Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Mrs Funnybones by Twinkle Khanna (Book Review-3*/5) !!!

    I finished reading Twinkle Khanna's debut non-fiction book "Mrs Funnybones" within 2.5 hours. It belongs to humour genre and as she is already famous with her columns in newspaper and tweets, her regular readers will surely enjoy the way she have written this book. Frankly speaking, I have never read any of her columns except few tweets so I picked it up just as a random reader. She has basically shared how her usual days are and have tried to create humor through that. Sometimes the humour looks real and obvious while somethings it looks forced. Which I must say also acts as a drawback to this book. When you attempt something like humor genre and only half of your jokes are funny, the other half irritates the reader more than the former half which made him laugh out loud.      

           Twinkle Khanna have used a very easy language to write this book which makes it easy for the readers to understand what she is trying to put forward. The book starts about her life as a wife of a celebrity and later on moves on towards her daily routine with her children, husband, mother, mother-in-law  etc. She discusses how a woman is in trouble throughout the day and with it, creates scenarios for us which are funny and laughable. She discusses even the serious issues so well that it does not look preachy and you like what she advises. 

             Through her sarcasm, she is surely going to win many hearts but for me the book has been average. Yes, it has some worthy humour but as I said, because the equal number of jokes look forced and unwanted, she fails to make it a laugh riot. Just like her husband's recent movies which are of comedy genre but manages to make you laugh only 30% of times, this book also ends up giving almost similar performance. I, therefore, rate this book 3 stars out of 5. 



Monday, September 28, 2015

The Suicide Diary by Hari Prasad (Book Review- 4.25*/5) !!!

      I am done reading 49th book in 2015 just yesterday. Just one away from 50th and I am happy that I got my hands upon a book which really excited the reader in me. I read "The Suicide Diary" written by Hari Prasad and published by Lifi publication. Frankly speaking, I didn't have expectation from the book and I thought it would be just another tale of how a man didn't get the attention from the love of his life and ended up writing an over emotional and psychotic suicide letter full of childish romance and SMSes shared between the couple. But when I got an idea about the intention with which author have scribbled this book after few pages, I was amazed and my reading speed accelerated. Now as I am done with the book, I can definitely say that it's one of the best books I have read this year and I wish that people get to know about it so that it gets at least close to being Bestseller if fails to touch that mark.
            The book is about this protagonist who is always humiliated by everyone in life just because he couldn't get along with people and whenever he tries to strike a conversation, he ends up humiliating himself more than before. No one acknowledges his presence and people just end up ditching him or misusing his trust and loyalty. The book starts with his wrong equation with his boss and then moves ahead towards his wife and so on. After a while he feels that it's enough and he should commit suicide as he can't bear more humiliation. But he gives himself chance of few more days and then leave the world. What he does in these days is what this book is all about. 

          The way Hari Prasad have handled this sensitive topic in his debut novel itself speaks about the great amount of talent he has. The book belongs in the genre- Fiction/Thrillers/Crime and author have beautifully dealt with it. The kind of words and sentences he have used to explain the philosophy of his protagonist and the way his thoughts develop regarding a particular person or situation is an amazing experience for a reader to witness. The depth in the emotions and thought process of the protagonist makes this book a special one. Even the violence is narrated so well that you can imagine everything happening in front of your eyes and feeling bad about the people turning out to be a victim of it. Even the twist of video leak at one point of time shivers you thinking about the kind of harsh step the character takes. His chemistry with a prostitute is also depicted so perfectly that you only wish to meet the author and tell him how wonderful he is.

          Coming to the drawbacks: I felt that the over-description of few scenes or emotions irritates you at times because there's not much for which the author kept digging. The book becomes repetitive at times. I feel that the book could have been easily 30-40 pages shorter but author chose to stretch it to give whatever he has as an author in this book itself. But overall, the book is something which every reader who have been reading Indian authors should read and not miss. I would like to specially mention the last conversation between the protagonist and his wife. The last words that he speaks on phone to her will make you feel so happy for reading this book that you will thank me later. :-) I will give this attempt- 4.25* out of 5. GO FOR IT!!!



Sunday, September 27, 2015

Yes, My Accent Is Real by Kunal Nayyar (Book Review- 3.5*/5) !!!

