‘Left Overs’-Stella Newman

About the book
Author Stella Newman
Picture of the Author  
ISBN 978-1847562715
Price [INR] 299/-
Pages 452
Main Plot Chic-lit by every word! A kind of biography of a character called Susie. It is about her life, career, ex and friends.
No. of Characters 1
Tone of writing Humorous and Explanatory.
My take on the book
Review >It is a simple and light read.>A book that talks about Susie’s life and how it progresses. It felt like reading a blog post day by day of a blogger who jots down all her life’s happening on her blog.

>It is interesting although I felt it could have cut a little short at places to make it compact.

>Newman has a great sense of humor and her writing has it all, the wittiness and sharpness of the pun!

>Newman has created characters that are relatable, situations that happen in life and reactions that are genuine and anticipated.

>A good read, a little lengthy but worth reading!

‘How to be a Woman’-Caitlin Moran

 

About the book
Author Caitlin Moran
Picture of the Author  
ISBN 978009194074
Price [INR] 450/-
Pages 309
Main Plot Real life experiences of a woman, her confusions, adventures, crushes, rivalry, feminism and motherhood; everything that a female goes through in life span of teenager to late 30s!!!
No. of Characters 1
Tone of writing Humorous, Pun intended and Pointed.
My take on the book
Review >It is sarcastic, real and is almost about every woman on this earth.>It talks about how woman are constantly judged, rated and are required to look good, know all and be available and how to break this stigma!>No stage in woman’s life is easy, as it sounds or portrayed or expected to be normally!>After reading this book you will know that it is okay to admit that you are fat if you are, you got a zit on your face that you don’t have a boy friend and that you are not sure when would you have kids because you’ve not planned them yet!

>The book takes you through Moran’s life herself. Ranging from 13 years to 34 years. Her family, her siblings, colleagues, fall-outs, boyfriends, marriage and motherhood. It has all and in a very candid manner.

>It is fast, furious and carries the enthusiasm throughout. The books is good if you want to have a good laugh at realities J

>I had heard raving reviews about the book and in that sense I did not love it like crazies, but I liked it! One time read, you can skip a little here and there to move on to next page and phases of her life!

>The best part of Moran’s writing is she is honest, straight and clear about what she has written. Writing about one’s own life in such detail and about everything , is courageous and I bow Moran for that!

‘The Lowland’-Jhumpa Lahiri

 

About the book
Author Jhumpa Lahiri
Picture of the Author  
ISBN 978-8-184-00386-4
Price [INR] 499/-
Pages 340
Main Plot A story of siblings growing up together, becoming each others’ shadows. A small middle class family touched by destiny’s ups and downs in the lowland of Calcutta (now Kolkata). It is set up in mid 1900s; where Subhash & Udayan grow up as one to only grow apart from each other in their lives.
No. of Characters 4
Tone of writing Literary & Maturely refined.
My take on the book
Review >I’m speechless, quite literally, after finishing it. There are stream of thoughts running in my head, to put them down here, but I’m unable to coherently arrange them.>I liked the book, though I’ve to admit that initially, in fact for almost 50-60 pages I didn’t really get the hang of it. I thought of abandoning the book and pick another one. But something inside me insisted to continue, and continue I did.>The writing is descriptive and reaches you. Lahiri has the knack of taking you to the depth of the story with her words.

>A story of love, betrayal, family and choices that we make in life. How turn of events change so many lives at the same time and a family is destroyed by the hands of destiny. It has all the emotions of all so many relationships, mother-daughter, husband-wife, brothers, sister-in-law and brother-in-law, step father. Midst these relationships, the story has been weaved beautifully!

>It is hard to be a mother, when you are not prepared, when you are drawn to your past, when you are in so much love that death doesn’t mean anything to you, it is hard to be someone else’s wife, to be married to the shadow of your own husband of love. It is hard to imagine that life, to live even when your soul has left you long ago to be with you deceased husband.

>The complications of relationships, the actions that we take in order to iron out the creases of life and how those actions turn out to be lethal at times.

>This story ascertains the fact that you can’t make all situations turn around. Something does go from bad to worse in life and all we are left to do is to accept the fact.

>How love doesn’t know boundaries of life and death. Love is surreal; it happens and stays within the human heart, forever!

>Childhood is the most important part of our lives and we retain all the love and hatred, which is developed in this phase, for eternity!

>There is a touch of political episode, about Naxalbari, in those times that took place in the country. Mention of wars around the world, but it is no way a political novel.

>I’ve to admit that I might not have done a proper justice while writing this review, as I’m falling short of appropriate words to voice my thoughts. I might revisit this review and add to it or modify. But the crux is I liked the book.

