Sunday, 30 December 2018

#BookReview: Ganga The Constant Goddess by Anuja Chandramouli


Image result for ganga anuja chandramouli

Title: Ganga the Constant Goddess
Author: Anuja Chandramouli
Published on: 20th November 2018
Publisher:  Rupa Publications
Binding: Paperback
ISBN: 9353332680



"The wise men,when looking for a place of sacrifice, made sure there was a perennial source of water."




BLURB

Believed to be the liquid manifestation of Shakti and the nurturer of the three worlds with her life-sustaining waters, Goddess Ganga is the epitome of beauty and purity, famous for her indomitable spirit and boundless charm. Renowned as a devoted daughter, a caring mother, a passionate lover, and a merciful saviour, she is here to absorb and absolve us of our sins. A constant goddess, she is part of the Indian ethos, revered, and loved across the ages.
The exquisite epic that is Ganga’s story, from her miraculous origins, her sojourn in the heavens, her poignant relationships with the divine trinity, the birth of her sons—Bhishma and Kartikeya, and her descent into a wicked world that is not worthy of her, is dazzlingly told by Anuja Chandramouli. Without this Goddess, life as we know it will be over, for her righteous retribution will be terrifying.
This book is a vibrant retelling of the story of Ganga, who has the power to save us all and bestow the precious gift of moksha, embracing saints and sinners alike with her all-encompassing compassion.
 





COVER PAGE

The cover page of the book Ganga The Constant Goddess is very beautiful. It is a really attractive and an eye catchy cover page in shades of blue, white and pink with the image of beautiful and elegant Goddess Ganga in a white saree. It is a very subtle and an amazing cover page. I really liked the cover page a lot.


REVIEW

I love to read mythology books and I am a big fan of Anuja Chandramouli's books. Ganga The Constant Goddess by Anuja Chandramouli is the fourth book which I have read by her. After reading her book, The Burning Queen Rani Padmavati, I had great expectations from this book and I am glad that this book was beyond my expectations.

I have read a lot about Lord Shiva so, I had a fair idea about Goddess Ganga but not in depth. Ganga The Constant Goddess is an intriguing and an interesting tale of Goddess Ganga who is the epitome of beauty and purity. She is a devoted daughter of King Himavat and Mena and a caring mother, lover and has the power to save or bestow us. This amazing tale took me on a life journey of Goddess Ganga.

 The book is written in a simple and clear language in a very fluent way. It is very well written which made me visualise events at times. I love author's writing style which only makes me stick to the book. There are a a lot of sub plots in the story which at times were relatable and made me think a lot. The story moves at its own pace neither so fast nor too slow which I really liked a lot.

There are quite a number of characters in the book such as Ganga, King Himavat and Mena, Parvati and various others. I really liked the main protagonist Goddess Ganga because she is so elegant and pure. The relationship she shares with her sister Parvati is very beautifully depicted in the the book. Few encounters between both of them is so nicely penned like when Ganga tells Parvati the story of Lord Shiva. The characters are very interesting interesting, well developed and each character has some originality.

Overall, it is a very amazingly penned down book having a very interesting and an engrossing plot and well developed characters. I took a bit time to read this mythology fiction and I enjoyed reading it a lot. I am glad that I got a chance to read this book. I would highly recommend this book to all the mythology buffs.

Image result for 4/5 stars


Buy the book here: https://www.amazon.in/Ganga-Constant-Goddess-Anuja-Chandramouli/dp/9353332680



ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Anuja Chandramouli



Anuja Chandramouli is a bestselling Indian author and New Age Indian Classicist. Her highly acclaimed debut novel, Arjuna: Saga of a Pandava Warrior-Prince, was named by Amazon India as one of the top 5 books in the Indian Writing category for the year 2013. Kamadeva: The God of Desire and Shakti: The Divine Feminine are her other bestsellers. Currently all three books are being translated into Hindi, Marathi, Gujarathi and Bengali, a real achievement for one so young. Her epic fantasies called Yama’s Lieutenant and its sequel has received an overwhelming response.
Her newest books are on Kartikeya, Padmavati and Prithviraj Chauhan. 
An accomplished orator, she regularly conducts workshops on Creative Writing, Story Telling and Mythology in schools, colleges and various other platforms. Her motivational speeches have also been well received. According to Chandramouli, her work with youngsters in the rural belt helping them improve their Spoken English and Writing skills has been wonderfully satisfying and enriching. 
This happily married, mother of two little girls, lives in Sivakasi, Tamil Nadu. She is a student of classical dance and Yoga. 


