Book Review: Killer Moves by Varsha Dixit

 
Killer Moves
by
Varsha Dixit
 
My Review: 

This was an attention catcher right from the first page. It was difficult to put down. The only thing that I found a little disappointing was that the author handled the whole “I can communicate with the dead” a little apologetically as if she was not sure of the audience’s response. That angle could have been developed a little more to make this a really great story.

I can well imagine this as a nail biting scary movie.

 

 
 
Blurb
Everyone has a secret. Aisha Khatri has many! 

Aisha’s life is seemingly mundane on the surface-she writes for television and takes care of her niece Kiara and her retired father. But when Kiara’s life is threatened during a modeling assignment for the famous Kabir Rana, once a suspect for his wife’s murder, the only way Aisha can save Kiara is by accepting the unique ability she has aggressively resisted all her life. 

But Aisha is not the only one with secrets. There are others who have secrets and will kill to keep them. Aisha is determined to protect Kiara even if it means placing herself in the crosshairs of a depraved killer who butchers beautiful girls and leaves them as grotesque displays. 

Is Kiara a target of a serial killer or is the killer closer to home-and Aisha’s heart? 

Who is Kabir Rana? An elusive and moody fashion photographer burdened with a dark past or a murderer who got away? 

How will Aisha save Kiara from a killer who is several steps ahead of an entire city’s police force? When the dead come calling, will Aisha answer? 

From the bustling streets of Goa to the beautiful palaces of Sirsa, Killer Moves is a fast-paced, gripping, romantic suspense tale with strong thriller and supernatural elements. 
 
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About the author
 
 
Varsha Dixit, the best selling author of six successful contemporary romance books. Her debut book, Right Fit Wrong Shoe was a national bestseller for the year 2010. Varsha was a part of the Indian Television Industry and worked as an assistant director and online editor. She considers herself a dreamer who thinks deep but writes light. Even though creativity is gender free,Varsha feels blessed and enriched to be a woman.Currently, with her family, Varsha resides in CA, USA.
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Book review: Groomnapped by Sundari Venkatraman

 

GROOMNAPPED
(The Groom Series #1)
by
Sundari Venkatraman

 

My Review:

Sundari Venkatraman never fails to deliver. Groomnapped is a sweet romance with a heroine who is totally aware of the reality of the society she lives in and yet chooses to live her life on her own terms and a hero who is willing to do anything to win his beloved.

In Groomnapped, Sundari has taken social norms and added a bit of satire to give it a twist and beat the guardians of society at their own game.

There is no coyness, no false modesty. Just an acceptance of reality which you don’t necessarily have to make yours.

 
 
BLURB
 
The lovely and feisty Surekha is the eldest of three daughters of a carpenter from the wrong side of the tracks. She teaches science and maths in the Bihar Public School. 
 
Ameya is the only son of a millionaire farmer-cum-builder and over and above that, he’s educated too. 
 
They meet and fall in love quite easily, the drawback being the dowry system prevalent in Bihar. With Ameya’s parents expecting a huge dowry and Surekha’s parents having a tough time eking a living out of their humble income, it seems like the match between the two lovers is one made in hell. 
 
Ameya isn’t one to take things lying on his back. But when the parents who adore him otherwise are so set against the marriage, will he be able to make Surekha his? 
 
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About the author
 
 
Sundari Venkatraman is an indie author who has 31 titles (27 books & 4 collections) to her name, all Top 100 Bestsellers on Amazon India, Amazon USA, Amazon UK, Amazon Canada and Amazon Australia in both romance as well as Asian Drama categories. Her latest hot romances have all been on #1 Bestseller slot in Amazon India for over a month.
 
Even as a kid, Sundari absolutely loved the ‘lived happily ever after’ syndrome as she grew up reading all the fairy tales she could lay her hands on, Phantom comics, Mandrake comics and the like. It was always about good triumphing over evil and a happy end. 
 
Soon, into her teens, Sundari switched her attention from fairy tales to Mills & Boon. While she loved reading both of these, she kept visualising what would have happened if there were similar situations happening in India; to a local hero and heroine. Her imagination took flight and she always lived in a rosy cocoon of romance over the years. 
 
