Monday, June 29, 2015

Mistress of Honour by Bhavna Arora

This is the secod time this year I have read a book that has its plot based on lives of Army men and their families and I think we should read more. There should be more books on this topic and Mistress of Honour was quite a good one for this list. 

This is the story of Pansy and Pontis who meet in unusually tragic circumstances ,not once but many times and between linked destiny and lives they get married to become parents of Rihana, an spirited soul who follows her mother's path and falls in love with an Air force pilot.
There are two love stories which are as similar as different from each other. The story follows some important dates in the Indian history that had our armed forces give up their best men for sake of the country's protection or politics.
The training , the anecdotes , the missions, the relations and above all the commitment to duty is never this extreme. Some of the passages made me so overwhelmed with respect and tinge of shame at my life and regrets we have. Is it all not a little frivolous ?
The writing of the book is simple and the conversations engaging. The story flows easily and there is no slow phase in reading. The characters are well researched and fleshy to understand and like them. But somehow there was a little discontinuity too. Like a lot filled in less number of pages feel.
I liked this one for the story more than writing though the end was a bit dramatic
My rating : 3 5/5

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Autobiography of a mad nation by Sriram Karri

There are few books that you pick up with lot of expectations from the plot but wjat completely surprises you is the writing of the book. This book is onenof those rare gems that I can open at random pages and read itnforbthe conversations and the sharp focus of the writer on the current state of society. I am no fan of politics and i have kept myself away from reading in depth about it. But this book migjt change that for me.
The book opens to a diary entry of a person who rants about the nation going madder day by day , a nation freed by the freedom fighters but one we could not manage to hold together. And now the division is the norm in society and daily life. Soon the person writing this diary confesses to having axe his neighbor for stealing his poem. Sounds crazy ? It gets all the more crazier when the same peraon asks the President of india for help in proving he is innocent.
There are very few events of national importance from last 30 years that the author has not used in the narrative. Somewhere his experience as a journalist reflects in the writing. One might not be unaware if the way the nation is rotting but this book is a mirror to how everyone of us aids in hiding or ignoring it.
One event leads to another and the diary entries keep the reader intrigued till the end of chapter one. There the fictional part of the story takes over and we have a glimpse into life of common men whose life is altered just by knowing each other. Here one can assume these men to be society and how if we all try , change is possible though at a price of life.  Also this is the weaker part of the book which thankfully ends before you could lose interest. The end is kind of predictable and a try to give answers. I liked it still for the way the author has shown the final act of the one directing the whole plot.
All in all, a powerful statement , a worthy read.
My rating 4/5

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Arcane Rhapsodies - Poems by Navya Jain

If the word poem is making you skip this book , you are going to miss some wonderful stories ! confused ? Well , that’s the magic Navya has created here. She has retold  some very engaging myths , legends and folklore from around the world – mostly unknown to me I must admit. And the medium of this story retelling is in forms of verses. The flowing , charming , bubbling lines of rhyming poetry that have added so much beauty to each tale. I could almost imagine the tales being unfolded on a stage as the verses played in the background. It was amazing feeling I tell you . The last 2 poems are part of single story of a writer compiling poems while the last poem of his collection is shared with the reader. Another good part of the book is the summary of the stories in the end that would help you know the context or origin of the tale.

Navya’s writing is much refined and very easy to understand even if you might find few words difficult to understand. They do not spoil the flow or the feelings of the verses in any way. I totally enjoyed this book.  This is a really innovative way to present the stories from around the world. I will be looking forward to read Indian mythology and folklores in a similar way. Not just for myself but also to read to children. Perhaps this will engage them in more such activities and reading too.

Such a lovely attempt !

My rating : 5/5
PS: My only complaint is with the book cover which i feel could show a glimpse into he book or be in lighter shade.

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