Your Dreams are Mine now – a book review


Title: Your Dreams are Mine now

Author: Ravinder Singh

ISBN: 978-0-143-42300-3

 Publisher: Penguin Metro Reads

I have read all the works by Singh, his first “I too had a Love Story” as a work will always be his best in my eyes. It truly was an honest story of a man who loved and who lost love of his life. Back then, when the book was originally published the number of authors and number of stories were limited. The balloon of authors and fiction novel has been blowing too big since then. The number of authors we had back then were limited. Singh and Bhagat were very few who came with their initial books. Since then, the Indian writing space went through a big change. Self-publishing came in picture, there are more publishing houses than there are authors. The quality of stories has degraded only since then. Among them stand those few authors who were good back at that time and end up being good even today.

Having read Singh’s all three books (not counting the anthology) I was decently excited to read his fourth work. No questions that his last book had disappointed me to umpteen extent. Honestly, the only reason I choose to read their work even today is because somewhere or else I relate to them. I relate myself with these stories. I think they are among me. Yes, time and again I’ve been disappointed but just for the sake of supporting them I read their work.

Singh’s latest book – Your Dreams are Mine now is a story based in Delhi and more specifically University of Delhi. This is understandable because Singh now writes full time from his Delhi based house and it was a clever attempt on his part to take Delhi as the story backdrop. Though, his attempt failed miserably. I shall come back to his part later in the post.

The story is claimed to be an innocent love story based in dominant campus politics. It is about the two protagonists who fall in love and how they attempt to create their positive hold in DU campus followed by their rise and fall. The story is based in North Campus and a famous commerce college in North Campus that is made of red-bricks (that is how author describes the college). I would not dug deep in the story part as it would be unfair to the author and would strictly write about the novel and what I feel about it.

On the story: Well, I wish there was a story to this novel. The text in the novel seems to be an over stretched piece of two individual’s who were born in author’s mind. To worsen the whole thing, author actually! Added a summary of a major newsbreak from 2012. This obviously was not expected from Singh, this cannot be called plagiarism because the content was modified in terms of name, actual incident and few minor changes here and there whereas the context was EXACTLY what we read in news back then. If you end up reading this part of the novel, you will think that you just completed reading a summary report of the incident that happened back then. It is a shame that Singh would indulge in such malpractice. It is total 30 pages of text that seems to be copied from newspapers only. I wonder if Singh was short of ideas or wrote this book in too much of hurry that he felt the need to use an extended news report to complete his book.

On the backdrop: When you pick up a book that you know is based in your city you expect to find yourself so close to the book. You expect that may be you will read about places you have visited, places you were present at one time or another. May be your college, your “Adda” where you used to spend your whole day during college days and many other related things. This book fails miserably on backdrop part. It seems that the author only wrote this book siting in four walls of his house and didn’t even bother to do basic research before writing this book. Honestly, no one who will read this book can agree that author has lived in Delhi for years now. The kind of backdrop setting author has presented in the book can also be written by anyone who sits in Bangladesh or as a matter of fact Mars. There is no close link of Delhi with the story, just some random mention of “North Campus” “ Rashtrapati Bhawan” and “AIIMS”.

Being a part of North campus, I was expecting so much from the book but apart from some random mention of a commerce college I didn’t read ANYTHING in this book. It seems that Singh only knew that there is a North Campus and then there is a red-brick college there. More like he didn’t even gave North Campus a visit before taking it as the battle ground of his book.

On writing style: Simple and elegant is what Singh’s writing style is in this book. No difficult or out of the world language is used. I am sure he has kept all his readers in mind who might not be as proficient as others in queen’s language.

Another good part was that there were no explicit sex scenes in this book. Apart from some kiss scenes and another romantic conversation part there was nothing that can annoy a reader. It obviously has became a tradition that an author would add some steamy hot scenes to keep the reader’s interest going in the book. Thankfully, Singh nailed it there and didn’t create more mess of this book.

My Ratings: 2/5

Please, this review is more like a personal note on the book which I happen to share with you. I don’t say read this book or don’t read this book. It should absolutely be your call. If after reading the book you think I was unfair and the book deserved more then please do not hesitate to drop me a line in comments.

