Book review – Alumni of the year

BLURB:

Dave is ambitious, has a demanding boss, and is struggling to balance work and life, especially the relationship with his five-year-old daughter. Dave cherishes the memories of his school days. However, due to an incident from the past, he hardly keeps in touch with his best friends.
When Dave learns that his arch-rival from school is nominated for the prestigious Alumni of the Year Competition, he buys his way into the nomination by donating to the school library.
Travel on a life-changing journey with Dave—from Dubai, to Goa, to Kochi—as he goes for the School Reunion function. See how he confronts his past, his ambitions, his fears, and discovers about what truly matters in life.

MY REVIEW:

If you are looking to relive your school or college memories, this book could be one of those which would rekindle your memories of those golden days. Most often after school, or if I have to say it clearly or accurately we suddenly drift our mind and doings only towards a successful career, status. We tend to forget friends, he happy moments. That after getting a good job we fail to regain happiness but only concentrate on climbing up the ladder. That is where the balance of work and life stumbles a lot.

The effect of a bad work life balance starts showing immediately. And if you’re having a kid, it starts affecting drastically. Dave here in this book, is bossy, well settled and is exactly the kind of person who climbed up the ladder I was talking about previously. He is very much commanding when it comes to being the boss. The work life balance in Dave’s life is stumbling badly and as I had told he is struggling in his relationship with his five –year-old daughter. Also an incident from school has been troubling him to keep in touch with his schoolmates.

Dave learns that his arch rival has been nominated for the Alumni of the year. So what does Dave’s mind think of now. He decides and buys off the nomination. He travels from Dubai for the Alumni Meet. What happens is the rest of the story which I would leave it in your hands.Dave any day would represent any one of us, who is stuck between family and work pressure.

The writing style is simple and lucid. Initially I wasn’t into reading it at one go. But as the story progressed, it became interesting.

BOOK DETAILS:

· Paperback: 158 pages

· Publisher: Notion Press; 1 edition (19 July 2019)

· Language: English

· ISBN-10: 1684668255

· ISBN-13: 978-1684668250

MY RATINGS:

Title :4/5

Cover -4.5/5

Plot -4/5

Writing and presentation-4/5

Overall -4/5

Review of the watchmaker and time

BLURB:

Pedro’s love for watches was born out of a strange incident in his childhood. Over the years he has become one of the most renowned watch designers in the world also holding the title, ‘the Maestro of Time’.

One fine day, he gets challenged by his granddaughter on the fundamentals of Time. Unable to answer her innocent questions, he realizes that all his life he had been creating watches but had failed to understand what Time was all about. He gets on to an interesting journey in search for answers.

The journey unfolds with the puzzles of his past guiding him ahead as one after the other his beliefs start getting shattered. Will the puzzles of his past ever let him get to the future? Will he ever find out the true essence of Time? Join this watchmaker in his enriching and thought provoking journey in search of time.

MY REVIEW:

If you are looking for an engaging short read, you must definitely go for this book. Simply one of the best reads I have come across this year. When I initially signed up for review, I thought that the plot would sound very complex and would take a lot of time for me to complete. But the author proved me wrong completely. Would you below I completed the book in 45 minutes.

The book starts with Maria, an eight-year-old looking around a room full of clocks. She is dumbstruck by the collection and is keen to find which clock is new. She is a regular visitor and can find out if anything new is occupied in the room. Right in front of her, we see a 70-year-old man, looking down and working seriously. The man is none other than, Pedro or the “maestro of time’ as he is known. He is Maria’s grandpa and was currently working to fix her watch. He loves to work quietly and when he’s into work, he’s into completely a different world and does not want to be disturbed. His world while working is only him and the clocks.

His work is interfered when Maria, tries to open her purse to look at her new flipbook. That is when it all starts. She starts questioning him on what is time and where is it. Pedro is startled when Maria questions him and makes him realize that all these years he’s been working with watches and he had missed thinking about these.

Pedro receives a phone call from his friend Stuart, post which Pedro and Maria are on their way to see Stuart. Stuart hands over a black box and a letter to Pedro. The letter was from Edward who is Pedro’s opponent counterpart from whom Pedro was expecting a solution to his long-running question in mind. The letter read out that Edward was unable to help and is unaware of any solution that would help Pedro.

When Pedro was a kid, he went out on a trip to Stonehenge with his parents and uncle. Pedro dreams of an old man chasing him and wakes up with a loud cry. That startles uncle Joseph, who ends up crashing the car into a tree. Unnoticed by anyone Pedro realizes they are so close to Stonehenge and he sleeps on the open field when he again sees the old man who gives him a watch. The watch has been running till now when Pedro is 70 years, but the question is how since it does not have a battery or cell.

