Story: Neena Arya, a Delhi-born goes abroad for further studies and decides to settle down there. Determined to be a ‘somebody’ from a ‘nobody’ she blends with the Americans via the accent and their mannerisms while having a live-in relationship with her European boyfriend, Adan Somoza.
When illness hits home, Neena rushes to meet her ailing dad. Tragedy strikes and amidst the mingling with relatives and friends, she finds herself suffocated with the two different cultures that she has been breathing since she moved to the United States. How will she strike a balance between both the cultures as she continues to support her widowed mother? Will she be able to do justice to her personal and professional life after the loss?
Amidst the adjusting she bonds with an ally and learns about ties beyond blood. On what grounds will she be able to form an invisible thread that she has longed for since childhood?
Breathing Two Worlds ventures into cultures and ethnicity allowing Neena to ponder upon her foundation and priorities.
My Take: This is my first time I am reading this author. She has a terrific way of penning stories woven with emotions and drama. Breathing two worlds is more of a story of anyone living away from home, trying to make up with the two worlds. Our country itself is so vast that with topography everything changes right from dialect to cuisines to clothing and above all the way of life. Sometimes, some advantages somewhere becomes bane somewhere else and it becomes very difficult to fit in. Yet people tend to migrate to make their life better.
The story set in US travels to India and then back keeps the reader hooked till the end. I could really feel the pain Neena went through after losing her father due to wrong treatment. But the way she finds solace is something to read out for.
Recommended for anyone who enjoys reading contemporary fiction drama
Blurb: Hours before doctors plan to switch off her premature daughter’s life-support systems, Lauren risks all and injects her baby with a stolen experimental drug. The last-resort treatment transforms Maya’s genetic fingerprint.
While Lauren struggles to disguise the reason for her daughter’s miraculous recovery, Maya develops unique abilities that may signal a new, more hope-filled future for humankind, or perhaps sound its death knell.
This is the first scific book I have read. Though I love watching Scific movies. They have a thrill. When I picked up Maya I was apprehensive about reading it because of my inexperience in picking up that genre. But the blurb was so catching that I could not resist. I read and re-read a few of its chapters.
Mr. Barber has really done justice to the characters. Lauren felt so real that I could feel the pain she was going through. Even the thrills were spontaneous. The moment when she discovers her research or when she injects the medicine to save her niece. Every moment in the scene was nerve cracking. The fast paced story will leave you nail biting on several occasions.
A marvelous read for those who love this genre, a suspenseful bio genetic sci fic.
Zayd Abbas Rizvi, out on parole, wants to escape the suspicious eyes of the world and concentrate on rebuilding his future. He zeroes in on Kasauli, a small, quaint hill town.
Contrary to his expectations though, he is unable to find peace in the skirmish around the guest house, the antics of a three-year-old, and the deep, sad eyes of his mother. As he battles the demons of his past, falling in love is not in Zayd’s plan…
Ashima’s life is a long, tiresome struggle, until a tall, tattoo flaunting stranger registers in her guest house. Hoping against hope for a ray of sunshine in her life, unbridled attraction to a stranger is not what Ashima bargains for…
Will Zayd and Ashima be able to forego their past and embrace their present, even when they know that if things went wrong, all they’ll be left with is a broken heart and painful memories?
Life always gives a second chance and one should accept it with open hands. Jugnu by Ruchi Singh is also an emotional roller coaster ride of two people who lost their first love in tragic incident. In the awesome hill town of Kausali the two people meet and their relationships blossoms amid so much constraints. I loved the way the author had touched each aspect a woman goes through before taking the plunge.
The character of Ashima, a mother, a daughter-in-law, a manager, a wife has been portrayed so naturally. Even Zayad’s character will make you fall in love.
Recommend for all romance readers who are looking for a second chance in life.
