Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Me 'n' Her A Strange Feeling by Rikky Bhartia: a review

This book is special. Not in any other sense, but just because I had to leave all others and read this one in Public Demand. So, with due respect to all of them, here it is-

On the back cover- Love..Life.. Separation? Love- implies three words- smiles, tears, and endings. Endings are not always happy... Yet they leave a mark in our lives in some way. Me 'n' her- a strange feeling is an involving and intriguing love story of two people, of strangers, whose paths cross and lead to strange feelings, later discovered as love. Harsh is passionate and ambitious, but forgets his ambition when he meets Janvi. Janvi...loves to dream, but is lost in life...reasons unknown, at the height of their celebration...a strange twist in life happens,that changes everything is what brings them close...and love is what...separates them. Does love change with time? Is it possible to fall in love repeatedly with the same person? Harsh and Janvi give you every answer...their love story will remind of your first love... Its unexpected ending will bring tears and smiles...

"The story of love n separation, where destiny dictates the relation"- the tagline of the book suits the book and its content to the fullest.the story of Harsh n Janvi can be the story of any two people but the twists and turns of the story males it unique.

According to me, the climax, the twists and turns of the book added to the oomph factor of the book. Yes, the shaeri's used in the book were also well written and to the non-Hindi knowing people, the glossary is of a real help.
the book is one of its kind with sketches along with the story, but still, there are a few things which I felt as drawbacks of the book.

one- the sketches were apt but could've done in a better way. Two- atleast there should've been an intimation that there isa glossary because the people wont understand there is a glossary when they finish the book. There were a few avoidable grammatical errors.

in a few places I felt that the situations, writing wise, has been far too stretched. The intimating of a sequel coming up worked for the USP of the book. But yes, this book has shown what a debut book should be.

 A one time yet engaging read. I am sure the writer would correct his flaws in the next book.
eagerly waiting for the sequel, I would rate it 4. Out of 5.

Sunday, 26 January 2014

The Homing Pigeons by Sid Bahri: a review

The tagline of the book "not all love stories are perfect, but then., neither are people's" is the most striking feature of the whole book. The Homing pigeons- the title itself gives out a very soothing effect on the reader.

As per the back cover- In the middle of the catastrophic 2008 recession, Aditya, a jobless, penniless man meets an attractive stranger in a bar, little does he know that his life will change forever…..
When Radhika, a young, rich widow, marries off her stepdaughter, little does she know that the freedom that she has yearned for is not exactly how she had envisioned it…..
They say Homing Pigeons always come back to their mate, no matter where you leave them on the face of this earth. Homing Pigeons is the story of love between these two unsuspecting characters as it is of lust, greed, separations, prejudices and crumbling spines.

The book is written in a narrative style from two voices. one of Aditya (the male protagonist) and the other of Radhika (the female lead). the problems faced in your life, jobs, marriage, children, society, family, friends are very expressively narrated in the book.

The way a city, needs, failure, anger, lust etc can make a person turn tables and do what they never thought of doing and the consequences faces couldn't have been described in a better way. this book is also an example of how destiny played a very strong role in bringing two people close again.
the simple language of the book has also been a point. wishing luck to the author for more, I rate this book 4.5 out of 5.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

The Storm In My Mind By Ayaan Basu: a review

The Storm in my Mind... Ami, Kolkata and Confessions. The tagline itself adds to the interest that the name creates for reading the book. It says this book is a narrative of confessions of any Kolkata boy and the Storm in his mind.

According to the Back Cover: When Aryan Roy stepped into college life to fulfil his childhood dream of becoming a successful engineer, little did he know that he was in for a journey of his lifetime. Anushka and Kaira turn his sojourn into a memorable one-in both good and not so good senses. The Storm in my Mind.. Is a collective narrative of events, habits, stereotypes and idiosyncrasies revolving around the contemporary society of Kolkata. It is a story of love as much as it is of hatred, passion,friendship, trust, misunderstandings, nostalgia and a boy's incomparable love for his city. It is the story of Aryan, his Kolkata and his mellowing heart that makes confessions of the times he has seen.

