Review of high heels and haywires by Shama Farheen and Suraj Dey

BLURB:

Cover of high heels and haywires
Cover of high heels and haywires

When the roller-coaster of mixed emotions hit Sameera. She finally decides it’s high time and she needs a break from the life she has been living all these years in the small town of Himachal. That when she decides to run away one night, in search of a perfect life she had always longed for, only to find herself getting deeper into the clutches of what she has been running from. In the new city she befriends Shikha and Akanksha who are haywired in their own war of destiny much like her but with very much opposite characters.High Heels and Haywires is all about them, their friendship, love and heartaches. Something most of you could relate to in one way or the other.

MY REVIEW:

The story revolves around three female characters as mentioned in blurb- Sameera, Shikha and Akanksha. Sameera is new to city and bumps into Shikha like in a Bollywood movie. AN instant connect between them and she immediately moves in with Shikha. Shikha on the other hand is carefree.

Sameera meets Akanksha in office and comes to know she’s on the lookout for accommodation. She decides to bring her into the picture with Shikha.

The three girls have loads of fun staying together. There are few other characters such as Vineet and Abir- Sameera’s colleagues, Kartik & Sonia who are Sameera’s childhood friend, Pooja Abir’s ex-girlfriend.

The romantic portions are very well portrayed with not an iota of over exaggeration.

The plot moves in a pace that seems to be engaging and unputdownable.

The narration was simple and crisp. There was no drag or over exaggeration anywhere.

The female emotions were portrayed absolutely well. Sameera’s thoughts were so clear and she was just characterized as a girl we meet up every day. Abir seems very reserved but the portions of him and Sameera brought out a smile every time.

I finished the book in a day, since it’s a light read.

BOOK DETAILS:

  • Format:Kindle Edition
  • File Size:1020 KB
  • Print Length:167 pages
  • Publisher:INDEPENDENT (5 September 2018)
  • Sold by:Amazon Asia-Pacific Holdings Private Limited
  • Language:English
  • ASIN:B07H4ZG6NC

The book is available on amazon. https://amzn.to/2CWFxYV

MY RATINGS:

Cover: 4/5

Title: 4/5

plot: 3.5/5

Writing and Presentation: 4/5

Overall: 4/5

Cover reveal- Piper prince



Piper Prince
Amber Argyle
(Forbidden Forest #2)
Publication date: April 2019
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

All magic is light. If that light be darkened, shadow and punishment come.

Long ago, a curse fell upon the land—a curse of forgetting and wraiths, a curse that ensured no daughters were born to the pied pipers in over three centuries. The pipers were all that stood between the humanity and utter destruction, so they did the only thing they could: they stole the daughters of the nearby kingdom with their hypnotizing melodies. With the sons born from those unions, they continued to defend against the wraiths and fight the curse, even though they were slowly losing.

Larkin was one of those daughters. Stolen by Denan and married against her will, she found herself falling in love with the very man who had taken everything from her, the man who had made her a princess. Together, they discovered that she was the first woman in three centuries to possess the magic of the pipers, and therefore, the only person capable of breaking the ancient curse.

But breaking the curse means unraveling the very past the curse is intent on keeping secret. The answer lies buried in the crypts of the Black Druids, men who consider Larkin a traitor they’ll kill on sight. Embedded in the intrigues of their court, she unearths a dark conspiracy destined to hasten the destructive power of the curse—a conspiracy aimed at destroying her piper prince.  

Goodreads / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

Sequel to:


Author Bio:

Bestselling author Amber Argyle writes young-adult fantasies where the main characters save the world (with varying degrees of success) and fall in love (with the enemy). Her award-winning books have been translated into numerous languages and praised by such authors as NYT bestsellers David Farland and Jennifer A. Nielsen.

Amber grew up on a cattle ranch and spent her formative years in the rodeo circuit and on the basketball court. She graduated cum laude from Utah State University with a degree in English and physical education, a husband, and a two-year-old. Since then, she and her husband have added two more children, which they are actively trying to transform from crazy small people into less-crazy larger people. She’s fluent in all forms of sarcasm, loves hiking and traveling, and believes spiders should be relegated to horror novels where they belong.

To receive her starter library of four free books, simply tell her where to send it: http://amberargyle.com/freebooks/

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest


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Review of From ashes to dreams by Rashmi Trivedi

BLURB:

Sometimes life brings you at a crossroad, where you have no choice but to live every day as if it was your last one. Naina was at such a crossroad! An orphan, she did not have much to look forward to in life, until she fell in love. Love gave her wings and she started to fly, only to come crashing down as the wind beneath her wings turned into a storm. She tries putting an end to her now wretched existence, but fate has some other plans for her. She comes to know that she has limited time to live and decides to start living everyday instead of merely surviving. She lives every moment without worrying about the future she does not have or the past that could not be undone. She falls in love once again, this time with life! Will fate respect her fortitude?

