nikhimenon

Cyber Sexy: Rethinking Pornography by Richa Kaul Padte

9:51:00 PM


          Pornography is something which everyone Loves to watch/read but no one openly admits in the public. Richa Kaul Padte's 'Cyber Sexy' is a book on Pornography, a bit 'scientific' one at that. In what can be termed as a nuanced account of the evolution of porn, 'Cyber Sexy' tries to look at the various aspects of 'pleasure'.
         Well, this is the kind of book which is quite difficult to review.Obviously, a somewhat authentic account of the hitory of pornography was what I was hoping for when I picked up this book.But to say that the book entirely lived up to my expectations would be a bit of an overstatement.First and foremost, though the efforts of the author to take up a subject like this for her debut work as an author is laudable, the way it has turned out leaves a lot to be desired.May be a little bit of humour in the narrative might have did the trick.
          The book opens with the writer's first encounter with 'porn' and soon goes on to discuss more serious topics like consent, pornography in literature,exhibitionism,mass intimacy and so on.
          The basic problem which I felt with this book is that though it deals with a topic which is hardly boring, the way it is narrated makes this work of non-fiction quite bland and even uninteresting at times. The book has references about some of the biggest online MMS scandals which shook the country in the early 2000s and later, but it never rises above the numerous discussions happening in the online platforms like reddit and quora on a daily basis. The last couple of chapters delves into consensual porn and non consensual sex. As I mentioned before, the basic problem I felt with the book is the jumbled narrative. Instead of discussing one issue at a time and taking it into it's logical conclusion/ writer's opinion on the same, the debutant author jumps from one thing to the other citing 'experiences' of random people.

On the whole, I'm giving this work a 2.75 out of 5.

-nikhimenon

Anthony Horowitz

The Word is Murder by Anthony Horowitz

3:13:00 PM


              Anthony Horowitz , one of the most sought after authors of children's fiction is also someone who has made a smooth transition to writing adult's fiction. His Sherlock Holmes novels, 'The House Of Silk' and 'Moriarty' were not only highly successful but also critically acclaimed.'The Word Is Murder' is a stand alone crime novel and interestingly has the author himself playing a prominent character in it.
         Detective Hawthorne is the protagonist. He was working with the Police once upon a time ,but is now working as a private detective. Diana Cowper, a wealthy lady and mother of the popular actor, Daniel Cowper is found strangled in her apartment. But the strange thing is that she had planned her own funeral less than 24 hours back. But is there more to the murder than what meets the eye? Detective Hawthorne investigates with the writer Anthony giving him company.(Anthony has been assigned to write about the investigation.
            The book has got some smart lines and interesting refernces to real life persons and movies.The meta-references are also quite brilliantly done.The scene featuring Stephen Spielberg and Peter Jackson and the author himself is a scream. Though it's unclear whether it was an entirely fictional scene, I hope Anthony Horowitz gets assigned to write the next film of the Tintin franchise. Though the book is a tad too long at 390+ pages, there are enough twists and turns happening at regular intervals making the proceedings interesting.

On the whole, I'm giving it a 3.5 out of 5.

-nikhimenon

Chic-Lit

Pyjamas are Forgiving by Twinkle Khanna

9:07:00 PM


                      I had read 'The Legend of Lakshmi Prasad' by Twinkle Khanna some time back. One of the stories from that book was inspired by the life of Arunachalam Muruganantham (Twinkle herself produced a movie based on the same titked 'padman' which had her husband, Akshay Kumar playing the title role).The 'legend of 'Lakshmi Prasad' was an interesting read. 'Pyjamas are forgiving' is Twinkle's latest work. Unlike her previous two works (Mrs Funny Bones and the 'legend...') which were about real life people and real life incidents, 'Pyjamas...' is an entirely fictional tale.
                       Anshu , the protagonist  is a middle aged woman with sleep issues.She has come to Shanthamaya Sthalam, a spa situated somewhere in Kerala. She is on a mission to reduce her weight, besides other things. There she unexpectedly meets her ex-husband, besides other people. What happens in the spa during the course of next one month or so is what the story is all about.
                      The characters are shallow and half baked. The protagonist doesn't come across as an entirely likeable character. Some one-liners are witty but quite often they tend to be borderline vulgar and quite crass(those pertaining to orgasm and sexual act were very quite crude, to say the least).
                    There is no story per se, the plot moves at snails pace and wholly relies on the day to day activities at the spa. It would have been fine if the narrative was replete with genuinely funny moments but that was far and few in between.The book is mostly about the self realization/ self discovery of a few of the residents at the spa over a period of one month or so.But at the same time, some of the key characters never get their due.The relationship between Anshu and her ex-husband is not properly explained or explored. We get to know that they went to a few vacations together, but then what really happened between them/or in their relation is hardly explained.
May be you can give it a try if a slow paced, leisurely read with a few witty lines and hardly any surprises is what you are hoping for. I'm giving it a 2.5 out of 5.