Pedro meets Reishi, a spiritual man, who gives a word of knowledge to Pedro about calmness and disturbance. It is after this meeting; Pedro decides to go back to Stonehenge to find out answers for the underlying mystery of the watch.

Does he find the answers? Who was the mysterious old man? What is the relationship between what Reishi told Pedro and what he is about to discover?

The narration is just right with the amount of pace that it puts into the reader’s mind. Those cute aeroplane drawings made to explain time concepts make it an additional reason for you to like the book. The editing was fine and the plot was simple and easy to comprehend.

Pedro’s character was thought out well, to have the maturity and knowledge of a seventy-year-old man and the childishness he has when he is around Maria are commendable.

BOOK DETAILS:

  • Paperback: 118 pages
  • Publisher: Embassy Book Distributors; First Edition edition (27 November 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10:9386450984
  • ISBN-13:978-9386450982

MY RATINGS:

Cover: 4/5

Title: 4/5

plot: 4.5/5

Writing and Presentation: 4.5/5

Overall: 4/5

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Devang Kanavia is a passionate storyteller who ventured into the world of writing with his first book, Best Sellers: Because Everything Is About Selling. A notable speaker and leadership coach, Devang is a versatile author with a perfect blend of science and philosophy. With a lucid and compact style of writing, Devang uses powerful analogies to question the obvious and explore the oblivious while creating page-turners, be it Management or Fiction. In The Watchmaker And Time, he explores one of the most enigmatic subjects, Time, and weaves a delightful and thought-provoking tale unravelling the mystery of Time.

Review of The death wish

BLURB:

“Detailed observations of human behavior and the complexity of human relationships…” – The HinduAs a man decides to end his life by jumping off the roof of one of the tallest skyscrapers in the city.Should he; should he not? Is there something to change his mind at the last minute?

MY REVIEW:

This book is yet another gem in the “it’s all about love series”. The plot revolves around Abani Halder, an old man who is on the verge of committing a suicide. The story begins with the description of tall buildings in the city, the sun setting down, children playing around. Abhani , the old man rewinds his childhood.

Shibu as he’s known to be called is Abhani’s father. He sells flutes on trains. He plays it while sitting beside windows at home, listening to which Abhani falls asleep peacefully. His mother on the other hand cooks their food. It’s a typical daily wage earning scenario. Shibu is also an alchoholic who spends his earnings in drinks. And on that fateful day he takes up more than usual and slips between the train steps and platform and ends up dying.

His mother takes up the burden to work an extra mile to meet the needs of the family. Abani on the other hand realizes his responsibility and studies hard. He longs to buy a saree with his first earnings for his mom, just like how the heroes do in movies he’s watched.

But fate played its part again, two days before his first salary day his mother dies and so does his dream of buying her a saree. All this flashes across Abhani’s mind. The only thing that was sweet about his childhood is the prashadh and aarti his mom prepares on his birthday.

His current life, he thinks that he is a burden to his son and daughter in law. More recently he was confined to his own room, rather than the common areas. He gets humiliated in a way he does not accompany them when guests pay a visit. His opinions are not to be taken into consideration. He clearly knows that he cannot live there anymore and remembers a thought that suicide is comforting.

When all this plays in his mind, he notices that all vehicles come at a standstill on the road. A lady sprang in action to save a child from going under the wheels of a truck. HE realizes that the lady could only be the mother’s child who would have dared to do such a thing. Does this change his mind? Does he die or he continues to draw strength and lives with the family is the remaining story?

The blurb took my attention and I chose to read it immediately. It’s a short read but a satisfying one.

Some situations in life make us realize if we are really important to live this fully or to stop it ourselves. But time teaches a valuable lesson to think and make a decision.

The narration is wonderful and the character of Abhani has been beautifully portrayed. There are no mistakes in editing and the cover design supports the plot and is also one of the reasons for me to pick this book up.

BOOK DETAILS:

  • Format:Kindle Edition
  • File Size:232 KB
  • Print Length:21 pages
  • Publisher:Srishti Publishers & Distributors (22 October 2018)
  • Sold by:Amazon Asia-Pacific Holdings Private Limited
  • Language:English
  • ASIN:B07GXNL2XY

MY RATINGS:

Cover: 4/5

Title: 4/5

plot: 4.5/5

Writing and Presentation: 4/5

Overall: 4/5

Review of The Gift by Sourabh Mukherjee

BLURB:

“Detailed observations of human behaviour and the complexity of human relationships…” – The Hindu After his bitter break-up with girlfriend Ishika, Aarav heads for his ancestral house in Mussoorie to get over his grief and to finish the novel he is working on. He meets Kishan, a child who has strayed into the house and spends his nights in the dusty, dark attic, scavenging through old books and toys that once belonged to Aarav and his cousins. Aarav finds his uncle’s diary, which chronicles a heart-warming love story unfolding in that house. What life-changing family secret does Aarav uncover?