MY REVIEW:

The story involves a lot of characters but to be termed as the main protagonist is Naina. She along with Kusum and Raghav were left in the orphanage by their parents on the same day in an orphanage run by Shanti Amma. Shanti Amma is portrayed as a loving motherly figure who treats every kid in the orphanage as her own, but has a liking inclined towards Naina since she resembles her daughter. Naina, Raghav and Kusum are of the same age and share all teeny tiny private secrets to each other.

The plot revolves around the lives of the three musketeers and their lives post the death of Shanthi Amma who succumbs to cancer.At one point the protagonist is left all alone and how she leads life as days pass unfolds in the rest of the story. The story is a mixture of all emotions such as happiness, struggles,friendship,love,pain.

Coming to the writing style its crisp and clear maintaining the pace of the story. The interesting factor being the book has an end at the start and the beginning when it comes to an end. Loved the way how the author’s language command never made me feel to continue the book at a later point.

The characterization has been done complete justice with each character not being clichéd and being natural in the flow. Naina as the protagonist has shown a lot of potential, she gives hope coming up from the struggles and hardships that come pelting to her. Kusum on the other hand, is someone we can relate to everyone in real life.

The plot is gripping and the story line is intriguing makes you want to finish it at one go. The author has done complete justice to the narration keeping it in a steady pace.

The cover has been designed in such a way that there are two images merged. Makes you want to pick it up immediately.

BOOK DETAILS:

  • Paperback
  • Publisher:Blue Rose Publishers; 1st edition (17 August 2018)
  • Language:English
  • ASIN:B07GKRNLY5

MY RATINGS:

Cover: 4.5/5

Title: 4/5

plot: 4/5

Writing and Presentation: 4/5

Overall: 4/5

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Rashmi Trivedi works in a middle management level in a leading public sector company. She was very passionate about reading and was never too busy for a book right form childhood. It was when she moved to Bhopal on a transfer away from family she started venturing into writing. She put in her experiences into writing which paved way for this book. Other than reading she loves travelling and also has a bucket list of places to visit.

Review of what will people think ? By Rashi Dubey

BLURB:

Do you want to fulfill your dreams? If yes, then the next question should be ‘how-to-move-ahead’, but is it really the next question you ask yourself? What about the numerous fears that precede this valid question like ‘What-will-they-think?’, ‘Should I?’, ‘Is it okay?’, ‘What about my image?’, ‘How will it look to other people?’ And at last, you crush your own dreams. That’s the choice most of us make. Isn’t it? This is a tale about one such middle-class family, the Guptas. In spite of being a member of such family, Riya chooses to follow her dreams. During her unconventional journey, her family disowns her. Will she be able to fulfill her dreams? Will the Guptas ever realize how one shouldn’t be afraid to do something just because of the fear of what will people say? Will the family reunite? Along with Riya, find out the answers to your most dreaded fear and experience the freedom to live inside out!

MY REVIEW:

Peer pressure to dump decisions on people or the fear of what people might think pushing you to do certain actions though you aren’t completely determined to do is pretty common in middle class society. Though we do say we live in modern age and we are practical there is still some practices, superstitions or decisions like whatever we wish to name them thumped on to us.

Due to above mentioned realities in this MODERN ERA as we call more often we are pushed into circumstances where we ought to let go of our dreams, passion and join the thousands of others following the same dream.

When you want to follow your passion and your parents thrash your dreams and want you to pursue their dream course, you feel so crippled. This was the state of Riya when she was asked to pursue medicine after grade 12.

Riya is the main protagonist who live with her family of four- mom, dad and brother. Though she wanted to take up arts being her passion her parents were against it.

They never thought that Riya was so serious about it to pursue it as a career rather than just a hobby. She decides to go against them and pursue a degree in arts and also is successful in bagging a job in one of the biggest firms in Delhi. Here again her parents don’t want her to move alone. Reason? Pretty simple. “What will people think?” So she again revolts and moves out. If she ever meets her parents again? Do they forgive her? What happens next? Do check out the book.

I finished reading it at a stretch, such a page turner it was. Right from the page one the author keeps you glued through her writing style. The story is from the perspective of a middle class girl who wants to pursue her passion and pave a career. Her parents on the other hand have a diverse mentality and want her to do what society expects. The portrayal of how Riya overcomes the denial and revolts to continue with her passion is commendable by the author’s narration.

The cover design is simple of a girl with her arms wide open, seeming like she’s free to choose and carry out what she wants.