Then came the writing – a true bolt out of the blue! And Sundari Venkatraman has never looked back.

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Book Review: The Bodyguard by Ruchi Singh

 
THE BODYGUARD
by
Ruchi Singh

My Review:

Esha Sinha has been hired as a bodyguard to Vikramaditya Seth Jr.

When I read this, I was intrigued. I looked forward to a book where the roles were reversed and a woman had a strong role.

I must say I was disappointed. Instead of finding a strong, capable woman, I found a bungler, someone who doesn’t even pay attention to where she is going and who doesn’t really do anything to protect the man she is hired to protect.

I was disappointed, all the more because I have read Ruchi Singh’s “Jugnu” and loved it.

However, Ruchi manages to hold the story together and I enjoyed her style of writing.

 
 
 
Blurb
 
Someone wants Vikramaditya Seth Jr. dead. 
 
He refuses the Z+ security option offered by the government. With too many variables trust is hard to come by…
 
Esha Sinha prepares for her first assignment outside of active-army service, oblivious to the fact that she has to baby-sit a man who has no respect for rules or protocol—a man who is headstrong, workaholic and a tenacious flirt. As the attraction between Vikram and Esha simmers and sizzles, another attempt is made on his life. 
 
The killer is resourceful and determined. 
 
The motive is unclear and perplexing.
 
Will they be able to nab the assassin before he gets to Vikram?


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About the author
 
 
Ruchi Singh is a novelist, and writes in two genres; romance and crime. Winner of the ‘Times Of India’ WriteIndia Season I under Amish Tripathi, she began her writing career writing short stories and articles, which have been published on various online forums. She has been a contributing author to many anthologies and Jugnu is her third novel.
 
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Book Review: Matsya by Sundari Venkatraman

After I read Matsya myself, I read it out to the kids in my Creative Writing class. They were as fascinated as I was. They knew about Narasimha, Ram and Krishna but not much about the other avatars of Vishnu.

Matsya gave them not only a new story but also led to a discussion on evolution and how all religions have similarities. The Noah of Christianity, Judaism and Islam had his counterpart in Manu; both being entrusted with the same job of saving all living species from the flood that destroyed mankind.

The story is short and well written; using language that today’s kids are familiar with. A must read for parents and children.

I am definitely looking forward to reading the rest of the series with my students.



 

 
Blurb
 
Lord Brahma is highly disturbed when the four vedas are stolen from him the moment he goes to sleep at the end of the kalpa. It’s Asura Hayagriva who’s gotten away with the sacred scriptures.
 
Lord Vishnu offers to go to the creator’s rescue and takes the guise of Matsya, the fish.
 
King Satyavrath lands up with a tiny gold fish when he’s offering prayers to the Sun God one morning. Is the fish all that it appears to be?
 
How can Satyavrath help the fish?
 
Read more to find out the reason for Lord Vishnu taking the avatar on earth as Matsya.
 
*This is a straightforward story of the first avatar of Mahavishnu, retold in simple English just the way it’s written over the ages. The target audience is the youngsters, children, who don’t know all that much about Indian mythology. It’s also for those parents who are keen to read aloud stories to their children and are looking for suitable books on mythology.
 
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About the author
 
 
 
Sundari Venkatraman is an indie author who has 16 titles to her name, all Top 100 Bestsellers on Amazon India, Amazon USA, Amazon UK, Amazon Canada and Amazon Australia in both romance as well as Asian Drama categories. Her latest hot romances have all been on #1Bestseller slot in Amazon India for over a month.
 
Even as a kid, Sundari absolutely loved the ‘lived happily ever after’ syndrome as she grew up reading all the fairy tales she could lay her hands on, Phantom comics, Mandrake comics and the like. It was always about good triumphing over evil and a happy end. 
 
Soon, into her teens, Sundari switched her attention from fairy tales to Mills & Boon. While she loved reading both of these, she kept visualising what would have happened if there were similar situations happening in India; to a local hero and heroine. Her imagination took flight and she always lived in a rosy cocoon of romance over the years. 
 
