January 22, 2016

Book Review: SHE-Ekla chalo re by Dr. Shayan Haq & Santosh Avvannavar

SHE- Ekla chalo re

Author: Dr. Shayan Haq & Santosh Avvannavar
Publisher: Authors & Hoffen
Rating: 3.5/5

‘Our identity has already been chosen for us; but it is up to us to accept it, or fight and change.’ ‘SHE’ is a story about Kusum’s search for her identity. Fighting all the myths and the superstitions and beliefs, Kusum decides to take a stand for herself and challenge everyone around her.  

Grab your copies to know more about Kusum, her life and get inspired!

My opinion
A different concept, concise content, lucid language and top notch characterization- SHE has it all. This is a really quick read as the story has been concluded beautifully in sixty pages. The language is understandable and keeps the interest alive all throughout. The cover of the book is way too simple. It could have been made better. The title is predictable to some extent, yet catchy.

Coming to the technicalities of the book, the font size and style is not up to the mark. The proofreading and editing is horrible. Time and again the readers can spot punctuation errors (especially in dialogues), missing words, wrong formation of sentences and wrong use of tense. Although the plot of the story is gripping, the lack of proper editing acts as a major turnoff.

Best wishes to the author duo!

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Book Review: All I need is you by Mukund Verma

All I need is you

Author: Mukund Verma
Publisher: Half Baked Beans
Rating: 2.5/5

“All I need is” is a subtle love tale that is relatable and sweet. The story revolves around Mohit and Pihu, who come in contact by chance and are struck hard by Cupid’s arrow. But destiny is probably not in Mohit’s favor, for the sudden turn of events sets the alarm bells ringing. Will Mohit be able to turn the odds in his favor or will he suffer at the hands of his destiny? 

Grab your copy soon to unveil the climax!

My opinion
‘All I need is you’ is a love tale, which revolves around the two main characters- Mohit and Pihu. The title of the book is fine. The cover page is nice- sober and subtle. The blurb is unnecessarily long. The font is smaller than usual but the language is lucid and understandable. I would like to compliment the author’s ability to present this piece of fiction in a language that can be understood by everyone.

The plot is gripping but the major drawback lies in the extended content about the text messages, from chapter 1 to chapter 3, where the protagonists are trying to figure out the names of each other. Here, to be clearer, I would prefer quoting Doris Orens- ‘Not everything that you want to say, needs to be said.’ It is high time that the authors realize that penning down each and every minute detail that is either inspired or adopted from a personal experience, makes the story boring and can result in turning the odds against you.

Another point that I would like to highlight is the abrupt ending of the book. The plot moves at a comfortable pace but suddenly the air sends across happy vibes and the story ends. Instead of such an ending, the last line of the book could have been- ‘Wait! Did she just blink her eyes or am I hallucinating?

The book lacks proper editing and proofreading as one can encounter punctuation errors (tenses, wrong use of apostrophe), missing words, wrong formation of sentences- time and again. There is frequent use of hindi words, which might act as a turn off for the ones who prefer reading rich literature.

Best wishes to the author!

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                         Review copy: Courtesy HBB                                                                                                                          

January 20, 2016

Book Review: Beloved bread and butter and other stories by Chaitanya Vyas

Beloved bread and butter and other stories

Author: Chaitanya Vyas
Publisher: Cyberwit.net
Rating: 1.5/5

“Beloved bread and butter and other stories” is a collection of short stories by Dr. Chaitanya Vyas. The author has penned down various subjects and has tried his best to make every story as thought provoking as it can be.

My opinion
The very first impression of the book is a total failure because the title in itself is baffling. It is neither attractive nor indicative of anything. Another turn off is the blurb, which has been written in a slapdash way. The concept or the main theme of the book is not clear. The cover could have been made better by using more images/ sketches and a catchy font.

The font- style and size, is not the one that is generally preferred but looks fine as the content is lucid and legible. I longed for a content section, though. The stories are subtle and deep. The climax is good in almost all the stories but the body seems rigid. A more flexible/ varied approach could have done the trick.