BOOK DETAILS:

  • File Size:1072 KB
  • Print Length:103 pages
  • Publication Date:October 24, 2017
  • Sold by:Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language:English
  • ASIN:B076LVJKT8

MY RATINGS:

Cover: 4/5

Title: 4/5

plot: 4/5

Writing and Presentation: 4/5

Overall: 4/5

ABOUT THE AUTHOR (in her own words):

I’m a self-taught person and I believe that there’s nothing more exciting than learning and gaining knowledge! I’m a passionate reader and always keep myself busy with reading something. I am a foodie as well. I love eating food anytime, anywhere! I’m a Software Engineer by qualification, but I enjoy writing and have presumed this hobby as my career. I love to write about life, food, travel, relationship, humor, health, home décor, movies, and games. And love to read about anything that can be useful in any form on this earth! I believe, “Aim for the moon. You may not get it but you will surely get a star!” You can reach me at rashi.dubey811@gmail.com

Review of The finest supermarket in KABUL – Ele Pawelski

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R&R Book Tours Proudly Presents: The Finest Supermarket in Kabul, a fascinating novella inspired by true events!

Finest Supermarket in Kabul - cover image

The Finest Supermarket in Kabul

Publication Date: Oct. 30th, 2017

Genre: Novella/ Terrorism/ Inspired by True Events

Kabul, Afghanistan January 28, 2011.

Merza, a freshly minted Parliamentarian receives ominous threats after he wins his seat. Alec, an American journalist, flies from Kandahar without his editor’s permission to chronicle daily life in the capital. Elyssa, a Canadian human rights lawyer in Kabul to train female magistrates, is distracted by unwanted attention from a male justice. On this grey, wintry Friday, all three are embroiled in a dramatic and savage bombing. Inspired by true events and places, The Finest Supermarket in Kabul follows Merza, Alec and Elyssa as their idealistic and visionary hopes for Afghanistan are deeply challenged in the aftermath.

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Excerpt

Alec:

I’ve been in Kabul for just under twenty-four hours. I flew in yesterday from Lashkar Gah, in Helmand Province, after a heated argument with my editor earlier in the week during which I suggested a temporary reassignment to Kabul. Eric demanded I stay in the south for another three-week stint embedded with a US platoon. According to him, my stories from the US outpost were gripping and getting positive reactions from readers. Certainly, the embed was riveting – my first time moving around with US platoons – and gave me stories I couldn’t otherwise have written: intense firefights on a patrol, the evacuation of a wounded soldier, discussions about post-traumatic stress disorder, and fortifying against ambushes. But after three months of only covering action on the front line, I felt my outlook had started to skew by living and breathing the life of an American soldier. The longer I stayed in Helmand, the harder it was becoming to be okay with just telling one side of the story, as opposed to the broader picture. It was when I began saying “T-Ban” instead of Taliban that I knew I needed to get out. Meanwhile, Eric kept insisting that front-line coverage was our best news feature and refused to accept my other ideas, no matter how vigorously I pushed.

So I travelled to Kabul of my own accord to regain some perspective. I figure I’ll hold out an olive branch to Eric later, a magazine-length piece about how local ex-combatants are using the continuing conflict to their advantage. From fellow journalists, I’ve heard about former warlords, their identities and deeds well known, who’ve built massive houses painted in vivid carnival colours in the centre of Kabul and are living the high life, seemingly without repercussion. Interviews with a few of them, along with regular ex-Taliban fighters who got away from the fray, will form the story’s core; here and there, I’ll filter in views from ordinary people. I’m pretty sure Eric will go for an article with a military focus, even if it’s set in Kabul. Plus, he and I go way back, having both started out at the Chicago Tribune after studying at Columbia College Chicago fifteen years ago. If things go completely awry, I’ll hightail it back to Helmand.

I had my initial foray into Afghanistan’s real world yesterday morning. As I entered the plane bound for Kabul, I saw rows and rows of Pashtun men with long beards and turbans or woolen, round-topped hats with thick edging. My heart skipped a beat, as Pashtuns were the ethnic group that had birthed the Taliban, and I wondered if any were Taliban fighters. No one here would protect me from danger, and my visit wasn’t even sanctioned by my boss.

A familiar blast of adrenaline rushes through me.

Jakob stamps out his cigarette and leaps up while I gather my coat and Tish’s things under my arm. We race for the door. Ahead, I see Ben still on his phone but can’t hear him. As news of the explosion circulates, the room’s noise level surges and nervous energy grips the space.

We pick Tish up at the entrance and rush through the security gates, easily retrieving our various IDs and my passport as Ben advises that he’s called for a taxi to pick us up and that Masood, his interpreter, will meet us there.

After three minutes of energetic conversation about what we’ll find at the Finest, the four of us pile into the black Toyota Corolla that has pulled up. Sitting on the raised middle seat in the back, I have to duck my head to glimpse the street scene outside. It looks calm and oddly sedate considering what we know has just happened. Fortunately, traffic is far less jammed than on our morning’s walk over from the Safi.