-nikhimenon


book blast

#Bookblitz : Physical by Mari.Reiza

6:32:00 AM

~ Book Blitz ~
Physical by Mari.Reiza
 Women's Psychological Fiction

About the Book:



A feminist read that won’t disappoint. 

In a small town in Italy, Kiki feels worthless and angry when her longtime partner finds a new cool girl to ride on another decade of easy existence. Meanwhile in London, Fátima, the wife of Kiki’s best friend, is losing her selfhood after giving birth to twins and being made redundant. Both heroines are determined to rebuild the passion and impunity of their youth, vitalizing desires that will bring them to risk everything.





Book Links:
Goodreads * Amazon


Read an Excerpt:

Finally, I got my boss on the phone.
‘Relax, you just had twins,’ she sounded shifty. She hurried to say there was no rush for me to come back.
‘Thanks, but I’m ready.’ I did not like how this conversation had started. Should I call again? Maybe we could do take two.
‘Orso can take care of you now,’ she replied to me.
I told her to go fuck herself, which I had told her enough times before, when we had worked together. She was used to it. She had said the same to me, as often. It was taken as a sign that we respected each other. ‘I do not need anyone to take care of me,’ I elaborated given her silence. Of course I did. But it felt so good to say utter bullshit aloud, like it made it more believable.
‘We’re making one hundred people redundant in the department,’ she came clean under duress. ‘Fátima you are on the list.’
Fucking hell! The temperature of my body had gone up by five degrees in a hundredth of a second. The cold white wine was flashing fast to cool me down, but I still felt the phone melting in my hand. I knew I should not cry with her on the line, and I was speed thinking a good punch. But I was out of practice. She was anticipating me. She was thinking faster than me what I was thinking.
‘Do not even think to sue, Fátima. They are giving some good money. Take it and go. You do not even need this job anymore,’ she said.
Who the hell was she to tell me what I did or did not need, what I was supposed to do with my life?
I was incandescent, my skin tingling like the filaments of a bulb. I certainly was not up to snappy ‘do not worry about it you little daddy’s girl from Notting Hill’ remarks. Yes. I had Dad and Orso spitting gold coins like crazy for me, but living in my brain was hell, because it seemed that whatever I did, it wouldn’t count for shit. I preferred to be spitting gold coins with them.
‘You should feel emboldened by your new life. Focus on that. You have been blessed,’ she added. She was trying a solid voice but I could perceive a quibble. This conversation was not easy for her either.
Yet she would be able to forget it as soon as she hung up. She would maybe pop out for lunch somewhere nice, perhaps with Mark or Rachel, and pride herself for how well she had managed a difficult firing earlier in the morning. And Rachel would know that it was me and say, ‘Poor cow!’ And Mark would add, ‘Well, she had it coming. You can’t have it all.’
The fuck you can’t! Emboldened by my new life... It was going around my head.
My new life as a mother? Blessed for having offspring? How did she know it was a blessing? She did not have any. By choice, I thought. She had chosen not to be blessed. Maybe blessings got in the way. Of course they got in the way.
I decided to stop my tears in their tracks. It even felt like the ones on my cheeks were going back into my eyes, and all the scum that had come into my mouth, driven by rage, disappeared down my throat. My temperature was going back to normal, perhaps colder. It was like we were rewinding the tape. And in a voice icy as Lady Death’s, I only said five words, ‘Just send the papers through,’ and hung up.


About the Author:

Mari.Reiza was born in Madrid in 1973. She studied at Oxford University and worked as an investment research writer and management consultant for twenty years in London, before becoming an indie fiction writer. Also by her, Inconceivable Tales, Death in Pisa, Sour Pricks, A Pack of Wolves, STUP, Mum, Watch Me Have Fun!, Marmotte’s Journey, West bEgg, Room 11, Triple Bagger, Caro M, Opera, the Retreat, sells sea shells and aberri (homeland), all available on Amazon.