* I received a copy of the book from the publishers and the author in exchange of a review. Thank You.



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Saturday, 29 December 2018

#BookReview : Dark Circles by Udayan Mukherjee



Title: Dark Circles 
Author: Udayan Mukherjee 
Publisher : Bloomsbury India 
Published on: 1st November 2018
Binding : Hardback
ISBN: 9789388134934


"Denial, suppression or forgetting - which game of shadows had the mind resorted to, to shield a twelve-year- old from carrying such an enormous burden?




BLURB

Can one indiscretion be allowed to scar a family for life?
Ronojoy's mother dies alone in the Ashram she had abruptly retreated to twenty-eight years ago, leaving him - then only twelve- to fend for the emotional needs of himself and his six-year-old brother.
When the cremation rites are complete, Ronojoy is handed a letter from his mother that is not so much a farewell as a confession. As before, it is left to him to decide whether to share the disturbing contents with his brother, whom he has always sought to protect.
Thus, begins another tumultuous cycle in the lives of the two brothers who already carry deep scars from their childhood; their fragile minds ever at risk of succumbing to the dark.



COVER PAGE

The cover page of the book was the first thing which attracted me to this book. The cover page of the book is very beautiful and realistic in nature. It has an image of two brothers behind their backs standing looking at the hills. It is very suitable with the story. The colours used in the cover page are very subtle making it attractive.




REVIEW

When I saw the cover page of Dark Circles I was very curious to know what this book is all about. I was amazed with the title and it was as if there was an attraction that was driving me to read this wonderful book. Dark Circles by Udayan Mukherjee is a heart wrenching story. I never imagined that Dark circles also have such a meaning.

It is a book full of emotions which wrenched me like anything. It is a very overwhelming story of a family. I was blown away by the first chapter itself and it made me stick to my reading corner. This book is so overwhelming that I had to put it down at several intervals to console my self and accept what is happening in the story but I was not able to hold myself from reading it further. The book took me to a different world away from the reality. It is a very intense read about family tragedy, relationships in the family and depression and how it impacted a well woven family. I loved the fact that the issue of depression was so highly addressed in the book and all the symptoms which a person faces are addressed. This is a book which is not going to leave my mind ever.

The book is penned down beautifully in a lucid manner with all the the events described in a great detail and his writing style made me dive into the book. It is a very fine debut book. The way the author has separated the present and the past is amazing. I was glad that the the flashbacks didn't confuse me while reading as there was a very clear distinction made between the past and the present. The book very well covers the themes of mental health issues and the relationships in the family. The various events in the book are described in a great detail. I liked the fact that the chapters are not so long in length. The story moves at its own pace in a calm manner. The book is set mainly in Delhi and Mukteshwar.

Since, it is a family tragedy so there are quite a number of characters in the book such as Ronojoy, Sujoy, Subir, Apu Kaka, Mala, Dida and various others. And, all the characters are very well developed and hold a very prominent place in the story. I liked how at various points the different perspectives of the characters are written in the book. The best part of the book is that all the characters are very realistic in nature showing that everything is not happy, there are broken families, people have mental illness and everything is not perfect in life. I really loved Ronojoy's character and I was very well able to empathise with him. And, the relation that Ronojoy and Sujoy share with their grandmother (Dida) is very well portrayed. Also,the strong bond between the two brothers is amazing.

It is a very well written, heart touching and an overwhelming read. I am really happy that I got a chance to read this marvellous work of  fiction which is so realistic in nature. It is so intense that it made me numb at various points but didn't stop me from reading more and the way the sensitive issue of depression is highlighted is highly appreciated. The title is very suitable and is well justified as each character in the story holds darkness in themselves. It is one my favourite books of the year 2018.

Overall, an amazing work of fiction which made me realise a lot of aspects of life. I would highly recommend this book to everyone.

