BOOK REVIEW: THE HEIST ARTIST

Book: The Heist Artist

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Author: Vish Dhamija

Genre: Thriller, Fiction

Published by: Harper Black

Number of pages: 262 pages

My Rating: 4/5

MY REVIEW: I received a copy of “The Heist Artist” by Vish Dhamija in exchange for an honest review.

The story begins with a description of Vagh Pratap Singh, aka “Captain”, a con artist wanted by the police.

The Captain has been assigned to pull off a major heist, one that if successful, will give him enough money for the rest of his life. He has been asked to steal an already stolen painting, ‘Poppy Flowers’, painted by none other than Van Gogh! This job is given to the Captain by an unscrupulous politician Udhham Kumar.

The Captain takes on the identity of an art professor in order to trace the painting. As Udhham Kumar does not trust the Captain completely, he assigns the beautiful Sylvia to keep tabs on him.

Once the painting is located, the Captain plans a daring heist to steal the painting and bring it to Udhham Kumar. Sylvia and Damodar, Udhham Kumar’s man, are sent to assist the Captain in bringing the painting in safely.

However, each individual in the story has their own agenda. So begins a thrilling journey of car chases, double crosses and betrayal. To complicate the situation further, an upright policeman Hari Mohan Gupta, who is determined to arrest the Captain and bring him to justice, is also hot on the Captain’s trail.

Will the Captain get away with the robbery or will he end up arrested or dead? The reader needs to read the story to find that out.

I recommend this book to readers as an engrossing and interesting thriller that will leave the reader hooked until the end.

BOOK REVIEW: DARK BLOSSOM

Book: Dark Blossom

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Author: Neel Mullick

Genre: Thriller, Fiction

Published by: Rupa Publications

Number of pages: 212 pages

My Rating: 4/5

MY REVIEW: The author Neel Mullick kindly provided me with a copy of his book in exchange for an honest review. I was specially touched by the lovely handwritten message for me inscribed in the book.

The story is told in the first person by Cynthia, a psychologist/therapist who has just resumed working after a divorce. Cynthia lives with her surly teenage daughter Lily.

Cynthia has a new patient, Sam, who seeks recovery after the sudden deaths of his wife and teenage son in an accident. Cynthia tries to help Sam recover although she cannot help but suspect that Sam is hiding something from her.

Slowly, it appears that Sam is healing from his bereavement. Cynthia is progressing in her relationship with Lily as well. Sam also makes the transition from patient to friend of the family as he too becomes acquainted with Lily.

Just as everything appears to be going smoothly, Cynthia learns something that leaves her shaken! She is unsure whether she should share this knowledge with Sam or Lily as it will have an impact on both of them.

The end of the story, is extremely unexpected and was surely nothing that I anticipated!

I highly recommend “Dark Blossom”, as a highly enthralling and intriguing suspense thriller that will keep the reader guessing till the very end!

BOOK REVIEW: THE GLASS HOUSE A YEAR OF OUR DAYS

Book: The Glass House A Year of Our Days

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Author: Chanchal Sanyal

Genre: Fiction

Published by: Rupa Publications

Number of pages: 184 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 told in the first person by the protagonist referred to only as M.B. and ‘Bungali Saab’. M.B., a history professor and his wife Roshni, a designer have always dreamed of owning their own home and accordingly invest in an upcoming scheme in Gurgaon.

However the development runs into a multitude of problems and construction is stalled. This leads to the unravelling of M.B. and Roshni’s marriage and creates many more problems.

There are many characters in the story that have been wonderfully portrayed by the author. The Punjabi and Bengali culture and their eccentricities too have been depicted well. The characters of M.B. and Roshni’s landlord Mr. Khanna, his gym freak son Rocky, M.B’s successful older brother Tubluda and M.B.’s colleague Malati have been so well etched out that they greatly add to the story.

One cannot help but empathise with M.B. as the struggles that he goes through to own a flat are those that every middle class Indian experiences. The story is well written and extremely interesting. Does the story have a happy ending? The reader needs to read the book to find that out.

I will certainly recommend this book to you. People of all ages can certainly understand and enjoy the book.