Then came the writing – a true bolt out of the blue! And Sundari Venkatraman has never looked back.
 

Click here to check out all the titles by the author…

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Book Review: Rising from the Ashes by Rubina Ramesh

 

RISING FROM THE ASHES: 
A Short Story: Prequel to Knitted Tales 2 
by 
Rubina Ramesh
My Review: 

image

The author in her introduction has clearly mentioned that it is the grey areas of mythology that interest her and this is one tale that has been obscured in confusion through the ages.  She does not claim to unravel its mystery, rather she gives her take on it.

Her description of King Sambara is beautifully penned, leaving you with a slightly sick feeling in the pit of your stomach at how loathsome he is. She has also managed to catch the essence of Sage Narada when she says, “being a friend of Narada is equivalent to being an enemy of Narada” and his tremendous capacity to cause confusion.

It is indeed a short story and keeps you wanting more.

 
BLURB
 
She was one of the most beautiful woman Asura Sambara had laid his eyes on. 
 
Possessing a beauty of this magnitude became his passion. Sambara kidnapped her and whisked her off to his palace. 
 
Mayavati knows she has no option but to bow down to his wishes. But what about the young man who always haunts her dreams? She had no clue why she was in this palace but after speaking to the mischief making Sage Narada, it all started making sense to her. 
 
Who was Mayavati and what was she doing in Asura’s palace? 
 
Was Sambara her destiny? 
Disclaimer: This short story is a mythological fiction and should be treated as such. The author does not claim it to be a retelling of the Puranas. This piece is a product of her unbridled imagination. 
 
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About the author
 
Blog Tour by The Book Club of DESTINED by Rubina Ramesh
Rubina Ramesh is an avid reader, writer, blogger, book reviewer and marketer. She is the founder of The Book Club, an online book publicity group. Her first literary work was published in her school magazine. It gave her immense pride to see her own name at the bottom of the article. She was about 8 years old at that time. She then went to complete her MBA and after her marriage to her childhood friend, her travel saga started. From The Netherlands to the British Isles she lived her life like an adventure. After a short stint in Malaysia, she finally settled down in the desert state of USA, Arizona. Living with her DH and two human kids and one doggie kid, Rubina has finally started living the life she had always dreamed about – that of a writer.

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Book Review: Prem Purana by Usha Narayanan

Blog Tour by The Book Club of PREM PURANA by Usha Narayanan
 
My Review: 

Blog Tour by The Book Club of PREM PURANA by Usha Narayanan

Honestly, I found it difficult to write a review for this book, because it was at the same time both interesting and irritating.

I found it interesting because of all the titbits of fascinating information about the gods and their lives and their scheming that are little known. The author has obviously done a lot of research and there were times where I, a diehard fan of Indian mythology, went, “Oh! Is it? That is something I didn’t know!”

It was irritating because it brings home the fact that nothing has changed through the ages.  The gods are as fallible as men. They go about granting boons to anyone who strokes their ego with devotion, without any thought of what chaos and destruction the boon is going to bring about.

Then and now, it seems, physical beauty is more important in the choice of a mate. You have Ganesha with all his qualities, wisdom and powers wooing Riddhi, yet she prefers him as Sumukha . She cannot or does not want to accept him in his half human, half elephant form.

Siddhi, in a past life immolates herself because the one she falls in love with does not return her love and she feels slighted. Does a woman only have a reason to live if someone loves her back?

I feel so terribly sorry for Mandodari. She has been created exclusively to cater to Ravan’s lust and to deflect his thoughts from Parvati. Her entire life is given up to pleasing him and enduring all his philandering in the hope that one day he will belong only to her. We all know how that ended.

The author however does have a great narrative style and her language is impeccable. As you read, the scenes unfold before you and I swear I could almost hear Ganesha sulk when things did not go his way.

So though I prefer her “Pradyumna: Son of Krishna” and “The Secret of God’s son” to Prem Purana, I am rather glad I decided to read this one.