A naive girl of eighteen is trapped in a dungeon, which changes her and her capturer’s life forever. Afar, tucked away in the sleepy terrains of a town in Kerala, a married woman is determined to revisit a forbidden part of her past. A model-turned-MBA aspirant is scourged mentally for a decision she almost made three years back. Back in the less happening village of Kanyapuram, an aspiring author loses a copy of her very first manuscript.
True to its title, ‘The Inimitable Chaos of life’ is an amalgamation of enthralling stories borrowed from the chaotic pages of life, which allure you to relive the multitude of unique emotions humans are made of.
My Take :
Life is a beautiful journey. And Maliny’s Book The Inimitable Chaos of life present the journey in a beautiful roller coaster ride. The book is a collection of short stories about the chaos in people’s life. Each of the stories are different and touch a new string of life. The author is very descriptive in her narrations and paints the picture of the scene very well.
Some of the stories like Sara and Second Chance I especially enjoyed reading. From sibling bonding in the first story to the betrayal and revenge in the later story, the author has made a mark in my heart.
This book is recommended for short metro reads and anyone can pick it up.
Title: The Money Lender Tales from a small town in South India
Author : Manju Nambiar
Genre : Collection of short stories
Blurb: Short and Fun read! Truly Entertaining and Witty.
The book is a collection of short stories, narrated through the eye of a small town money lender. As the story unfolds, we get introduced to the unique characters in the town and their bizarre issues. How the money lender provide solutions to their problems in the most humorous and practical manner form the crux of the book.
The book is a collection of short stories from the perspective of the money lender at Gulf Town, a small town in Kerala. The author succeeds in weaving great stories based on turmoil of relationships of people in this small town with the money lender in a pivotal role. Most of the stories are a small pack of surprises.
The book is recommended for anyone enjoying short read.
Blurb: Say hello to Ernie Fish, the famous cat expert and his two cats Giri and Garby. And there’s a dog too. Join them on their adventures as Ernie Fish’s own cats prove his theories wrong, give him advice, and even sing! Every short story in this collection is full of meow.
So you love cats?
Great! Then this book is meant for you. With cat expert Ernie Fish the author takes you to a roller coaster hilarious bumpy ride mentoring cats with the help of his pets. Of course Ernie Fish knows his job as an cat expert however, he faces many embarrassing situation because of his pets Garby and Giri. And joining in the gang of cats is Gugulu, the friendly neighbour dog.
The language of the book is narrative and is a collection of short stories. A very short read recommended for anyone who loves to interact with furry buddies.
I am not much of a reviewer but would surely love to write my thoughts on the book I read. The princess of a whore house was a nice read. The book was part of blog tour organized by The Book Club. The title of the book attracted me as I love to read dark stories or stories based on social issues.
The author has picked up the plot which is very sensitive in a way that such topics where the life of a sex worker and her dreams are not usually discussed. The story talks about the plight of a widow, a young mother, who is trafficked and ends up in a brothel in Delhi. Can she succeed in changing her daughter’s life is what the book is about?
The story is very realistic and touching. Author has managed to show all the hardships an woman can go through under such a circumstance. However, there are few things which made the flow of the story very confusing. The point if view of the characters in some part of the book is not categorized properly. The description of the city is too elaborate in some places. I would have enjoyed them if it were a romance scene but here it was a turn off sometimes. Nevertheless, the book is a first attempt of the author and has managed to strike the chord of the community and a reader in a very positive manner. It was a good short read and I would like to recommend it to those who enjoy reading social issues.
Aparajita is a tenacious go-getter. Her name means unconquerable in Sanskrit, and she lives up to its meaning.
Just like any other ambitious girl, she desires to fulfil her dreams and become an independent individual. Far and wide, the shadow of her melancholy past chases her passage. The fact that her widowed mother is a former sex worker irks the community. Nonetheless, she is not ashamed to reveal her mother’s past.
Will she lose hope, or will she defy an enigma that is centuries-old? Will she ever conquer the hearts of a prestige-obsessed community?
See the world through Aparajita’s prism in a tale stirred by some real life events.