We’re silent; our initial eagerness to cover this story has given way to an unpleasant realization that we will soon be confronting the bomb’s aftermath of chaos, destruction and injury. Jakob has already explained that the Finest is a convenience store that stocks expensive Western products like Nutella and peanut butter, so almost no Afghans ever shop there. An expat target, then, I ponder.

My review :

The Finest Supermarket in Kabul, initially upon looking at the title I never had a thought that it was a serious subject.

The story is the amalgamation of perspectives of three people in Kabul reacting to a savage attack on one of the busiest spots in city.

One person is a recently elected parliamentarian(against will of family) who portrays the political struggles and the situation currently. The second person is an American journalist who ahs negative views but strives hard to make the best use of situation to grasp the maximum information.The third person is from the UN and is neutral to the occurrences. The book is best described as political fiction but does have teeny tiny bit of family sentiments,and romance peeking a bit . Though the three characters have lived in the land for a considerably longer duration they know about the happenings, it’s still an expat. The way the diverse reactions are portrayed in response to the savage attack by the three people who are present at different locations at the time of the attack and the way in which it was intertwined is absolutely the X factor that makes the book a page turner.

The characterisation is excellent and the author has done complete justice on focusing the protagonists though we do find a number of small characters in each chapter.

My Ratings:

Cover -3.5/5

Title -3.5/5

Plot -4/5

Writing style and presentation – 4/5

Overall -4/5

Available for Purchase

Quattro Books | Amazon | Amazon CA

Amazon UK | B & N| Indigo

About the Author

Author Pic.jpg

Ele Pawelski has lived in Afghanistan, South Sudan, Bosnia, Kenya, Uzbekistan and Kosovo. She has climbed in the Himalayas, walked the Camino and hiked in Newfoundland. Now living in urban Toronto with her husband, she’s always planning for her next travel adventure. Her stories have appeared in magazines, journals and newspapers. The Finest Supermarket in Kabul is her first novella.

Ele Pawelski

Tour Schedule

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Oct. 1st

Reads & Reels – Review

Cup of Toast – Interview

The Reading Mermaid – Excerpt

Where dragons reside – Excerpt

Oct. 2nd

Loving Life Every Day – Excerpt

Touch my spine book reviews– Excerpt

The Bookworm Drinketh – Excerpt

Tranquil Dreams – Review

Oct. 3rd

The Voluptuous Book Diva – Excerpt

Didi Oviatt – Excerpt

Valerie’s Musings – Excerpt

Oct. 4th

The Genre Minx – Excerpt

Just 4 My Books – Review

Oct. 5th

Bri’s Book Nook – Excerpt

On the Shelf Reviews – Excerpt

Jessica Rachow – Review

My Baby, My Books, and I – Review

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3 print copies of The Finest Supermarket in Kabul and 5 $20 Amazon GCs (North America Only)

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Book blitz – Qualify by Vera Nazarian

Book & Author Details:
Qualify
by Vera Nazarian
(The Atlantis Grail #1)
Publication date: December 20th 2014
Genres: Dystopian, Science Fiction, Young Adult

Synopsis:

The Atlantis Grail has been optioned for development as a feature film series and/or TV series.

You have two options. You die, or you Qualify.

The year is 2047. An extinction-level asteroid is hurtling toward Earth, and the descendants of ancient Atlantis have returned from the stars in their silver ships to offer humanity help.

But there’s a catch.

They can only take a tiny percent of the Earth’s population back to the colony planet Atlantis. And in order to be chosen, you must be a teen, you must be bright, talented, and athletic, and you mustQualify.

Sixteen-year-old Gwenevere Lark is determined not only to Qualify but to rescue her entire family.

Because there’s a loophole.

If you are good enough to Qualify, you are eligible to compete in the brutal games of theAtlantis Grail, which grants all winners the laurels, high tech luxuries, and full privileges of Atlantis Citizenship. And if you are in the Top Ten, then all your wildest wishes are granted… Such as curing your mother’s cancer.

There is only one problem.

Gwen Lark is known as a klutz and a nerd. While she’s a hotshot in classics, history, science, and languages, the closest she’s come to sports is a backyard pool and a skateboard.

This time she is in over her head, and in for a fight of her life, against impossible odds and world-class competition—including Logan Sangre, the most amazing guy in her school, the one she’s been crushing on, and who doesn’t seem to know she exists.

Because every other teen on Earth has the same idea.

You Qualify or you die.

AUTHOR BIO:

VERA NAZARIAN is a two-time Nebula Award Finalist, a Dragon Award 2018 Finalist, an award-winning artist, and member of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, a writer with a penchant for moral fables and stories of intense wonder, true love, and intricacy.

