Sunday, December 31, 2017

Farewell 2017...Welcome 2018



    Today the sun has set on 2017 and tomorrow it will rise with 2018…

           Like it did all these years, this year too was full of incidences; some bought a smile on our lips, while some bought a tear in our eyes.

           No, I am not gonna go into flashback and reminisce all the instances and details. But instead, I would like to share with you what I learned from some of the incidents.

           A couple of days back, my close friend and sister, Janaki posted on her timeline

‘You can be a friend. You can be an entrepreneur. But you can't be both all the time.’

Well the above sentence itself is self-explanatory. Need I say anything more?
   
Since the day we are born we are taught to be selfless. We are taught to think more of our family rather than us. So in that process, we forget ourselves. And the end result, we bury ourselves for others. So it’s time to think about ourselves, its ok to be selfish sometimes and say NO, and not feel guilty about it. You can't make everyone happy when you yourself are not happy.

          So I would like to rephrase Janaki’s phrase as

‘I can be a friend. I can be a mother. I can be a wife. I can be a daughter. I can be an entrepreneur. But I can't be all-in-one at the same time. I can be me, just me.’

But most important and foremost thing which I want to say is




Thank you all who lent me a patient ear while I cribbed, one who lent me their shoulder while I cried buckets (Yes, people who appear strong can also break down at times), one who gave me words of encouragement when I was feeling low and broken and also to those who were always there for me; no words, no hugs but they were just there for me which meant a lot.

So thank you one and all. I won't name anyone, but you know who you are. And one important thanks to God, who gave me such gems in my life.

          As for new year resolutions, well resolutions are meant to be broken but goals, I do have couple of goals in my mind so let's see how it shapes up because as the saying goes





So, thank you once again to all my friends, readers, and supporters and wishing you all a very happy joyous and healthy new year 2018.













DMCA.com Protection Status

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Book Review-Rajiv Mittal's Brahmahatya

Blog Tour by The Book Club of BRAHMAHATYA by Rajiv Mittal

BRAHMAHATYA
by
Rajiv Mittal

Blog Tour by The Book Club of BRAHMAHATYA by Rajiv Mittal


Blurb

A story of revenge and redemption and deeds shaped by forces that humans believe they have defined through mythology and scriptures but still struggle to understand. 

A woman employee of a retirement home is shocked to discover that a new resident is in fact the son impersonating his father. The son is seeking revenge. She, by her past actions, is unwittingly complicit in his being there and now tries to thwart his peculiar plans. A senile woman-resident and an enigmatic founder offer him sage advice. The samudra manthan (a major episode in Hindu mythology), a slightly dim secretary and a sinister boss play their part in ensuring justice is finally served but in an unexpected manner. 

The novel quotes frequently from the ancient Hindu scriptures and stories that the protagonists use to justify their actions. The treatment of the elderly in society is a major theme. 

‘I found Rajiv's novel completely charming. The story is always interesting and is funny and moving by turns. It has really original elements with its setting and his use of the Hindu stories. I think it is such a good novel and with such appealing characters. I loved it!’ - Rebecca Smith, author of 'The Jane Austen Writers' Club'.


My Reveiw:

Doctors are often regarded as Gods. But what happens when some of these so-called Gods become arrogant and selfish which leads to the death of a person or damage the future of a yet to be born child.

We often say there is always a rotten apple in a basket of good ripe apples or a bad fish amongst good fish in a pond. Similarly, each institution, be it an orphanage or hospital or an old age home all consists of some individuals who are the rotten apples.

Ravi has a grudge against Dr. Chari, as he had refused to admit his ailing father in GMR, an institute for old and ailing people. Bhavna also dislikes Dr. Chari as his callous attitude during her delivery lead to brain damage due to lack of oxygen due to which Laxmi suffers from Athetoid cerebral palsy.

Brahmahatya is a mix of suspense and spirituality. The story is based on spirituality, as most characters, belong to Tamil Brahmin community, and each act/deed of the characters are explained with verses of Samudra Manthana or some famous verse of Hindu scriptures.

Brahmahatya is a well-developed, engrossing story, though initially it looks like slow paced and you somewhat get lost while reading but then as the plot unwinds itself, everything falls into place.

But as they say, not everything is perfect; similarly, I found some flaws in the book. Some editing error in a couple of places, a verse had few words missing and main suspense, ‘What is the relation between Dr. Chari and Reddy?’

