Monday, October 6, 2014

Out Of Denial


Flying blind in the realms of darkness
Is a soul so torn, lost in madness;
But denial is the citadel she has built for herself
Refusing to let go of her decimated self.

Rendition of life, ripples of past
All have some dark spell cast;
Luring her to a sparkling Mangata,
Feeding on her grieving platter.

But torn she is, not defeated yet
Unknown to all, she has now put a self-bet.
Breaking the walls of denial with a sneer
She now wanders to find acceptance’s lair.

Hath no power like a scorned woman

How dark would she be, once out of the gloomy den?

-Vaisakhi Mishra

Monday, September 29, 2014

Who Told Men Not To Cry - Book Review


Book: Who Told Men Not To Cry?
Author: Azar
ISBN: 9781630414306
Pages: 249 
Ratings: 2/5
Price: 150

Something from the book:
It gave me the happiness
It gave me the pain

When a book starts with wrong grammar, you know for sure it is going to be a disaster and same was the condition of ‘Who told men not to cry?’, by Azar. The story is of a boy with adjustment issues. Raj the protagonist of the book belongs to a middle class family and is termed unlucky from the very start because the day he was born, his father suffered a loss in business. The book then moves on to his school life where for Raj the whole world revolves around his friends, teachers and ‘his girl’ aka Keerthi his love interest.
 He was a topper and was loved by all till class tenth but life took a turn (like it does for everyone) when he had to shift to high school. That is when his real struggle started as he had to face the consequences of not being a topper – no more the apple of his teachers’ eyes, no more genuine and trust worthy friends and no more ‘his girl’. Raj then works hard and tries to overcome his adjustment issues in order to sustain the pressures of High School but one of his biggest concerns is if he will get ‘his girl’ back.

Pros –
1.   Funny moments and light jokes in the book keep you going to some extent.
2.  The end – For a book with a very week plot to end in a funny satisfying end, it is a big thing. I liked the quirky poem in the end.

Cons –
1.   Grammar – A full length novel that starts with – “My son, it’s again you are going to be late to your college,” shouted my mom as I was busy singing in my bathroom. – gives you the picture of the book and takes the rating of 5 straight down to 3. (Sorry I am a Grammar Nazi)
2.  Raj’s Character sketching – Why does Raj call his friends mothers mom? And how does a flirtatious guy become teachers’ favourite by literally being cheesy and flirting with them? Also Raj hardly ever talks about his own family; his friends’ families have been given more importance in the book than his own mother and sister.
3.  My Girl! – Keerthi is her name. I found myself saying this God knows how many times in the 3 hours I took to finish the book. The author addresses his girlfriend as my girl almost everywhere. It gave the book very non – bookish feeling.

The story seems like ranting of a teenage boy and the storyline is not something an avid reader would enjoy. This book is the debut of the 20 year old author, Azar; and for his age it is a decent work but as a book or story it is a big failure.  Unfortunately the book needs a hell lot of editing and serious revision in case of grammar. Except for the end – atleast it was realistic, tragic yet funny, I personally didn’t enjoy the book much. Might be a onetime read for many but I wouldn’t pick the book again. 

P.S.- This book was given to me by BlackBuck Publications for review and the review is completely my own view about the book.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Of Course, We are Best Friends : Book Review


Book: Of Course, We are Best Friends!
Author: Sonia Bansal
ISBN: 9781630412920
Pages: 200 
Ratings: 3/5
Price: 140

Something from the book:
A bond so strong
A longing so necessary
A feeling so precious

Here is one of the biggest advantages of travelling for almost 4 hours a day – You can finish a book! Yes recently I have finished 2 such books and this is the first of the two. ‘Of Course, We are Best Friends!’ by Sonia Bansal is a short and sweet tale of friendship and love. The story revolves around the protagonists Aditi and Aditya who are classmates in school. Even at the young age, and with absolutely no idea about the depth of the emotion named love, Aditya falls for Aditi. Aditi being, the free spirited girl, though naïve in her thoughts is more rational than Aditya and feels young love is nothing more than infatuation. Soon they become best buddies and are the target of every Tom Dick and Harry in their friend circle. Teasing, helping, making random jokes slowly pulls them towards each other and very soon they start dating each other.
Their love blossoms in school against all rationalities but fails with the first real challenge they have to face - long distance relationship in college. They meet after some years but the awkwardness of past haunts them. Aditya being more involved than Aditi, fights with every inch of his will to let go of the weirdness and in the end the friends do make a decision, saving their friendship from the dark clouds of immature love.

Pros:
1.   Point of views – The author gives you the point of view of both the protagonist throughout the story. The way the story is written is refreshing and keeps you going.
2.  Narration – Simple and effective, just like reading your regular day to day diary. Something light like every tired book person would want after a hectic day.

