The Evil Twin: Book Review

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THE EVIL TWIN?

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P.G. Van

P.G. Van lives in San Francisco and she published her first novel, Destiny Decides… in October 2015 and cannot stop writing. She loves to spend time with family and is a strong believer of retail therapy (mostly shops for boots and purses!!). She enjoys giving her readers an escape to the world of love and romance.

 

You can stalk her @

 

Blurb

 

Vinnie lost her parents when she was ten and lives in San Francisco with her aunt and her teenage cousin. She never expected a simple act of kindness would be life altering. Reyan comes into her life threatening to shake up her focus and challenges her resolve. He is everything Vinnie wants in a man and he shows up just when she thought she had everything she needed to stay focused on her life and her goals. 

 

Will he crack her titanium tough exterior and get to her heart? Will she let him into her life especially with what she has been through since she was ten? Will she trust Reyan to help her recover from her emotional wounds? 

 

Will she get to the bottom of why people think they have seen her at places that she has never been to before. Does she have a doppleganger or a twin? 

 

Follow Vinnie’s and Reyan’s love story as she learns the true meaning of love, trust and family.

Review 

Rating: 3/5.

  • Narrative: Primarily narrated by Vinnie, the protagonist, the novel moves rather fast. The style is lucid and dominated by dialogues.
  • Characterization: This is one significant aspect of the book I really liked. I enjoyed the characters specially Vinnie and their developments are well portrayed in the novel. Emotions fill the crux of the novel. I appreciate the ways sexuality has been treated by the author. The acceptance and inclusivity of people coming from various parts of the spectrum is quite appreciable.
  • Theme: The book is a young adult fiction dealing with the lives of some young-adults of Indian origin based in USA. The focus is primarily on their personal lives with little interventions from the professional sphere.

The book is a good read for readers who enjoy romances and need a book which they can read without much difficulty.

 

I would like to congratulate the author for her book and wish her very best for her upcoming works.

You can stalk her @

       

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Masudur: Ek Swapner Naam: Book Review

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Name of Book : Masudur—Ek Swapner Naam ( Masudur—The Name of a Dream)

Edited by: Kanti Ganguly

Co-edited by: Amartyalok Banerjee

Published by: Paschimbanga Rajya Pratibandhi Sammilani

Genre: Non-fiction.

Language: Bangla.

Review:

Reviewing a book like Masudur –Ek Swapner Naam, a compilation of remembrance is perhaps the toughest review I am doing so far. It’s not just about the rich context of the text, the pearls of language, dripping in emotions but also about the person, who now exists in our memories, in the stories, in the pictures and in the newspapers. It’s about the champion of Bengal, Masudur Rahaman Baidya who left all of us at a tender age, winning the waves of The English Channel and the Gibraltar Strait thriving in extreme unfavourable conditions without two legs. The book is a requiem for Masudur on behalf of the people who loved him and rendered their support in whichever ways possible.

Presented to the readers in a beautiful, delicate hard cover, packed in an equally beautiful envelope featuring Masudur and his beloved, the water, the book takes us on a magical journey through the ripples of Masudur’s life. Continue reading

Book Review: Sita’s Curse by Sreemoyee Piu Kundu

Sreemoyee Piu Kundu is a name which I didn’t come across in book stores. Rather, it was way back in 2013, when I was fascinated by a story, ‘Nice Boobs’, written by a certain author, which, according to our professor would be helpful in my term paper. I had chosen the topic of analyzing the media representations of rape, as a part of my course work in Gender Studies while I was pursuing my M.Phil in Comparative Literature from  Jadavpur University. “This woman must be someone”, I had muttered while reading the text.  Later in 2014, I found Sita’s Curse on the book shelves of a popular bookstore of Kolkata. After that, I got the honour to be in her friendlist in Facebook. Each day I started discovering and learning new things about her, about the woman in us and about the society. Finally, when I read Sita’s Curse, which happens to be Sreemoyee ma’am’s second book, I found a universe, which was locked by the norms of the society. In the current scenario when authors behave like ‘love gurus’, teaching you to get a boyfriend or a girlfriend through their works, lecturing on love over the social media during promotions, here is one Indian author, The Sreemoyee Piu Kundu who is there to peel off the mushy romantic veil, unearthing the forbidden and making a palace out of a mud castle, revealing the beauty in otherwise ignored and forbidden. Needless to say, that I got hooked to the book, and the experience was a magical one, with Sreemoyee ma’am, giving me time of her busy schedule, to discuss about things in Facebook as I read the novel. Without wasting any more words, I would like to go straight to the review. Continue reading

