BOOK REVIEW: BESTSELLER

Book: Bestseller

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Author: Ahmed Faiyaz

Genre: Fiction

Published by: Rupa Publications

Number of pages: 190 pages

My Rating: 4/5

MY REVIEW: I was kindly provided with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

The story is about Akshay who is sent to India from England in order to attempt to revive Kalim Publishing, a company that was once at the top but is now in deep trouble.

Akshay is given a year to turn around Kalim’s fortunes but he has his own problems to contend with as he is divorced and in debt. Aided by Zorah and hindered by Tarun, Akshay tries to publish more books on Kalim’s behalf.

The author has vividly depicted the way things work in the publishing industry by way of Akshay’s struggles. Akshay encounters an array of amusing characters ranging from the film star Roshan Khan to the politician Suryakant Joshi. Akshay unwittingly becomes a Page 3 personality and is thrust in the limelight in the course of his struggle.

Can Akshay succeed in getting Kalim Publications to start earning a profit or will he have to return to England in disgrace? The reader needs to read the book to find out.

The story is well written and extremely interesting.  If you are looking for a brisk paced and entertaining read, I will certainly recommend this book to you.

BOOK REVIEW: STROKES OF LIFE

Book: Strokes of Life

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Author: Anish Jha

Genre: Romance Fiction

Published by: &All

Number of pages: 239 pages

My Rating: 3.5/5

MY REVIEW: I was provided with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

The story is not a run of the mill romance, instead it has the elements of a lifelong love story.

Raj and Vira work in the same organisation but in different departments. Raj fancies Vira and allows her to talk him into joining a company organised holiday to Switzerland though he can ill afford it.

In Switzerland, Raj and Vira find that their booking has been messed up and they have to stay apart from the rest of their colleagues. They have to stay in a hostel and in textbook fashion, they proceed to fall in love.

Upon returning to Mumbai, they decide to get married as soon as possible. Slowly and gradually, over the years, the mundane problems of life creep in and a distance is created between them. However, the straw that breaks the camel’s back is their inability to have a child.

Matters come to a head and Raj leaves. Vira is shattered but tries to pick up the pieces of her life and move on. She manages to conceive a child through the wonders of modern medicine, whom she names Nandini.

Nandini is naturally curious to know the identity of her father but they are unable to find Raj anywhere. Nandini is also obsessed with Viraj, the famous reclusive writer.

Nandini go to Switzerland for a confrontation with Viraj thereby setting events in motion that will eventually lead to a meeting between Raj and Vira.

Will Raj and Vira be able to reunite? Who is Viraj and why does he play such an important role in the story?

Though there are a few loopholes in the plot, the story will surely appeal to readers of this genre.

BOOK REVIEW: BECAUSE I PROMISED

Book: Because I Promised

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Author: Anupriya

Genre: Romance, Fiction

Published by: GJ Group

Number of pages: 245 pages

My Rating: 3/5

MY REVIEW: I was kindly provided with a copy of this book for an honest review.

Sushant and Varnika have been friends, classmates and competitors all through college. However when Sushant publically professes his love for her, Varnika rejects him firmly.

Varnika belongs to a large joint family dominated by her grandmother. Her father is deceased while her mother lives in Mumbai to manage the business of her own father. Varnika has had a traumatic childhood on account of her parents being estranged.

Varnika moves to Mumbai to live with and work for her mother while Sushant moves to Bangalore to pursue further studies. Their paths cross again when Sushant comes back into her life to help her out on an extremely important project.

The story reveals why Varnika is so determined to deny her feelings for Sushant. Will she ever be able to accept her love for Sushant and take their relationship to the next level? The reader needs to read the book to find that out.

Because I Promised would have been a much more enjoyable book if there had been less grammatical errors.

BOOK REVIEW: I AM M-M-MUMBAI

Book: I am M-M-Mumbai

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Author: Rishi Vohra

Genre: Fiction

Published by: Vishwakarma Publications

Number of pages: 188 pages

My Rating: 4/5

MY REVIEW: I was kindly provided with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

The story is about Rudra, a young man who lives in Mumbai. He aspires to become an actor but does not dare to attempt to do so on account of his speech impediment, i.e. stammering. Instead he struggles as an assistant film director but constantly faces humiliation on account of his stammering.

