Ivory Gleam by Dr Priya Dolma Tamang

#blurb: A deluge of poetry and prose, ambiguously honouring the essence of existence from birth onto death, life and loss, self and society, romantic love and pensive longing, melancholy of regret to gratitude in healing, and the struggles of and strength in femininity. A potpourri of musings assembled with a hint of practical spirituality, to be savoured passably as an oracle of hearts to the many answers, whose questions our minds are yet to comprehend. Ivory Gleam is split into three chapters of learning, longing and loving. Each chapter is a journey traversing a different road to the ultimate destination of self-reflection.

Author: Dr Priya Dolma Tamang

Publisher: Virgin Leaf Books

Pages: 238

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My Review: 🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

The book is a beautiful collection of prose and poetry which touches various facets of life. Each poem conveys a deep emotion which doesn’t fail to touch your hurt. The writing style is pleasing and captivating. The topics range from love to betrayal, self-harm to child abuse and freedom to toxicity. The author has put forward both the positive and negative side of the society through this anthology. The words which people need to hear to awaken their inner self has been beautifully portrayed. Also the emotions from which we tend to run away have been spoken aloud through this compilation. The way she has weaved her words to express her thoughts is enthralling. Every page has a charm to it and makes you feel connected. It helps you assess yourself and strengthen self awareness. It helps you in personal growth and motivates to preach self love. Most of us have gone through the various feelings and emotions described in the book at some point or the other which makes us feel more connected to the writing. The book is divided into three chapters where each talks about a different about a different subject i.e, learning, longing and love. Overall it was a fascinating read and also the cover of the book is so serene and aesthetic.

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Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

“Maybe we just lived betweenhurting and healing.”

#blurb: Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime. And it is through this friendship that Ari and Dante will learn the most important truths about themselves and the kind of people they want to be.

Author: Benjamin Alire Sáenz

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Pages: 368

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My Review: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

Ari is a gentle timid boy growing up in El Paso, Texas. He doesn’t know how to talk and open up to people. He blames his parents for this trait of his because they always choose to stay silent rather than discussing the real issues. He wants to talk to his father, he wants to know more about his brother, he wants to understand himself better, he wants to discover the secrets of the universe but his inability to accomplish these makes him disappointed. Ari has no real friends when he meets Dante in the swimming class. Slowly they become close and Ari feels Dante understands him better than anyone else, but still it is difficult for him to talk about his feelings to Dante while Dante wants him to. Ari is always too scared to speak his mind. Ari proves several times how important Dante is to him but still finds difficult to share his inner though with him. Will Ari be ever able to reciprocate the feelings Dante has for him which according to him is against the laws of the universe? Will Ari be able to find the true meaning to his life? Pick up the book to find out.

The book is a brilliant piece of literature. I can’t explain how overwhelmed I was after reading it. There are not enough words to explain the emotions I went through. It was such a beautiful experience. I wish I had read this book sooner. The characters are so realistic and well drawn. The conversations were so lyrical, with touch of emotions and sorrow. Also the character development throughout the story was perfect. The quest of a teenager to establish his own identity, to discover the truth which baffles him is beautifully portrayed. It is a phase which most of us have went through in that age when everything seems confusing, we are unsure about the steps we need to take, we are afraid of others mocking us, we are scared we won’t able to fulfill our parents’ wishes, on the top of that if there is communication gap in the family it makes the situation worse. Everything which every teenager goes through is beautifully depicted. Not to forget the book puts out a strong message on homosexuality which many people still finds hard to accept. Same sex love is still criticized in the society and considered illegal in many countries even in the 21st century. People need to inculcate the art of acceptance and love and respect everyone as they are. They are just human beings like all of us but still they have to go through things which we don’t have to. The question is WHY?

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Malice by Keigo Higashino

#blurb:Acclaimed bestselling novelist Kunihiko Hidaka is found brutally murdered in his home on the night before he’s planning to leave Japan and relocate to Vancouver. His body is found in his office, in a locked room, within his locked house, by his wife and his best friend, both of whom have rock solid alibis. Or so it seems.