BOOK REVIEW : FOREVER IN MY HEART : WRITTEN BY ARINDAM DEY

 

 

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NAME OF THE BOOK : FOREVER IN MY HEART

AUTHOR :  ARINDAM DEY

MY RATING : 3.75

REVIEW :

A novel starting with poetry!!  Well, for a poetry lover like me, it was surely a treat to my heart.  I enjoyed reading the book as the author composed tales of romance across time. I would like to talk about  some elements in the book which really deserve appreciation:

  • Poetry: The verses were mesmerizing and if I am to remember quotes from the novel, they will be these verses : “ When the winds hold me and kiss my lips, I know it’s you, I know it’s you “…. “Love me like the storms tonight, And take me in that unknown way, To that world where forever awaits, A world that I’ll know someday “…..  these verses will stay with me forever.
  • Lyrical passages : The passages are beautifully woven and lyrical which kept me engaged. I felt as if I was reading poetry.
  • Theme and background : Shimla serves the perfect background for this romantic saga; the scenes described in the novel reminded me of ‘ fairy – tale romances ‘ whose existence I have ceased to believe. However, this fairy tale has a twist as the hardships of real life distorts the apparent physical beauty and in the end, it is all about the heart and the mind who can make the reality , a living fairy tale. Rishav’s Schizophrenia proved this. I appreciate the author’s effort to bring in this psychological twist .
  • The cover : The cover of the book is appealing and truly brings out the ethos of the story. Painted in just black, white and red, it delineates the real essence of love and romance.

However, there were certain elements, which I felt need attention and should have been worked upon:

  • Characterization and loose ends : A huge importance was given to Ritu and Vikram in the first part but they seem to disappear all of a sudden in the second part. Perhaps, giving them a little more space would have been better. Also, the character of Prachi has been introduced all of a sudden at the very end of the story. From what it seemed, Prachi was Joey’s close friend but she was not mentioned anywhere earlier. Working on these lose ends would have given the novel, a more concrete shape.
  • Editing : Well, editing is a pretty important aspect of the novel. There were a few striking editing flaws which should have been mended.

Nevertheless, the book , Forever In My Heart is a story to fall in love with. I congratulate the author for writing this heart-warming lyrical piece. Looking forward to read more books of the author in future.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR :

Arindam Dey is a writer and a blogger. You can stalk him at : https://www.facebook.com/arindamdey.author?fref=ts

You can also visit his blog : https://arindamdeyblogs.wordpress.com/

 

BOOK REVIEW : THE EKKOS CLAN BY SUDIPTO DAS

The Ekkos Clan
by
Sudipto Das
The Blurb
“The Ekkos Clan” is the story of Kratu’s search for the killers of his family, his own roots and the mystery behind his grandmother’s stories.

It’s the fascinating account of Kubha and the basketful of folklore she inherited from her ancestors. The eventful lives of Kubha and her family span a hundred years and encompass turbulent phases of Indian history. The family saga unfurls gradually, along with Kubha’s stories, through the three main characters – Kratu Sen, a grad student at Stanford, Kratu’s best friend TistaDasgupta, and AfsarFareedi, a linguistic palaeontologist.

Afsar hears about Kubha’s stories from Kratu in a casual conversation, but she figures that these stories are not meant to be mere bed time tales – they contain rich linguistic fossils and layers of histories.

In a bizarre incidentKratu miraculously survives an attempt on his life. His sister and uncle had not been so lucky. Were these murders acts of revenge, or a larger ideological conflict connected to Kubha’s stories which conceal perilous secrets that should be suppressed?

Afsar, Kratu and Tista travel across continents to unravel the mystery of Kubha’s roots and the origin of her stories.

At a different level, the novel subtly delves into the origin of one of the oldest civilizations of the world and the first book written by mankind.

Meet the Author

Sudipto was born in Calcutta to a family which fled Bangladesh during the partition riots of 1947. He grew up listening horrid stories of the partition, something which he has used extensively in his debut novel The Ekkos Clan. He completed his engineering from IIT Kharagpur in 1996. He lives in Bangalore.