Cons:
1.   Nothing new – We hear these things, we know these things, and Durjoy Dutta and Chetan Bhagat have made sure we read these things too. There is nothing to take away from the story, nor does it leave you with a long lasting feel good effect.
2.  Editting – It is very important for a book to be free of grammatical errors and spelling mistakes cause if the reader is like me, it breaks the flow and gets irritating.


Over all it is a onetime read for sure, but that is all it is. It is a book you would pick to refresh yourself. When I got this book to review from the publishers, I thought it would be the same as any random teenage love story book these days and wasn’t wrong; but having said that it was a refreshing read thanks to the narration and the point of view writing style. To let go of the heavy life and hold a mirror at simplicities, that we seem to have forgotten these days, teenagers included. I would give the book a 3 on 5 rating and would really want the author to try some new and different genre because she sure shows the flair of storytelling in this book. The book manages to break the illusion that a girl and a boy can always be good friends but in a very conventional way. I would have enjoyed it more, had the story explored unconventional track to explore the emotions. For people who love chick flicks and teenage romance, this book is surely something you will enjoy.

P.S.- This book was given to me by BlackBuck Publications for review and the review is completely my own view about the book.

A Passionaate Gospel of True Love : Book Review


Book: A Passionaate Gospel of True Love
Author: Poonaam Uppal
ISBN: 9788192105
Pages: 1084 
Ratings: 3/5
Price: 595

Something from the book:

"I would wash your path with my tears of plea
My eyes are fixed on the road that brings you to me
Beholding the ocean of love in your eyes"


Shrouded by myths and reality, A Passionaate Gospel of True Love by Poonaam Uppal, is the journey of an ambitious Indian girl Moh Lal. The story moves through the corridors of glamour and desire as Moh has her mind set on becoming an internationally acclaimed Fashion Designer. And destiny lets her wallow in her yearnings too, until one day when not only it deceives her desire but changes her course all together. Moh gets a premonition, a sign from Goddess Durga that she would meet her ancient lover in 1997 and that sets her on the path of finding her true love.
The story takes you National to International and back and makes you her unseen companion through her journey which is donned by Deja vu, divine interferences, premonitions, idiosyncratic occurrences and past birth revelations. The journey makes her a believer of love, beyond the sexual and artificial meaning people have accepted for the word these days. And also leads her to misty terrains of Himalayas for a cryptic secret waiting to be unveiled.

Pros :
1.   Narration – The flow is such that it makes you feel you are reading a diary and keeps you intrigued about the next incident always.
2.  Descriptions – If one thing every reader would cherish in this book (whether the book is of his/her type or not), it is descriptions. They were intricate, vivid and literally pen painted every page of the book in front of you.
3.  The Himalayan and Khajuraho sections – Can’t reveal much here, but I really liked these bits and yes the book has pictures too!

Cons :
1.   Autobiography – Fact that it was an autobiography kept me distracted for a very long time. And I have to be frank and accept; only when I started reading it as a random novel did I enjoy tits and bits of it.
2.  Love Messiah – Moh to Messaih, the story I still can’t digest. Kama Sutra and Love the holiest of the religions! I don’t really believe any god would preach religion. They or their messiah preached principles and way of life and people segregated them in religions. If Moh really was dragooned by her destiny set by Ma Durga , Love can’t be the religion.
3.  Over exaggerated events. – Sorry, again it is a read to know more con, but I found that ruining the flow.
4. Grammar and Punctuation - The book is some serious need of revision where grammar and punctuation are considered. Repetitions and random sentences going on and on. For a 1084 page book, these factors do matter. It gets annoying!


The book is apparently the autobiography of the author, but I went on reading is as some fantasy novel and it had many sections where I felt the situations and happenings were gonzo incidents. And my review too is totally for the book as a novel and not an autobiography.  Nevertheless the flow of the book is such that it feels like you are reading someone’s diary and surely by the end of it, it leaves you with a new thought about love; a more mature and to be pondered upon thought. I would give this book a 3 star on 5 because I thoroughly enjoyed the descriptions else would have been a 2.5 for the content. Even though the story felt dragged it did make a sense and most of the points were tied up. It was a onetime read for me, given the fact that I don’t usually enjoy books related to romance and love. But for all the lovers out there, who knows this might be your kind of book.

P.S. This book was given to me for review by @share_books . The review is completely my own view and is unbiased. I do not intend to hurt anyone's feelings with my views but review is purely for the benefit of my readers.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Lost


Wisp of darkness looms around,
Stealing the dusk off the ground;
While lost in reminiscence of the day past by
She gazes aimlessly at the starless sky.

