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Showing posts from 2016

What The Heart Wants

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This is the second novella by the author that I have read. The length is approximately 35 pages. And yes, this is different from the first one.

Since it is short, yet again, it becomes difficult for me to actually summarize it since there is an underlying fear that I might give away too many details. The plot revolves around Love. A married man doesn't love his wife. He has found someone else. The who, what next and why can be best answered if you read this.

The language is understandable but yes, this story is meant for people over the age of 18 years. Some relationships are really complex and Layla tries to explore this aspect in this novella of hers. The subject is really sensitive and the narrative does justice to it.

The characters are few but well etched. However, the short length inhibits their parts getting developed completely. The story ends with a cliffhanger, hence, the sequel might bring out their strengths better.

To sum up, if you need a quick read and there is lit…

Tonight Only

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Sometimes it is really difficult to rate and review a book that is really short. Yet, I hope to do justice to this story. I read it in one single sitting, it is that short (35 pages in total). Hence, it makes up for a quick read.

The plot is really simple. A girl just out of the Police Academy wanting to have fun before getting serious at work. The contents actually make it suitable for people over 18 years. Remove the profanities and sexual content, you have a really simple story.

Layla writes in a very conversational style. Her descriptions of scenes and places are really vivid. The best part about this story is the twist that is introduced in the end.

There are basically only two main characters out here. If the length of the book had been more, there would have been ample scope to develop them better. The story is way too short for the characters to really shape up.

To sum up, this story is really good because it ends with a cliffhanger. There is more to come as sequels. It makes…

Becoming Phoebe

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In the process of reading Phoebe becoming herself, I discovered myself. I read it in one session straight.
The story is about determination and self-esteem. It is a journey undertaken by an orphan whose passion for ice hockey makes her chart a path less trodden by girls. The plot revolves around Phoebe and her tryst with ice hockey. For the why, how, when and what, you need to read the story.
Sometimes, life leads us into situations where a stage comes when we feel completely let down. There are moments that draw out the negative emotions of self-pity. Yet, it is during these trying times that strength of character comes to the forefront. It is a strong heart that heals by letting go of a past that haunts and of emotions that hold back. As you read this story, the mind automatically takes you back to those dark moments in your life where many a questions have been left unanswered. 
The game of ice hockey has always been associated with men. In this story, the protagonist wants to bre…

When The Dragon Roars

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When I read the first book in this series, I was intrigued. There were a lot of questions that were left unanswered. So when I did get a chance to read this book, I did not let it go. And to be honest, I was not at all disappointed. This book is even better than the first one. I couldn't help but finish reading it in one sitting. It is unputdownable.

This story is about Starks but also about human struggles. In fact, the most difficult thing to come to terms with is the mistakes we make in our lives. This story is about Stark's journey inwards through introspection and self-realization.

Introspection is not easy, especially when you know that the fault is yours too. The process of acceptance, of understanding the truth, is a personal one. This has been so beautifully brought out in this story. Also, there is a limit to submission and being on the receiving end. Through Starks, the author has subtly hinted that there is a dragon within every person. The onus is on the individu…

Open Home Closed Heart

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Libby Cole has been one author whose writings I have been following. I have read all the three books in her Hawaiian Heartbreak Series and this is the last one in the series. While the first three books revolve around Kayla, this gives a peek into the life of Tess, her best friend.
This story too deals with love. It is about how the initial hatred for and anger against a person slowly gets replaced with love. There is attraction, there is passion, but in the end, it is the mutual feelings for each other that matters. This story is about relationships and romance in the true sense of the term.

The story is very simple, in fact, if need be, it can be narrated as a short flash fiction. Yet, what sets it apart is the manner in which it has been narrated. Libby has a distinct writing style and that is what had compelled me to read all her stories. Her stories are not complex but the emotions depicted are. Reading it would make to want to run to the protagonist and give her a hug. It kind o…

Bumbling Bea

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When it comes to books where children are the protagonists, I make it a point to share the story with my daughters. If they loved listening to it, then it means the story is really awesome.

Bumbling Bea is a story about a little girl and her trials and tribulations in the world of drama. The plot revolves around the emotions and thoughts that occupy a child. I wish I could elaborate further but that would lead to loads of spoilers and that would be like doing injustice to the author. You need to read it to actually experience it.

The writing style is simple and appealing. It is easily understood by children except for a few words that exposes them to a different culture like Kabuki. However, besides being a great read, Deborah ensures that her story constantly generates mental images and tugs at heartstrings. The choice of words used reflect the effort that she must have put in to make this story both child-friendly and adult-friendly.

There are no antagonists in this story. In fact,…

Murder And More

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This book promises to deliver exactly as its title. Yes, there is murder and more in the story. It is a mystery novel that is worth reading. I read it in one session straight.

The plot deals with a murder, the trials associated with it, the investigations behind it and of course oodles of suspense. On the other hand, this book deals with human greed, disgruntled yet calculative spouses, infidelity and more. The issues that the story touches upon truly reflects the title in an apt manner.