Secondly was expecting some punishment for Reddy for his bad behavior as he deserved to be punished.


          Other than these flaws I must say Brahmahatya is definitely a must and good read. 

Grab your copy @


About the author


In Rajiv Mittal's own words:

"I was born in Chennai, India in the early nineteen sixties. I am an alumnus of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad and a CPA from Australia. I now live in Melbourne after a stint of several years in the Middle East. 

Writing was a vague aspiration. It became reality thanks to a stranger who said I reminded him of the main character from Desiderata by Max Ehrmann. He quoted from it, ‘Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.’" 

Stalk him @  


                     

Rafflecopter helps you win Prizes. So lets PLAY !


   This Tour is Hosted by 



We Promote So That You Can Write 


More posts :

Friday, December 15, 2017

Book Review-Terrance Coffey's Valley of The Kings

VALLEY OF THE KINGS: THE 18TH DYNASTY by Terrance Coffey

check out the schedule here
VALLEY OF THE KINGS: THE 18TH DYNASTY 
by 
Terrance Coffey

VALLEY OF THE KINGS: THE 18TH DYNASTY by Terrance Coffey


Blurb

In the year 1355 BCE, the land of Egypt was the superpower of the known world. King Tut's father, Akenaten, the so-called 'heretic pharaoh,' and his wife, Queen Nefertiti, are on the verge of catapulting Egypt into a revolution that will forever divide its people and rip the most powerful empire on the earth from its foundation. 

Inspired by the actual Hittite and Amarna letters of 14th century BCE, 'Valley of the Kings: The 18th Dynasty' is an epic novel of intrigue, passion, and betrayal, resurrecting the thrilling story of a singular leader whose beliefs were both visionary and disastrous.


My Honest Review:

Valley of The Kings – The 18th Dynasty is based on Egyptian history.

The story travels through three generations and is a typical royal family story full of treachery, suspense, deceit, betrayal and plans to access the throne. The story also deals with spirituality and people’s belief and superstitions and fear during that era.

This is the first time I have read a book by Terrance Coffey, first time I have read a book on Egyptian history and I sure loved reading both.

I liked the author’s writing style, his detail research on the royal family’s looks, their insecurities, their strengths, their rituals, their God’s and their beliefs, and mainly people’s fears and their blind superstitions and faith.

This book is a perfect read except for one thing; the suspense revolving around Queen Nefertiti’s sudden death, which was left undisclosed by the author.

Other than that, Valley of The Kings – The 18th Dynasty is a must read if you like history and can handle little gore and suspense.



Grab your copy @


About the author


Terrance Coffey is a bestselling author, screenwriter, songwriter and composer with a predilection for Egyptian history. He has written numerous short stories, screenplays, television pilots, and even Coca-Cola music jingles. His debut novel "VALLEY OF THE KINGS: The 18th Dynasty" is the first of a trilogy and a #1 Amazon bestseller.

Awards & Accolades 


#1 Amazon Bestseller!
2017 National Indie Excellence Awards FINALIST
2017 International Book Awards FINALIST
2016 International Pacific Book Award WINNER Best Historical Fiction  

Stalk him @    

                   

Play the Rafflecopter and stand a chance to WIN


   This Tour is Hosted by 



We Promote So That You Can Write 


Check out all the posts for VALLEY OF THE KINGS: THE 18TH DYNASTY by Terrance Coffey

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Book Review-Neil D'silva's Right Behind You

My honest review:



    If you have read Neil D’silva’s previous works you definitely know what to expect from this one. Having read Pishacha and Bound in Love, I was expecting enough chills and was really eager to read Right Behind You as the book cover and blurb was intriguing enough.

    Right Behind You is a collection of thirteen short stories (he had to choose the number 13…); stories which are a figment of author’s imagination, some which are based on rumors or stories of local folk.

    But each story is written with the right amount of horror, which really sends chills down your spine. So a precautionary warning to readers with faint heart…don’t read this book at night.

    The book cover is apt and intriguing, no errors except in the last story in which some parts are printed twice but given the good content, this one error can be ignored. An additional point is the blurb contest of the book which really makes the reader curious and read with utmost interest and attention.

    So if you like to read horror stories Right Behind You is a must read. Make sure you sit down with enough munchies while reading it.


One can buy the book here and read more about the author here.