    Who doesn't watch and like "The Big Bang Theory"? It's one of the most popular show and specifically in India, I have seen people watch it on their Android smartphones every time I travel in local train. It's the best time pass for the idle people. The characters of the show are favorites of everyone. And the show boasts about an Indian character too- Raj which is played by Kunal Nayyar. The popularity lead him to finally write a book on how he became popular with funny scenarios and events in his life. The name is "Yes, My Accent Is Real". He also adds in the title "And some other things I haven't told you". The book is published by Simon & Schuster publication and it is surely going to be one of the best selling books by them.      

           I haven't seen The Big Bang Theory for more than an episode or two because of the time constraint in my life. As I always chose a book before any kind of video, I ended up reading Kunal's book even when I have no connect with his character. That's the kind of person I am and I am very delighted to tell everyone that the way he have written his tale, anyone can pick up the book and enjoy the funny situations he have shared with us even if you are as stranger with the show as me. Haha! The language is easy and fast pacy. It makes you laugh with each sentence because the way writer have written it, he is telling that he does not deserve to be anywhere but still he lands up and make fun of himself. 

            The good part about the book is that it's not only funny but it becomes serious and emotional too at times when it's necessary. That's when I wanted to salute author for not letting this book look like a wanna-be or asking the reader for a forcible laugh even at the places where the jokes doesn't work. Along with making fun of his whole journey which from an Indian's point of view is quite successful, he also keeps telling where did he have to struggle more than needed and when did he feel low about himself. He have described India beautifully rather than making cheap comments on the nation like few other authors who find it a way of amusing their foreign fans. 

           The only drawback of the book is that the author is confused at times if he have written this book for only his Indian fans or only his overseas fans or for both of them. Sometimes he writes as if he's talking to Indians. Sometimes to the people of his migrated nation. Sometimes with all of us. That confuses us a bit about the approach with which that particular chapter is written. Also, I didn't find the whole description of each ceremony of his marriage funny even when the author have tried to create humor in it. He failed miserably only in that chapter otherwise all the chapters are wonderful if not great sometimes. I give this book 3.5 stars out of 5 and I want to read more from Kunal. GO FOR IT!!!



Monday, September 21, 2015

Chhimi Tenduf-La: "I have to be nicer to people in the hope that they buy my books." (Interview) !!!

 Chhimi Tenduf-La is someone whom I call Chetan Bhagat of Sri-Lanka because the way he writes, he makes a reader feel that it's his own story even when he have faced nothing of it. He has recently come up with his 2nd novel- Panther. Do read this funny and honest interview to know what Chhimi have to say to all of us regarding his life as writer.

1.      How has life changed since writing first book early this year?

I have had to employ heavier bodyguards and I wear sunglasses in the night now. I’m just joking, of course, as if I am honest, nothing has really changed. The big change in my life was becoming a parent not an author. The only changes are that I am busier, for sure, and I have to be nicer to people in the hope that they buy my books.

2.      What kind of responses did you get for THE AMAZING RACIST?

Incredible really, both from bloggers and the press. I hoped it would have some commercial success but I never imagined it would be well received critically, so that’s great. The best part, really, is hearing that people who don’t normally read, have read it.

3.      Tell us something about your new release- Panther.

I started writing Panther as a high school drama- like a teen movie for South Asia, but it developed into more as I studied the psychology of child soldiers and the like. This made it a more emotional story, and possibly one which has suspense and surprises.

4.      How did you come up with such a title which does not tell much about the story inside? :-)

Initially it was called the Papadum King but my publisher felt that title made it sound too childish. We changed it to Panther to maintain some mystery. The main character was a child soldier for the Panthers, and in some ways he is a panther at high school, trying to sneak around and get by.

5.      How did you manage to write and release it within 6 months of your first release? 

I wrote both books before I approached an agent, so with a few tweaks here and there I sold them at roughly the same time. It is not like I quickly wrote Panther.

6.      A tough question: Choose one out of two- The Amazing Racist or Panther, which one is closes to your heart? You have to name one. :-)

Easy at the moment. I would say Panther for sure as it was more challenging to write and it is a deeper, more substantial story. The Amazing Racist was really fun to write and it has greater appeal to those who want an easier read, but Panther is getting more critical success. This choice may have been easy because Panther is the newer book so it is what I am thinking about more. In fact, sometimes I feel like I wrote The Amazing Racist in another life time.

7.      Didn't you find it a risk to write a story based on communal wars within a nation you live in?

Very much so. I don’t want to annoy people or look like I am taking sides. I think I can avoid the attention of violent elements as they are unlikely to read the book – if a movie comes out, then I could be in trouble.