Hailing from Kolkata itself, the cover has really been one star attraction of the book, atleast for me. The cover does its job of bringing about the nostalgia related to Kolkata.
For a debutante writer, this book has been a wonder. The writer has been very well able to narrate the happenings of the story and connect the readers to it. Every Kolkata person who has stayed in Kolkata for a long time could very well relate to each and every point of the story.

Coming to the story, though it has been well narrated, the story is not an unusual story. It might seem a lil dragged at some places. Proper description along with historic memorabilia adds to the plus point of the book.

The writing, at parts, seem a bit childish but that's perfectly fine for a debutante author. The confession or rather the letter at the end was the best.

There were several grammatical errors in the book which I hope the author would improve with his next. Wishing the author loads of luck for his future projects and for this one too, I would rate this one 3.5 out of 5 ..!!

Sunday, 19 January 2014

Islamic views on Jesus Christ

In Islam, Jesus is considered a great Prophet of God, and is greatly respected. Over one billion Muslims
around the world love and respect
Jesus as an important prophet of God. Most Christians however, view
Jesus as part of a triune God.and also the begotten son of God. To
get to the bottom of this, who better
to ask then those that lived in the time of Jesus ?
How was Jesus viewed in his lifetime?
Bible-Matthew 14:5
"And when he would have put him to
death, he feared the multitude, because they counted him as a prophet."
Matthew 21:11
"And the multitude said, This is Jesus the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee."
Matthew 21:46
"But when they sought to lay hands on him, they feared the multitude,
because they took him for a prophet."
Luke 24:19
"And he said unto them, What things?
And they said unto him, Concerning
Jesus of Nazareth, which was a
prophet mighty in deed and word
before God and all the people"
John 4:9
"The woman saith unto him, Sir, I
perceive that thou art a prophet."
John 6:14
"Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world."
John 7:40
"Many of the people therefore, when they heard this saying, said, Of a truth this is the Prophet."
How did Jesus describe
Bible-Matthew 13:57"
And they were offended in him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, safe in his own country, and in his own house."
Luke 13:33
"Nevertheless I must walk to day, and tomorrow, and the day following: for it cannot be that a prophet perish out of Jerusalem."
Verses in the Bible where Jesus
describes himself as God:
Verses in the Bible where the disciples describe him as God:
Verses in the Bible where people
describe him as God:
Ps: This post is just a conclusive study on the islamic views on Jesus christ. It doesn't intend to hurt the emotions or sentiments of any individual or group.

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Supernatural Diary by Devraj Sanyal: a review

Well, I guess, its time for me to modify the format in which I review.. I hope, with this one, I do justice to the format... Anyways, coming to the point... Supernatural Diary...
the title itself sends chill down the spine. And me, being really fond of these things, badly wanted to read the book.

On the Back cover: this boom is a research work on Supernatural phenomena mainly focused on haunting and their types. Its an effort to understand the spirit world closely with scientific explanations and logic. This book contains strange facts related to paranormal happenings. I have changed some names of the characters of those facts due to personal privacy. The aim to publish this book,is to enlighten the supernatural world.

Reading the back cover gives enough hints to the reader about what he/she is going to read.
Several unknown, interesting and scary facts about the supernatural world makes it a really interesting yet knowledgeable read for every reader.
The book is not just another book, its a 'quest' by the author himself where he himself visited every haunted place and discovered them himself.

Illustrations, examples, Most talked topics of the supernatural world and the Glossary of the terminology used by the researchers makes this book worth a read.
The only bad part of the book was that, one- the book was too small (it could've been a bit more researched and written) and two- the language could have been a bit articulated to give the correct feel to the readers.

All in all, giving us an insightful read and waiting for the sequel or rather the next quest by the author, I would give this one 4 out of 5.