Thanks Priyanshi Gulati for proof reading.

Aisle Be Damned by Rishi Piparaiya (Swaying Hips, Praying Lips and Flying Tips )


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Yeah Yeah I know cover page of this book is riveting and so is what’s inside this cover page. There are not many authors who would please you in their first book itself, but take my words Piparaiya (whose surname is more difficult to pronounce then writing a book itself) has done it in a great manner.

Reading this book would make you inclined towards flying and make your upcoming flying experiences far funnier. Taking this book along is recommended and reading it before you take a flight is far more recommended. The book is divided into many chapters which talks about everything related to air travel. From the moment you get out of your home to take a flight to the moment you reach your destination.

The paperback can also be treated as a new manual to air-travel, like Piparaiya says himself that he is thinking to pitch this book to airlines so that they can keep it with air manuals in their aircrafts. That I believe would be a good idea. Especially in long trips, one must read this book to KILL ALL THE BOREDOM while traveling and come out of that flight with experience of having traveled in more than 300 and so flights.

AUTHOR IS HERE TO STAY

…Airplanes are equipped with state-of-the-art vacuum flushes that use brute suction power to pull out all the crap. If you operate the flush while still on the pot, there is a huge reasonable chance that your intestines may get ripped out through your ass.

Another good part of the book is the personal and ‘intellectual’ opinion Piparaiya has jotted down in the end of the book. He has mentioned his take on each and everything that may bother one. From Life-to-Technology-to- Economy- to Capitalism and everything else on this planet.  Reading this section is also like running through the complete book once again in ‘just’ few pages.

.. Sneak in a few swigs of alcohol into the baby bottle when no one is looking. A little bit of giggle juice in their system and babies will sleep through the flight like, well, babies. Brandy works best, whiskey or rum is almost as effective, but do avoid tequila shots. It is particularly difficult to get them to lick the salt and suck on a lemon wedge and that too without Mommy noticing

Writing style that Piparaiya has opted for is simple, at least far simpler than air-travel. The book is surely an easy read that can be completed in just one or two sitting and in most hilarious manner.

Take my words folks; this book would change your perception about boring air-travel. This one is amazingly fresh in style and in writing. This is a must recommendation for anyone. Especially, in times when we all are bored of reading soft porn been sold as literature. I managed to complete this book in just two sittings; each and every word that you would read makes you read a little more. Piparaiya has nailed it! This book is a must read. For those who had few travels and for those who are over-traveled. And for those who are dreaming to travel; well in clouds 😉

I am going with five awesome stars for this book.

Rishi Piparaiya is an over-worked and over-traveled corporate executive based in the skies, 38,000 feet over India.

Publisher                          Jaico Publishing House
Publication Year               2013
ISBN-13                            9788184954654
Language                          English
Binding                             Paperback
Number of Pages             216 Pages

Wise Enough to be Foolish : Gauri Jayaram : Book Review


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Wise Enough to be Foolish is a fictionalized memoir that traces the journey of an Indian girl’s life, with all its challenges and delightful surprises, as she blossoms from an insecure child into a confident young woman. This roller-coaster ride of adventure, laughter and heartache, as she balances her love life with her struggle for independence, will keep you guessing – What rules will she break next? How far will she go to find herself?

Well, after a long time I was reading a book written in first person. Author herself takes you to a journey which is worth reading. The acknowledgement section is a clear ‘intervention’  into Jayaram’s life. This section speaks loud and clear about author’s life which later helps to read book in a better manner. This book is all about author’s life and the choices she made.

Wise Enough To Be Foolish is about a peregrinate that protagonist of this book takes. It starts from childhood and moves to her college and lasts till she falls in love, once, another time and till she gets married. Jayaram has written this book with most sincere details possible. She has managed to share each details of her life in most elegant manner possible.

The book’s cover connotes her life very literally. If I can describe the cover page I would say it is Gauri herself on the page. With just one suitcase. A title defining her life. Reading the book makes this cover page more appropriate. The character of Gauri is just what it is on the cover page. She is outrageous, she is bold and she takes you on a ride with you.

What is most likable about this book is how an individual can face and run through different phases of life. The protagonist here makes mistakes and move over them quickly, The character portrayed is likable.

