Monday, March 23, 2020

#BookReview: My Ride, I Love You by Patrick Rangimant




My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A few months back while searching for new Asian dramas to watch, I came across a show in the BL (Boys Love) genre from Thailand. It is no secret that I like shows and books in BL genre a lot, so I ended up watching about a dozen BL series/movies since then. Since I keep an eye on the BL upcoming dramas, I came to know about My Ride the series which will be an adaptation of this book - My Ride, I Love you.
My Ride,I love You (MRILY)  started as twitter fiction and was later made into a full novel in the Thai language. Fortunately, the author decided to also release the English translation on Kindle before the series. 

MRILY is the story of Doctor Tawan and a motor-taxi driver Mork. Tawan meets Mork when he uses his motor-taxi to go to his boyfriend's place. As the visits become frequent, his conversations expand with Mork from pleasantries to other topics.  Gradually, they become friends and end up spending more time together. While Mork starts having feelings for Tawan, he never oversteps his boundaries and instead makes peace with just making Tawan happy and being inspired by his hard work.

MRILY is not a love story, but more a journey to reach the beginnings of the love story for all characters in the book. Since it was majorly set in a hospital, It was quite interesting to know of the personal life of the doctors/staff and appreciation for their efforts. It takes inspiration from author's own profession and life as a neurologist and made for a unique setting for me. All characters are fleshed out and have their own role in the story without any unnecessary drama. The progression from strangers to friends for Tawan and Mork are quite relatable and sweet. Their conversations with their respective best friends about love and their doubts give a lot of positive thoughts.

My favorite part was the FB page which Mork reads to find answers to questions of his heart. The posts/answers/thoughts of the admin of the page were something I had not read before regarding Love & relationship. For instance, on topic of one-sided love, Mork learns that instead of giving up or feeling bitter, he should just learn his position and make the other person happy from next to that person's heart, if not in that heart.

Kudos to the translator for the book to keep all the essence of setting, the casual banter, the cultural references intact throughout the book. The language is simple, the flow of the story is smooth throughout and even with an open ending ( or not ), this book is quite satisfying to read. Even though this is BL/ LGBT story, please be assured that there are no explicit scenes and the book can be read simply as a story on friendship and love and family.  I can not wait to see this as a live-action show now.

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Sunday, March 15, 2020

Review: Deadly Waters A Detective Jane Phillips Novel by O M J Ryan


Deadly Waters A Detective Jane Phillips Novel
by O.M.J. Ryan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Several young women have recently drowned in Manchester’s vast network of canals. A coincidence? Or something more sinister?
When star detective DCI Jane Phillips begins to investigate, her finely tuned instinct tells her these are no accidents. And when she discovers that each of the drowned women has a mysterious circular bruise on the back of her neck, Phillips is sure of it -- she’s up against a very clever serial killer.
But how are the victims being chosen? And who will be next?
With the body count rising, Phillips and her team find themselves in a fight to the death with a shadowy figure who always seems to be one step ahead.
Can Phillips stop the killer before the next victim dies? Or will she herself become an offering to Manchester’s deadly waters?


For most of the crime thrillers, the lead investigative officer and the team dynamics are the deciding factors for me in liking a book/series. This is the third book in the Detective Jane Phillips series but it can be read as a stand-alone. As the blurb says, it revolves around multiple killings of young women with similar life history & profile - something that Jane Phillips refuses to consider a mere coincidence from the get-go.


Her feelings and efforts to find answers and justice for the women was really inspiring. She is a likeable leader and the respect she gets from her team is admirable and looks very well earned. Every character, though new to the reader is fleshed appropriately so one gets comfortable with the story. the story proceeds in a logical manner and even a little cryptic, it never gets confusing.  Any time I thought I had the plot figured, the author threw a twist in the story. The book kept me hooked until the very last page.

There is not even a little detail placed unnecessarily or left unexplained in the end.   I spent the whole afternoon on finishing the last 40 per cent of the book in a single sitting. I enjoyed this police investigative thriller a lot. I am looking forward to reading the previous books having Jane Phillips as the lead now.

I would recommend this book to anyone who does not prefer much violence in their crime thriller books and a very good female lead. 


Hailing from Yorkshire, OMJ Ryan worked in radio and entertainment for over twenty years,
collaborating with household names and accumulating a host of international writing and radio awards.