PS: I won the copy of this book in a contest held by the author. 

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Book Blitz - Darkness There-But Something More

Book Blitz: Darkness There - But Something More: An Anthology of Selected Ghost Stories by Dr. Santosh Bakaya and Lopamudra Banerjee
 
Print Length: 182 pages
Publisher: The Blue Pencil
Publication Date: June 30, 2017
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
Language: English
Genre: Paranormal
 
 
Who has not been intrigued and enthralled by the spirit world, ghosts, other-worldly beings, or in other words, the paranormal? Ambiguous presences around us, whether in the form of orally narrated stories by our grandparents, or in the form of haunting, riveting supernatural stories in books and movies have held us in their spell, engaging, alluring us even to this date. In fact, the prominence of paranormal investigators, ghostbusters and others documenting the other-worldly in today’s age overpowered by science and technology only points to the fact that we crave to push our boundaries as rational beings and delve into the phenomena which we cannot define or explain tangibly.This anthology of 30 selected ghost stories by authors dispersed all over the globe celebrates the spine-chilling thrills and sense of awe and bewilderment of this very inexplicable world inhabited by the other-worldly beings. Come, experience the cataclysmic, weird, and at times, benevolent spirit world and you will never have a dull moment in this roller-coaster ride!
It would be great if you can add this book to your TBR
Dr. Santosh Bakaya
Recipient of the international Reuel Award for literature [2014] for her long poem, Oh Hark!, The Poet Laureate Award for Ballad of Bapu, Oh Hark! And where are the lilacs? [2016 Poetry Society of India, Gurugram, Haryana, India] , The Universal Inspirational Poet Award [2016 , Pentasi B friendship Poetry and the Ghana Government ] and the Incredible woman of the year Award, 2015 [Incredible women of India blog] Santosh Bakaya, an academician –poet –essayist –novelist, has made her mark both in prose and poetry. Her three mystery novels, [The mystery of the Relic, The mystery of the Jhalana Fort, The mystery of the Pine cottage] for young adults, were very well received in the 1990s.
Flights from my Terrace, her e-book of 58 essays, published on Smashwords [2014], now has a printed version [Authorspress, Delhi, 2017]. Ballad of Bapu, [a poetic biography of Mahatma Gandhi, Vitasta publishers, Delhi, 2015], and Where are the lilacs? [Authorspress, Delhi, 2016] have received international laurels.
Her poems have figured in the highly commendable category and poem of the month category in Destiny Poets, a U K based poetry website. Her poetry has also appeared in Learning and Creativity- Silhouette magazine, in Incredible women of India, in an Australia based e-zine, Mind Creative, In Brian Wrixon's Anthology, the online magazine Episteme, published from Mumbai and Setu , a bi-lingual journal published from Pittsburgh , USA, GloMag ,Different Truths and Spillwords.com, all very popular international e-zines.
She has co-edited UMBILICAL CHORDS: AN ANTHOLOGY ON PARENTS REMEMBERED, published by Global Fraternity of Poets, Gurugram, Haryana and Darkness there but something more – a collection of ghost stories. [Blue Pencil] Under the Apple Boughs, her second compilation of poems, is her most recent book [Authorspress, 2017]. In July, 2017, an Award for Literary Excellence was conferred on her by Bharat Nirman, an international NGO.
You can stalk her @
Lopamudra Banerjee
Lopamudra Banerjee is a writer, poet, editor and translator, currently based in Dallas, USA. She has a Masters' degree with thesis in creative nonfiction writing from the Department of English, University of Nebraska at Omaha. Thwarted Escape: An Immigrant's Wayward Journey, her debut memoir/nonfiction novel, (Authorspress, 2016) has received Honorable Mention at Los Angeles Book Festival 2017. The manuscript has also been First Place Category Winner at the Journey Awards 2014 hosted by Chanticleer Reviews and Media LLC, USA. Her literary works have appeared in numerous journals, anthologies and emags.
Her fiction has been featured in Silhouette I & II anthology (Authorspress), among other places. She has received the Reuel International Award 2017 for Poetry and also Reuel International Award 2016 for her English translation of Rabindranath Tagore's novella Nastanirh (translated as The Broken Home) instituted by The Significant League, a renowned literature group in Facebook, and the book is available in Amazon Kindle. Her debut poetry collection 'Let The Night Sing' has recently been published by Global Fraternity of Poets. Also, her collection of selected stories by Rabindranath Tagore in English translation, 'The Broken Home and Other Stories' has recently been published by Authorspress.
You can stalk her @