Fiddling with her old rusty locket,
Stretched she lies, on a verdant bed.
Alone she was from the very start
But least she wanted to be this world’s part.

The descant of people fading leaves her pondering deep,
While a surging familiar loneliness takes her by a sweep.
Yes: she walks, smiles and talks just like she always did,
But little by little, piece by piece she only faced defeats.

Strong and bold, but hollowing so;
Tranquility lost with every blatant blow.
Innocence of spirit to grow and fuse
But virtue lost in this disdain deluge.

All she wanted - to be one of them
A pawn she remained in this wicked game.
A dam of endurance now broken all,
Floods the smile of this porcelain doll.

She braces herself for a sleepless night
And witnesses the fading silver light;
Again she rides high on her daily lies
Orphan she was always, but now she cries.


-Vaisakhi Mishra

P.S. - Picture Courtesy - Google Baba

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Waqt


Waqt ki chaadar par
Aazmaaish ki silvate na ho
To woh waqt bhi fizul ho jata hai

Bikhre palon mein
Gar khwaish ke chheetein na ho
Toh who pal ek dhundla saya hojata hai

Katra Katra
Jo haq na ho humse rubaru
Woh haq bhi humse chup kar hume daga de jata hai

Dil mein daba ho koi ehsaas
Jo waqt rehte bayan na ho
Toh woh ehsaas bhi khud se beparwah ho jata hai

Har lamha thehere pani ke tarah
Hai dikhata humara aks hume
Par na rahe hume ilm yeh
Toh waqt jhonke ki tarah sab khatam kar jata hai


-Vaisakhi Mishra

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Private India - Book Review


Book: Private India
Author: Ashwin Sanghi & James Patterson
ISBN: 1780891725

Pages: 447 (Excluding extract by Patterson)
Ratings: 3.5/5
Price: 350


Something from the Book
Yellow Garrote Killings, read the headline of the Afternoon Mirror.

And the Private Investigators are finally in India thanks to Ashwin Sanghi. Ashwin Sanghi teamed up with International Thriller King James Patterson to get Patterson’s Private series to India with a case brewing in Aamchi Mumbai. Murder, Investigators, Shady but not guilty characters and Twists – this is thriller 101 formula and Private India capitalizes on most of it. The story starts with the murder of Thai national and more women are killed rather strangled with a yellow scarf as the story progresses. Enter Santosh Wagh an ex police officer who is a rough image of Detective Spencer of True detective – Alcoholic and Dark past. He is appointed to solve the curious case of the yellow scarf by Jack Morgan, the head of Private worldwide. Mumbai police overburdened with their work, in awe of Private’s quick response to Marine Bay Plaza’s call and puzzled by the deaths and their frequency hand the case to Private India, the best “private” detective agency of the country and so begins the hunt for the psychopath.
The story is a typical crime/murder mystery, so some of you might be wondering why Mr. Sanghi, right? Well turns out the scarf and the murder pattern has cultural and religious linkage, so the expertise. The story however doesn’t restrict itself to the main track. ISI makes a special appearance so does Indian Mujahideen and the story maintains the drama punch thanks to the cop sidekicks and a Don. The book is fast paced and enveloped in the essence of Mumbai from Taj to Dharavi from Chowpati to Malabar but has many flaws that make it a onetime read and that too an unimpressive one.

Pros –
1.   Fast Paced – Classic James Patterson novel needs to be fast paced and this book doesn’t disappoint.
2.  The End – No matter how the story went I didn’t realize the mystery till the end which was somewhat satisfying.

Cons –
1.   Language – Bad editing or bad writing, still in a fix cause no matter whose fault it is the book has numerous flaws when it comes to English.
2.  Unimpressive Characterization – Sanghi makes all attempts to let his characters make a significant impact but fails terribly. Even the Main characters Santosh and Neha don’t really impress you at any point of the story.
3.  Research in terms of the Religious and cultural aspects – Poor, that’s the word and have to say it is so unlike Ashwin Sanghi’s works. The religious aspect of Thuggee cult seemed interesting in the beginning but lost the charm mid way. To portray any fact as historical stuff proper research and clarity on the topic is required and failing to do so is one of the biggest flaws of this book.
4.  Over cooked Tale – I sincerely want to ask Ashwin Sanghi why has he started writing stories with a Bollywood frame. There are so many things in the book that scream “this is such a Salman Khan Thing.” I am ready to let go of the flaw in the very concept of the book – Mumbai Police giving all authorities to a Private Detective agency; but other than that the cold war between old pals, the unwanted intimate breaks and the overdone climax, was all that really needed?


On the whole the book gets a tick as a thriller for sure but fails to impress as a novel on the whole. I would give this book a 3.5, would have been a 3 had I not found the pace fast enough to not spend time sulking over the logical errors. The story is a ready to hand over script for a Bollywood action movie but not a one to find its corner in any reader’s paradise. 