‘Intermission’-Nirupama Subramanian

 

 

 About the book
Author Nirupama Subramanian
Picture of the Author  
ISBN 978-93-5029-323-2
Price [INR] 250/-
Pages 271
Main Plot A story of Sarin family, living an urban life in Gurgaon. The dynamics of a 17 years long nuptial knot, spouses who are independent and detached. In the midst of a steadily-but-not-smooth flowing, relationship, enters the heart and it’s whims and fancies stir up everything. It tells you, what you know for sure, that how difficult it is to deal with the whole situation carrying an upper middle class status.
No. of Characters 3
Tone of writing Straight and Simple.
My take on the book
Do I recommend the book? Not really. Though I’ll not reject this book by terming it as ‘not worth reading’.
Review >The story is easy, unfolds quickly without much fuss and like I mentioned above, the tone of writing and choice of words is as simple as unfrozen butter!>A corporate couple,Gayatri and Varun Sarin, in their mid 40s, with an almost-achieved-everything-in-life assumption, come at a juncture where their marriage does not have that ‘spark’ left in it.

>The story is about the couple who in spite of having lavish careers and good family are not happy, typically suburban types!

>The story takes the reader through the ups and downs of the puppy love, marital routines, newly found romance, a dash of adultery, family values, sacrifices and the whole sanctity called marriage!

>Subramanian has picked up a very ‘tried and tested’ plot for a story and has weaved in through the real urban life and its technicalities.

>The book loses its grip in the last leg of the storyline. Though the reader’s imagination is kept on hold for sometime as to what does Sweety Singh decide for herself and Varun Sarin, but the curiosity is killed with the pace becoming a little slower, giving away the signals to the secret easily.

>It felt like the author herself lost the track of that little suspense that came into picture and hence concluded the story plainly.

>The story gives you insight of extra marital affair, the confusions faced in the ‘this’ relationship and that one question at which everything comes to an end in the world-‘Marriage or Adultery?

>It has also shown the glimpses of a liberal women and how lot of them still haven’t realized where their happiness lies and they have their own lives to live too apart from being wife, daughter in law and a mother!

>It raises a question in the reader’s mind; do all marriages look same after ample years of time spent? Is a relationship outside marriage only about physical pleasures? Is there anything like an intellectual connect, an affair of minds, and whether that is even considered to be valid and legitimate outside marriage?

>We all are human beings, poor, rich, middle class, these are all tags given by us in the society to the financial statuses. What about the core of the human being, life? Everyone is made up of same red color liquid, pink flesh and white bones inside, aren’t we? Anyone, under this Sun can fall in love and maybe many a times! Then just be being slotted as not ‘poor’ can make so much of difference in our lives to accept our relationships and our desires out in public? Point to ponder!

>So are family ties important and take over us triumphantly or love has more power to rule above all?

>The book made me ask this to myself and to others: In all the suburabanian chaos, I’m not even sure if people still know the meaning of love? Are we sure we know what exactly it feels like and when to call it as ‘love’ love?

>I must say I loved the name of the book, it is aptly chosen and suits the plot totally!

>The book is average, newness is missing in the line but Subramanian has written it well because the very fact that it is a very common plot the write-up still makes you think for a moment and for that she deserves 3 cheers!

 

‘Those Pricey Thakur Girls’-Anuja Chauhan

About the book

Author

Anuja Chauhan

Picture of the Author

 

ISBN

978-93-5029-602-8

Price [INR]

350/-

Pages

388

Main Plot

A huge Thakur family with all the ups and downs that a normal family goes through. 5 sisters, which are ‘those pricey girls‘, and each one is a distinct character in itself. The story is about family bonding, disputes, hiccups of being all girls’ parents and all boys’ parents, marriage decisions and dash of love and hatred in between. Interestingly, there is a little political wave (Sikh Killing in 1984) added in the flow of family drama and it makes the novel intriguing, that said it doesn’t make it a politics based novel and does not confuse the reader between drama and politics.

No. of Characters

2 (+5)

Tone of writing

It is hilarious, straight forward, raw and very Indian. 
My take on the book

Do I recommend the book?

Yes, for those who want to read drama which is less like fiction but more like real life story. A no brainer, light, hilarious and tension free novel!

Review

>First and foremost, I’ve to mention that I bought this book totally based on its cover, it is intriguing and stunning!

>It is a light read, though a fat book, but will keep your mood light throughout.

>It has emotions,drama and portrays ghar-ghar ki kahani with a pinch of salt and dash of honey.

