Book Review: Jugnu by Ruchi Singh

jugnu cover

I barely registered the rain or the fact that my dog had come and settled on the bed besides me as I read the book. I was lost in Kasauli. Ruchi Singh has a wonderful way of describing places that is more poetic than prose. I could see the mountains and the sun shining through the trees. I could smell the fresh air. As I said I was lost in the book from the first page itself.

The characters are portrayed brilliantly. I half expected them to come right out of the pages and talk to me. Not just Zayd and Ashima but all the supporting characters as well. Each one of them exhibits a plethora of emotions that you can relate to and empathise with.

Ashima is a single mom… no, she is a single daughter in law, a single bhabhi as well, and the sole bread earner. Her weariness, her loneliness, the conventions that bind and hold her back, Her helpless acceptance of her responsibilities , her anguish of not knowing the fate of her husband who is missing in action in the Kargil war, the endless waiting, the flickering of hope against hope, are  what make Jugnu a book that is a class apart.

Zayd, having faced death in all its gruesomeness at an early age, is mature beyond his years. He fights with his demons and forges his own identity. Out on parole all he wants is peace but finds someone who steals his heart instead.

Ruchi has brought out the discrimination faced by Muslims in India in the book, but she deals with it in a very matter of fact manner. She doesn’t make a hue and cry about it. I liked the fact that she doesn’t get preachy yet brings home her point.

I think this one definitely deserves 5 stars.

For a lovely read in the rains, pick it up from amazon here.

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Book Review: Finding the Angel by Rubina Ramesh

 


 FINDING THE ANGEL

by
Rubina Ramesh

I thought I’d take a nap. Then I remembered that I had this new book, “Finding the Angel” by Rubina Ramesh. I thought I’d read a bit till I dozed off. One hour later, nap time was over and so was the book.
What struck me was that those of us who love reading romance, always look to the west for our princes. Mills & Boons are packed with princes from mysterious countries. And here finally we have our Prince Charming or should I say Uncharming, right here in India.
Whenever I review a book, I don’t just look at the story and so though the title, “Finding the Angel” felt like more of a mystery, the book is an all and all out love story.
It’s a really quick read and had me gripped because the author has a way of writing that pulls you into the story. Every scene unfolds very realistically. The emotions, the actions of the characters all make you feel as if you were right there in the book itself.
There were places in the book where I really wanted to whack both Prince Aryan and Shefali, one on their heads. Him for being so mean and irritating and her for not whacking him herself.
I am definitely looking forward to more books from Rubina Ramesh.

 
 
Blurb
 
All She wanted was love…
 
Shefali is a die-hard romantic. Having lost her parents at a very tender age, she is in search of a place which she can call home. Her passion for Art lands her a job as an art curator to the famous artifacts of the Ranaut Dynasty. When she meets the scion, Aryan Ranaut, she feels that her dream might come true until…
 
All He wanted was to trust…
 
Living the life of a modern day Prince is no easy task for the young and dashing Aryan Ranaut. Having lost his father to a rapacious woman, Aryan has severe trust issues. But upon meeting Shefali, he feels he could let down his guard. Until…
 
All They need is to find The Angel…
 
Just as Aryan realizes his love for Shefali, one of the most precious artifacts, The Angel, goes missing from the Ranaut collection. All fingers point towards Shefali—more so because she leaves the palace without telling anyone on the very night of the theft. 
 
Finding the Angel is a story where duty clashes with love and lack of trust overrides passion. Under these circumstances, can The Angel bring the star-crossed lovers together?
 
Grab your copy @
 
Amazon.com.au | Amazon.ca


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About the author

 

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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Spotlight: Ponni’s Beloved by Sumeetha Manikandan

Blurb

Kalki Krishnamurthy’s Ponniyin Selvan is a masterpiece that has enthralled generations of Tamil readers. Many authors have written phenomenal books in Tamil literature after Kalki Krishnamurthy, but Ponniyin Selvan remains the most popular, widely-read novel. It has just the right mixture of all things that makes an epic – political intrigue, conspiracy, betrayal, huge dollops of romance, infidelity, seduction, passion, alluring women, unrequited love, sacrifice and pure love.

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Excerpt


“I have brought important information for all of you. That’s why I asked the noble Sambuverayar to invite us all here. Maharaja Sundara Chola’s health has been steadily deteriorating. I secretly asked our royal physician, and he says that there is absolutely no chance of his health improving. His days are numbered. And it is up to us, to think about the future of the royal throne.”

“What do the astrologers say?” asked one of the noble men.

“Why ask the astrologers? Haven’t you seen the comet that has been appearing in the sky, for the past few weeks? They say whenever a comet appears, there will be death in the royal family,” said another.

“I have asked the astrologers as well, and they say that the king might live for some more time. Anyway, we will have to decide who should ascend the throne next,” said Pazhuvetarayar.

“What is the use of discussing that now? Aditya Karikalan was made the Crown Prince two years ago,” said one of the noblemen.

