Anthology

QBR: Boo- edited by Shinie Antony

8:51:00 PM

                                        Anthology/Horror Fiction
                                           209+ pages, 
                                     Penguin Random House India (2017)
                                          RT Rating: 2.6/5

The Verdict:'Boo-Horror Stories..' is an okay read at best! Though it is marketed as a horror anthology, most of the stories fail to create a chill down your spine(contrary to what it's tag line promises!).The basic problem with the book is that though the book features writings (translations) by some of the big names in new-age writing (K.R. Meera, Shashi Seshpande to name a few), the essence of their stories seem to have lost in translation!  
 
Synopsis: The stories try to explore the para-normal.A work of Psychological horror is what the book aspires to be ,basically.
 
The Good: The stories which some what stay true to the tag line are 'The Face' by Manabendra Uphadyay , 'The Claws' by Durjoy Datta and 'The Monkeys in the Orchard' by Kanishk Tharoor.

The Bad:horror element missing in most stories, infact the book shouldn't have been marketed as a compilation of horror stories(suspense/psychological short fiction,may be), the ambiguous ending/'literary value'  of some of the stories will not go down well it's target reader group. 

RecommendationsBorrow it!

-nikhimenon

Anthology

QBR: Buffering Love by Issac John

10:04:00 PM



                                         Anthology/Urban Fiction                                                                                                   209+ pages, Penguin Metro Reads (2017)
                                          RT Rating: 3.9/5

The Verdict:'Buffering Love' is an enjoyable work. Most of the stories are quite good with relatable characters. I haven't really liked any of the earlier books which have come out of this imprint (metro reads) but this debut work by Issac John has turned out to be a pleasant surprise!
 
Synopsis
'Buffering Love' is basically a collection of short stories set in Urban India. Some of the stories are inter-connected and works as some sort of follow up to the previous ones. All the stories explore through the escapades of their protagonists on mobile apps .Though Love is also a recurring theme,the book is not an anthology of love stories per se.
 
The Good: relatable characters, interesting twists, unpretentious prose, the stories have a 'Jeffrey Archer' feel to it (IMHO).The pick of the lot- Smart Lass and Daft Watch.

The Bad:some stories had abrupt ending, the 'app' element seemed forced at times

RecommendationsBuy it!

-nikhimenon

coming of age

QBR:The Messenger by Markus Zusak

3:00:00 PM


                                             
 Young Adult/Coming of Age                                                                                   470+ pages, Dimensions (2015,originally 2002)
                                  RT Rating: 3.25/5

The Verdict:'I am the Messenger' is already an international best seller and I don't think that my 'verdict' is going to change it's global recognition in any way.I liked the book anyways,though the book is intended as a 'young adult' work,this one is definitely going to put a smile on your face, no matter which age group or which nationality you belong to!
 
Synopsis:Ed Kennedy is a cab driver, who is aimless in life. He is a mediocre card player, a lousy romantic and an irresponsible son.How he finds purpose in life is what this book is all about!
 
The Good: Starts off well, there are interesting twists happening at regular intervals,the book has got all the 'ingredients' in the right amount! 

The Bad:The length is a bit too much, towards the middle portions the pace of the narrative slackens a bit,the ending is also a bit ambiguous.

RecommendationsBuy it!

-nikhimenon

Cinema

Karan Johar's An Unsuitable Boy

10:31:00 PM

                           An unsuitable boy is the candid memoir of Bollywood's most influential man- the one and only Karan Johar. The book is a must read for all the Bollywood fans out there and is undoubtedly one of the better memoirs to have come out from a B-town celebrity in the recent past.Though I am not a big fan of his movies,have always admired him for his success,for his marketing skills and for his sense of the market ,this book has only elevated my reverence for the master showman, Karan johar.
                       Karan is being brutally honest here. So when he remarks that no matter whatever kind of films he make, he is always remembered as that rich guy who makes films for the rich NRI s, or when he tells zoya akhtar that any comparison with him is no compliment ("you are the new karan johar"),you can't agree with him more. Also when it comes to film critics, he puts it bluntly that he doesn't care about many of them nor their opinions. At the same time he doesn't try to hide the little joy he felt when shubrata gupta of indian express, who doesn't actually like anything with a kjo name attached to it finally liked Bahubali, a film that he had distributed.Likewise when he reminisces that Bharadwaj Rangan, who totally hates the karan brand of films, once approached him to write a forward for his book, the irony is not lost either.
                    Karan  doesn't shy away from making fun of himself either, 'the beggar costume change' issue being a case in point. Also at a time when even the directors-creators of super flop films too don't hesitate to brag about how successful their films are, kjo is sincere when he says that acknowledging a failure is as important as acknowledging a success.He also never hesitates in naming his movies ( productions) which failed big time, while maintaining that that he never holds a failure against its (first time) directors/creators.
                 Johar also touches upon segments from his childhood(of him being obese),his first encounter with Shahrukh Khan, his father's failed production ventures,his not so-rich childhood,sexuality to name a few.
                On the whole, I liked the book, for its straight forwardness and for the unpretentious attitude of kjo.I'm giving it a 3 out of 5.

-nikhimenon


Review: Guardian Angel by Ruchi Singh

8:05:00 PM

Guardian Angel Guardian Angel by Ruchi Singh
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Nikhil is a person captured wrongly and for no reason apparently. And that does not go well with Ayesha who is told to nurse his woulds so he can be tortured for information.

Ayesha is a girl who would be soon married to the guy who tries too hard to earn name and money from the so called holy war against the Indians.

These two are star crossed lovers from the moment they meet and it is their story that Ruchi has penned down so beautifully.

Guardian angel is a real good story with a plot that's sorted and feels complete. I enjoyed the clarity in the writing which reflects that the author has spent due time and diligence on the characters and overall feel of the story.

A short and yet engaging read.


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