 
 
BLURB
 
Stories of love and extraordinary devotion 
 
No one is untouched by love, not even devas and asuras, kings and nymphs. And when they face life’s unexpected tribulations, their love also undergoes trials. Read how Ganesha took myriad forms to please Riddhi, Siddhi and Buddhi, how Ravana shared an unbreakable bond with his true love, Mandodari and how Nala and Damayanti’s relationship was tested till almost nothing remained. 
 
Tormented by passion, wracked by betrayal, torn by the agony of separation, love in its many splendored forms is the origin of these incredibly endearing stories of Prem Purana. 
 

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About the Author


Usha Narayanan had a successful career in advertising, radio and corporate communications before becoming a full-time author. Her bestselling novels span multiple genres: ‘The Madras Mangler’, a suspense thriller; ‘Love, Lies and Layoffs’ (Harlequin) and ’Doctor Stalker Spy’ (Juggernaut), lighthearted romances; ‘Pradyumna: Son of Krishna’, ‘The Secret of God’s Son’ and her latest ‘Prem Purana’ (all from Penguin) that have been praised as ‘Indian mythology at its fiercest and finest.’ Two new books are in the offing. When she is not travelling, writing or editing, Usha reads everything from thrillers and romances to the puranas.
 

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Praise for Usha’s books:
 
‘Like the best of our mythological tales, Pradyumna: Son of Krishna too is a multilayered one…There is valour, there is cowardice, there is glory, there is shame, there is sex, lies and deception.’
 
The Secret of God’s Son is a compelling read on mythological tales.’ – The Sentinel
 
Prem Purana is so good! I am impressed at how Usha can write about Ganesha with so much personality while at the same time showing him as a cosmic divine being. ’ Dr Laura Gibbs, Professor, Indian Epics, University of Oklahoma 
 
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Book Review: Carthick’s Unfairy Tales by T.F. Carthick

Blog Tour by The Book Club of CARTHICK'S UNFAIRY TALES by T.F. Carthick

 

 
My  Review: 

 

Blog Tour by The Book Club of CARTHICK'S UNFAIRY TALES by T.F. Carthick

I would rate this book a four and a half stars.  It has been a long time since I have read a book that was both entertaining and thought provoking at the same time.

The book takes a look at the fairy tales from a refreshingly new perspective.  By the time I got to the third story, I started trying to guess what spin the author would put on the next story. He has really put in a lot of thought into writing the book and I think every parent should read this book themselves, before reading out fairy tales to their kids. It might make you rethink what you are really teaching your kids through the age old tales.

Blurb

A damsel in distress. An evil dragon. A concerned father seeking a savior to rescue his daughter. A hero galloping off to the rescue – a knight in shining armor. Now THAT is stuff of fairy tales.

But what if the father’s real concern is for the dragon’s hoard; What if the damsel’s reason of distress is the marriage proposal by her pompous and vicious savior; and what if the story is told by the horse who bears not only the overweight knight but also his heavy, shining armor all the way to the dragon’s lair and back, facing certain death in the process?

What if there was more – much more – to all your favourite fairy tales than met the eye?

This book chronicles not one but seven such unfairy tales – tales told by undead horsemen and living cities. Tales of mistreated hobgoblins and misunderstood magicians. Tales of disagreeable frogs and distressed rats and bears baring their souls. Once you read these stories, you will never be able to look at a fairy tale the same way ever again.
About the author

 

 

T F Carthick is a Bangalore-based writer and blogger who has been blogging since 2008. He is an avid reader of Children’s Fiction, Science-fiction and Fantasy. Enid Blyton, J K Rowling, Isaac Asimov, Frank Herbert, Neil Gaiman and Douglas Adams are some of his favorite authors. His paranormal thriller ‘Bellary’ was one of the three stories in the book Sirens Spell Danger, published in 2013. Six of his stories have featured in multi-author anthologies and literary magazines. He has written over 50 short stories, many of which can be read for free on www.karthikl.com.

He is an Engineer and MBA from India’s premier institutes IIT, Madras and IIM, Ahmedabad and currently works as an Analytics and Artificial Intelligence Consultant at one of the world’s leading Consulting Firms.

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