She is the author of critically acclaimed novels DREAMS OF THE COMPASS ROSE and LORDS OF RAINBOW, the outrageous parodies MANSFIELD PARK AND MUMMIES and NORTHANGER ABBEY AND ANGELS AND DRAGONS, and most recently, PRIDE AND PLATYPUS: MR. DARCY’S DREADFUL SECRET in her humorous and surprisingly romantic Supernatural Jane Austen Series, as well as the Renaissance epic fantasy COBWEB BRIDE Trilogy, and the high-octane adventure YA / teen dystopian apocalyptic bestselling science fiction series THE ATLANTIS GRAIL that has been optioned fordevelopment as a feature film series and/or TV series.

After many years in Los Angeles, Vera lives in a small town in Vermont, and uses her Armenian sense of humor and her Russian sense of suffering to bake conflicted pirozhki and make art.

Her official author website is http://www.veranazarian.com

To be notified when new books come out, subscribe to the Mailing List: http://eepurl.com/hKaeo

Author links:

Book blitz – Dagger’s destiny by Linnea Tanner

Curse of Clansmen and Kings, Book 2

Historical Fantasy

Publisher: Apollo Raven Publisher

Release Date: September 26, 2018

 photo add-to-goodreads-button_zpsc7b3c634.png

A Celtic warrior princess accused of treason for aiding her enemy lover must win back her father’s love and trust

In the rich and vibrant tale, Author Linnea Tanner continues the story of Catrin and Marcellus that began with the awarding-winning novel APOLLO’S RAVEN in the Curse of Clansmen and Kings Series. Book 2: DAGGER’S DESTINY sweeps you into an epic tale of forbidden love, mythological adventure, and political intrigue in Ancient Rome and Britannia.

War looms over 24 AD Britannia where rival tribal rulers fight each other for power and the Romans threaten to invade to settle their political differences. King Amren accuses his daughter, Catrin, of treason for aiding the Roman enemy and her lover, Marcellus. The ultimate punishment is death unless she can redeem herself. She must prove loyalty to her father by forsaking Marcellus and defending their kingdom—even to the death. Forged into a warrior, she must overcome tribulations and make the right decisions on her quest to break the curse that foretells her banished half-brother and the Roman Empire will destroy their kingdom.

Yet, when Catrin again reunites with Marcellus, she is torn between her love for him and duty to King Amren. She must ultimately face her greatest challenger who could destroy her life, freedom, and humanity.

Will Catrin finally break the ancient prophecy that looms over her kingdom? Will she abandon her forbidden love for Marcellus to win back her father’s trust and love? Can King Amren balance his brutality to maintain power with the love he feels for Catrin?


Other Books in the Curse of Clansmen and Kings series:

Apollo’s Raven

Curse of Clansmen and Kings, Book 1

Publisher: Apollo Raven Publisher

Published: April 2017

A Celtic warrior princess is torn between her forbidden love for the enemy and duty to her people.

AWARD-WINNING APOLLO’S RAVEN sweeps you into an epic Celtic tale of forbidden love, mythological adventure, and political intrigue in Ancient Rome and Britannia. In 24 AD British kings hand-picked by Rome to rule are fighting each other for power. King Amren’s former queen, a powerful Druid, has cast a curse that Blood Wolf and the Raven will rise and destroy him. The king’s daughter, Catrin, learns to her dismay that she is the Raven and her banished half-brother is Blood Wolf. Trained as a warrior, Catrin must find a way to break the curse, but she is torn between her forbidden love for her father’s enemy, Marcellus, and loyalty to her people. She must summon the magic of the Ancient Druids to alter the dark prophecy that threatens the fates of everyone in her kingdom.

Will Catrin overcome and eradicate the ancient curse. Will she be able to embrace her forbidden love for Marcellus? Will she cease the war between Blood Wolf and King Amren and save her kingdom?

Excerpt

Treason

July, 24 AD, Southeast Britannia

The image of her father being wounded at the prisoner exchange haunted Princess Catrin as she entered the cave’s dank womb where warriors had secretly carried the casualties. Under the illumination of a flaming torch, she found several men hovering over the king’s motionless body. She feared the decision to use the dark forces of the Ancient Druids to alter the future could doom her father and people.

Catrin trembled as she knelt by her father and studied his bloodsmeared face. A chill of foreboding sliced down her spine. Just that morning, she had made love with Marcellus on what could be her father’s deathbed.

She placed the palm of her hand on his forehead. His skin was cold and clammy, but he was still alive.

Feeling the bloody streaks on his tunic, she pulled her fingers away and turned to Cynwrig, the king’s most-trusted guard. “Help me remove the tunic. I need to stop the bleeding!”