In 2018 he followed his passion to become a full-time novelist, writing stories for people who devour exciting,
fast-paced thrillers by the pool, on their commute – or those rare moments of downtime before bed.
Owen’s mission is to entertain from the first page to the last. 
DEADLY WATERS will be his third novel published with Inkubator Books


Social Media:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/OMJRYAN1 @OMJRYAN1


Purchase Links:



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Saturday, March 7, 2020

#FaeFriday #WeeklyTag : Cavities inducing sweet books


Fae Friday is an awesome new weekly post created by Kristy at Caffeinated Fae.

Here’s the rules:

  • Link back to this page on Caffeinated Fae.
  • If the prompt idea comes from another blog, link to that blog as well.
  • Use #FaeFriday when posting to social media so we can all find each other!
  • Participate when you can and have fun with the prompt!

Faeries are known for their love of sweets and candy, So this week's prompt is -

What is a book that was so sweet you worries you might get a cavity ?



When Arthur and Ben meet-cute at the post office, what exactly does the universe have in store for them?
Maybe nothing. After all, they get separated.
Maybe everything. After all, they get reunited.
But what if they can’t quite nail a first date . . . or a second first date . . . or a third?
What if Arthur tries too hard to make it work . . . and Ben doesn’t try hard enough?
What if life really isn’t like a Broadway play?
But what if it is?

Most of my favorite YA books in recent years have been about queer love stories.  Many of the stories , though end on a happy note , have shades of sadness , angst , and pain from defining who they are and later defending their identity. 

This book - What if it's us on the other hand had all hangups of  any other teenage love story - the chances , the coincidences , the confusion and above all the whole larger than life image of Love - falling in love , being in love and even when moving away, there was friendship to take its place forever. all of this sweetness without the pain and sadness. This is a story of opposites attract + universe conspiring + Special gestures gone hilariously sideways ! 

Ben and Arthur will make you smile and think of all your firsts fondly and will stay in your heart long after the book is done. 

I am amazed I did not review this book ever, even when I have made a few close friends read it since.  Perhaps a re-read would be a good idea now :) 


Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Regonal: Maranathinte Thirakkadha by Anver Abdulla



                   'Maranathinte Thirakkadha' is a detective novel by Anvar Abdulla,published by Don Books.The protagonist is detective Perumal, an ex-CBI official-turned-Private investigator.Like in the case of many super star movies of yesteryears, in this book, the protagonist makes his appearance only towards the 'half-time'(read 'by the 100th page or so').
                   Leela Rose Panangadan is a newbie actress who has just found her super stardom.With a state award and a couple of blockbusters to her credit, she is widely considered as the 'next big thing' in the Malayalam film Industry.The producers are making a bee-line to get her dates and she has managed to garner her own share of detractors by now ,too. The prominent among them being , Gokul Das, an ageing superstar and a womaniser, who has suddenly developed a soft corner to Leela. But the smart lady that she is,Leela has been rather cold towards him till now and Gokul's enemity with Freddy, Leela's god-father is making things worse. Leela's dark past slowly catches up with her and Gokul and his cronies, including Janardhanan, the editor of a page 3,film magazine can't wait to make the best use of this situation.The actress becomes the prime accused in the murder of Robin Crish.Can Perumal save her from this mess?
                 The book is an engaging read.Though at times, you get the feeling that the author has tried the 90 s formula of long,court room dramas,towards the end he has been successful in tying all the loose ends.This is the kind of book which can be enjoyed during a long train/flight journey or on a lazy Sunday afternoon.This indeed is a good, time-pass read!I'm giving it a 3 out of 5.

-nkhimenon

Sunday, March 1, 2020

#FaeFriday #WeeklyTag : One wicked book you love


Fae Friday is an awesome new weekly post created by Kristy at Caffeinated Fae.

Here’s the rules:

  • Link back to this page on Caffeinated Fae.
  • If the prompt idea comes from another blog, link to that blog as well.
  • Use #FaeFriday when posting to social media so we can all find each other!
  • Participate when you can and have fun with the prompt!


This week on Fae Friday, we’re talking about the wicked faes we have come to love! Faeries are known to have a bit of a wicked side. This week’s prompt comes from author Lydia V. Russell, and it is:

What is one wicked book that you not so secretly love?

I did not even have to think more than a second to pick  Command Me ( Royal Saga#1) by Geneva Lee




Royal bad boy.
Exiled heir to the throne.
He's controlling. He's demanding. He's dangerous.
He warns me to stay away—that the press and his family will destroy me. I should run, but I can't. The last thing I expected was that I'd fall in love, especially since he never will...