>Unpredictable, gripping and has crests and troughs of family drama.

>Chauhan has written the script in a fashion where in you can relate to so many things that happen in Indian families.

>Things like sprinkling cold water on the mattress before sleeping in summers. Or a group discussion and debate taking place to decide who would be the ‘would-be’ of one of the girls. Or Sister fights and leg pulling over clothes, boys etc.

>There are places where the author is very bold in using some abusive words but they match the flow of the story and don’t stand out to sound odd. Honestly, when I first encountered the words, I thought how odd, but then when I gave a deep thought, I realized that it suits the entire plot and the usage subtly fits in. 

>Chauhan has good writing skills, it is thoroughly researched and laid in a manner where in it will surely strike connect with the Indian reader.

>I liked the way Chauhan has done detailing of each character of the story and that too in a way that doesn’t seem like an introduction but a neatly weaved in the flow.

>On the other hand, the kids in the story are way to mature and nosey than their age permits. But that may be very typical of large families where in kids grow up before their age.

>The story length could have been shortened.

‘The Artists of Palkha’-Saurabh Kumar Das

About the book

Author

Saurabh Kumar Das

Picture of the Author

 

ISBN

9789350880647

Price [INR]

140/-

Pages

208

Main Plot

A story of 3 friends from an imaginary hill town “Palkha”, set out to achieve big in their chosen stream of art but life has sketched something different for them. Magic, Miracle and Success-it draws them apart, it brings them together. In this entire topsy-turvy life circle, do they succeed in true sense? Do they really learn the lesson that life has to teach them? Does fulfilling their dreams make them wiser to understand the true spirit of friendship? What happens when they achieve what they have always wanted to?

No. of Characters

3(+1)

Tone of writing

Although easy to understand it is at times too simplistic. The brilliant use of poetry in between the prose makes it interesting. That it is a debut novel is very much evident by the style of narration. 
My take on the book

Do I recommend the book?

Yes, for those who love a quick read, who love a novel which resembles an idealistic short story. Added advantage here is a generous sprinkle of poetry in the prose.

Review

>It is about dreams, friendship and about the other world!

>What have you done to achieve a dream which appeared farfetched and impossible at the beginning? Have you thought of leaving your ties behind and moving in your dream’s direction?

> If you’ve you’ll be able to relate to this story. If you haven’t then you’ll once you read the story!

>The way the entire plot progresses is very much predictable like a Bollywood movie yet the poetry in between is like a fresh breeze that rejuvenates you to carry

on for some more.

>The author should give a serious thought to writing poetry, which seems to be his forte.

>His attempt to weave in the same old sociopolitical theme through modern day characters, is appreciable and has come out well.

>On the other hand, the book overall is a little short of getting the reader hooked throughout.

>That said, for a debut novel, I think the book is a good beginning to the long journey that the author has to travel, looking forward to his second novel, which I’m sure has matured to a next level of writing.

‘One Amazing Thing’-Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

About the book

Author

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

Picture of the Author

 

ISBN

978-0-143-41655-5

Price [INR]

250/-

Pages

208

Main Plot

A group of strangers put together in a difficult situation by nature’s fury. They are stuck together for hours in that dark hole which has no opening and even if the opening is there, they aren’t aware of it. Do they befriend each other? Do they remain strangers? Do they find the way out?

No. of Characters

9 characters

Tone of writing

Refined and rich, a reader gets connected easily and instantly.
My take on the book

Do I recommend the book?

Yes. I liked it.

Reasons Being

>There are characters and there are their stories.9 characters, 9 stories, one amazing thing and all this in one life !

>Beautifully written and in a refined language. CBD’s hold on language is certainly the one which a reader looks forward to in a book.

>Have you ever imagined yourself thrown in a situation with complete strangers for an unknown period? You’ve got to read this book to feel this feeling.

>9 different stories woven in one plot with ease. It is not a murder mystery or a suspense thriller from any corner but it still is a page turner.

>Like the characters in the book, you’ll want to hear (read) all 9 stories before something big crashes and everything ends or before a positive ray of light enters and everyone scatters.

>It is about life and people in it. It is about relationships and emotions entangled in them. It is about feelings and their heaviness. It is about decisions that we humans make which have impacts on others’ lives. It is practical and real.

>I’ve loved CBD’s books (so far read 3) and can certainly recommend this author to one and all. Her books are for all, the genre suits every type of reader and will keep them engaged till the last page.

>Having said the above, I still would say that so far I’ve loved her “Palace of Illusions” the best as compared to the other 2. Her writings are intellectual and so much thought through. She is a blessed writer indeed!