Author Links:
Website * Twitter * Instagram




Anthology

Tell Tale by Jeffrey Archer

8:52:00 AM


                     Jeffrey Archer's short stories are a pleasure to read. They are mostly easy reads, draw inspiration from real life incidents and almost always end with a small twist.'Tell Tale' is Archer's latest short story collection and like his previous works, the stories in this latest anthology are also quite interesting.
                    The collection begins with the story titled 'The Death of The Mayor'. As the title suggests, this story revolves around the mysterious death of the Mayor of a small town and the investigator who is brought to find out the truth behind the crime. The case is almost left unsolved until the officer stumbles upon a startling revelation.A surprising twist indeed!
                    The other stories are also equally good with quirky and relatable characters. Be it the smart couple who devise the 'crooked' plan to make money 'through' their 'summer holidays' or the car park attendant who makes a living out of an abandoned council property, Archers characters are tangible and believable.My favourite story in this collection was 'The Senior Vice President', which incidentally was also the longest one of the lot.

Verdict: On the whole, I'm giving 'tell Tale' a 3.5 out of 5.This one is an enjoyable book! 

-nikhimenon

crime fiction

Masako Togawo's 'The Lady Killer'

8:22:00 PM


           Pushkin Vertigo has brought out the English translation of yet another Japanese crime classic by the queen of Japanese crime fiction, Masako Togawo. 'The Lady Killer' was originally published in Japanese in the 1960's and the action is seti in Tokyo of the 60 s.

         Ichiro Honda is a hardworking professional and a dutiful husband by the day and a hardcore womaniser by the night. He never 'uses' his female companions for his pleasure more than once.The pervert that he is, also has the habit of maintaining a 'Hunter's Log' which depicts graphic details of his sexual conquests. However, his preys soon start getting killed one by one and soon, the hunter becomes the hunted.This is the basic premise of the book. Agreed, a couple of books have come out with similar themes later (Masako Togawo's work originally came out in the 1960 s) in various languages, however what makes 'The Lady Killer' a must read work is the smart writing and intelligent plot twists ( due credit goes to the translator as well who has made sure that the soul of the work is not lost in translation).

        The writing is taut and as I mentioned before ,though the book was originally written almost 50 years back, the plot still feels fresh and contemporary. Infact, I found it quite surprising that a woman writer had thought about Vaginismus (which is considered a taboo topic even in this era) and was bold enough to make it as one of the core plot points in her work .Obviously, Masako Togawo's thought process was very well ahead of her times!

        While the first half of the book is mostly about Honda's sexual pursuits, it's towards the latter half that the book that it turns to a criminal investigation/procedural. On the whole, 'The Lady Killer' is an engaging thriller with a brilliant twist towards the end.I'm giving it a 3.5 out of 5.

-nikhimenon

domestic thriller

Frederic Dard's 'The King of Fools'

9:09:00 PM

                 
                 Frederic Dard was a French Writer, who had written more than two hundred thrillers. Thanks to Pushkin Vertigo, one of his masterpieces (King Of Fools) has been translated to English, long after his death in 2000.Originally Published in French in the 1950 's, King Of Fools is one of those rare works which doesn't have a ' dated ' feel to it.Even in 2019, the work feels quite fresh and engaging!
                Jean-Marie has just befriended Marjory (a British woman who is on a French holiday) after a chance meeting in France. Pretty soon, they fall in love and Jean- Marie follows the beautiful Marjory to her native country, Scotland. But all is not well as Marjory's husband soon finds out about their 'affair' and the desperate lover that he is, Jean-Marie does what any other 'foolish lover' would have done in a scenario like this.Will he be able to wash off the blood on his hands?(go, grab a copy and figure out!)
              As I said in the beginning,'King Of Fools' is a racy thriller.There are twists and turns happening at regular intervals and the suspense is maintained well through out.The climax is also well thought out and at 156+ pages, the book is quite slim and engaging.The avid readers might feel the lack of detailing a bit disheartening though.Looking forward to reading more works by Frederic Dard, the master of French Crime Fiction.I'm giving this book a 3.5 out of 5.