Monday, 13 January 2014

Zealot : The life and time of Jesus of Nazareth by Reza Aslan

Oh God who art in the heaven, hallowed be thy name.
Jesus christ, a child born helpless in the land of the jews, a land of gods chosen people, a land of prophets and messenger.
The Holy christ revered throughout the world, as a God, as a prophet, as the messiah (the saviour of humanity), loved the world and its people. Sacrificed his life for the sins of the people.
The Holy bible quotes this Godloved man as;
"Behold, the virgin shall be with child and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel"
-Matthew 1:23
"Jesus is the way, the life, and the truth. None can go to God except through him"
-John 14:16

Monday, 6 January 2014

A long run needs an honest you : Sudeep Nagarkar

What wikipedia says about him?

" He met his girlfriend in college days and their love life flourished until they broke up with each other.He adapted his own story into a novel. Now, he is the author of two bestselling novels Few Things Left Unsaid (2011) and Thats the Way We Met (2012). His third novel It Started With a Friend Request was release in July 2013, which was also a national bestseller and most popular Indian fiction 2013 by His upcoming book is also based on true story which is scheduled to be released in Feb 2014. "
No hard to guess, the man we are talking about is the young talented man with pen, Sudeep Nagarkar himself!
Fortunately, Vanya's Notebook got a chance to be one with him in a FB chatbox and we are sharing the witty answers we got for our naughty questions here:

  • Vanya's Notebook

    So tell us something about Sudeep-the person rather than Sudeep-the author! What he feels when he is reading his own books ?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    I feel shy when it comes to reading my own books and hence even in book reading sessions I prefer to be informal and interact more with the readers rather than reading long passages from the book. Even after selling more than lakh copies today when my new book releases I fear if someone will buy it or not
  • Vanya's Notebook

    What were the circumstances under which you started writing your story, the plot of Few thins left unsaid ? As it was a narrative form of your own personal diary, did it took too much of your mind in converting your story in Aditya's ?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    I was in depression when I wrote my diary about my love life. The break phase was saddening. My friends insisted to give it a face of novel. More than efforts, it needed patience. I had to frame the incidents and had to sort out the best ones from my diary. I read many books during that time and then started penning down my own. It nearly took me 8 months to complete 'Few things left unsaid'. Many times I felt that I should quit as this is not my cup of tea but my friends supported me a lot and handled my frustrations superbly. I am thankful to all those who stood behind me all the time.
  • Vanya's Notebook

    And popularity, well you soon gained a position in heart of indian readers! Do you agree that their sympathy to you also helped the book in getting placed in the bestseller's list?

  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    No I don't agree. If that was the case then all the authors who followed the same path would have gained the popularity. But according to me, I only know couple of more who have achieved the tag. If that tag was in my mind anywhere in the entire process then I wouldn't have poured my heart in writing. I believe the book was instant hit because of the fact that almost every teenager goes through a break up phase. Everyone could relate to Aditya's and Riya's situation. We see so many love stories which have flooded the market. How many do you remember from the past couple of years? So your writing has to connect with the readers. Sympathy, attractive titles and marketing can only give initial boost. To sustain in long run you need to be honest with your work!
  • Vanya's Notebook

    You said you read books while writing 'Few Things Left Unsaid'! A review of your book says : " What I feel can be better is the language. It feels childish at places" How will you advocate this?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar
    I can show you even worse review than this. Should I? Even reputed authors and in that case actors get such reviews. I take it sportingly and if I feel it is genuine then I try to implement in my work for sure. Where there are lovers, there are haters too!! Yes it was my first book and moreover it had few grammar mistakes too which were rectified in the later editions. However I am not the one who go behind reviews and pay reviewers to write something good about my book. For me readers are best reviewers.

