him. He stopped her hand in mid-air and in one swift move, yanked her towards him, momentarily taking the wind out of her lungs.

When she attempted to step back, he tightened his grip on her arm and held her other arm with his right hand. His nearness was doing strange things to her composure. His touch was making her heart stutter, sending electric impulses rushing through her body.

If it was not for the revulsion he had evoked with his arrogance, she certainly would have enjoyed the sensation of being held by him. But now, she regretted the hours she had spent browsing the internet to know more about him. As she had feared, he had turned out to be an outright jerk. She didn’t want to waste her energy arguing with him.

She pushed him with all her strength and then broke into a run, determined to never to cross his path again. She heard him chuckle and it enraged her further.

She wanted to see how they were going to make a film about her ancestor. She would see to it that it got an early grave.

 

Tanhai – Loneliness (Hindi Poem)

Paromita Goswami

Loneliness is depressing but even more when your loved one is not near you. The wait gets longer each day.

rashk

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