The links :

Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/Ekkos-Clan-Sudipto-Das-ebook/dp/B00I48VJV4/

Amazon.in http://www.amazon.in/The-Ekkos-Clan-Sudipto-Das-ebook/dp/B00I48VJV4/

Flipkarthttp://www.flipkart.com/ekkos-clan-english/p/itmdzcg7adjg8bnq?pid=9789381523957

Author Website :http://www.sudiptodas.com

Twitter :https://twitter.com/sudipto_das

Facebook :https://www.facebook.com/TheEkkosClan

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18195225-the-ekkos-clan

Some Media Mentions

“A promising debut in the growing realm of modern Indian fiction” – Jug Suraiya

“An Indian thriller inspired by Dan Brown & Harrison Ford!… fast-paced thriller, replete with murder and miraculous escapes” – Telegraph

“If you are a history buff and a thriller aficionado, then [it] might just be the book for you” – The Hindu

“A tale of the Indian civilization and culture… takes you on a roller coaster ride” – The New Indian Express

“An interesting read for an afternoon… One feisty woman’s partition story” – Bangalore Mirror

“Should be read for its sheer aspiration and the intelligent handling of historical material” – The Sunday Guardian

“Is essentially a mystery novel, but is grounded in a substantial base of research and exploration into our past” – newsyaps.com
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NAME OF THE BOOK : THE EKKOS CLAN

NAME OF THE AUTHOR : SUDIPTO DAS

MY RATING : 5 OUT OF 5

MY REVIEW :

A book you can read for the umpteenth time and still feel that you have not been able to unravel its secrets.. a book that makes you cry … a book that makes you want to fall in love with life once again … a book which you are proud to possess … written by an author who will make you say , ” Yes, we Indians too have a Dan Brown .. and our Dan Brown is Sudipto Das ” .. yes… it is THE BOOK … THE EKKOS CLAN..  written by THE AUTHOR , SUDIPTO DAS .

There are so many things I  like about the book.. the more I start reading it, the more I discover new things .. and perhaps this review is not enough .. Still, I have tried to pen down a few for my readers :

(1) The theme of adventure and mystery : the book is a journey .. a journey of discovery.. through soul.. through life.. through history .. read it to experience it.

(2) The theme of love : Love sings a beautiful melody in the stream of adventure. Sudipto Das has portrayed love passionately , and in an unique way , a thousand times better than writers who claim to be ” experts ” in love stories. Kratu’s proposal to Afsar , ” ami tomakey bhalobashi ” still gives me butterflies; it is something every woman dreams of, does not matter if she is a Bengali or not; the words have a charm of their own , something like that perfect piece of diamond, small, but filled with everlasting light. Afsar and Kartu’s romance often made me wonder if they at all existed in real life and if at all they did, I bet they are the epitome of Cupid-Psyche.

(3) The use of language : The flawless editing and neatly woven words make me wonder , ‘ is this author really from IIT ? ‘. Sudipto Das belongs to the group of technocrats from IIT and IIM who have entered the publishing world and have been flooding the market with chick- lits. Well, the author proved that he is way above their league. He is not just a technocrat writing a novel.. he is a genuine writer who writes just for the sake of writing.

(4) The author’s unique style : Sudipto Das has created a style of his own and it is very evident in this novel. He has retained the old names of the cities, like Kolkata as Calcutta and has a whole chapter dedicated to his disapproval against this changing of names. Hats off to you !! Very few people are bold enough to make this move.

(5) A well researched book : These days, we often find writers hurrying to get published. Reading this book made me feel that there are genuine writers out there . The fact that the author  has done research for 3 years to write the book, itself shows the sincerity and hard work done on the part of the author . And if you are still not convinced, look at the reference list at the end of the book ; the no is 59. I don’t think I need to say anything more on this.

Given a chance to write about the book, I would write again and perhaps I would find a new perspective to write on. This book is not just a book; I feel it is a text of study in the field of literature and I hope someday, researchers will be working on this. Can’t wait to red the writer’s next book 😀 8-2 18195225banner 1

BOOK REVIEW : RI : THE HOMELAND OF UNCERTAINTY

NAME OF THE BOOK :  RI : HOMELAND OF UNCERTAINTY

AUTHOR : PAULAMI  DUTTAGUPTA

MY REVIEW :

Well, to be honest, when Paulami didi 1st asked me to review her book, I felt my review would be biased for she is a very dear sister of mine and I have seen her work at wee hours , doing all the research for one single book.I know the effort she has given to write the book. I was given the privilege to attend the book launch on 28th of October, held at Abar Baithak : The Coffee Shop, Kolkata, India. But now after reading the book , I am convinced that the review will not be a biased anymore for the book really deserves to be taught as a text in Departments of Border Studies and Conflict Studies.