Author: Keigo Higashino

Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group

Pages: 288

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My Review: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

Kunihiko Hidaka, a bestselling author gets murdered in his office few hours after his best friend from school Osamu Nonoguchi visits him. His wife Rie and Nonoguchi are the ones to discover his body. When the police visits to investigate the murder Nonoguchi seems to be friends with one of the officers named Kyochiro Kaga. Kaga doubts Nonoguchi’s behavior and eventually finds evidence to arrest Nonoguchi. Though Nonoguchi accepts his crime but is not ready to tell the motive. Did Nonoguchi really killed Hidaka? Why is he hiding his motive? Can you believe everything Nonoguchi says? Grab the book to find out. It is a brilliantly written twisted tale of murder. You will find out who the criminal is at the first few pages but why he committed the crime encompasses the main story. It is a complete page turner filled with awesome twists. Halfway through the story you may think you know what happened but I can assure you that you don’t. It may seem monotonous sometimes but don’t give up, just wait till the end. The motive for the murder is going to make you feel disgusted and question the values which children now-a-days grow up with. As childhood shapes your personality, parents should build up their children with care and teach them to love and respect every other human being. I love the way Keigo Higashiono weaves his stories, giving away the actual murderer in the fast few pages but later building up the suspense surrounding intentions, motives and cover-ups. I highly recommend this book to lovers of murder mysteries out there. You are in for a treat.

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Where Rainbows End by Cecelia Ahern


“Home isn’t a place, its a feeling”

#blurb: True love, friendship and luck – a warm-hearted novel about where fate can lead you from the No.1 bestselling author.Now being filmed as LOVE, ROSIE.Best friends since forever, Rosie and Alex have shared their hopes, dreams, awkward moments – and firsts. But their bond is threatened when Alex’s family move to America. They stay in touch, but misunderstandings, circumstances and sheer bad luck seem to be conspiring to keep them apart.Can they gamble everything – even their friendship – on true love?

Author: Cecelia Ahern

Publisher: HarperCollins

Pages: 585

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My Review: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

The story is about two best friends Rosie and Alex who grew up together starting from sitting next to each other on their first day of school to writing email in between the classes in high school. They were always there for each other but never realized that they were made for each other. Alex had to move due to his father’s job in the final year of high school and Rosie somehow got pregnant because of a drunken mistake which changed their life drastically. All her plans to study hotel management went into vain. She had to put all her attention towards her child but inspite of all those Rosie and Alex never forgot to write to each other. They shared every minute details about their lives. But when Alex married someone else and Rosie played the best man she realized that she had feelings for Alex but until then everything had changed. Eventually when Rosie married, Alex felt the same emotions which once Rosie felt. But everytime there was one obstacle or the other which kept them apart. Will Rosie and Alex ever be able to get together?
I can’t explain in words how beautiful and enthralling the story is. It is not a typical romance novel but something very different which makes your heart ache. Everytime you think they will get together something or the other keeps them apart. It is once in a lifetime kind of love story. And their bond is so beautiful and ethereal. Apart from romance the book also displays the hardships of a single teenage mom and the sacrifices she has to make for the upbringing of her child. It is also a story about establishing one’s identity and proving that you can complete your dream at any age if you are willful and determined. Also a interesting fact about the book is that the whole book is written in the form of letters and also there is a movie based on the book called ‘Love,Rosie’. I have not watched the movie so I don’t know how good it is but the book is fabulous and a must read. Please do pick it up next time.
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The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri


“You remind me of everything that followed”

#blurb: Gogol is named after his father’s favourite author. But growing up in an Indian family in sub urban America, the boy starts to hate the awkward name and itches to cast it off, along with the inherited values it represents. Determined to live a life far removed from that of his parents, Gogol sets off on his own path only to discover that the search for identity depends on much more than a name

Author: Jhumpa Lahiri

Publisher: Harpercollins

Pages: 304

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My Review: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

Ashoke Ganguli and Ashima Ganguli who were born in Calcutta are spending their married life in America. Ashima misses her life in Calcutta and spends her free time reading Bengali books and magazine while Ashoke is mostly busy with his work. Soon a baby boy is born to them and they decide to name him after a Russian author Nikolai Gogol whose book once saved Ashoke from an accident. Gogol grew up in America but was always teased due to his name. When he reaches a matured age he decides to change his name to Nikhil and actually goes through the process. But what he doesn’t realise is that changing his name doesn’t change his roots. As time passes by various changes occurs in his life, his relationship with his parents hits a rock and he starts avoiding them. He takes many wrong decisions in his way to search his identity. If you want to know more about the Gangulis then don’t forget to pick it up the next time you see it.

This book is a literary gem and deserves all the praise. It is beautifully written with an exceptional story line giving out the message that your search for identity depends on much more than a name. All the people living away from their homeland with relate the most to this story. The feeling of loneiness and cultural differences in a foreign land is well highlighted. The struggle to establish your identity in a land where you feel alienated was portrayed beautifully through the character of Ashima. Also Gogol’s character makes you understand that changing your name doesn’t change who you are and from where you belong. A name doesn’ t define your identity. The story is simple yet enthralling. I highly recommend this to everyone out there.