-nikhimenon

Drama

QBR: The Windfall by Diksha Basu

7:56:00 PM

                                                     
                                                       Satire/Drama
                                                        376+ pages 
                                                   Bloomsbury (2017)
                                                       RT Rating: 3.5/5

The Verdict: 'The Windfall' is a humorous take on the life of a typical middle class family from East Delhi.Told in a honest and hilarious manner, 'The Windfall' is definitely a must read!
Synopsis: Mr Anil Jha and family have been leading a middle class life in East Delhi. Mr Jha recently sold his website for a whopping 20 Million US Dollars making the Jha family rich all on a sudden.Since they have succesfully climbed up the social ladder,the family decides to relocate to Gurgaon, the place for the super-rich.How the neo-rich slowly get acclimatized to the new neighbourhood and how they make new friends is all the story is about.Though on the face of it, it looks like Mr Jha and Mr Chopra are in a constant race to out do each other,pretty soon we realize that they do have a lot of things in common.
The Good:The setting is perfect, the jokes are fine and the characterizations (Mrs Ray, Johny, Rupak, Mr Jha) are brutally honest, Diksha's prose manages to be a social commentary and a satirical (Mrs Ray and her stolen Yoga Pants, a perfect case in point) take on middle class ambitions at the same time.
The Bad:The ending was a bit abrupt and ambiguous (may be it is intentional and the author is planning for a sequel?)

RecommendationsBuy it!

Manu Joseph

Miss Laila Armed and Dangerous by Manu Joseph

5:58:00 PM

                          

                         Manu Joseph's award winning 'Serious Men' and it's follow up ,'The Illicit Happiness Of Other People' were books which I enjoyed a lot. So, I was eagerly looking forward to reading his latest work,'Miss Laila....'. Infact I was very pleased when I could finally get hold of 'Miss Laila'  A good couple of hours and a 200 + pages later,I should confess that I have been left with missed feelings.
                          'Miss Laila,Armed and Dangerous' is the kind of book which is very difficult to review. First and foremost, it's almost impossible to consider this book as a pure work of fiction.May be because of his background as a journalist, Manu Joseph has an opinion about almost everything which has happened in our country in the last decade or so(which in my honest opinion ,is a perfectly fine thing!). But when he tries to pack in too much of his opinions into his latest work and try to pass it off as fiction ,without even bothering to change the 'real-life' names of the personalities involved in a jumbled and often confusing narrative, it results in something like 'Miss Laila'.
                        The Plot goes something like this- A building has collapsed somewhere in Mumbai and in the midst of the ruins, there is a man who is mumbling something about a potential terror plot. A social media prankster, Miss Aiyer is one of the first persons to reach the spot and with her help , the IB and the officials soon spring into action and commence their 'mission' to nail the potential terrorist. What happens to their 'secret mission' is what the story is all about. 
                       The story line is quite plain and the book is hardly 200 pages long. The language is  simple and Manu Joseph's trade mark humour and sarcasm are quite in place which tries to make up for the dullness in the plot , to an extend. Aiyer's 'Pranks' are often quite hilarious. Using Aiyer's character, Joseph  has tried to poke fun at almost everyone, be it the media , the so called 'fascists' , 'activists' or the 'neo-liberals'. (Mind you , even the economist Raghuram Ranjan is not spared! The scene involving activist Sathya and his bid for the Nobel Prize is particularly funny! BTW, what was Bill Gates doing in this work?). But the basic problem is , all those funny bits remain as isolated set pieces and they never particularly gel with the story line nor do they add anything to the core plot- they just stick out like isolated, random scenes!
                      As I mentioned in the beginning, it's very difficult to categorize this book as a pure work of fiction.It's mostly like a string of opinion pieces on some of the important incidents which has happened in our country in the last one and a half decades or so.The author has taken the convenient route of masquerading it as a work of fiction.However, some of his observations and one-lines are quite interesting. Sample this- When the elite of a system become the underclass in another system,they search for a moral cause to restore balance of power. This is popularly known as activism
            or thisAn erection is the same hydraulic event in political economists as it is in jackasses
           or  thisIt appears that if only passenger trains were equitable systems, many revolutions would not have occured.

Verdict- On the Whole, Miss Laila is an okay read. But a writer who has given us gems like 'Serious Men' and 'The Illicit Happiness....' is defintely capable of much more!

-nikhimenon

fantasy fiction

Review: A Flight of Broken Wings by Nupur Chowdhury

5:17:00 AM

A Flight of Broken Wings A Flight of Broken Wings by Nupur Chowdhury
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Six hundred years ago, humanity rose up in revolt against the Aeriels, who were driven from earth and back into their homeland of Vaan after a bloody and glorious war.

Eight years ago, Ruban’s home was destroyed and his family murdered by an Aeriel.

When a new Aeriel threat looms over Ragah, the capital city of Vandram, Ruban Kinoh must do everything in his power to avenge his family's past and protect the future of his country.



I have been a fan of fantasy fiction genre long before I realized that it is a genre of books ! And for a long time I read mostly foreign authors. So it is always a good feeling to see an Indian author do justice to the genre and good story in general. To say , that I read this book without expectations would be a lie and I am always a little too sceptical of the fantasy fiction books that seem to be part of a trilogy.