Badshah Moitro, the veteran actor of Tollywood Film Industry , who happened to be the chief guest , mentioned this particular point in his keynote address : ” I would like you all to remember that the idea of this particular book came after the movie , RI : THE HOMELAND OF UNCERTAINTY  was made. We see movies are being made from books but this is one is just the opposite. And this is what that makes the book special”.  Yes, Badshah Moitro’s words are true and before talking about the book, I would like to say that it was a tough challenge for the author to fit the movie in a novel of 30K words as per the guidelines of the publisher. After reading the book, one will feel that word limit was a constraint, a disadvantage to be precise but the author applied words in such a strategic way with intense dialogues, stringing every letter with care that the book stands out as a an unique text, against all odds.

“Shillong ” , “Meghalaya ” :  such fascinating names.. aren’t they?? And the 1st thing that comes to your mind, when you hear them? Tourist spot .. holiday.. isn’t it ?  Well, they have become a tourist spot of war and if you want to spend your holiday in a chaotic place, taking a break from your peaceful , secured mundane life, well, Shillong is the place for you. As I read through the intriguing pages of the book, I got goosebumps for I never thought that the rivers of blood and hatred have traversed the tranquil scenic beauty of Shillong.

I would not ruin people’s interest by narrating what is there in the book. Rather, I would prefer to limit myself to discuss about the themes which I found extremely interesting and unique :

(1) TERRORIST – FREEDOM FIGHTER DILEMMA : The author, through the character of  Manbha has wonderfully portrayed this ‘ terrorist – freedom  fighter dilemma ‘ . She reflects upon the situations which make the youth choose these paths and also the breaking of their illusion when they see the merciless killings and become a part of them too.

(2) ROLE OF THE PRESS : Through the interactions between Janet and S.P. Kyndiah, the role of the press in situations of anarchy have been portrayed well by the author. It reflects upon how the press shapes people’s views and also their limitations which often backfires and overshadows the verity of the situation.

(3) SHILLONG : HEAVEN OR HELL : Each and every word of the book bleeds the pain of the people and the police who fight against the terror that has shaken the paradise called, ‘ Shillong’.  It will make you cry even if you do not have any idea about North -East; it will make you pray for those souls and it will make you shift your eyes from the news of ISIS or Kashmir and feel grieved for the residents of this paradise.

I don’t feel I am accoutered well enough to rate this book . There are so many sub themes to talk about and discuss that I felt, a single blog post is just not enough. I have tried to talk about the prime themes and I have plans to take up the text ( yes, I  prefer to call it a text of study ) and work on it for some research paper in the near future. I also feel, I need to read more about the theories of power , politics and media before I can restart my discussion on the book again. And yes, thank you Paulami didi for writing this wonderful piece of literature and also giving  me a signed copy. I feel like a celebrity now 😛 😀10671217_548164618648815_2846708808272407829_n

BOOK REVIEW : THE RUNAWAY BRIDEGROOM

 

NAME OF THE BOOK : THE RUNAWAY BRIDEGROOM

NAME OF THE AUTHOR : SUNDARI VENKATRAMAN

 

‘ A runaway ‘bridegroom ‘  ??  Shocked ?  Well, the author is Sundari Venkatraman after all. Yes, I am talking about her latest book, The Runaway Bridegroom where the bridegroom actually runs away. But you need to read the book; am not going to narrate the story.

My rating : 4 out of 5

My Review :

I am not too much fond of the romance genre but Sundari captivated me in her spell of words. I enjoyed reading the book and here are things I liked :

(1) The  issue of ‘child marriage ‘ which has been portrayed subtly but with strokes of boldness and its effects.

(2) The interesting portrayal of  young- adult romance.

(3)  Element of fate which has been evoked enriched the novel with a traditional spice.

(4) Flawless grammar and editing.

Even though the book belongs to young-adult fiction, it shows that it has been written by a matured writer, who knows how to address the mass in her own way. I am grateful to Sundari for giving me the opportunity to review her book. Looking forward to read more from her.

To know more about the author, visit these links :

Sundari Venkatraman,

Click Here to purchase my eBook – DOUBLE JEOPARDY – a romance novella
Click Here to purchase my eBook – THE MALHOTRA BRIDE – a romance-drama novella
Click Here to purchase my eBook – MEGHNA – a full length romance novel

 
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Skype: sundarivenkatraman
FB page: Flaming Sun
Amazon Author Page: Sundari Venkatraman