“True. But before he took that decision, did Sundara Chola consult any of us? We all have stood by the Chola Kingdom with loyalty and have sacrificed our sons and grandsons in the battlefield. Even now warriors from each of our clans have gone to Elangai to fight for the Chola Kingdom. Don’t you think we deserve the right to be consulted about who should be the next heir to the throne? Even King Dasaratha asked his council of ministers, before deciding to crown Rama. But our Sundara Chola didn’t think it necessary to consult anyone…”
About the author


“Sumeetha Manikandan is a top bestselling romance author whose novellas ‘Perfect Groom’ and ‘These Lines of Mehendi’ (which was published as a paperback novel called ‘Love Again’) have been on the top of Amazon India charts ever since its publication. A bookaholic, thinker, feminist and a daydreamer, she reads across genres and is a crazy fan of history, romance and science fiction novels.
An avid reader of historical novels, she has been translating Kalki Krishnamurthy’s classic Tamil novel Ponniyin Selvan for the past ten years and hopes to translate more of his novels to English.
Sumeetha is married to filmmaker K.S. Manikandan and lives with her nine-year-old daughter in Chennai.”

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Climbing The Charts


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Spotlight: Finding Anya by Sundari Venkatraman

 


Dear Book Lovers, 
 
This is the Book Blitz of Finding Anya by Sundari Venkatraman.  This is my stop and we have many bloggers who are sharing the love for this book. This tour is organized by The Book Club.

 

Name of the book: Finding Anya
 
Author: Sundari Venkatraman
 
Format Available: Kindle / Paperback
 
Also available on Kindle Unlimited 
 
No. Of Pages: 182 Pages
 
Genre: Romance
 
 
 
Blurb
 
Anya Chhabria wakes up in a hospital room with no recognition of who she is and where she belongs. In her troubled times, Anya finds her anchor in a handsome stranger. But is he really unknown to her? 
 
Dev Wadhwa’s past finds him when he sees Anya lying unconscious in the middle of the road. Not willing to let go of her one more time, Dev takes her to the hospital and later to his farmhouse, where he helps her recuperate. 
 
Sparks fly and Dev and Anya fall for each other! But the feisty Anya refuses to commit herself to marriage as her loss of memory looms larger than life. 
 
Things aren’t easy with an ex-husband, not-so-understanding parents, and a jealous neighbour thrown into the mix. What if Anya’s memory never comes back? 
 
Will Dev and Anya get a second chance? 
 
Or will circumstances force them apart, yet again?
 
Grab your copy @
 
 
About the author
Sundari Venkatraman is an indie author who has 15 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.

You can find all her books Listed here ….
 
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Spotlight: The Diamond Heist by Sai Daksh


THE DIAMOND HEIST: A SEVEN AGENT ADVENTURE 

by 
Sai Daksh


Blurb

Life was all fun and play, with a few small adventures and mishaps, for Daksh, Arsh, Garv, Om, Swarit, Aditi and Simran till… 

They are recruited by the Indian Detective Agency. 

They are summoned to the headquarters and given a mission – to recover a lost diamond. 

With all the plans and props in place, they set forth to hunt down the diamond. 

By chance, they stumble upon a conspiracy that is connected to the theft. 

Do they succeed in foiling the conspiracy? What happened to the lost diamond?

Grab your copy @


About the author

Sai Daksh Shetty, at the age of eleven, completed the book 7 Agents: The Diamond Heist. At the age of six, he had started writing short stories. At the age of eight, he used to draw comic strips and share it with his friends. Although this is his first book, he plans to write a whole series on the 7 Agents. Since early childhood, he has had a very creative mind and uses his imagination in all his activities. He is very interested in all forms of creative arts. He is very open-minded. The main characters of the book have been inspired by his real life friends. Om, Garv, Arsh and Swarit are his best friends and are in the book, while Aditi and Simran are fictional.     
                          

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Book Review: The Princess of a Whorehouse by Mayank Sharma

The Princess of a Whore House by Mayank Sharma

I was intrigued by the title and wanted to see how the author dealt with it.

The book is a quick read. Events flow one into the other. It is very obvious that the social issue of how children of sex workers are treated was what Mayank Sharma wanted to focus on and the story does that. It focuses on the life of Aparajita from her childhood to her happily ever after. It documents the problems she has first getting admission to a good school to colleagues accepting her. She is as the synopsis says a go getter and she is not ashamed of the fact that her mother has been forced into prostitution.

The story feels like a mixture of Cinderella and Pretty woman, but the characters are a tad unbelievable. It is difficult to imagine a 12 or 13 year old kid, who has been born in a remote tribal area and then spends a couple years being tutored with other children from the brothels, saying things like, “Life sucks when the stereotypes like you look at a million year old yardstick to decide what we deserved. Again and again you position us in your hierarchy based on prejudiced notions of a restrained society”

As far as the story goes, it is pretty good till the end. Then it disappoints. It could have definitely been handled much better. As they say, it not just the end of the story that is important, it is the settling down that comes after that that gives your reader true satisfaction.