Grab Your Copy From


This Tour is Hosted by



We Promote So That You Can Write


Check more posts for this book:

Friday, December 8, 2017

Book Review-Rishabh Jhol's Lean In To Relationships

Blog Tour by The Book Club of LEAN IN TO RELATIONSHIPS by Rishabh Jhol


LEAN IN TO RELATIONSHIPS
by
Rishabh Jhol

Blog Tour by The Book Club of LEAN IN TO RELATIONSHIPS by Rishabh Jhol


Blurb

Doubt has pivoted many a relationship across the centuries. Whether it is Othello suspicious of Desdemona or through the rise of paranoia as a trope in twentieth century writings. While paranoia naturally suggests the vulnerability of individual mind to social rhetoric, it is also the space for deep interrogation of the individual that renders him/her to paranoia. This novel presents that doubt has the potential to be a space of liberation.

Madeeha works in Jordan to rehabilitate Syrian refugees. Zehen, a political analyst from India, meets her in the US during their social impact program. He is intrigued and charmed by her, and falls deeply in love. But the world political climate, with its accompanying cultural narratives about terror and pain, infects Zehen’s mind. Zehen begins to suspect Madeeha as a possible mujahid. Will he find his truth? Fear doesn’t devastate; it stirs the inner pot. 

The novel uses Sufi philosophical terms to mark the journey to self-love and explores the tensions between Ishq-e- Mazizi (worldly love) and Ishq-e- Haqiqi (love for Divine). The novel uses the backdrops of various cities around the world to build its narratives – Cusco and Lima in Peru, Petra/Aqaba/Amman/Jerash in Jordan, New York/Philadelphia/DC/Chicago/Seattle/San Francisco. The cultures within each of these cities inform and influence the story so that each city becomes a character themselves participating in empowerment and liberation of the main protagonist.

It is a tender love story that triumphs heartbreaks and sets the foundation of deep lasting future relationships - a delightful emancipation from social intrigues and cultural constraints.



My Honest Review:


    Relationships are very complex. Neither easy to start nor easy to maintain but easy to break. It takes two people to start a relationship but it takes a lot of struggle and effort from both sides to nurture and maintain a healthy relationship.

             Lean Into Relationship is basically Zehen’s experience with his various relationships. Travel liberates one’s self. It helps one to rediscover one’s true self and that’s what Zehen did after his heartbreak with Madeeha.

    This book also gives us a world tour but through Zehen’s eyes.

             The book though, is not an easy or casual read. This book is not a romantic story but an intense take on a person and his flaws. If you are looking for a thought-provoking, soul-searching and intense read on relationships then Lean Into Relationship is one.

            Some of the quotes in the book are so effective and strong that it makes one close the book (in my case the Kindle) and eyes and ponder on it and it stays for a very long time.

    But I wish in the end, along with Aisha there was some mention of Madeeha too because the major part of the story was about her and Zehen. So some information on how she moved on with her life after he left would have a plus point.


             So, my final verdict, if you ignore the little editing errors this book is definitely a good and intense read.  


Grab your copy @


Read an excerpt here:

Zehen was experiencing sweet joy in his heart. Memories bustled in the head. When did he first see her? Zehen searched his head madly. Orientation session? Corridor to the classroom? However, he tried, he couldn’t pinpoint the moment. A whirr of images, of moments, yet-to- be collaged. And a heart that already had a narrative, waiting to be inset.

We imagine that all romantic stories will have a sigh-worthy romantic beginning. But beginnings are when the heart awakens, when the soul remembers. A presence stills and emerges from the shadows of time.

His first memory was when she introduced herself in the class. They had gathered at Presidium University for a one-year course on Social Impact Leadership. Outside, the white fringe tree was laden with its grape-like fruits. The pine, oak and spruce waited for winter to tell the world how unchangeable they were. And the old Redwood stood proud like the institution itself. Inside, in the warm classroom, students from various cultures across the world had gathered. Icebreaker session was on and the usual round of introductions.

Introduction is a ritual. A cumbersome ritual. How does one reduce the tapestry of one’s entire existence, the colors, and the many weaves into a single palatable thread?

About the author


I was born into poverty. At the time of my birth, my parents shared a one -room hut with six other family members in one of the poorest neighborhoods of Delhi.