Majority of the stories have a fair storyline and cater to various audience groups. For example, ‘A ghost of a chance’ can be classified as kids’ story. But the editing and proofreading of the book is awful. Even the punctuation (inverted commas) are different for every story. The tenses, punctuation, sentence formation and grammar is wrong. Moreover, there are blunders in the titles too (eg. ‘A ghost of a chance’ should ideally be ‘The Ghost of a chance’).

Overall, a book that is not recommended by me.

Sincere advice: Please proofread and edit your work before giving it for publication. Secondly, read more books to improvise on setting of the plot.

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                    Review copy: courtesy Cyberwit.net                                                                

January 19, 2016


Hello fellas

Respecting the interest and enthusiasm shown by the dear authors and poets, we are now accepting poetry as well.

Cyberwit.net is calling for submission for an upcoming anthology and I am compiling and editing the same.

So hurry and submit your entries as the deadline is not too far!

PS: There is no contribution fee.

January 18, 2016

Book Review: Voices of the silent creek by Vikkas A. Pareek

Voices of the silent creek

Author: Vikkas A. Pareek
Publisher: Nivasini Publishers
Rating: 3/5

‘A woman with a voice is by default a strong woman.’ ‘Voices of the silent creek’ is a story about three women, who decide to fight against all odds, in three different ways. Where Shanti decides to go with the flow of her destiny, Bhano is one such character who is ready to fight tooth and nail to help her sister get out from the hurricane of atrocious behavior ripping through the Singh house, creating havoc. And there is a third character too, who decides to intervene in the lives of Shanti and Bhano and help them make their way through the forest of problems. But will these three protagonists succeed in their efforts? Or will the darkness of the male dominant society engulf their spirits and rip apart their bodies?

Overall, a good book!

 My opinion
‘A woman centered book once more’- was my first reaction when I read the blurb at the back of this book. ‘Voices of the silent creek’ is one such maneuver by the author that is bound to strike deep within the conscience of every reader. Yes, it contains the incidences which every woman-centered book has, but I appreciate the narration style of the author that not even one ounce of it makes you foam at the mouth. The language is simple yet very effective.

The title of the book is apt but long. Personally, for such plots I feel that one words do a much better job of making the readers bounce off the walls. The cover sketch is amazing. The blurb is short and precise. The major drawback is the print of the book. The font, both size and style, are awful. To my utter dismay, the text is left aligned all throughout. The editing is not proper as there are several mistakes in tenses and punctuation. Wrong expressions like ‘this Lehenga is so pretty on you’, have been used. Also, page 33 (second paragraph) lacks punctuation. There are missing words in sentences like ‘her roll number was always the first ten students of her class’.

Coming to the plot, the story line is strong. The character sketch of Bhano has been done exceptionally well and the introduction of Arti into the gloomy/ daunting story, was definitely a balancing act.

Good effort done by the author.

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Review copy: courtesy Author Paradise

Educational values are flowers that do not grow in everyone's garden!

“Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without.”  - Confucius

The youth of today are the future of the country. But when the current system of education and its implications are considered, the youths are found to blot their own copy book by indulging in the activities of ignorance. Simply by burning the candle at both ends, one does not achieve success. The youth of today lacks values and morals. Even though the level of education in every school is high, the solid foundation which is established by moral principles and strong character, is missing.

It is a well known fact that today’s generation has to face more challenges and obstacles than the past generation. And with the increase in problems, the mind set of students is changing speedily. More number of students are indulging in illegal activities like cheating, bribing or even attempting suicide. And all this is done with the goal of achieving good result. But is this really worth? Literature has shown that the main connection of corruption is with the existence of monopoly and the discretionary power, lack of supervision at all levels and ignorance of values and ethics in the educational system. It is rightly said that true morals are priceless. They possess the greatest value ever and cannot be bought or sold. Nobody is born with values and morals, but they imbibe these principles from the surroundings. Just like “Namaste” and “Joining of palms” as a token of respect, is taught to a child by his/ her parents, the values are also taught by the parents, teachers and the near and dear ones.