BOOK REVIEW: SHADOWS OF THE NIGHT

Book: Shadows of the Night

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Author: Priyanka Lal

Genre: Fiction, Short Stories

Published by: Redgrab Books & Anybook

Number of pages: 160 pages

My Rating: 4/5

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

The book comprises of 13 short stories. I have always enjoyed reading short stories as so much is conveyed by the author in the short time the story is concluded. I thoroughly enjoyed reading each and every story in the book.

No two stories in the book are the same. They are on various topics such as a teenager falling in love with a photograph, a lady who falls in love with an amnesiac, business rivalry, a girl’s decision to donate the organs of her brain dead father and of course the spine chilling story, “Shadows of the Night” after whom the book is named.

This book can be easily carried along on a journey to read. I recommend this book as interesting and engaging.

BOOK REVIEW: HONEY & THE MOON

Book: Honey & the Moon

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Author: Kamini Kusum

Genre: Romance Fiction

Published by: Redgrab Books & Anybook

Number of pages: 152 pages

My Rating: 3.5/5

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

The story is extremely contemporary and relevant, as these days many marriages face the same issues as those described in the book.

Srishti is a single, attractive woman in her thirties living in Delhi. She is successful in her work and enjoys her single life. She is also a fitness enthusiast.

She meets Atharv Mathur who is a new colleague and is drawn to him. Slowly, but surely, they start to interact more and more frequently, until Srishti feels that she is in love with him. Atharv proposes marriage to her.

Srishti’s mother has misgivings about the match as Atharv comes from a large family and she doubts if Sristhti will feel comfortable in Atharv’s home. However, Srishti is sure about her love for Atharv and the two of them proceed to get married.

Issues start to crop up for Srishti as she feels that Atharv is too extravagant with his money and shells out too much money for his family instead of saving for the future. As Atharv does not like Srishti saying anything against his family, Srishti starts to withdraw from him and starts to focus more and more on her career.

Unfortunately, Srishti also seeks solace elsewhere and finds herself involved with another man.

So of course the question raised in the story is whether Srishti is able to overcome various hurdles and work out her marital problems. The reader needs to read the book to find out.

I recommend “Honey & the Moon” to readers who like to read realistic, contemporary romance fiction.

BOOK REVIEW: INELIGIBLE

Book: Ineligible

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Author: Bijaya Kumar Mishra

Genre: Romance Fiction

Published by: Invincible Publishers

Number of pages: 173 pages

My Rating: 3.5/5

MY REVIEW: I received a copy of “Ineligible” by Bijaya Kumar Mishra in exchange for an honest review.

Saahil and Varsha are very much in love and want to get married. However, in true Bollywood fashion, Saahil is a penniless, unemployed orphan while Varsha comes from a very wealthy family.

To take the comparison to Bollywood further, Varsha’s brother Dev sets down conditions for Saahil if he wants to marry Varsha: he must own a house, a car, have a monthly income of one lakh rupees and a bank balance of ten lakh rupees!

Saahil starts rushing to meet these impossible targets. On the other hand Dev fixes Varsha’s marriage to a stranger, making the situation even more difficult for Saahil and Varsha.

Saahil learns lots of lessons on his journey to earn money. Varsha ably assists him in achieving his targets. They are also aided by an assortment of friends and people they meet who become their friends.

Whether Saahil achieves his target and whether the love story has a happy ending, is obviously part of the suspense of the story and should not be revealed by me!

“Ineligible” is a fun filled and quirky romance that will certainly appeal to readers who love that particular genre.

BOOK REVIEW: THE PAINTBRUSH

Book: The Paintbrush

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Author: Krishnasish Jana

Genre: Fiction

Published by: Locksley Hall

Number of pages: 183 pages

My Rating: 4/5

MY REVIEW: The author provided me with a copy of his book in exchange for an honest review.

The story is about an artist Raman and his life. He grows up dirt-poor in the slums with an abusive father. But he has one talent that stands him apart from the other children: he is good with colours!

His mother gifts him a paintbrush that sets him off on his journey towards becoming a great artist. The paintbrush stays with him throughout his life and has a great significance for him.

Raman does see success as an artist but he also has to face many losses in his life. Raman remains determined to find his masterpiece that will fulfil him as an artist.

Raman tries his best to be a good father to his daughter Pakhi who also turns out to be a talented artist.

Will Raman be able to find his masterpiece or not?

I recommend this book to readers as an extremely touching and well-told story.