Gerald has the writing style that is capable of keeping you captivated and hooked on to your seats. The kind of suspense and aura that is trademark for mystery novels has been woven like magic. His narration makes visual imageries pop up in one's head. The only little hitch is a bit of repetition in dialogues that adds a tinge of monotony to an otherwise wonderful book.Instead of following the cliched route, Gerald has taken pains to describe an era gone by. The architectural descriptions, the de…

The Homebirth Baby

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This is the second book I am reading that has been written by Anita. The best thing about her is that she has neither claimed to be an authority on this subject nor has rejected the role of doctors in childbirth. I have never come across books on homebirth and this is my first one on the subject.

In this book Anita has brought out the importance of homebirth and how a baby can be naturally delivered by a mother in the confines of her home. There is no doubt that all parents want their babies to be born safely. In fact, the examples that have been quoted also help promote homebirth. However, the author has also stated the relevance of a doctor for cases that have complications.

The author is not a doctor, hence, all her efforts had been towards bringing out as much information on the subject as possible. Hence, there are places where the information given may not be enough and the reader would have to research more. Yet, this book is comprehensive, as in, Anita has tried to ensure tha…

A Thousand Eves

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Some books start with a great promise. A Thousand Eves was one such book. The storyline was unique, the concept very different, yet something went wrong somewhere.
The plot revolves around a ship that has only females while all men except one have been eliminated. The one who has been lucky enough to have survived is because he was absent during elimination by virtue of his voyage. I know, it sounds a bit complicated and trust me, it is. This is what can happen when the language used doesn't make sense at some places.
George has a wonderful plot and a different concept, yet the errors that cropped up here and there were a big let down. Though the book is a novella, there were a few characters or situations that could have had a bit more of descriptions. Sometimes, too little information fails to evoke the imageries that are required to get a reader involved.
There are many characters. Luckily, they all have a part in the story. Also, maybe, if George had been a bit more descripti…

Butterfly Blink

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Sometimes you really don't need words to put across an idea. Butterfly Blink is one such book that has no words. Yet, it has the power to keep you pondering long after you have kept it aside.
The book is meant for the most avid readers, children, yet, it has universal appeal. The book is filled with butterflies and lovely illustrations throughout. The endeavour of the writer is to encourage creativity and vocabulary building. From an adult's perspective, I found that this book took me back to my childhood. I had always been fond of symbols and signs. To tell you the truth, this book intrigued me. It kept me thinking long after I had finished reading. For me, a butterfly represented childhood and the increasing number of butterflies indicated various facets of my life as a child. It brought back memories, some bitter some sweet.
I cant comment upon Karl's writing style but his illustrations are bright and vivid. The colour adds to the cheerful mood of the book. Also, he ha…

Alchemy: Turning Silver To Gold

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Read this sequel "Turning Silver to Gold" as soon as I had finished the first book "A story of perfect murder". Both the books are part of Alchemy series. 
The story starts exactly where it was left unfinished in the previous book. The cliffhanger there does get suitably answered. However, the plot continues to be a continuation of the previous story. Yet again there is a trial. Yet again there is the shift of focus from the past to the present. However, but for the increase in the violence and horror, the plot is a continues repetition of the old. 
Chris is a promising writer. Yet, except for the increase in the graphic content and the increase in the insanity of the anti-hero, the sequel actually fizzles out in comparison with the first. The imageries are gory and horrific. They are definitely disturbing but that is all about it. 
There is one character besides the anti-hero in this story who is worth giving a second thought. That is Lizzie Weston. Sadly, she is…

Alchemy: A Story Of Perfect Murder

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This book is the first part of a two book series. If you think Alchemy is all about magic and trying to strike gold etc., well...its that and much more. First things first, this is one book I will never return to. No...there is nothing wrong with the book, but I guess the genre is probably not my cup of tea. Yet, inspite of this fact, there is no denying that I finished both the books back to to back sittings.
The plot of the book is as the name suggests. It is the story of perfect murder. However, in this case it is actually more than one. That notwithstanding, it can be taken to imply the perfect murder of alchemy per se... Anyways, interpretations are the prerogative of the reader. So each one his or her own interpretations.
Chris has a way with words. In fact, the manner in which he writes makes you literally squirm and twitch in your seat. The mood is dark. Even the love story entwined is not one that would give out a happy feeling. So, for all the die-hard romantics, this book …

Fire And Ice

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Leisure: WH Davis

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The Road Not Taken

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A Word: Emily Dickinson

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The Story Of Lucius Cane

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An awesome piece of writing but way too short!!! If only it had been longer, it was a sure shot unputdownable kind of book.
The plot revolves around a vampire who is not into harming humans. Its a different treatment given to typical vampire stories. 
The narrative is gripping. Vanya writing style makes one want to read more but sadly the story ends fast. The choice of words give way to beautiful imageries. The mental pictures are accompanied by sound effects. However, the length of the story is a big spoiler. 
The protagonist is a typical antihero and not the cliched vampire. The other characters, a human and a voice do add on to the suspense, but sadly, their presence makes one wish for bit more descriptions and due to the short length the story ends without elaborations.
To sum up, the story ends with a promise of a sequel. The only major drawback in this story is its length. But for it, the plot has everything it takes to make a bestseller. The book is a quick read, in fact one o…