Image result for 4/5 stars


Buy the book here: https://www.amazon.in/Dark-Circles-Udayan-Mukerjee/dp/9388134915

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Image result for udayan mukherjee

Udayan Mukherjee was born in Kolkata. He had a two-decade career as a television anchor and editor and continues to be an occasional commentator and newspaper columnist. He divides his time between the Uttrakhand Himalayas and Mumbai.







* I received a copy of the book from the publisher (Bloomsbury India) in exchange of a review. Thank You.


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Saturday, 15 December 2018

#BookReview : Daddykins A Memoir of My Father and I by Kalpana Mohan



Title: Daddykins
Author: Kalpana Mohan
Published by: Bloomsbury India
Published on: 18th September 2018
Binding: Paperback
ISBN: 9789386349538




BLURB
When journalist Kalpana Mohan's elderly father falls ill in Chennai, she is on the next flight over from California and the home she has shared with her husband for three decades. Caring for her sometimes cranky, sometimes playful, and always adored father at his home in Chennai, Mohan sets out to piece together an account of her father's life, from his poverty-stricken childhood in a village in south India, to his arranged marriage, to his first job in the city, all the while coming to terms with his inevitable passing.
Mohan's tender, moving, and sometimes hilarious memoir is an account of a changing India captured in her father's life, from the sheer feat of surviving poverty in I920s India of his birth, to witnessing key moments in the nation's history and changing alongside them. Above all, Daddykins is an intimate and deeply relatable account of our relationships with our parents whatever our age, and the shared experiences of love and grief that unite us all.



COVER PAGE

The cover page of the memoir is very simple and is in white colour with the title in bold letters. It has an old picture of author Kalpana Mohan and his father, Daddykins. The picture is black and white and it makes the cover page look very elegant. I loved the cover page a lot.



REVIEW

I rarely read memoirs, autobiographies but since last few months I don't know why I am reading such books. It feels great when some of these books I read relate with my life. Daddykins by Kalpana Mohan is one such amazing book which relates a lot. It is a very interesting and a heartwarming memoir.

The memoir revolves around the author, Kalpana Mohan and her father. The book took me on a ride of emotions, I laughed, cried, felt contended and what not. It is a very peaceful and a very heartwarming read. The book has some kind of magic that I was not able to put it down. It is humorous at times and very emotional at some points.

There are quite a number of characters in the book. And, a lot of relations emerge in the book but, the relation that author's father share with Vinayagam is amazing and I enjoyed reading those moments in the book a lot. The author and her father's relation also shines out in the memoir. The book not only covers the relation of the author with her father but also a lot of events and instances of her father. There are a lot of events which are shared in the book such as her father's childhood, post partition events, marriage, and various others.

The book is penned down in a very beautifully and is very well written. The language is lucid, subtle and is flowing like a river. Her writing style made me dive into the book. I read a lot of portions of the book not just once rather twice, so I took quite a few days to finish reading it. A very nice and subtle narration made my reading experience wonderful. The author has very nicely captured and written about her father expressing about all his habits, ways, interests, traditions and ideas about politics. I really loved the small instances which the author has written in italics in the beginning of each chapter.

Overall, it is a very heart touching, overwhelming and a refreshing read. It can be easily finished in one sitting.I am glad that I got the chance to read this wonderful memoir. I would highly recommend this book to those who want to read a warm book.

Image result for 5/5 stars


Buy the book here: https://www.amazon.in/Daddykins-Memoir-My-Father-I/dp/9385936514




* I received a copy of the book from the publisher (Bloomsbury India) in exchange of a review. Thank You.


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Wednesday, 12 December 2018

#BookReview: GURU A Long Walk to Success by Narendra Raval, Kailash Mota






Title: Guru A Long Walk to Success:An Autobiography
Author:  Narendra Raval, Kailash Mota
Publsiher: Bloomsbury India
Published on: 18-08-2018
Binding: Papaerback
ISBN: 9789387146877




"Nothing is impossible in this world for a willing heart and determined mind. The limitation is in our minds. 




