Monday, November 14, 2011

I'm not twenty four - Blogadda Book review

I’m not twenty four… I’ve been nineteen for five years. When I first read this title as a part of the Book review program on Blogadda, I said to myself: I have got to get this book to review; the only reason being that I’ve been saying the same thing as the title since the last five years. Well not in the same exact words though!!!

The story begins with Saumya describing herself, an MBA grad being placed in the god-forsaken town of Toranagallu in Karnataka in a steel plant. Her journey starts from the various gory realities that she is exposed to in the Safety department and ends in chasing the subtle hints left by her beau Shubro, the love of her life. What transpires inbetween is a series of nuances that describe Saumya’s life in that village (which is a drastic contrast to her life in Delhi) touching various aspects like helping the villagers, dealing with employee losses, gaining responsibilities and then, falling in love through a series of fairy-tale-like incidences!

There are a couple of shining highlights about the book where Sachin has almost hit the jackpot. The first one is the plot of the book that is interestingly gripping. The second has to be the concept that proves to be a breath of fresh air since the portrayal of a girl by a guy is commendable. Once you start reading the book, you actually fuhget that it’s a guy writing this book. At some places, you can even relate to the protagonist.

As far as Shubro is concerned, his character has been allotted a nice sparkle and vibrancy in contrast to Saumya’s sensibility. But Shubro, in the end, was projected to be of a type that no longer exists lol – a type that is too good to be true. That burst of emotion towards the end was a bit over the top. And in the end when Saumya’s made to read Shubro’s blogposts, Sachin should’ve made it more heart-warming and humane to keep in line with the feelings of both d leads.

The mood of the whole book has been kept to a very simple tone… a little too simple infact! With different incidences thrown in to provide an emotional contrast to the readers so as to break any monotony, Sachin tried his best to weave a smoothly intertwined story. Having said that, I think the language is a bit too deplorable. When the prologue itself houses three variant spellings of Toranagallu, you don’t know what to expect from the rest of the book. The lowest point of this book is that the proof-reading isn’t up to the mark. In fact, it quite runs into the negative space along with an improper usage of syntax all throughout the book.

Overall, kudos to Sachin for having a conceptually different book with a likeable cover pic, but had he worked on it a tad more, he would’ve been able to deliver the otherwise malnourished story strongly and effectively. But seriously, you have got to work on your English!!!
This review is a part of the Book Reviews Program at Participate now to get free books!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Live from London - Blogadda Book review

What a book?! And quite literally. No, not in a good way though. I’m trying to think of a few good points about the book just so that I can start this review on a ‘good’ note as they say; but to my disappointment that’s hard to do with this book. Of all the people, I know how much of ‘yourself’ goes into writing or creating anything artistic for that matter, but you gotta do what you gotta do – in this case I have to be candid about my review. But, I’ll try to subdue my thoughts and try not to be harsh on Parinda Joshi’s creation called ‘Live from London’.

So this book is about a girl called Nishi who’s been living in London since a few years with her family. It’s her journey that goes through an embarrassment faced on Britain’s Got Talent; to an interesting job in a music company; to a plainly-boringly-defined ‘steamy’ affair with an NRI American Idol finalist (Nick); to a break-up with him (due to something that was ridiculously considered as a reason for break-up in the book!!!), losing a job, moving back to India, getting on with life; getting an opportunity to anchor a TV show and ending the so-called de-hydrated melodramatic book on a patch-up between the two love-birds. As lethargic as this sentence seems, so was the case with this book. 

Void of an interesting story or an emotional attachment, this book not only failed to deliver on levels more than one but, also chewed your brains off. It’s mentioned in the synopsis in the end that ‘the unthinkable happens and Nishi lands back in India’, and it would have really saved the miserably sinking boat had the ‘unthinkable’ actually have been that concrete of a reason.  But alas! Disappointment here too.
And as if the story wasn’t gripping enough already, you face boredom in the face of the characters of the book as well. With a lack of clearly un-defined character sketches, all that the characters did in the book was confuse you with their altercating behavior. Nishi does not seem to be the kind of girl she is being portrayed in the synopsis of the book, nor does she appear to be someone with whom you would want to relate to.

Coming to the language part of the book, it felt as if the book was a joke and how?! It felt like what I would like to call the ‘baby language’. You are familiar with the famous victory sentence by Caesar – ‘I came. I saw. I conquered’. The book was on similar lines, only that it felt like feeding the chronology to a toddler – ‘I came. I got ready for the battle. I saw here and there for enemies. I found a few enemies to slaughter. I lifted my sword. I sloshed someone’s throat. My army catered to the leftovers’. And sadly, Parinda’s language and story died their own deaths before she could take them to the ‘I conquered’ part in her book. Quite honestly, I’m amazed at the fact that ‘such’ an unappetizing book was published by such a revered and reputed publishing house in India.