Mayank Sharma is a computer engineering graduate with post-graduation in business management. He works with a leading technology multinational in Delhi. He has authored a number of articles and white papers on software technology and processes. For the first time in April 2014, his article was featured in Better Software magazine published in Florida, USA. Writing has become Mayank’s greatest passion when he observed how it can trigger the winds of change. He is gradually transforming from a “left-brained” writer to a “right-brained” writer. Besides writing, he is passionate about sketching, painting, and making sculptures since childhood.
India is the fifth-largest economy in the world with the Gross Domestic Product growth at 7.1 percent. Contrary, India ranks 118 out of 157 countries in the happiness index. The fact seized Mayank’s attention towards social problems affecting social support, freedom of choices, and generosity, to name a few. Having travelled across continents and associated with people with diverse beliefs and values, he became more curious about the social riddles curtailing liberties across societies. He penned his debut novel, The Princess of a Whorehouse, when he came across some real life incidents that quivered his soul.
“I was never a book reader, just how we have acquired taste, reading became an accidental hobby when I used to travel for almost an hour in Mumbai locals”
– Kaushal Mahesh Gupta
In the last “Chat n Coffee” session of the year 2016 we have with us one of the top book reviewers in Goodreads and an eminent book blogger Kaushal Mahesh Gupta whose blog Errors and Kaushal has been home to many books both from newbie and renowned authors.
Today he is going to share with us his journey and tips as a book reviewer.
Tell us about yourself
I like to call myself a biodegradable human, who doesn’t believe in being pollution in some other human’s life. My bread & butter, when not on a diet, comes from being a digital marketing professional. I am an I.T graduate, like many others who followed the herd and like many others; I am a Cricket & Bollywood fan too.
What is your take on books/ movies/music? Any favorites?
I am of the opinion that every single book, every single movie and every single piece of music has something valuable that can add to our lives. They are not only a form of entertainment, but also a form of realization. A book can take you on a journey that you may never be able to be a part in your entire life. A movie can make you love and live the characters on screen, understand them and the humans, I never leave my logic and brain behind while watching a movie. Music, what do I tell! In my viewpoint they are best pill against a headache. It would be difficult to name only a few favourites, but biographies and autobiographies are my favourite in books, “Anurag Kashyap” is one of my favourite genres and I like every form of music, but I am trying to understand EDM.
Given a chance what one thing would you like to change in your life?
Nothing. If I would have had anything different in my life, maybe I would not have been answering this set of questions here. Whatever happens, happens for good. It’s only one life that we have, so we should live it the way it comes, unless one believes in reincarnation.
You have been reviewing books. What kind of books you usually love to read?
Yes, I am reviewing books actively for more than a year now, but I think I write more about the book instead of being a tough critic and getting into the nitty-gritty of the story. I prefer to read non-fiction, autobiographies and mythological fiction. Also, if you have a look at Errors And Kaushal, my book review blog, you will notice that I have read a lot of debut Indian authors and that’s because we should promote their work unlike popular authors who get backed by the publishing house in their marketing and advertisement efforts.
Indian book bloggers have made a very important presence in the publishing industry. Did you always wanted to be one of them?
Yes, the book review bloggers are making the presence felt now and that’s all because of the ease of creating a blog/website and then reaching out to the blog readers. No, I never wanted to be a book blogger, it happened by chance when I first wrote about my experience of reading Raghu Ram’s debut Book, Raghu picked that up and shared with his followers and this kind of got me excited.
P.S: I was never a book reader, just how we have acquired taste, reading became an accidental hobby when I used to travel for almost an hour in Mumbai locals, and I had nothing to do.
What was your feeling when you were first approached by an author or publisher as a book reviewer?
When I was first approached by an author, I had written only about two books on my blog. I was amazed at this incident of being asked to write about a book by the author and also excited to receive the book directly from the author.
As a book reviewer, what are the things that you consider while writing a review ?