I first read "Command Me" in 2016 when it came up in a random search on kindle and the summary intrigues me. It was my first book with "royalty falls for the commoner" category and also probably the first book with so many steamy sex scenes. It was royally wicked combination in my head ;)

This is a story of Clara Bishop who kisses Prince Alexander at a party without realizing who he actually is. What begins with a kiss and her being hounded by the press as she is linked to Alexander, brings the two closer not just physically but in matters of the heart too. One of my favorite scenes from the book is Alexander discovering about Clara's sickness in the past and how he reacts to it. It was also one of the sub-plot that explains a lot of things about Clara, especially her strength in deciding to love Alexander and her demands of the same respect from him.

Over the years I have read this book and other books in the series a few times. Even when  I realize there are some cliches in the story or sometimes I find these two characters not too perfect,  my love for this book ( and next two ) remains the same. I will always go back to Alexander & Clara's world for some smiles and for the fairy-tale love story feels.



Monday, February 24, 2020

#BookReview: Merchants of Milan (Night Flyer Trilogy, #1) by Edale Lane



Three powerful merchants, two independent women in love, one masked vigilante.


Florentina, set on revenge for her father’s murder, creates an alter-ego known as the Night Flyer. Madelena, whose husband was also murdered, hires Florentina as a tutor for her children and love blossoms between them. However, Florentina’s vendetta is fraught with danger, and surprising developments threaten both women’s lives.
Merchants of Milan is the first book in Edale Lane’s Night Flyer Trilogy, a tale of power, passion, and payback in Renaissance Italy. If you like gadgets and gismos, rich historical background, three-dimensional characters, and fast-paced action with a slow-boil lesbian romance, then you are sure to love this series.

Review: For a long time I was looking out for an f/f story with mature characters and the timing for Merchants of Milan could not have been better. Last year was my introduction to some really amazing historical fiction books and it made me realize the value in this genre. A story set in the city of Milan in 1600s, this book is another wonderfully crafted historical romance. It starts with the death of a scientist by the hands of an arrogant merchant, expecting his daughter would be in no position to avenge her father's death. Of course, she proves him wrong and how!

Some time back, I was reading about the life and various discoveries of Leonardo da Vinci and was amazed at the range and depth of his knowledge. Florentina, being his apprentice and a keen learner and observer uses many of Da Vinci's works as the base of her tools and tricks used by her alter ego, the Night Flyer. Her actions and the name give such a Batman vibe and I was glad that it lived up to the expectations in my head. Not just the historical setting, the drama within the family and other merchants were beautifully narrated, the action sequences were brilliant too. There was no one -dimensional or extra character that did not serve his/her purpose in the story. It was one of the factors I would remember this book for. I could visualize them so easily and I really wished I could see this story as a show someday.
The romance part though started very abruptly for me and felt forced in the beginning, it gradually became a part of the story and pushed the plot forward seamlessly. Both Florentine & Maddie are amazing women who are intelligent, kind, strong and most importantly have a great sense of duty and justice. It was heartening to read their interactions with each other and the kids alike.
I am very much looking forward to reading the next part of the book only to know about their story.
Kindle Version:  https://www.amazon.com/Merchants-Milan-Night-Flyer-Trilogy-ebook/dp/B083H6WNKD/

About the author:  Edale Lane is the author of an award-winning 2019 debut novel, Heart of Sherwood. She is the alter-ego of author Melodie Romeo, (Vlad a Novel, Terror in Time, and others) who founded Past and Prologue Press. Both identities are qualified to write historical fiction by virtue of an MA in History and 24 years spent as a teacher, along with skill and dedication in regard to research. She is a successful author who also currently drives a tractor-trailer across the United States. A native of Vicksburg, MS, Edale (or Melodie as the case may be) is also a musician who loves animals, gardening, and nature.
Author Links: 
Twitter:   @EdaleLane
Official Site:  https://pastandprologuepress.lpages.co/

More posts on the book at below blogs:


I Smell Sheep  http://www.ismellsheep.com/ Guest Post
The Seventh Star Blog http://www.theseventhstarblog.com Guest Post
The Writing Process http://kimsprocess.wordpress.com Author Interview
Jazzy Book Reviews https://bookreviewsbyjasmine.blogspot.com/ Guest Post
A Lot of Pages   http://www.A-lotofpages.com Review
The Literary Underworld http://www.literaryunderworld.com Guest Post
Jorie Loves a Story http://www.jorielovesastory.com Review
Quirky Cat's Fat Stacks (of Books) http://www.quirkycatsfatstacks.com  Review
The Paperback Voyager http://thepaperbackvoyager.wordpress.com Review
Willow's Thoughts and Book Obsessions https://willowwritesandreads.com/ Review
The Paperback Voyager http://thepaperbackvoyager.wordpress.com Interview

Jorie Loves a Story http://www.jorielovesastory.com Follow-up VLOG


***
This book was provided to me for an honest review, and no compensation was provided for the same.

View all my reviews

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Pradhamadrishtya-Malayalam Crime Thriller: Update






I'm really glad to share the latest update of the upcoming Thriller , 'Pradhamadrishtya' here.The latest teasers of the book have just got released.There has been a positive buzz about the book all around.Thank you all, for the support.Book is being published by greenbooks,india.It is expected to come out by early March, this year.

Thanks and regards

#alexmorrisiscoming#

-nikhimenon

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Review: Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

Red, White & Royal Blue
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

What happens when America's First Son falls in love with the Prince of Wales?

Alex , the son of first female President of America , for some reason has a beef with Prince Henry which becomes an issue for both countries when their altercation reaches newspapers. So , begins a fake friendship which gradually grows into something that could change not just them personally but also has long lasting effect on their families and  politics of both countries. 


RW&RB is a enemies ( sort of ) to lovers story.  Both Alex & Henry are picture perfect men on surface level. Alex though is no fan of Henry and there is no chance where he lets his irritation show. At one event , their conversation though takes an ugly turn and ends up being reported in newspapers as an altercation. As damage control, Alex is ordered to spend a weekend with Henry to show the world an alternate reality. Once the misconceptions are cleared , there begins a friendship of Instagram pictures, comments , texts & emails that are so damn fun to read. Gradually , we come to know the story of Henry's family , Alex dreams , Alex's parents growth in their own area, the siblings and friends and some of the staff that accompanies them on all their (mis)adventures and journey to each other's life and heart.  

And then I was a careless fool, and I fell in love with you anyway. When you rang me at truly shocking hours of the night, I loved you. When you kissed me in disgusting public toilets and pouted in hotel bars and made me happy in ways in which it had never even occurred to me that a mangled-up, locked-up person like me could be happy, I loved you.And then, inexplicably, you had the absolute audacity to love me back. Can you believe it?Sometimes, even now, I still can't.”


In parallel, we also read about presidential election drama, the tricks and games people play in order to win. and then there is blessing of friendship that our main cast enjoys. Whether it is the phase where Alex & Henry are getting to now each other , or how "the gang" comes together - Alex , Henry , Nora , Pez & June together are superb. Their  love for each other and loyalty in face of any challenge is worth being envious. They have their own personalities and ideologies and each is a force to reckon - kind of setting the stage for future leaders and change makers  we need.

“On the map of you, my fingers could always find the green hills, Wales. Cool waters and a shore of white chalk. The ancient part of you carved out of stone in a prayerful circle, sacrosanct. Your spine's a ridge I'd die climbing.
If I could spread it out on my desk, I'd find the corner of your mouth where it pinches with my fingers, and I'd smooth it away and you'd be marked with the names of saints like all the old maps. I get the nomenclature now- saints' names belong to miracles”

But what actually shines most in the whole book is the letters that Alex & Henry write to each other once they accept each other's love. Those letters are so damn cute and intense and heart warming at the same time. The author's research and appreciation of literary quotes and written correspondence makes this part of the book such a joy to read. I lost count of the highlights I made on this book by the time I finished it. 



View all my reviews

Monday, February 17, 2020

Regional: Selfie by Selma



                        'Selfie' is a collection of memoirs by Selma.Written in a very simple, yet interesting manner, the book is also a commentary on the many social issues which we have witnessed in the last couple of years or so. In this book, Selma also pens down the interesting events which happened in her personal and professional life and the foreign travels which she has embarked upon till date.The debut writer is successful to a very large extend ,in airing her thoughts interestingly.Her positive approach towards life is also pretty evident in her writing.The reader also get to know that she is a very updated and open minded,fun loving,cinephile human being with very liberal values. On the downside, the book doesn't offer anything new in terms of knowledge or narrative style. At times, while reading the social issues mentioned in the book, the reader gets the feeling that he/she is just going through a collage of the news paper headlines of the past couple of years or so.The author hasn't really bothered to go into the intricate details of the issues being discussed, rather she has only brushed through the issues in an albiet topical manner. Also, there isn't anything that is too intriguing or eventful in this memoir.

