Book Review: Lean In to Relationships by Rishabh Jhol

Okay. So what happens when you pick up a book thinking it is a romance and find out it is an autobiographical travelogue instead. You keep reading trying in vain to search for the story which is finally just one chapter tucked somewhere inside another story in the book, If it could be called a story at all. It is more an episode in the life of the writer.

Every chapter introduces new characters, and you get a wonderful tour of the USA along with countries like Jordan and Peru.

The book reads more like an “Eat Pray Love” except that the Pray has been replaced by “travel”.

If you stop looking for the romance or the story, what you do find is a very nice turn of phrase, and some really deep observations and introspection.  There are passages in the book, that make you want to copy them down in a note book for future reference or just because they are so well said.

Like this one, “Heartbreak is never about two hearts. It is about that one single heart seeking validation. It is that one heart that needs acknowledgment from outside— of being welcomed in the Universe, of feeling included, of being reassured about existence.”

Or the reason why friends do not keep in touch over the years, “After all, meeting old friends isn’t urgent; it cannot be a higher priority to, well, say doing a long overdue laundry.”

So once you read the book like an autobiographical journey of self discovery, and ignore the grammatical mistakes that come from literally translating from one’s mother tongue, the book is pretty good.

Print Length: 143 pages
Language: English
ASIN: B0749CLW5G
Format: Kindle Edition

 

 

Doubt has pivoted many a relationship across the centuries. Whether it is Othello suspicious of Desdemona or through the rise of paranoia as a trope in twentieth-century writings. While paranoia naturally suggests the vulnerability of individual mind to social rhetoric, it is also the space for deep interrogation of the individual that renders him/her to paranoia. This novel presents that doubt has the potential to be a space of liberation.Madeeha works in Jordan to rehabilitate Syrian refugees. Zehen, a political analyst from India, meets her in the US during their social impact program. He is intrigued and charmed by her and falls deeply in love. But the world political climate, with its accompanying cultural narratives about terror and pain, infects Zehen’s mind. Zehen begins to suspect Madeeha as a possible mujahid. Will he find his truth?

Fear doesn’t devastate; it stirs the inner pot. It is a tender love story that triumphs heartbreaks and sets the foundation for a deep lasting future relationship – a delightful emancipation from social intrigues and cultural constraints.
Truly inspirational builds upon the basis of not second guessing everything, and taking risks instead of regretting not taking them. A must-read for anyone. 5 Stars. – Bill McManus, Author, and creator of the Storytime Pup

It would be great if you can add this book to your TBR


At the time of my birth, my parents shared a one-room hut with six other family members in one of the poorest neighborhoods of Delhi.
It was a hot day in the month of March 1995. I was in standard 4th and had an examination the following day. As was regular in that locality, we didn’t have electricity that day. I couldn’t study or sleep properly. One of the watershed moments happened when I came back from school the next day. We had an inverter installed at home. I knew we couldn’t afford an inverter. But my dad was always convinced that the way out of poverty for our family is through education.
Despite an interest in creative writing, I chose to study a subject that society values more – Finance. Later, I got into one of the top colleges for finance in the country. My first salary out of college (in 2007, when I was 20 years old) was higher than that of my dad’s salary at the time.
When I was 24 years old, I had everything that makes one happy – loving parents, great partner, close-knit group of friends, and career path that exceeded every goal. Yet, I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t sad either; but it never felt like my life. I had carefully and meticulously built that life though. Contextually, it was the safe thing to do.
Following year though, I had to deal with the loss of my 7 year old relationship and of my 5 year old job. My identity was crushed. My biggest lesson was that you can fail at what you don’t want, and what you consider safe; you might as well take a chance at what you truly want.
Next year, I got my ‘ideal’ job but walked away from it. Failure had taught me to be more ambitious and audacious. I had reached a point in my life where I wanted my work to have more meaning; and to stand for something more important than myself.
I started a political consulting company to maneuver social ascendance of marginalized communities by equalizing access to political capital. I primarily did topical research for MPs for their debates in the parliament and on TV shows.
Along with running my own company, I focused on my passion for writing and traveling as well. I solo travelled to all seven wonders of the world, and did two-cross country trips by train in India and in the US. I have also written and published three fiction novels.

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