I personally believe that no story is a bad story, and should be read for a perspective on living the characters and their lives. I look at the overall attempt of the writer in keeping me engaged with the story at some level or the other. It is all about the narration and the choice of words for me, and if the book is with minimum predictability than the author has won the reader in me.
What is your opinion on rating a book on a scale of five?
Ideally, the book should not be rated because for us it’s just another book, but for the author it was almost everything. Today, with the kind of book review mechanism and portals that have come up, the ratings have become an integral part of the review system. I rate them only when it is mandatory on platforms like Goodreads or Amazon, but I don’t rate a book on my book review blog, Errors And Kaushal.
Reviewing a book is a very critical task since it helps a reader to decide whether to read the particular book or not. Many book lovers are nowadays turning into book reviewers. What message would you like to give them?
Yes, it’s a very critical task because it is almost the make or break for the book. My message to fellow book bloggers would be, “We should appreciate the story and writing more than the author or publication house it comes from as there are many self published authors who are writing great stuff but are away from the readers world because they don’t have enough marketing or advertising budgets. If possible, do help them in creating awareness about their debut books.”
With so many books publishing every day, what do you expect from an author or a publisher regarding reviewing books?
I expect them to be more organized and when I say more organized, what I mean is that they should handpick book bloggers who write more often about the genre of their book. They should be open to honest reviews and should not ask for a positive review right away, because the book goes out to the book blogger for free. Remember a book blogger also puts in equal efforts to read the book and then write about it so no unjust expectations like the review should be made live within 3 days, no negative comment, mandatory post on Amazon, etc… As most of the book bloggers themselves understand the importance of a review on Goodreads and E-Com sites.
And now in the end, how can the readers and others contact you.
Blurb – The New York Times bestseller and international classic loved by millions of readers.
The unforgettable, heartbreaking story of the unlikely friendship between a wealthy boy and the son of his father’s servant, The Kite Runner is a beautifully crafted novel set in a country that is in the process of being destroyed. It is about the power of reading, the price of betrayal, and the possibility of redemption; and an exploration of the power of fathers over sons—their love, their sacrifices, their lies.
A sweeping story of family, love, and friendship told against the devastating backdrop of the history of Afghanistan over the last thirty years, The Kite Runner is an unusual and powerful novel that has become a beloved, one-of-a-kind classic. My Ratings –
My Review – The book left me in tears.
I felt a strong bonding with Amir Aga, the protagonist, who had to flee his country, his home, his comfort, his memories, and his ancestral land due to turbulence in the country. How does it feel to land up in an alien world leaving everything you ever owned behind? My folks have boar the bruise of Indo-Bangladesh partition. I have heard the stories so many times from every mouth I visited in my grandparent’s place. How lavishly they lived and then one day out of the blue they were rendered homeless. The author had depicted that very well in his book.
This is the first book of the author that I have read and I am not regretting it at all. The narration of a war trodden country, the lives of people, the helplessness, the frustration and above all the submission of oneself, to accept what is happening around, just to survive is very well presented. It would be understood by the people who have faced a situation likewise.
Maybe the meanness of Amir Aga, the legitimate rich class, selfish boy of upper class society is not very well accepted as a reader, for one would feel more for the Haazra boy instead, but Hosseini had not tried to portray him in white. His grey shades were more prominent for that matter.
I enjoyed how the author, at the end of every chapter, lures the reader with his one liners to grab the next chapter. Many a times, he even leaves them wondering what could possibly have happened, how it had happened, where it had happened mode, so that the reader is bound to turn pages and reach there, to see what really happened.
The story is told in first person and unlike many other books I read, the author never attempted to outgrow his POV. It always flows in present situation.
His using of local dialect is another good point I enjoyed where he had put the meaning too in the same line without any commas. I learnt quite few Afgani words too.
What I would have enjoyed more is the little history of Afghanistan as well. Since the book is based on the political scenario of the country if little more information is given on the situation there, it would have left me the trouble of goggling the internet.
I would recommend this book to readers who enjoy cultural fiction, emotional roller coaster drama in a political turmoil backdrop.