    Vanya's Notebook
    The titles of your book are getting an increament of 1 word each time! What things you keep in mind while choosing titles ?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    Oh God! Even I was not aware of this fact. But my fourth book's title is decremented by 1 I look for trendy titles which gels well with the story of my book! After reading the book, reader should feel this was the perfect title for the book.
  • Vanya's Notebook

    So tell us somethings about your upcoming title!
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    I feel its a perfect title for current generation where we see so many break ups and link ups too within a short span. The title goes perfectly with the theme of the book. Its a true story of Delhi College Band!
  • Vanya's Notebook

    " After Few Things Left Unsaid, I was expecting a lot from the sequel but it turned out to be similar to the first one."
    This is what a reader says about your 2nd book, what will you say to this?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    If they feel so then I accept it with grace. However I know I had given it a best shot and I don't feel that I should have modified something in it. Just to make a better story I didn't want to hurt the readers by portraying a fake story as a real one!! The incidents which happened in the second innings of my life were similar to the first then I think destiny should be blamed. On serious note, I feel the book has all the elements that were needed to take the story to next level. It was the end of Aditya-Riya love story!
  • Vanya's Notebook
    Do you ever feel that now a days you too are one among crowd of young authors of genre-romance ?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    No. I don't think so. Atleast that is what my publisher and my readers says. Its just 2 years that I have started writing and you can already see my name listed on Amazon. I give all credit to my fans and those readers who read my book and recommended it. Also to those who read it, cursed it and recommended not to read it. 'It started with a friend request' is listed as popular book of 2013 by Amazon and that certainly makes me more responsible. I hope in coming future too I fulfill the expectations of the readers. I am happy with the response of all 3 books. Especially the reviews and response of ISWFR was mind blowing.
  • Vanya's Notebook

    does author Sudeep know that there are people who talk behind his back that he uses wrong English at times and question his capabilities.. What's his take on this?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    Its good that they atleast talk. I will feel bad when they stop talking. I never cared about the people who talked behind my back. I believe they must be having lot of spare time to gossip over my capabilities. I just want to say one thing to such people 'Grow up in life.'

  • Vanya's Notebook

    Do you take yourself as 'just' an author, or as 'also' an author ?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    Its too early for 'just' but I would love to take that in future. Currently am doing my management studies and let time decide the rest.
  • Vanya's Notebook

    What do you take writing as : passion, need, hobby, or anything else ?
  • Sudeep NagarkarIn early days it was 'need' to overcome depression. Later it became 'hobby' and now its my 'passion'. I don't know what it will be in future. 

  • Vanya's Notebookwhat do you think you posses more than any other teen author of your genre? If a reader asks you to compare yourself with durjoy, ravinder or Faraaz, where will you place them around you ?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    I would rather place them around me and click a nice photograph .

  • Vanya's Notebook

    If you are to act as a co-author of some Indian writer, who will be your first choice ?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    No one!
  • Vanya's Notebook

    Most of the reviews about Preeti's 'life is what you make it' say that its title is misleading, yet she is one of the prominent indian authors ? What are your views regarding the contribution of reviews in popularity of a novel ?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    As I said earlier that I do not believe in reviews and neither do readers. Reader who runs into crossword or browses flipkart do not look for a book with good review. If he feels he should buy it then he will. Mostly in India word of mouth plays a major role. I strongly believe half of the reviews are paid and there are many false acts that takes place from reviewers as well as author's side. You pointed it right. There are many books which are doing well inspite of bad reviews given by reviewers. Just because few reviewers rated a book low on rating scale does not mean the book will not be loved by the readers.
  • Vanya's Notebook

    most of the publishing houses have 'request review copies' section in their websites, so will you suggest them to change it to 'please don't review' ?
  • Sudeep Nagarkar

    I am not an expert to give publishing houses suggestion. But certainly I would tell those authors and even few publishers who pay reviewers to review their book and then manipulating reviews according to the money given! I still get messages from reviewers saying pay me a certain x amount and we will review your book. It is necessary to see whether your book is getting reviewed by genuine people or not. There are few genuine people too in bloggers world and there is no harm in giving them. But spending money behind online reviews is not what I look for. That's completely my take and you can disagree to it 

    Sudeep at a book signing event!

    Vanya's Notebookokay, so we wish for a great writing career of yours!We also wish you a happy new year and a beautiful 363 ahead!
  • Sudeep Nagarkar
    Thank you so much for considering me!! 
    Wishing you too a very happy new year