One thing that disliked about this book was number of characters. They were MANY. Though hardly few of them lasted more than few lines. At one point I felt as if my memory test is been done in terms of how many character names I can remember. And in the last when we reach epilogue, one seems to forget most of the characters.

I surely suggest reading this book. It takes you through a journey which you always wish you had.

Check the website here: Wise Enough to be Foolish.

Part of sales proceeds from the price of Wise Enough to be Foolish support Pinakthon’s Charity – Women’s Cancer Initiative.

Publisher                        Jaico Publishing House
Publication Year            2013
ISBN-13                         9788184954562
ISBN-10                         8184954565
Language                       English
Binding                          Paperback
Number of Pages         216 Pages

About The Author

Mother of two girls, amateur athlete, part-time writer, management school drop-out, traveller, entrepreneur, in full-time employment with the world’s largest escorted touring company and woman behind The Active Holiday Company, Gauri Jayaram is a little bit of many things and still not satisfied! She frequently combines her love for long distance running with rock music.

English Bites by Manish Gupta: Book Review


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English Language- My Piece of moon

Clearly I love this language.  Since my early schooling I loved English as a subject. No matter how many classes I’ve bunked in school but English was never on the list. I just could not let myself bunk English classes. While I was in class 9th and 10th and yeah 11th and 12th too I used to  hate English literature. I used to tell my teacher to make me speak on any topic she like, give me something to write and I will do it best way possible but, just do not make me read literature. I hated that. I still remember what nightmares the book Flamingo used to give me. Even in my secondary and senior-secondary exams I never used to study for literature part [25 marks]. I did not prepare a single word even while my board exams. I just used to keep my focus on other three sections. And the best part was I never had to study for those three sections too :).

Thankfully I never scored less than 75 in my English exams.  Moving forward when it came to college I had to opt for English Hons as my major. I NEVER wanted it. It just happened. May be it was destined. Till this point in my life my speaking skills were very good. But, when it came to writing I used to make many  mistakes. Punctuation marks and wrong sentence structure were major among them. Time moved on and so does my graduation. There was a lot to learn while doing English Hons, but they did not improve your basic mistakes. It was more about deep study of language itself.

Today when I write this I am good with English as a language. I am improving every moment. I am not ashamed to accept that I still make mistakes but, I am proud and happy that I have improved *THIS* much in recent years. And I continue to improve every day.

Let’s talk about the Book.

The book is a first person narration by Gupta. The book is his own story of mastering an alien language. The pace at which this book is been written is amazing. The transition is smooth and makes it a delight for any person to read this self-help book.

English Bites has to be one of the most well articulated book I’ve ever read. Especially when it is a self-help book. Saying that this book is an autobiography would not be wrong but Gupta is not acting a narcissist here. His attempt to write this ‘autobiography’ is wonderful.

This book takes you through a journey you would wish does not end. At some point this book is mesmerizing. If you love this language you would just do not want to stop. I would not hesitate to say that there is some magic in this book. But, to experience that magic you first need to love the language itself.

English Bites add a lot of words to your vocabulary, along with interesting trivia about the language. If you are deep in to language part you would love the origin of words given in the book. At times it may sound like a cumbersome task but at the end it is surely increasing your knowledge base to a greater extent.

The word meanings given at the footer of each page helps you to a greater extent. You would never need to take a look at dictionary. The book takes your language skills to a greater level and is a must read.

Suggestions

Learning language is always a pleasure. Enjoy reading this book instead of reading for the heck of it. I completed this book in a week or so but I am surely going to give it another read once again. This time reading one chapter a day.  This will help keeping the words in your mind and using then in your daily conversations.

About the Author

Manish Gupta is a banking professional. When not crunching numbers he is busy engaging with and examining the vagaries and idiosyncrasies of the English language. He also likes trivia, travelling, adventure sports, delving into human psychology, and giving professorial discourses to colleagues, family and friends, and practically anyone who can give him a patient hearing. An engineering graduate from Punjab Engineering College, Chandigarh and an MBA from XLRI, Jamshedpur, he lives in Mumbai with his wife Deepali, a medical professional, and daughters Tamanna and Prakriti.