On the whole, I'm going with a 2.6 out of 5 for this book.

-nikhimenon

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Regional: Nayika Agatha Christie by Sreeparvathy


                               Mystic Mountain by Sreeparvathy was a book which I didn't like that much. It had left me with absolutely mixed feelings and I genuinely thought that the book had a perfect setting and a decent beginning but only to lose it's steam midway. Anyways, the book went on to become a best seller and the author's follow up work,titled 'Nayika Agatha Christie' has just hit the stores a couple of days back.
                              First thing first; unlike 'Mystic Mountain', 'Nayika Agatha Christie(NAC)' is not a full blown thriller. This book is more of a biographical fiction and tries to trace the 11 missing days in the life of  the 'queen of crime'.The novel begins with the disappearance of Agatha and her husband Archie getting framed for her disappearance/murder. Her car and some of her belongings are later found abandoned somewhere in the outskirts and the police,media and the public kicks of one of the greatest searches of all time to bring back the writer,dead' or 'alive'.
                             Coming to the positives, the book is definitely a light read and at no point does the author try to 'show off her literary intelligence' by indulging in over detailing and long, boring monologues. Though in the beginning , I thought that this one was going to go the 'Gone Girl' way, pretty soon, it became evident that the author had other plans in store.  The friendship between Anna and Teresa has been portrayed really well.The comparison between Poirot and his contemporary 'Holmes' is also brilliantly done.The book also throws light on the exemplary observation skills and intelligence of Agatha Christie in crime deduction & body language with the 'shop robbery-overcoat-scene' being the perfect case in point.The author also should be given due credit for not portraying 'Archie' as a full blown villain and giving him equal space to open up.
                        It is pretty evident that the author has done a great deal of research for penning this work.Madam Christie's love for music and her penchant for problem solving have been etched out in a graceful, realistic manner.Also 'NAC' discusses multiple themes like adultery,solitude,midlife crisis, lost love, depression and melancholy in a subtle, yet effective manner.
                        On the downside,as I said in the beginning,this book is not in the thriller genre and if you pick up this book expecting a fast paced thriller, you will be disappointed. This one is a good character study of one of the greatest writers of all time.Period!

On the whole,I'm going with a 3.25 out of 5, for this work.

-nikhimenon

#FaeFriday #weeklybooktag : What book helped you through a difficult time?

Fae Friday is an awesome new weekly post created by Kristy at Caffeinated Fae.

To participate in Fae Friday, please do the following:
Link back to Kristy's blog -  Caffeinated Fae.
If the prompt idea is from another blog, link to that blog as well.
Use #FaeFriday when posting to social media so we can all find each other!

This week on #FaeFriday, we’re talking about healing! Faeries are known for their healing abilities. It doesn’t matter if it’s a dying plant or a broken heart. The fair folk can help mend what is broken. So this week’s prompt is: What book helped you through a difficult time?





Most times I do not read when I am really upset or would read just anything for distraction. But in last 5 years I have read Rule by Jay Crownover four times from start to finish. The story is now imprinted in my mind and yet every time I need to find some peace and smiles on my own, I read the story of  Rule & Shaw (Marked Men series #1 couple) . Rule is the playboy who has decided to show a bad attitude to his family after his twin brother's death. Shaw has loved Rule since she first saw him and has been taking care of him ever since even if it means being hurt every time she sees Rule with a new girl every weekend.  One birthday, they come together physically but staying together in a relationship is a completely different game, that none of them knows how to play. The Marked men series has 6 books but Rule and Rome ( who is Rule's elder brother ) are two of the men whose stories are my absolute favorite.

Rule has a special place in my heart because this book was my introduction to this world of amazing friends, love that has the power to lift each other and stand strong in face of difficulties , some awesome tattoos and enough sweet moments to guarantee a happy smile at the end.

For  this reason, I have this book in my kindle so I can pull it at random anytime I need a pick-me-up buddy :)


#BookReview: My Ride, I Love You by Patrick Rangimant

My rating: 4 of 5 stars A few months back while searching for new Asian dramas to watch, I came across a show in the BL (Boys...