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Circus Folk & Village Freaks by Aparna Upadhyaya Sanyal


“Some people cross continents to find their heart, while some find it across their street or backyard”

#blurb: Meet the beautiful people of the Circus, and the freaks who live in the Village next to them. Mangled, jangled, misunderstood, all find place in the rich tapestry of this book. Siamese twins separate to lose half a heart each, and find snake-man and tiger-taming lovers. A man bitten by a crocodile becomes a God, and a Devadasi woos the entire countryside with her culinary artistry.Fates intertwined lead sometimes to tragedy, sometimes happy summits of fame. A clown finds his place in Hollywood and mute animals break unspeakable chains. A twisted man falls in love with a mirror and a white man is unmade by the Indian sun.In this book are tales for every season and every reason. Tales of human depravity that take innocent lives, and of a murderers’ insanity that follows, a fitting revenge by nature, red in tooth and claw.These stories are told in the form of narrative poems in rhyming couplets.Look inside and you will find, you have been to this Village. Surely, you have been to this Circus too

Author: Aparna Upadhyaya Sanyal

Publisher: Vishwakarma Publications

Pages: 156

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My Review: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

The book is a collection of eighteen twisted tales set against the backdrop of a village and a circus nearby it. The stories are in the form of rhyming poems along with beautiful illustrations. The characters are odd and quirky which makes it all the more enthralling. While some of the tales are funny, beautiful, weird, others are sad, despairing and dark. Also the author has tried to address various social issues through the poems. In our society those to do not comply with the set norms are discarded, taunted and isolated. They are looked down upon either because of their sexual orientation or their physical appearance. People yet need to adopt the art of acceptance. The author has beautifully put forward these scenarios of discrimination in her book. When the village people found someone to be misfit, he/he was sent away to the circus where they found a new home. The stories are strangely beautiful and fascinating. The style of narration keeps you mesmerized till the end. The characters quite resemble the characters from old folktales and fairytales which used to be eccentric like the crocodile man or the snake man. I enjoyed reading and listening to such stories in my childhood and this book brought back those memories. The language used can be little difficult for a beginner but nevertheless I would suggest you to read it once. Just pick it up and you are in for a treat. Also the cover is so attractive and eye catching which makes you want to read it more. This book is one of a kind and I highly recommend it to everyone out there. If you want to know more about the circus folk and the village freaks pick it up immediately. This book is going to stay with me for a long time.Please read it once
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Rewind And Play by Tarun Gautam


“The Universe tries to reveal its plan for you. If you get what it is, don’t mess with it”

#blurb: Raghav Diwan is living the American dream. A successful career, a comfortable and happy married life. One day, he receives an invitation to an evening get together with his college batch mates. He has not kept in touch with any of them and has no desires to meet them. But the past seems to be calling him. The past wants to reveal something to him. Will he open the door to let his past in. Will he let it change hi future. Will he press, rewind and play.

Author: Tarun Gautam

Publisher: TreeShade Books

Pages: 176

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Thanks to TheBookGenie for providing me with a review copy

My Review: 🌟🌟🌟🌟/5

Raghav worked as the division head of a tech firm named Visiontek in New York. He was awarded as the winner for the most innovative consumer product of the year for developing Glove, a smarphone which can be worn as a part of your body. But few week after the award function, a malfunction of glove caused an accident which in turn got him fired. When his career is falling apart he receives a notification for a reunion from his batch mates. Though he initially wanted to avoid it but finally ended up attending it in an underground gastropub. They had food and shared funny stories back from their college days. Raghav he did not realize that meeting old friends was going to give his life a new turn.Those memories was about to open something inside him. Will Raghav be able to come back stronger? What is he going to do next?

It is a short and easy read and can be finished off in a single sitting. It is fast paced and keeps you engaged. The stories from their college days are really funny and enjoyable and bring back the memories of your own college days. It makes you miss all your friends who used to be your lifeline. The time spent with them while studying for exams, getting ready for practicals, taking trips come to you as a flashback. The bond of friendship displayed in the book is precious. You need these kinds of friends in your life who are always there for you in your ups and downs. Moreover the relationship between Raghav and his wife is also very beautifully portrayed. I really enjoyed reading this book. It was a fun and lighthearted read which can be easily enjoyed with a cup of coffee on a rainy evening. I would definitely recommend it to everyone out there.
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