The term “value” can be used in different aspects. The dictionary has defined this term as “to prize, to estimate, to value something. It means that something is cherished or is dear to the heart”. A value signifies ideas that men love for. And they form the part and parcel of the philosophy that governs any nation and the educational system as well. The Indian Constitution provides many different ideals like democratic, secular, equality, fraternity, dignity, liberty, justice, socialist and dignity of every individual. This makes it obvious that the values should be adopted or inspired from these ideals. According to the Secondary Education Commission (1952-53), special emphasis should be laid on the values of efficiency, good temper, co-operation, integrity and discipline. But do these values still exist in the current education system? Probably not. There is one in hundred chance that the educated youth of today possess the characteristics of a noble man. People are so busy in competing in the rat race of life that the essence of living a meaningful life, is lost. The existence of moral values and ethics has ceased. Nobody cares about anything. And consequently the quality of life has deteriorated as well.

Values are essential because they define the standards of levels of goodness or desirability. Value education is implanted in every tradition of the Indian culture. Yet it is very sad to witness that gradually hypocrisy is taking over the values. It is the need of the hour to control this and call for change in the education system. Perhaps the major responsibility of bringing about this change lies in the hands of the teachers, the education policies and the syllabus. Since the purpose of education is to convert mirrors into the windows, it is important to inculcate the basics of values in every child. The treasure of values lies in the Vedas and the Upanishads of past. Vedays say, “Speak truth; never lax in self study and fulfill your duties”. The central idea of value based education is to develop individuals with goodwill, individuals who do not cheat, or do not lie, or steal or kill. The aim is to develop individuals who consider mankind as one, who value every other human being and treat them with respect, dignity and equality.

The incorporation of value based education will help the individuals to thrive for peace and justice and acknowledge freedom of self, in which no individual will live with fear. They will learn the power of self reliance and lead a dignified life. The work of every individual will be safeguarded and recognized. Everyone will be given equal rights to work and will be provided with best opportunities in life. Although the cut throat competition to achieve materialistic success has made man mechanical, there is still a ray of hope left. Lack of values has resulted in insecurities, distrust, lack of honour, loss of companionship, etc. All this has eventually resulted in unstable social and personal lives, indulgence in substance abuse and development of self killing ideologies. In such scenario it is very important that value based education is introduced, once again, in the system. This will help in developing the purity of the heart and will help in extending the relationship with the world. Right education, as quoted in the literature, means ,” Sa Vidya Ya Vimuktye”, which means that knowledge helps in attainment of liberation.

But all said and done, the most daunting part is the implementation of value based education system. For starters, very strong determination and will power is required to aim for being the change and bringing about the change. The fact that without values in the education system we cannot aim for safe society or develop a harmonious country or even family environment, is no more a bone of contention. Therefore, some practical approaches and ways are required to implement values in the current system, example: beginning with the junior classes, producing more trained  and  dedicated teachers, establishing more supportive and administrative teams, putting up a well organized library and developing student’s interest in knowing the history.

The current trend in the privatization, liberalization and globalization of lives has created a global society where ancient heritage has been thrown into the winds. However, the degradation of values and disrespect for the culture and traditional has only brought personal discontent and large number of socio-economic problems for everyone. Therefore, it is high time to introduce a system that aims at infusing values and moral principles into the minds of students so that the world becomes a better place to live in and peace, serenity and prosperity prevails.

January 15, 2016


Hello fellas

This time I am not posting a book review. Instead, I am opening a door for all the aspiring authors to pick up their pens and start giving their imagination, wings.

Cyberwit.net is calling for submission for an upcoming anthology and I am compiling and editing the same.

So hurry and submit your entries as the deadline is not too far!

Good luck!