8.      What are your plans for your 3rd book?

I have started writing it and the words are flowing – however, I want to be patient and not send it out there until it is as good as I can make it. I want to write at much as possible until December, when we are expecting a baby, then I will take a few months off and come back to it with fresh eyes. I hope.

9.      Any words for your Indian fans out here.

Thanks so much for your generous support of this book. The feedback from India has been fantastic and I have loved being in touch with some of you. If lots of you read my books I will admit that India has the best cricket team in the world.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Panther by Chhimi Tenduf-La (Book Review-4*/5) !!!

          I remember reading "The Amazing Racist", the debut novel of Chhimi Tenduf-la, in the first half of this year. I enjoyed it so much that I still remember the story even when I am a victim of a very bad memory. Haha! I was amazed to know that he have already published his second book with HarperCollins in the second half of the year named "Panther". I was very skeptic about this book because I felt the writer does not have an idea of how to go in the industry which is making him release books in such short  gaps. But after reading this one, I can easily say that Chhimi is Chetan Bhagat of Sri Lanka. He knows how to hit the right spot with the youngsters through story and make them feel a part of it. Even when I am not from the country he belongs or the country in which this book is based in, I could easily feel and understand all the emotions and black face of reality. 

           Chhimi has this amazing humour which he creates in scenarios where you least expect it. There are situations which will make you laugh like crazy imagining if something like this can actually happen. That keeps his readers under the domination of the book and they only leave it once they end up reading the last page. And the good thing is that he does not use that simple English language to tell his stories. He creates and form sentences that shows how great a writer he is and how great he can be with each book. His writing style directly hits you and takes you in the world of his stories and stay there even after the book ends. I completed the book last night and I am still thinking about the protagonist and the life he lead. Only a great writer can make this happen.

           The book will be difficult initially considering the way it's started. It's written in two voices and two different lives of the protagonist is discussed one after another which makes it hard to fathom but once you understand how it's been written, you start enjoying the story. The characters are very well-developed- specially Prabu and Indika along with other supporting characters like Coach Silva, Achala, Mathews etc. The accent given to the Prabu is also well maintained throughout the book and doesn't cause irritation to the reader while reading conversations in wrong grammar. The way book changes in 2nd half gives it the right momentum and it is then that you finally get engrossed in it and start believing that you are reading a good and unique book. The twists and turns in the end are really unbelievable. 

            Through this story, Chhimi have told it in such an easy language the several difficulties developing countries like Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh and Pakistan faces on daily basis. It tells how everything is corrupt and how your life is ruled by few bad self-proclaimed kings. It tells about how a nation and its people suffer because of the unwanted wars that take place even within a country between two groups. There are many such realities- minor and major that Chhimi have discussed with this book which shoould be definitely appreciated. I will give this book an excellent 4* and I am eagerly waiting for his next book now. I have only one complain- Why such cover pages always? Give your cover pages as much life as you give to your stories. :-)



Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The Winning Way by Anita Bhogle/Harsha Bhogle (Book Review-3.75*/5)!!!

       In my shelf from last 2 years, I finally picked the book 4 days ago and since then, I have been able to grasp enough knowledge about how management has to be performed in a corporate environment that I even thought of giving it as a gift to my bosses of every organization here on wards. Haha! That's the magic of "The Winning Way" written by the couple- Anita Bhogle and Harsha Bhogle. The magical aura of the book can be assumed after knowing the names who have scribbled the foreword and the last word for it- Mukesh Ambani and Rahul Dravid respectively. This 196 pages book has many things to say which can definitely make you look things at organization from bigger perspective. It will make you understand why you have not been able to grow as quickly as others in hierarchy as this book makes you realize the mistakes you have been doing all along.   

    The Winning Way blends the field of pure management and Cricket together and tells us how both are inter-related with each other. The writers keep on giving us the example of many Cricket events and how few people managed the riskier and impossible situations there to get over the challenge. And then it teaches us how by taking an example from the same, we can apply it in our daily lives at organization and produce the same impossible results and win the already lost fight. I liked the language in which the authors have described the events and examples. Their own experiences in different seminars and the query from the employees of MNCs makes the book more insightful and you cannot thank the authors for sharing all of those moments with us.