Dada by Vibhor Tikiya: Book Review


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Title: Dada
Author: Vibhor Tikiya
Publisher: Indra Publishing House
Price: Rs 149
Genre: Fiction
Pages: 301

On Title:
The title of this book is most captivating, once you read the word ‘DADA’ there is an automated thought in your mind that it must be talking about what we call an elder brother in Bengali. The title makes you more inclined to read this book.

Characters:
There are majorly four characters. Among them DADA is the protagonist. The part, that author missed here is developing the characters completely. Somewhere I believe the characters were not developed the way they could have been.
Story :
Well, it’s a story based in college. Four friends, each one of them are different from other  yet they make up a gang which fights together, booze together, cheat together, and all that once can think of in a college life.
The adventures they go through in their college lives are worth reading. They manage to take you to your own college days and think of things you did in your time. At one point when they were to move apart as the college got over- the scene does make you have tears in your eyes. It takes you back to the days when you were parted with your friends. To me it was a little different. I actually when in to imagine  what would it be like when I would move apart from my office. When the day would come where I would have to say good bye to this awesome team I work with.
The story then after takes a leap and moves to US where only the protagonist is in the picture. This is where the story takes a fairy tale turn. Everything is good. Protagonist gets everything served in a golden plate and is fulfilled by all his wishes coming true.
There is a lot of instances in the book where accepting the events happening become difficult for  you for obvious reasons, how can you you accept that you would NEVER be caught for anything in your college. OR maybe you would get a clean sweep for all your acts. This is the point where book turns out to be be fictional otherwise the book and the story is very simple and can be accepted as a true event of anybody’s college life.

Final Words :


This book is surely an interesting read.  Go grab the book. I am sure you will enjoy reading it.

About the Author

An IIM Ahmedabad and IISc Bangalore alumnus, the crazy author has been around in many conventional fields before he took to writing DADA. For him, the book signifies dreams that never die, friendship that go the distance and unwavering passion and belief.

Book Review: Complete/ Convenient: Ketan Bhagat : a Riveting Story


From www.ketanbhagat.com

From http://www.ketanbhagat.com

Publisher : Srishti Publisher

Price: Rs 195

ISBN 978-93-80349-92-3

 

“Life is more convenient there, life is more complete here”. From this line is the title of this book been derived . Just one line, yet with full power it describes the complete book itself.

Bhagat’s debut novel is based on lives of Everyman settled in other countries living behind not only a country that needs them, but, also a family, some friends, emotions, liberty, satisfaction and that sense of ‘ “I was complete there’.”

First views

400 pages! That’s a huge number. This was my first reaction on the book. We all are now habitual of reading 250-280 pages fiction novel, thus, this initially comes like a shocker. But when you read this book, you would realize within first 50 pages that how well detailed this book is; a book well written in complete leisure.

“Only Kabir noticed that she didn’t touch any male member’s feet. Just went close enough to their feet and when her fingers were inches away, she moved back. So typical of Myra, touch me not!”

Story

The protagonist of this story is Kabir and Myra. Both settled in India. Their lives were going pretty well when one sudden day an opportunity strikes the door and makes it impossible for Kabir to turn it down. Then after, they both marry, and fly for their ‘well dreamt’ foreign life.

Bhagat takes you through their complete journey in most simple yet thought-provoking manner.

This book does not necessarily shows NRIs in high lights nor does this book makes them play the role of victim. We may agree that this book is a work of fiction but, Bhagat has certainly taken a lot of his own “NRI Experience” and put it into words. This book has all into it- the Punjabi weddings and all the glamour added to it and the sad part of Sydney and ‘proclaimed’ modern life.

Book is written in third person and is divided among three chapters. Describing the journey from Mumbai to Delhi to Sydney, further the stay in Sydney and the journey of coming to home.

Why (who) should (you) read?

This book is actually meant for everyone; an egoist, an egotist, an altruist, an introvert, an extrovert, an ambivert, a misanthrope, a misogynist, a misogamist and an ascetic. For anyone who ever thought that settling down in abroad is a life changing experience; this book would change your perception.

This book can also be an eye opener for those NRIs who are settled in other countries and are delaying their decision to come back to their country.