January 09, 2016

Book Review: No parking. No halt. Success non-stop! by Abhishek Ratna

No parking. No halt. Success non stop!

Author: Abhishel Ratna
Publisher: Supernova Publishers
Rating: 3/5

“Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it”- and the author Abhishek Ratna targets the basics of achieving success. ‘No parking. No halt. Success non-stop!’ is a self-help book that offers an insight into the intricacies of work environment. The book offers 50 career lessons that can be read and used in personal life for dealing with complicated situations.

The author has successfully targeted many myths and sayings and has provided a logical and acceptable answer to almost all the queries and concerns of the new recruits. Since ages we have been hearing about the need to maintain the work life balance or the balance between the professional and the personal life. This book not only helps in establishing this balance but also helps in making its readers understand the importance of professional success.

Grab this book from your nearest store.

My opinion
If you want something desperately then don't spend time beating on a wall, hoping to transform it into a door. You need to work hard and strive for it in order to snatch success from the jaws of death. The cover of the book is ok. A more professional cover could have been better. The font and the style is a little big as compared to the standard. But I liked it because this made the book look lighter and made the content spread out.

The book has been divided into 50 chapters. And further into 12 headings based on the twelve months Each chapter has a lesson to be learnt in the end and the chapter consist of humorous instances and real life experiences that are very much relatable. The language is really very simple and at no point does the reader feel the urge to keep the book down. The content section has been prepared nicely, Unlike the tradition of romantic fiction these days, this book definitely is something new.

The plus point of the book is the small and to-the-point chapters that bind the interest of readers.

Good effort done by the author.

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                    Review copy: Courtesy Author Paradise

January 08, 2016

Book Review: Khel- the writings by Vishal Goswami

Khel- the writings

Author: Vishal Goswami
Publisher: Leadstart Publishing (Frog Books)
Rating: 3.5/5

“Khel” is full of fear and anxiety. The story revolves around Sanya, who works for a reputed Newspaper and tries really hard to keep together the withering shreds of her life. Hopeless, feeble and lonely, she finds a ray of hope in the mysterious case of four deaths that happen in an abandoned Haveli. The story is a pot boiler, for it describes the efforts and the stress put up by Sanya to solve the mystery, so much so, that her own life gets highly affected by the situation. Despite being unable to stand the heat, Sanya chooses not to get out of the kitchen but fight at all costs.

But does her effort reap benefits? Or does she suffer at the hands of her own decisions?

Grab a copy soon to unveil the secrets.

My opinion
‘Khel- the writings’ is a good novella with an absurd title. Probably, the punch line was not at all required. The cover is okay. It could have been made better. Kudos to the author for putting up a good show altogether and coming up with a horror/ thriller in just 150 pages.

“If you build the guts to do something, anything, then you better save enough to face the consequences.” Sanya has been portrayed as a very strong character, who fights all odds with all her might and never takes a step backwards. The characterization of Kabir, Nawabs and other supporting people is just up to the mark. Nothing more should be (or rather cannot be) expected in a 150-page thriller/horror novella. The author seems to be a huge fan of Hollywood as majority of the scenes are inspired from horror movies like ‘Unborn’, ‘Black widow’ and many more. But the quality and the placement of scenes at appropriate places, is what wins.

There are some really long descriptions and paragraphs that may/ may not act as a turn off for some. The language is lucid and the font and style is fine. However, the proofreading and editing is bad. Time and again you can spot mistakes in punctuation and sentence formation. The blurb is too long and the font used for the same is illegible.

I especially liked the second chapter for its mystery and the flow. On the contrary, the climax was baffling. It will definitely not leave the readers gruntled. Ending a story on a loose end is different than ending a story illogically. The readers won’t be forced to ask about what happens to Sanya or Rohan or Kabir because the climax does not talk about anything except the ‘decaying stench enveloping Sanya’. And this makes the reading worthless.

The major drawback in the book is the lack of proofreading and presence of several grammatical errors that makes the content ambiguous.

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Review copy: Courtesy Author Paradise