Cynwrig supported the king as Catrin cut the fabric from his chest. The ghastly crisscross cuts and deep abdominal gash made her cringe. A stench like rotten eggs assaulted her nostrils.

King Amren fidgeted. “Fetch my Druidess.”

“No!” Catrin snapped. “Agrona is a traitor. We can’t risk letting anyone

know we’ve rescued and are tending you. There are herbs near the wall that will help reduce the swelling.”

Catrin clasped her father’s icy hands and noticed his sunken, bloodshot eyes. She looked to Cynwrig. “Heat a knife so I can seal his wounds. I also need water from the river.”

“Do what my daughter says,” rasped Amren.

Cynwrig pointed to the cave’s opening. “I’ll start a fire over there and get someone to fetch the water.”

While Cynwrig prepared the fire, Catrin rummaged through several pouches, searching for the proper herbs. After a warrior returned with a bucket of water, she soaked several strips of willow bark in the container, then crushed dried blackberry, borage, and sage stems in a ceramic mortar.

She finally added vinegar to the powder and stirred the contents with her finger into a green paste.

She looked at Cynwrig. “Is the knife ready?”

Cynwrig pulled the glowing red blade from the flames. “It looks hot enough.”

“Then bring it to me.”

Catrin took the knife from Cynwrig, who then restrained the king’s arms. She pressed the searing blade on the wounds, methodically moving downward. The king writhed in agony, his eyes as wild as a wounded animal’s as he fought Cynwrig’s restraint. Concentrating on her task, Catrin swallowed the bile in her mouth and handed the dagger to Cynwrig to reheat the blade. Light-headed and in a cold sweat, she leaned into the hard wall to brace herself, then applied the paste dressing over her father’s reddened wounds. Even with her gentle touch, his muscles flinched. Observing the anguish on his face, she placed a blanket under his head and gave him chamomile and poppy in water to ease his pain.

She continued the treatment by placing bark strips on the dressing until the king’s grip around her wrist stopped her.

“We need to speak about Marcellus,” Amren said with a growl from deep within his throat.

Catrin winced, apprehensive her father knew about her relationship with the Roman hostage placed under her charge. She warily studied the king as he closed his eyes and breathed deeply. He waved Trystan, his second- in-command, over and whispered to him. With a nod, Trystan ordered everyone away.

The hairs on Catrin’s neck prickled. The only reason her father would order warriors away would be to reprimand her. She wilted under the king’s burning glare as he began questioning. “Trystan told me when we were imprisoned together that Cynwrig found you unconscious in Marcellus’s arms. I want to know what happened between the two of you.”

Catrin hesitated, fearing her revelation would anger her father and cause his condition to deteriorate. “You should rest now. We can discuss this later.”

“No. Tell me now!” Amren snapped.

Catrin could feel the king’s eyes probing her like a sharp-edged scalpel for the truth. She bit her lower lip to stop it from quivering. “When I was stricken with the falling sickness, Marcellus came to my aid.”

“Trystan said the Roman was found naked with you, and Agrona accused him of bewitching you with an amulet!”

“Marcellus had just finished bathing,” Catrin answered, suddenly feeling queasy.

Amren cocked an eyebrow. “Bathing?”

“Yes.”

“And that is all that happened?”

Catrin froze under her father’s cold stare.

“Answer me!”

“You can’t trust what Agrona says,” Catrin replied.

“And why is that?”

“She is a druidic spirit from your past.”


About the Author

Since childhood, award-winning author, Linnea Tanner, has passionately read about ancient civilizations and mythology that held women in higher esteem, particularly the enigmatic Celts reputed to be warriors and druids. She has extensively researched and traveled to sites described in the Curse of Clansmen and King series. A native of Colorado, Linnea attended the University of Colorado and earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemistry. She lives in Windsor with her husband and has two children and six grandchildren.

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Review of on the open road by Stuti Changle. #myfriendalexa

On the open road

BLURB:

Myra wishes to break free of her cubicle. Kabir wonders what life would be to build on his own. Sandy drops out of college to work on the next big startup idea. Ramy inspires millions of his generation on his travel blog – on the open road.

on the open road – THREE LIVES, FIVE CITIES, ONE STARTUP, revolves around the lives of these restless and dreamy 20-somethings as they battle their inner demons and the societal taboos to live life on their terms. It is an emotional journey of following one’s heart. The journey entails undying friendship, love and loss, happiness and depression, fear and conquest, dreaming and achieving.

Will they be able to embark on the hard yet empowering journey to their true selves? Or succumb to the hardships on their road to freedom?

MY REVIEW:

The story revolves around three people- Myra, Kabir and Sandy. We have the struggle part described for all three of them. Myra is fed up of her 9-5 cubicle life but longs to startup a business with friends. Kabir is a rich gyu who has his family business, but he wants to have a business of his own. Then we have Sandy who is Kabir’s friend, who’s a college dropout and has his own startup creating apps but is not very successful.