                 The bullets in the end of every chapter assures that you can pick this book anytime whenever you are in trouble and recall all that you read in it. The bullet makes it clear that you do not miss any important point from the chapter. Even though the book belongs to the self-help genre, it can be read while traveling as it's written in the easiest language possible to make you feel as if you are hearing another great commentary from Harsha Bhogle and not reading something as important as this but still you will find yourself improving with each sentence as it's written with great research and counselling of people in corporate world and basically in management field. I give this book 3.75 stars out of 5. Yes, little more could have been given if it didn't have repetitive sentences every now and then. Also, Sachin's example is taken more than required. I know he's God but I didn't read this book to recite mantra. Right? :-)



Monday, September 7, 2015

There's Something About You by Yashodhara Lal (Book Review-3.5*/5) !!!

       I always heard about first two books by Yashodhara Lal but never got a chance to read them. Finally, I got my hands on her latest and 3rd fictional book named "There's Something About You" which also carries a tagline "She was in enough trouble before he came along...". The cover page of the book is very interesting and unavoidable which definitely makes a reader pick it up and go through its synopsis once. The 256-pages story is a complete entertainer with different mood shifts which can make you as mad as the characters in the book. Not a single character is normal which makes the reader get lost in their world and forget his. Only when he shall get up after completing the novel, he will come to know about the crazy world he was in. That's how this book intrigues you in itself.   

          Yashodhara Lal have written the book in a very fluid language which makes it easy for a reader to read it in one sitting. Right from the first chapter, the character of Trish is described so clearly that it generates interest to know more about her. The backdrop of her family situation is also maintained very well nicely and the way the secret is revealed in the end gives the book quite a fine ending. The chemistry of Sahil and Trish is also discussed periodically rather than making this book a complete romantic saga. The best part is how Trish handles Nivedita and Zee when she gets into a deal with them. That's the only part in this book which I'll support if I have to fight a debate in favor of it. Haha!

           The first half of the book is more interesting than the second which is not in favor of this book. Initially, as there's a distance and barrier in every relation described in this book, you become assured that there's something magical in the second part of the book. By the time you reach there, the distance still exists and even when some of them become cool and fine, it's not done in the manner which may excite you. It happens so plainly that you just end up reading it as another initial chapter. I wish if authoress could have added something more masaledaar in the end. But overall, the narration have played its part which helps in engaging you even when books become quite slow at times. I will give it 3.5 out of 5. You can go for it. May be such weird relationship entertain you more than it did to me. :-)



Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Crutchman by Ashok Pal (Book Review- 3*/5) !!!

      I am done reading "Crutchman", a novel of 209-pages in two sittings. It's written by the debutante- Ashok Pal, who got struck with polio and couldn't fulfill his dream of becoming a cricketer like Sachin Tendulkar. But still he is dreaming of winning gold medal at the Paralympic games for India. The author should be appreciated for setting an example by writing this book for all those who stop living their lives considering themselves disabled. The title of the book is quite attractive which will make readers to at least go through the synopsis. The man walking with crutches on the cover page also speaks a lot on what the book is based upon.    

            It becomes obvious as to what the book would be consisting of but I'm glad that Ashok Pal have treated the whole story differently rather than continuously speaking about the protagonist who is disabled. Even when he have used it as basic in some chapters, it is dealt with so properly that you will appreciate the author for not gaining any kind of sympathy for his protagonist. He is not trying to make you cry but making you treat this character just like other two friend of his who are physically capable and strong. 

            Ashok Pal's writing style is simple and it seems to be an inspiration taken from Chetan Bhagat's Five Point Someone. You will find the same kind of easy language, boys trying to impress girls, the chemistry between three friends and a story that is also trying to speak about the flaws in our system. The characterization of all the three friends are finely done. The chapters in which each of them speak themselves in first person makes it easy for readers to process with the story without getting bored. The best part of the book is that the story is kept short rather than dragging it to the core even when it consisted many sub-plots. 

              Coming to the drawbacks, you wish if love angles could have been written much better. It seemed as if author inserted them just for the sake of adding little spice in the book disinterestedly because of someone's insistence. Also, I felt that the book was unable to make me smile, cry, jump with its character. The language used is too simple except in few initial chapters when the characters are off to start a business. That very first scene when they earn money at Marine Drive does magic which you miss in rest of the book except in one more scene when they start making profit as brokers. Except these two scenes, other scenes were just plainly written. Except this, author have passed in letting his message reach people. I give this book 3 stars out of 5. 



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