When Rudra is dumped by his girlfriend, he hits rock bottom and goes into a deep depression. He is helped by a bar dancer Devika who gives him a roof over his head and his first break. Rudra manages to overcome various hurdles and finally gets a break in a film. Will he be able to make it big time?

The author has vividly depicted the way things work in the Hindi film industry by way of Rudra’s struggles. Once cannot help but fall in love with Rudra’s character, i.e. a truly decent human being. The story is well written and extremely interesting.

If you are looking for a breezy and light read, I will certainly recommend this book to you. People of all ages can certainly understand and enjoy the book.

BOOK REVIEW: SCARS DO HEAL

Book: Scars Do Heal

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Author: Shilpa Menon

Genre: Romance Fiction

Published by: Notion Press

Number of pages: 328 pages

My Rating: 3/5

MY REVIEW: I received a review copy of “Scars Do Heal” by Shilpa Menon in exchange for an honest review.

The main character in the story is Sonal Kapoor, who lives in London with her aged mother and runs a florist shop. Sonal moved from India to England several years ago, in order to escape from a traumatic incident. This incident has left her very disturbed and she is unable to trust a man.

A chance encounter with a handsome stranger in the grocery store leads her to dropping her belongings. The handsome stranger cares to track her down and return them to her. He is Dr. Ryan Percy, a cardiovascular surgeon.

Ryan is drawn to her and wants to get to know her better. Sonal tries to push him away but Ryan proves to be too charming to resist. He courts her in an extremely romantic fairy tale fashion until she too reciprocates his feelings.

It turns out that Ryan is also recovering from past wounds. Sonal opens up to him about her past as well. However, just when everything seems to be going on well, a ghost from Sonal’s past returns to haunt her.

All the characters in the story are portrayed very well and the reader will keep turning the pages to find out if Sonal and Ryan’s love story has a happy ending.

BOOK REVIEW: FOR THE SAKE OF LOVE

Book: For the Sake of Love

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Author: Anamika Mishra

Genre: Romance Fiction

Published by: Westland Books

Number of pages: 171 pages

My Rating: 4/5

MY REVIEW: I received a copy of “For the Sake of Love” by Anamika Mishra in exchange for an honest review.

There are two parallel romances in this book, one is a love story that spans over decades. This story is beautifully depicted in the form of letters written by David to Jasmine. But is David’s love unrequited? Why has Jasmine never replied to any of his letters?

Twisha Khanna is the creative head of a travel magazine. Young, pretty and practical, she doesn’t believe in the notion of romantic love. She is sent by her travel magazine to Shimla on an assignment for a month, accompanied by her colleague Bobby.

In Shimla, Twisha and Bobby discover David’s letters to Jasmine. Fascinated by the letters, Twisha and Bobby track down David. They undertake to find out what happened to Jasmine and why she never answered any of David’s letters. They are aided in their search by David’s grandson Alex.

While they try to track down Jasmine, Twisha and Alex find themselves drawn to each other. But neither of them believe in the concept of love.

Whether they succeed in finding Jasmine and whether both the love stories have a happy ending, is obviously part of the suspense of the story and should not be revealed by me!

“For the Sake of Love” is a romance that will certainly appeal to readers who love that particular genre.

BOOK REVIEW: SECRET DIARY OF AN INCURABLE ROMANTIC

Book: Secret Diary of an Incurable Romantic

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Author: Chitrangada Mukherjee

Genre: Fiction

Published by: Fingerprint Publishing

Number of pages: 278 pages

My Rating: 5/5

MY REVIEW: I was provided with a copy of this book by the author Chitrangada Mukherjee in exchange for an honest review.

The story is about Madhu (Madhubala), whose husband has died recently after only a year of marriage. Madhu now lives with her elderly mother-in-law and teaches Social Science in a school.

The story is witty, hilarious, extremely interesting and poignant at the same time. Though Madhu misses her husband intensely, she is still portrayed as a woman with normal needs and desires. She takes solace in alcohol and a fling with a colleague.

Madhu’s workplace, i.e. the school, is extremely well depicted with interesting descriptions of the staffroom, her bitchy colleagues, the pushy parents and the demanding principal.

I also loved the characters of Madhu’s parents and her mother-in-law Lalitaji as well as her best friend Pintu.

On the whole, the story is extremely modern and accurately shows the dynamics of relationships today. Will there be a happy ending for Madhu? The reader needs to read the story to find out.

I highly recommend ‘Secret Diary of an Incurable Romantic’ to readers as a real page-turner of a novel!