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

Sunday, August 17, 2014

The Queen


The walls sing to her a symphony dry
Of life that flutters by her closed window pane
And some dim lit lamps blatantly glorify
The ageless wait for her lover in a luxurious den

She has a story to tell
The one of big halls but closed doors
Of colours and hues
And grandeur but also blues

A story of a girl full of life
But who lost herself in some vain strife
For name maybe that of a queen
But reality is grave and often unseen

Her face is now shadowed by a lull
But tearing her apart is a raging storm
What had she got in name of fortune’s call
A caged bird she was to be part of some historic form.

-Vaisakhi Mishra

Monday, August 11, 2014

Rise of the Sun Prince - Book Review


Book: Ramayana: The Game of Life - Rise of the Sun Prince
                                                               Author: Shubha Vilas
ISBN: 9788184955309
Pages: 252
Ratings: 4/5
Price: 250

Something from the Book
Sweet, genuine words of gratitude are the best welcome drinks!

Ramayana is the way of life. Haven’t we heard this line a number of times? But do we believe it? Do we really see glimpses of our lives, our day to day challenges, our reverberating thoughts of what is right and wrong, in the versions of Ramayana that we know? I don’t know about all of you but till last week Ramayana was nothing more than a mythological story for me. Then what changed in a week? It was this book - Ramayana: The Game of Life #1 - Rise of the Sun Prince by Shubha Vilas.
There have been hundreds of renditions of this ageless saga but none have come this close to making me look beyond the tale. Rise of the Sun Prince is the first of the 6 books that have knitted the story from the poetic verses of Valmiki to the veiled analogies of Kamba Ramayana. The first book mainly focuses on Bala Kand of Ramayana but with a lot of insight to various aspects of the epic.
The book starts off with a gist of Ramayana in a very fundamental form but slowly delves into the era and the circumstances of the era. Ramayana that we have read till date runs on the high emotional quotient and the theme of love and sacrifice but this book makes you look at the book from the angle of society, struggles, and “not everything is black and white along with the emotional built up. The story starts with how Rishi Valmiki came to be despite of his sinister past and then gives you the whole insight to the great king Dasharatha. Did you know Dasharatha had 350 wifes other than his Prime Queens? You don’t believe me, it is ok, I didn’t believe either. But this book not only mentions that, it also gives the reason behind it. After that starts the journey of a hero in making and the journey of a spiritual teacher to find the true sense of the spiritual realms and the strength of the Guru Sishya relationship.
The protagonist of the story might be Rama but for this book it was Vahishtha – Flawed, Strong, Famous, Respected, Lost and on the journey of finding himself. He was the guru of the Suryavanshi Princes, but the short tempered sage was also on a quest of his own, to defeat the demons that were determined to spread the negative energy everywhere. But in his journey he tends to lose himself cause of his anger and spreads some level of negativity himself. The book connects to our very own lives with that of Vashishtha and the way he learns from the young princes all while teaching them. At the same time the story of Ahilya and that of Sita talks of Fate and dedication.

Pros –
1.   Narration - Powerful yet simple and crisp narration.
2.  Perfected Rendition - Logical, bit philosophical but very apt rendition of Ramayana and not just a direct rip off of the story in different words.
3.  The chapters – The way the story is written, it makes you think clearly and connect directly to the physical and metaphysical lines of the mythology.
4.  The footnotes – The give you all that you need to know but not enough that you would have wanted to know. For example The Author started with Ravana’s story, gave just a sneak peek of his beginning but it was the footnotes about him and his brothers and sisters that made me say – I want to read more about them!

Cons –
1.   If you are not a mythology fan, I don’t think you will enjoy the book.

On the whole the Book is a sure read for every mytho-fiction fan and is a soul stirring yet a very light read and re read version of Ramayana. More than the story you will end up learning a lot out the characters, era and about life. This book is a sure 4 on 5 book and am eagerly waiting for the next part.

P.S. - This review is a part of the Book Reviews Program at BlogAdda.com. Participate now to get free books!

Monday, August 4, 2014

In The Blur


In the blur called life
I am lost for some time
With a destination unknown
Now lost in my hazy travel zone

Wondering at nature's might and beauty
Enjoying its pitter-patter symphony
Trying to gauge the clarity post the haze
To let go of some unwanted worldly craze

The race towards never ending achievements
The life that makes you question all your commitments
Is washed away in the breezy pour
Letting me see beyond a lot of closed doors

But all it is, is a moment of clarity
Soon it will be a reason lost in some busy vanity
And I will set out again on some forlorn path
Shrouded by disbelief and menacing self-doubt

- Vaisakhi Mishra