Causality: The Crisis In Zelan

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If you mesh science fiction with fantasy you would get a story like Causality. The plot is the quintessential good versus evil. However, the treatment meted out to this story is very different.
The plot revolves around an angel on the run who turns saviour on a mortal planet. There are vampires, dragons and black magicians. There is magic and dark humour. But there is also sufficient violence which makes this book not suitable for all ages. In fact its a mix of two genres and one needs to develop a taste for such writing.
Zam has used simple language while describing familiar celestial beings and magical creatures, However, there are a few scenes wherein which the violence and gore was a bit more for me to handle. Yet, even writing about graphic violence is an art and Zam does have the flair to write in this genre. The narration is gripping once it catches up pace after the first ten percent. It is dark and has elements of horror, supernatural and suspense. As said earlier, the story…

Chergui's Child

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Loved this book. In fact this is the second book by the author that I have read. And yes, there is a complete different treatment. 
The plot explores the bond shared by a mother and her daughter akin to Daughters of the Lake. But the similarity ends there. The essence of this poignant story is the journey a mother undertakes to find her lost child, a child whose existence was kept hidden by her own mother. I wish I could say more but that would mean spoiling a beautiful narrative. Read it to believe it.
Jane's narration is really powerful in this story. She has brought out the yearning of a mother for her lost child in a manner that would tug your heart strings. I cried with the protagonist, I laughed with her and in the end felt really happy for her. The imageries are as powerful as the narrative. It was as if  I was part of a story where I could do nothing except be a mute spectator. Felt really desperate. Hats off to you Jane for a writing that made me be a part of it.
The sto…

Daughters Of The Lake

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Families can be complicated and the lesser said about dysfunctional families the better. Yet, in the end, it is families that really matter.
The story revolves around a dysfunctional family of a lady named Madalena living in Switzerland. She has planned a reunion at home with her middle aged children joining in. Why dysfunctional? Because each one has a personal battle to fight. For the what, why and how, you really need to read this book. What really caught my attention was Madalena, the mother.  The story line brings out an important message through her character and that is to live life. Times may be trying and circumstances may change. However, what really matters is the fact that one learns to live. Madalena learns to let go, learns to love and wishes the same for her children.
The language is simple and Jane has beautifully brought out the subtle undercurrents that exist between the siblings. Women are known to be the best example for emotions. Through the daughters and their moth…

Jonathon Goode, Honorary Witch: The Crystals of Aztlan

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The first thing that caught my eye was the title of this book. Men and boys were supposed to be wizards right? How could Jonathan Goode, a boy be an honorary witch? 
The plot is really interesting. Its about a boy and his transformations. The story line shifts between realms of reality and fantasy. And, the transition is so subtle and smooth that the story narration remains unaffected. sometimes, strange things happen when they are least expected and the plot simply reflects this statement. This book takes you on a magical journey.
The narration is fast paced and can keep you engrossed till the end. The writing takes a reader into a world of unicorns, elves, dwarves and centaurs. On the whole, a perfect treat for visualisations. Michael has used a language that is appropriate for children to read this book as well. Hence this book has a universal appeal.
The characters are apt and have a role to play in the story line. They exhibit emotions that any person in their shoes would feel. …

Second Nature

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It goes without saying that people take refuge in worlds of fantasy whenever they need a break. it is like second nature.
This book is set in an imaginary world where Queens can control elements of Nature and there are antagonists desirous of disrupting the delicate balance. For a start, the concept is unique. At least I have not read a book based on elements till now. Hence for me, the concept was interesting. The story line can be best understood when the book is read. But trust me, there is a little bit for every reader.
Lauren writes from the heart and at times even heart tends to get repetitive. Notwithstanding that, narrative is simple. It has the right blend of fantasy and reality. The terms are not complicated and lucidly explained. Yes, there is no dearth of imageries. As one reads, the story unfolds like a visual movie. 
The characters are well etched. The protagonist and the antagonist have an enigma associated with them. You will love to love and/ or hate whatever the cas…

Crossroads

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Being a woman myself, it was easy for me to empathize with all the authors. Hats off to the Christopher for putting forth this awesome collection.
This anthology comprises of fifteen essays written by fifteen women from Uganda. Each essay is a reflection of the social fabric of the country and brings out its different facets. A real treat when it comes to understanding a new culture. The best part of these reflections are that they are not isolated, as in, many of the thoughts have a universal appeal. The social surroundings separate the gravity of various issues discussed.
Its not easy to compile an anthology with stories that have a strong emotional content attached to them. Hats off Chris for putting together these beautiful masterpieces. Each story is like a jigsaw puzzle piece and together they make a lovely picture. 
The writings are simple. However, there are issues like sexual abuse, violence, child abuse, and the like, thereby making this book out of reach for children. Yet, …

Minor

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Chasing The Wind

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