So , it was very fortunate for me to chance upon this book as this one totally lives up to its promise. Fantasy fiction mostly survives on the world you set for your characters  , the rules , the past , the present and tying them all in the near future.


Nupur set up a world that wasn't too far from reality and mixing it with her out of the world creatures, some of them,  I must say have such amazing sense of humor that I was immediately hooked to the book. The best thing about the book is the light banter that keeps flowing in the story keeping you smiling and engaged. The friendship and the loyalty that develops by passing some hard times together is amazingly shown as is the author's understanding of relationships in general. The action scenes are totally on point and do not lack the punches that are needed.


I would love to see Ruban and Ashwin together again if they promise to give me same dose of fun in every single book. And on that note , I must add that whether the author decides to write another part or not , this book in itself is complete and the reader would not be disappointed at the end.






     



View all my reviews

augusto de angelis

QBR: The Mystery of The Three Orchids by Augusto De Angelis

9:41:00 PM


                                                       Vintage Crime
                                                        186+ pages, 
                                                    Pushkin Vertigo (2016, originally 1936)
                                                       RT Rating: 3.2/5

The Verdict: 'The Mystery of The Three Orchids' is an engaging mystery.It is indeed a proof of the genius of  Augusto De Angelis, the man widely regarded as the father of Italian Crime Fiction.
 
Synopsis: A Murder has happened in one of the fashion houses in Milan. Valerio, the right hand man of Christina, the owner of the Fashion house is found dead in her room.Inspector De Vincenzi is called to investigate the crime.But pretty soon, the bodies start piling up and within a span of 48 hours, there are three murders with Orchids beside these three bodies.Will De Vincenzi be able to solve the crime?
 
The Good: the setting, twists and the climatic reveal. Never did I feel that this work was written almost 80 years ago! 

The Bad:The reader never gets to know much about Inspector De Vincenzi (may be one should read the first books in the series for that!)

RecommendationsBuy it!

-nikhimenon

crime

QBR: Don't Let go by Harlan Coben

9:09:00 AM

                                           

                                                    Crime/Thriller
                                                    386+ pages
                                                     Arrow (2018)
                                                     RT Rating: 3.2/5

The Verdict:'Don't Let Go' is an engaging stand alone thriller from Harlan Coben, one of the most successful crime writers of our times. Definitely worth a read!
 
Synopsis: Nap is a cop who has lost his brother(Leo) and his lover(Diana) after a freak accident 15 years back.The incident forced Maura, Nap's girl-friend to go into a hiding.Now years later, there is a series of killings and Maura has suddenly made an appearance.Nap is convinced that there is some sort of connection between his brother's murder and these recent murders.Will Nap be able to uncover the truth?
 
The Good: As usual, Coben's narrative moves forward at a breakneck speed,there is never a dull moment and the twists happen at regular intervals, the CIA-Military base angle was well done, the 'sleeper-cell' twist was also believably done,the Bolitar cameo was a pleasant surprise. 

The Bad:Nap's characterisation reminded of Myron Bolitar at times,towards the middle portions,the book dragged a bit.

RecommendationsBuy it!

-nikhimenon

Cate Woods

Review: Just Haven't Met You Yet by Cate Woods

6:30:00 PM

Just Haven't Met You Yet Just Haven't Met You Yet by Cate Woods
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a story that tries to seek answers for the quest we have to find our soul mate. What if technology can accurately match you to your soulmate ? Does it really have to be a romantic link up always ? and what it takes to find love otherwise ?
 
Percy is in a steady relationship when she is made aware that she has a soulmate and if she wishes , she can meet the persona nd decide what to do about it. Finding herself a little bored and in need of an adventure , she goes for the date and her life changes after that.    

A really fun read , part relatable and part wise yet fun enough to make you smile. This book made me read till 2 am just to know the end and to see where the heart actually fits for Percy. I liked the friendships , the moments of connections with a stranger or the ways our heart and inner voice lead us to right decisions , only if we keep our heads clear. This is a very current time read and without being preachy , it's a wonderful story.


Later when I reflected on the title and the story , it also felt that perhaps its about finding yourself in a new light. Maybe You haven't met the better version of you yet !





View all my reviews

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


General/Indian Fiction

Review: Guardian Angel by Ruchi Singh

8:05:00 PM

Guardian Angel      
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. Every string of this web is tied beautifully and there is a human touch to even the extreme violence that you feel throughout. 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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