BLURB

The journey of a boy that began from a little-known village of Mathak in Gujarat, India, culminated in the creation of East Africa's biggest business groups to straddle the industrial world of steel, cement, infrastructure and aviation. This is the inspiring story of Narendra Raval, endearingly known as 'Guru', who began from the most humble beginnings to reach the zenith of his career through tireless hard work, an inherent business acumen and sheer tenacity.

His autobiography, in collaboration with his dear friend and colleague, Kailash Mota, traces four decades in the life of Guru Bhai Narendra Raval. It is hard to believe that the astute businessman, who successfully built a US$ 650 million industrial empire, began his work life as a young, teenage priest in Nairobi, Kenya. Today, Guru Bhai runs his business empire with more than 4,500 employees spread across East Africa. He was also featured among the top 50 richest men in the Forbes Africa 2015 list.



COVER PAGE

The cover page of the bookis very simple and nice having inblack and grey colours aving an image of Mr. Narendra Raval. It is very apt as it is his autobiography. I really liked it a lot.




REVIEW

There are few books that touch a reader's heart very dearly and Guru Along walk to Success is one such book. I don't read autobiographies much but something attracted me to read this book and when I got the opportunity I was not able to hold myself. This was not at all a quick read for me.I took a long time to read and absorb each and every detail of this amazing autobiography.

Guru A long Walk to Success is a wonderful autobiography of Mr. Narendra Raval who began his journey from Mathak, a village in Gujarat to East Africa's biggest business group of steel. It is a very inspirational success story filled with so many obstacles and hardships faced by Mr. Raval. And, he is popularly known by and called "Guru". Thus, the title of the autobiography is very well suited. The opening page holds a beautiful message from the Indian Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi and the Foreword by President of the Republic of Kenya, Mr. Uthuru Kenyatta. The biography is written in collaboration with Kailash Mota.

The book takes a reader on a journey from Narendra Raval's childhood to his adulthood. It covers all the hardships faced by him and his family in a very detailed manner. There is not just one instance that taught me something rather there are numerous instances in his life which can teach a person a lot about his life. I have used a numerous number of sticky notes to mark the important points which teach me about the life.

The autobiography is very systematically penned down. It is divided into five parts covering a lot about Mr. Raval's life. Part I is about the early years of his life, Part II is about Priesthood which in detail talks about his life as a priest, Part III is titled A New Beginning which covers about his family, how from Saint he started his steel business and his marriage. Part IV about the birth and Rise of the Business empire which in a very detailed manner is about his Steel Empire in Kenya. Part V is Charity and Philanthropy in which he mentioned about Giving back to the Society, various awards and the most important Bhuj Earthquake. Lastly, Part VI is about Family in which he shared about his family and relationships.

This autobiography is a very interesting book filled with so many details. There are also a lot of photographs about his life like his performance at the Nairobi Temple, meeting Mr. Narendra Modi, Kenyan President and various others. It has a lot of quotes in it which are highlighted in bold letters. The autobiography is written in a simple language and is flowing. I read it slowly and really enjoyed it and it was like a lesson for me. It taught me the value of hard work, determination and not to give up.

Overall, it was a very great and a very refreshing read for me. After a long time, I got to read an autobiography and I am glad that I got this opportunity to read this inspiring life journey of Mr. Narendra Raval. I would highly recommend this book to everyone.


Image result for 5/5 stars


Buy the book here: https://www.bloomsbury.com/in/guru-9789387146877/


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kailash Mota


Kailash Mota is a qualified chartered accountant, who gave up his successful career after twenty-eight long years. Writing has been his passion, and this is his first attempt at penning a formal biography. It took the author nearly six months to convince Mr Rawal to have his biography written.
Kailash has been associated with Mr Rawal and his family over the past two years, ever since he began researching the latter’s inspiring journey through life. The entire process of collecting material for the biography and penning it down took him nearly two years to complete. During this period, he met and interviewed people from India as well as Kenya, who had influenced Guru Bhai as a child, a teenage priest in Bhuj and Nairobi, and then as an industrialist and philanthropist.
Currently, Kailash Mota is a freelance career counsellor and international recruitment consultant.



* I received a copy of the book from the publisher (Bloomsbury India) in exchange of a review. Thank You.




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