Funny and weird notes

“A popular Diwali sparkler, shaped like a rod, it produces a flickering fountain of colorful glitters that hummingly crawl towards the other end.”

Well, this is how the author describes phuljhari. It was like been explained to an alien over the phone.

“..Uncles taking aunts to Murthal dhabas for Karvachauth” The mere mention of Murthal makes me so close to this book. #TrueDelhite.

“The arrival was meaningful for him, not India. India had moved on. “”I missed you”” Kabir accidently mumbled to India. “”Liar !  You yourself left me… willingly, excitedly !”” India replied honestly, “”But don’t worry. I am doing fine without you. In infect , much more than fine.”” A shiver of guilt and possessiveness passed through Kabir.

“He looked down at the newspaper…….Rajnikanth” pg. 172. This was the most strange section. I felt as if I am reading a year compiled newspaper. It had all the major stories of the year into it.

In comparison to Chetan Bhagat

I need to be honest here. I personally did not like author’s idea of mentioning Chetan Bhagat’s name everywhere; from email to interview to books to everything. Somewhere it was a thumb down for me.

Many of you may not agree with me on this point but, this is my idea. On my end I did not choose to read this book because it was written by Chetan Bhagat’s brother but because it was a book written a man who has already experienced what he is going to write.

To me Ketan Bhagat was just an author- no one’s brother; no one’s nothing.

But still, if I have to judge both their works. I have to appraise Ketan for the tremendous job that he has done. His writing skills are invigorating and captivating. His choice of words were brilliant and elegant.

Unlike the other Bhagat’s work this book is not just a fiction. It is a good fiction; a book that would stay in your minds for a long time. Ketan has certainly crossed the benchmark his brother was able to set over few years.

Chetan Bhagat would surely envy his brother for breath-taking success his brother is going to have very soon.

Final Words

Though the author would himself deny, but, this book is more like an autobiography. Author takes his readers through different phases of his life, his feelings, emotions and his sense of belongingness to everything. As you read the introduction of author on first page of book and then read the book itself you would start relating the author with the characters and events.

This is book is here to stay for long and so is the author. From the first book itself one can judge his mastery with words and how playful he can be with them. Undoubtedly, his writing is powerful.

Big hands up for Ketan; this book is likeable and a must read. Brilliant job done.

 

About Author: Ketan Bhagat is a thirty-something common man, who stands out as uncommon owing to his mastery with words, smart sense of humour and lively demeanour  The art of storytelling seems to be in his genes.

 

Book Review: Smart Phones Dumb People by Parthajeet Sarma


For the first time when I looked at the book cover I thought it would talk about how technology has made people dumb. Well, in some instances it does talk about the said thing but in a broader prospective this book is all about how technology can help us address many issues that seem to prevail around us and in our lives.

The main focus of book is on how entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship can help us eradicate many issues from our ever expanding cities. Sarma has also shared some of social enterpenuer stories, that inspires you to take that little step towards bringing a difference to the society.

The most important aspect that Sarma pointed out in this book is how computer and phone have become integral part of our lives and not having any of these in our life would make things so difficult. This does raise a question on the kind of life we are living. No doubt that technology is important and an eminent part of anyone’s life but, the way technology is over taking our lives for wrong reason is something one needs to worry about.

Sarma, who is an innovator and an entrepreneur, has touched the base of what he is best at; technology and innovation along with other important elements which are linked directly or indirectly.

It is worth reading for anyone who is looking to read something different and directly from horse’s mouth about various aspects that included innovation, technology, entrepreneurship, priorities and corruption.

This non-fiction is a fresh and an easy read among all those fiction books we read almost everyday. The idea is good but could have been presented in a far better manner. But for the first book, author deserves a word of appreciation.

Part of India and the World live in the 21st century whereas parts live in 19th century. Whilst many of us live in times ruled by smartphones and the internet, millions go without easy access to basics like water and electricity

 

About Author: Sarma is an award winning innovator and successful entrepreneurs. A fan of free market and technology, he likes writing and talking about holistic approaches towards addressing base of the pyramid issues.

 

This book was sent to me by author for an unbiased review. If you are an author or a publisher who would like me to review their books please drop an email at [A] [@] adityabhasin.in or [adityabhasin81] @ gmail. [Com]

 

 

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