We have another Character Ramy(Myra’s friend) to whom people look up to. He is a traveler and a blogger. Kabir and Sandy draw inspiration.

The plot is something that every single person in the corporate rat race can relate to. It has elements of love, friendship, dream, travel and success. The writing is simple and crisp. I completed the book at one go. The book is mentioned as unputdownable on the cover, since its fast-paced. But seriously, it did not let down my expectation and has lived up to it.

Stuti, coming from the corporate background herself has brought out the experiences just as it is in reality.

The one liners and the quotes will inspire anyone with ambitions but has inhibitions to proceed with it. I have listed out some of the one-liners I liked.

I loved the cover and how the title aptly suits the plot. I loved reading the second half especially. The characterization was done brilliantly with no sugar-coating. They were genuine in their portrayal.

Anyone who has a dream of owning a startup should give this book a read. I felt people from other walks of life could find it a little difficult to relate to the experiences noted by Stuti. Though the book is a light read, the amount of experience and self-motivation we gain is a lot. The book makes you self-introspect to think ahead of career and make decisions.

BOOK DETAILS:

  • Book name: On the open Road
  • Author: Stuti Changle
  • Paperback:188 pages
  • Publisher:Invincible Publishers & Marketers (2 March 2018)
  • Language:English
  • ISBN-10:9387328465
  • ISBN-13:978-9387328464

The book is available on Amazon https://amzn.to/2zqBsZY

MY RATINGS:

Cover: 4.5/5

Title: 4/5

plot: 5/5

Writing and Presentation: 5/5

Overall: 4.5/5

ACCOLADES:

Winner of ‘Notable Mentions’ in Amazon Kindle’s Pen to Publish competition

‘Unputdownable, lively and fast-paced, it promises to inspire the youth to pursue their dreams.’- Ashish Kashyap, founder – Goibibo & redBus

‘The book reflects you and me. A great group of characters who bring life into a great story. It’s a must-read.’- Neha Hinge, Actress & Miss India 2010

Quotes from on the open road:

“Somewhere between the right and the wrong, the past and the future, there lies a now. Don’t let it go. For ‘now’ often leads to a new road!”

“Life proves to be one hell of a ride. All you’ve got to believe is that the things that do not work out lead to the ones that do! As the journey goes on, there’s a lot more to learn.”

” Citylights seem glorious at night, the high rises stand in splendor, in my mind I have a fight,what do I want in life? I wonder! ““Whenever you have a problem, try to enlarge your perspective, look at the sky and the stars.”

“If you feel that the cubicle isn’t for you, build some for others!”

“We belong to a generation full of broken hearts and wandering souls, just blank from the inside, in a constant search for ourselves, looking for something we don’t know yet, in the empty spaces of life. It is not that we can’t do great things, but we’re raised to believe – we can’t!”

“When you work on what you love; it acts like meditation. If each one of us does what we love and pour our heart and soul into it, we would not have to meditate elsewhere at any point in time.”

About the Author (in her own words)

A minimalist at heart, with every passing day, I find myself moving farther from the never-ending quest of owning material possessions and a step closer to owning a vast ocean of experiences. In 2016, at twenty-three, I packed a rucksack and left Mumbai, in search of my true self. I met people with extraordinary stories – the travelers, the entrepreneurs, the artists, the visionaries and the saints, who inspired me to the core and gave a new direction to my life. on the open road draws inspiration from my real-life experiences and I wish to inspire my readers to follow their dreams.

Share your thoughts about the book using the hashtag #OTOR

She interacts with the readers’ community through Instagram Live and Facebook Live. @stutichangle

About the Author

A post-graduate in management from the prestigious B-school IMI, New Delhi and a graduate in Computer Science and Technology.Winner of Notable Mentions in Amazon Kindle’s Pen to Publish Competition.

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Review of Sneak peak by Krishna Kumar nair

BLURB:

THIS BOOK IS FOR ALL THOSE DARING HEARTS, WHO HAVE SECRETS OF THEIR OWN AND WOULD WANT TO CONFESS A FEW IN FRONT OF OTHERS. Sneak Peak will take you through a time when APPLE was still a fruit, children spend time playing with each other rather than in front of computers and a time when people rescued a dying person instead of taking their video and posting on Facebook. There was a simpler time in the 80’s and 90’s and those who lived those times and who didn’t, will equally love what you are going to read here. It’s not my story but it is yours too! The hero of this story is not Dhyankumar but the story itself. Here Dhyankumar closely post-mortems the various phases in his life, how he felt and how different it would have been, or should have been, had he thought in a different way. The book deeply emphasizes the values of friendship and how it can change one’s life and sometimes destroy the same.