 

THE PRINCESS OF A WHOREHOUSE: THE STORY OF A 
SWAMP LOTUS
by
Mayank Sharma
 
 
 
Blurb
 
Aparajita is a tenacious go-getter. Her name means unconquerable in Sanskrit, and she lives up to its meaning. 
 
Just like any other ambitious girl, she desires to fulfil her dreams and become an independent individual. Far and wide, the shadow of her melancholy past chases her passage. The fact that her widowed mother is a former sex worker irks the community. Nonetheless, she is not ashamed to reveal her mother’s past. 
 
Will she lose hope, or will she defy an enigma that is centuries-old? Will she ever conquer the hearts of a prestige-obsessed community? 
 
See the world through Aparajita’s prism in a tale stirred by some real life events.
 
Grab your copy @
 
Amazon.com | Amazon.in | Amazon.co.uk | Flipkart


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About the author

 

 

 

 

 
Mayank Sharma is a computer engineering graduate with post-graduation in business management. He works with a leading technology multinational in Delhi. He has authored a number of articles and white papers on software technology and processes. For the first time in April 2014, his article was featured in Better Software magazine published in Florida, USA. Writing has become Mayank’s greatest passion when he observed how it can trigger the winds of change. He is gradually transforming from a “left-brained” writer to a “right-brained” writer. Besides writing, he is passionate about sketching, painting, and making sculptures since childhood.

 

 India is the fifth-largest economy in the world with the Gross Domestic Product growth at 7.1 percent. Contrary, India ranks 118 out of 157 countries in the happiness index. The fact seized Mayank’s attention towards social problems affecting social support, freedom of choices, and generosity, to name a few. Having travelled across continents and associated with people with diverse beliefs and values, he became more curious about the social riddles curtailing liberties across societies. He penned his debut novel, The Princess of a Whorehouse, when he came across some real life incidents that quivered his soul.

 

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Book Review: Her Secret Husband by Sundari Venkatraman

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“Her Secret Husband” is the third book in the “Marriages made in India” series. Having read five of the ten books authored by Sundari Venkatraman, I must say her writing has gotten so much better. This is really difficult for someone who already was a really good writer. But now her story moves seamlessly, through time and events.

The story very nicely brings out the fact that people see what they want to see. Ruma’s mother looks at the boy she has chosen for Ruma and thinks that they make a lovely pair. Dadima looks at them together and feels disgusted . The poor father just buries his head in the sand and notices nothing.

Her characters are well fleshed out. Whether it was Ruma, or Lakshman or Ruma’s grandmother, Sundari made them come alive. Though the series is about the Maheshwari family, it is Ruma’s character that had me hooked.

She comes from a conservative family that believes in arranged marriages and women not working after marriage, yet, she is a feisty young woman. She is not someone who sits quietly and lets life take its course. She is assertive and confident enough to make the first move, first by taking the first step towards ending the distance between them, by visiting Lakshman in his home town unexpectedly and then proposing marriage to him.
But there was one paragraph that made me fall in love with Lakshman.

“They walked to Om Book Shop where Lakshman insisted on buying every book she browsed.
“Laki, are you mad? I don’t need so many books.”
“I need to buy them for you,” was the quiet reply.”

Now that is what I call hero material!

 

HER SECRET HUSBAND

(Marriages Made in Heaven Book #3)

by

Sundari Venkatraman

 

 

Blurb

The Maheshwaris are back, a little secretly this time!

 

What do you do if you find a man who looks like chocolate, speaks like warm syrup, looks at you like you were the most precious cake ever created, and he can bake too? You marry him, even if in secret.

 

Ruma Malhotra falls head over heels and a little more in love with Lakshman Maheshwari, but her parents insist that she marry a rich businessman of their choice. When Ruma’s only option is to marry Lakshman in secret, she is left torn between her love for her parents and her passion for Lakshman. Is a secret marriage the solution or will it lead the way to a public disappointment?

 

Lakshman Maheshwari falls in love with Ruma Malhotra the first time he sets his eyes on her in Ranveer’s office. Will he agree to marry Ruma in secret even if it means betraying his parents?

 

Psst… Those who have read THE MALHOTRA BRIDE might be happy to reconnect with Sunita & Akshay Malhotra in this one. 

 

*MARRIAGES MADE IN INDIA is a five-novella series that revolves around the characters you have met in The Runaway Bridegroom.

 

 

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Grab your copy @
 

About the author

 

 

Her Secret Husband is the tenth book authored by Sundari Venkatraman. This is a hot romance and is Book #3 of the 5-novella series titled Marriages Made in India. Book #1 of the series is The Smitten Husband & Book #2 is His Drunken Wife. Other published novels by the author are The Malhotra Bride, Meghna, The Runaway Bridegroom, The Madras Affair and An Autograph for Anjali—all romances. She also has a collection of romantic shorts called Matches Made in Heaven; and a collection of human interest stories called Tales of Sunshine. All of Sundari Venkatraman’s books are on Amazon Top 100 Bestsellers in India, USA, UK, Canada & Australia under both #romance & #drama categories.

 

Books by the author

 

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