It was a hot day in the month of March 1995. I was in standard 4th and had an examination the following day. As was regular in that locality, we didn't have electricity that day. I couldn't study or sleep properly. One of the watershed moments happened when I came back from school the next day. We had an inverter installed at home. I knew we couldn't afford an inverter. But my dad was always convinced that the way out of poverty for our family is through education.

Despite an interest in creative writing, I chose to study a subject that society values more – Finance. Later, I got into one of the top colleges for finance in the country. My first salary out of college (in 2007, when I was 20 years old) was higher than that of my dad's salary at the time.

When I was 24 years old, I had everything that makes one happy – loving parents, great partner, close-knit group of friends, and career path that exceeded every goal. Yet, I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t sad either; but it never felt like my life. I had carefully and meticulously built that life though. Contextually, it was the safe thing to do.

Following year though, I had to deal with the loss of my 7¬year old relationship and of my 5¬year old job. My identity was crushed. My biggest lesson was that you can fail at what you don't want, and what you consider safe; you might as well take a chance at what you truly want.

Next year, I got my ‘ideal’ job but walked away from it. Failure had taught me to be more ambitious and audacious. I had reached a point in my life where I wanted my work to have more meaning; and to stand for something more important than myself.

I started a political consulting company to maneuver social ascendance of marginalized communities by equalizing access to political capital. I primarily did topical research for MPs for their debates in the parliament and on TV shows. Partial project list includes:

Providing 108 rape survivors with medical, legal, financial, and social support over six months through one of my client's NGO
Getting amendments passed in the communal violence bill that tackle systemic bias towards Muslims
Helping three social entrepreneurs raise a combined total of INR 43 lakhs from their MP for community initiatives

Along with running my own company, I focused on my passion for writing and traveling as well. I solo travelled to all seven wonders of the world, and did two-cross country trips by train in India and in the US. I have also written and published three fiction novels.

Stalk him @
                          


Play the Rafflecopter to Win Prizes !
a Rafflecopter giveaway
 
This Tour is Hosted by 



We Promote So That You Can Write 


Add your Link posts for LEAN IN TO RELATIONSHIPS by Rishabh Jhol !

Cover Reveal-Carthick's Unfairy Tales



Cover Reveal: CARTHICK'S UNFAIRY TALES by T.F. Carthick

CARTHICK'S UNFAIRY TALES
BY
Carthick

Blurb


A damsel in distress. An evil dragon. A concerned father seeking a savior to rescue his daughter. A hero galloping off to the rescue – a knight in shining armor. Now THAT is stuff of fairy tales.

But what if the father’s real concern is for the dragon’s hoard; What if the damsel’s reason of distress is the marriage proposal by her pompous and vicious savior; and what if the story is told by the horse who bears not only the overweight knight but also his heavy, shining armor all the way to the dragon’s lair and back, facing certain death in the process?


What if there was more – much more – to all your favourite fairy tales than met the eye?


This book chronicles not one but seven such unfairy tales – tales told by undead horsemen and living cities. Tales of mistreated hobgoblins and misunderstood magicians. Tales of disagreeable frogs and distressed rats and bears baring their souls. Once you read these stories, you will never be able to look at a fairy tale the same way ever again.

     
About the author






T F Carthick is a Bangalore-based writer and blogger who has been blogging since 2008. He is an avid reader of Children’s Fiction, Science-fiction and Fantasy. Enid Blyton, J K Rowling, Isaac Asimov, Frank Herbert, Neil Gaiman and Douglas Adams are some of his favorite authors. His paranormal thriller ‘Bellary’ was one of the three stories in the book Sirens Spell Danger, published in 2013. Six of his stories have featured in multi-author anthologies and literary magazines. He has written over 50 short stories, many of which can be read for free on www.karthikl.com.

He is an Engineer and MBA from India’s premier institutes IIT, Madras and IIM, Ahmedabad and currently works as an Analytics and Artificial Intelligence Consultant at one of the world’s leading Consulting Firms.




You can stalk him @

            
  

Are you ready???

5

.
.
.
4
.
.
.
3
.
.
.
2
.
.
.
1
.
.
.
0
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.


Cover Reveal: CARTHICK'S UNFAIRY TALES by T.F. Carthick

  This Tour is Hosted by 



We Promote So That You Can Write