MY REVIEW:

The book is of a different genre from the current trend that prevails. I felt like reading out from a diary of kind born in 90’s, keeping in mind I am one such. It brings out numerous nostalgic incidents.

It speaks about an era of no social media intervention. Yes, that’s right no mobile phones, no tabs. Leading a simple life enjoying a vacation with no social media check-ins, hanging out with cousins, TV series and cartoon and most important of all staying with our grandparents. Isn’t that a wonderful feel, staying as a complete family with many people and relatives, helping each other out, laughing, sharing. This I feel is something that the current generation is missing out on.

Though we have several advancements in technology and comforts at all levels, the concrete jungle can never equal the above mentioned joys.

The book is about a protagonist Dhyankumar who introspects the various phases of his life. The narration portrays his life filled with love and affection as a boon of staying with grandparents. A couple of mischievous events and few confessions make it an interesting read.

The pace of the story seems to be slow at places and characterization needs betterment. The cover design could have been improved. With no surprise elements the narration is pretty good except for the slow-paced parts which seem dragging. The language is simple and crisp making this a good choice for one time read.

MY RATINGS:

Cover: 3/5

Title 3.5/5

Plot: 4/5

Writing and Presentation: 4/5

Overall: 4/5

BOOK DETAILS:

  • Title : Sneak peak
  • Author: Krishna kumar nair
  • Genre: Realistic fiction
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3259 KB
  • Print Length: 142 pages
  • Publisher: Half Baked Beans (26 July 2018)
  • Sold by: Amazon Asia-Pacific Holdings Private Limited
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B07FY9KL7N

The book is available on Amazon https://amzn.to/2O3kW7d

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Review of Hungry Gods by Richa Lakhera

BLURB:

Beaten and brutally raped, her body is never found. However, the killers make one mistake. They leave a witness, a witness who has nothing to live for except revenge. And when he crosses the boundaries of time to make the guilty pay, a whole lot of dark characters come to light. There is Valentine, the superstar brand ambassador who sells anything for a price; there is Medici, a pharmaceutical company fraudulently manufacturing banned drugs; there is the perverted and sinister minded Dr Ranga and there is Este, the prostitute whose dark secret will blow up a daughter’s sanity. So, is there another murder waiting to happen? Will Police Inspector Dorab Silva be able to connect the clues to prevent another crime? Will these gods of greed be exposed? And yes, you will be surprised by who you will find there, finally. Deeply unsettling, Hungry Gods takes a hard look at greed for wealth and power.

MY REVIEW:

The first thing that struck me when I was asked if I can review this book was what made the author choose this name. I initially thought that it was something of mythological sorts but when I googled and saw the cover my opinion was completely proved wrong. The cover design conveys a lot. In fact that’s one of the stand out features of this book. I went through the blurb and which made me even more anxious that was eagerly waiting that the book would get delivered to me sooner.

The book is based on the tagline Drugs, Sex Cults, a horrific crime and an unthinkable revenge. The revenge here is by a son who witnesses him mom being abused and killed by a group. Bu the way in which the narration is taken is what which makes the book stand out among similar books of this genre.

It is very difficult to keep track of all characters since there are a lot of them, a LOT I say. The writing style of the author is on par with that of international authors. Its crisp, subtle and brilliant. She has a good command over the language and an extensive vocabulary.

The narration is from first and third person perspective which is confusing a times to relate the consecutive events. A clearer description of the place and time could have made it better.

Writing was very intriguing and intense but applauds to the author, the surprise element was kept up till the end. The nail biting sequences of pre climax and climax was outstanding.

Overall, Hungry Gods was a bold representation of the present sadistic world we live in and can very well be made into a movie.

But I would like to leave a disclaimer that the book is not for light hearted ones.

MY RATINGS:

Cover: 4.5/5

Title: 4/5

plot: 5/5

Writing and Presentation: 5/5

Overall: 4.5/5

BOOK DETAILS:

  • Book Name: Hungry Gods
  • Author: Richa Lakhera
  • Genre: Fiction/ thriller
  • Paperback: 204 pages
  • Publisher: Rupa Publications India (20 July 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9353040795
  • ISBN-13: 978-9353040796

The book is available on amazon https://amzn.to/2x1jHy5

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Hungry Gods is Richa Lakhera’s third novel, she has previously written Item Girl, a crime novel and Garbage Beat, a satire on the Indian entertainment industry. A libertarian addicted to absurdism, she works as Deputy Editor at NDTV. She has a Master’s in Organic Chemistry and Bio-technology and is the recipient of the Indian Council for UN Relations (ICUNR) Award for Excellence in Journalism. Richa divides her time between New Delhi and Mumbai and is currently working on her next crime fiction novel.

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