MY REVIEW:

The book is the first one in “it’s all about love series’ by Sourabh Mukherjee. The plot starts with Aarav and his girlfriend getting to know that they are having a baby. This good news doesn’t seem like one for him, he currently has a deadline and is quite unsure of the time the two pink lines came up for Ishika. She storms out of the apartment knowing that Aarav is not happy with the little one coming and decides to leave him.

Aarav having a deadline to submit a novel is being pressurized by the publishing house. So in order to get a clear mind and to complete his work, he moves to Mussoorie to his ancestral house in Dehradun. He’s being welcomed by Mrs. Bakshi, the caretaker. She introduces him to a small kid, Kishan. One immediate look at him, Aarav is suspicious and starts looking for answers on his whereabouts. He realizes that the boy resembles someone who was close to him. He then starts to read his uncle’s diary which was left incomplete since the last time he visited.

It is only while reading it there comes an intertwined love story and the mystery behind Kishan’s existence. A lovable tale which makes you want to read the next book in the series.

Though the book is small about 28 pages, the tale is interesting and gives you a good feeling.

The writing style is simple and clear. The plot is interesting, where the intertwined story that unfolds gives the protagonist a thought and to change his mind. Characterizations are good while the main focus is only on Aarav, the author does justice to the other characters as well.

The climax is something that is quite unexpected, but to come to know the fact why it was portrayed that way is truly remarkable.

BOOK DETAILS:

  • Format:Kindle Edition
  • File Size:362 KB
  • Print Length:28 pages
  • Publisher:Srishti Publishers & Distributors (10 September 2018)
  • Sold by:Amazon Asia-Pacific Holdings Private Limited
  • Language:English
  • ASIN:B07GXNB9KW

MY RATINGS:

Cover: 4/5

Title: 4/5

plot: 4/5

Writing and Presentation: 4/5

Overall: 4/5

Review of The Friend by Teresa Driscoll

BLURB:

On a train with her husband, miles from home and their four-year-old son, Ben, Sophie receives a chilling phone call. Two boys are in hospital after a tragic accident. One of them is Ben.

She thought she could trust Emma, her new friend, to look after her little boy. After all, Emma’s a kindred spirit—someone Sophie was sure she could bare her soul to, despite the village rumors. But Sophie can’t shake the feeling that she’s made an unforgivable mistake and now her whole family is in danger.

Because how well does she know Emma, really? Should she have trusted her at all?

Time is running out. Powerless to help her child, still hours from home, Sophie is about to discover the truth. And her life will never be the same.

MY REVIEW:

This is one of the books where the plot turns out to be gripping and keeping you intrigued. It was one psychological thriller that was full of mystery, suspense and an impressively manipulative character in recent times.

The story goes like two friends Emma and Sophie whose kids are close in age. Sophie moved to Tedbury with her husband and son Ben. She immediately strikes a friendship chord with Emma. Sophie is inconsolable when she receives a call mentioning that the boys had an accident and are in the hospital. Most of the story narration is from Sophie’s point of view, but we have the other character’s view as well. The story unfolds in present time and flashbacks.

The plot occasionally skips to different character perspectives for a chapter or two to advance the story and the threads all pull together in a great crescendo at the end of the book.

The narration was good but at places too dramatic, in fact an overdose.

We’ve all been fooled by people who come into our lives bringing excitement with them, only to turn against us in the end. The word friend now has a new meaning after reading this book. I feel that this book is different from “I am watching you” by this Author. It is the best kind of thriller—one that doesn’t sacrifice portrayal for thrills. There are twists and turns that makes you want to gasp for breath. The book is creepy and intense and the suspense keeps you intrigued till the end.

BOOK DETAILS:

Author: Teresa Driscoll

Publisher: Thomas and Mercer

ISBN: 1542046661

ISBN13: 9781542046664

Genre: Suspense, thriller

MY RATINGS:

Cover- 4.5 stars

Title- 4 stars

Blurb- 4 stars

Plot- 4 stars

Writing and Presentation- 4 stars

Overall- 4.5 out of 5 stars

The book is available on Amazon

Amazon : https://amzn.to/2LxyqG2

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

For more than twenty-five years as a journalist – including fifteen years as a BBC TV news presenter – Teresa Driscoll followed stories into the shadows of life. Covering crime for so long, she watched and was deeply moved by all the ripples each case caused, and the haunting impact on the families, friends and witnesses involved. It is those ripples that she explores in her darker fiction. Teresa lives in beautiful Devon with her husband and two sons. She writes women’s fiction as well as thrillers, and her novels have been published in six languages. You can find out more about her books on her website (www.teresadriscoll.com) or by following her on Twitter (@TeresaDriscoll) or Facebook (www.facebook.com/teresadriscollauthor).