And just to be a little good to Parinda (though I’m sure it wouldn’t matter to her lol), the last 30-40 pages of the 200 pages of utter boredom could be termed as a saving grace (only so much as to let the sinking boat called ‘Live from London’ crack up in a zillion pieces enabling all the pieces barring one to sink and that one piece that stays afloat is in the form of those last few pages).

What I’m amazed at is that Parinda’s credentials and interests do quite a bit of talking – but only at the back of the book in the ‘About the author’ section. Had she channelized those talents and interests in her writing as well, I’m sure she would’ve done better than giving a dismal performance.

I have read humongous paged-books, including Leo Tolstoy’s 800 pages Anna Karenina (that according to me was a disaster bigger than John Grisham’s A painted house), but I can affirmatively declare this that Parinda Joshi’s Live from London is fighting its way to reach the top spot as well. If you want to still go ahead and read this book, go ahead *grins* unless you are a sadist who derives pain by inflicting pain on ‘others’ and in this case, the ‘other’ being you :P. But yes, if you’re in the phase of V for Vengeance (and not Vendetta) and want to make someone else pay lol, you can surely give him/her/it this book :p.

This review is a part of the Book Reviews Program at Participate now to get free books!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Memories inked in 'ashes'...

Walking through life, flipping the pages deftly,
inked in sorrow and void of respite,
the stained and yellow pages, scream loud to be heard,
the suppressed agony ceases, to try and outlive the days.

Gibberish, esoteric, or legible it is,
scribbles, doodles and emaciated figures,
all lost, all over-analysed, all a part of the past,
numb my invisible heart goes, numb goes my soul.

A pale palm is raised, trying to stop the past,
but the pages keep flipping, relentlessly enroute to the last bit,
stop, please stop! The reality disgusts me,
but I am its creator, I shall be its destructor too.

A haggard me, meak and starvelling,
beholds the treacherous pages, beholds the angst against me,
I pause the galloping pages, I devour 'em one by one,
until the gross book is rendered naked, until I lose my will to succeed.

The pages all mock me, even the tiny bits of shit,
I'm flummoxed at my diabolical behaviour, I drop next to 'em lifelessly,
I'm as flagrant as water, and as frozen as the ice poles,
where did I go wrong? Oh lord, where did I not try?

And yet, I'm most certain, that this is the only way,
and this is the only thing I'm accustomed to,
I've fuhgotten the past, and I can't know the future,
I stand alone, I stand tall, no matter what I need to hold on for long.

I look at those delicate bits, snorting at me to humiliation,
but its me who scoffs at them, for they never understood me,
and never could they comprehend my faith in 'em,
and never could they be the treasure to me, that I was to 'em.

And so the decisive moment stands in front of me,
a bit vague, a bit lost, but I need to grab it now,
and burn the past that's no good to me,
and live with the ashes, that can never talk.

For life goes on, and so does our mind,
and it's time to disavow this old rugged book,
and create some new story, and ascribe life in the white pages,
that soon will turn brown, and soon will be caged again.

But can I really march forth? Can I really let go?
Can I be the one that I was? Even though I don't remember 'her' any more?
I think a new chapter has already begun,
for I don't remember the past, no matter where it is hidden.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Brutal ecstasy...

A love tied in shackles,
a life lost in wait,
to ask for more elixir,
is a sin wrapped in wrath.

With a numb heart and soul,
he watched the light replace,
confined in a vicissitudinous state,
he couldn't help but hate.

And then the clouds revealed,
the cruelty of his pulchritude,
when his carnal-infested body,
transformed into a beast.

He growled and grumbled,
and compassionately moaned,
until his melancholic voice faded,
into the vacuum of feelings so evaded.

With heart wincing in isolated glory,
and mind racing away from realities so gory,
memories shy away from the only life they knew,
as twisted cadaver rolls down, from the treachery so strewn.

The lava spews, the ashes flare up,
the rage forecloses the agony with love,
the intense lividity, the overcoming hatred,
all become heroes, and leave the romance to shed.

And the beast feels lethargic, but still wants to continue,
to pierce his claws, to scathe the living flesh,
to ooze the warm blood, to leave the skin disfigured,
and with that pressure of angst, devour the soul that he loved.

And efface the trace, of her existence altogether,
for betraying him, for tormenting his innards,
for burning his trust, and castigating his love,
her filthy abasement, left him palsied.

To forgive her, is no longer an option,
his packaged soul, is bruised and lacerated,
and reduced to shambles, disgust, and ugliness galore,
how can he release her now? She has to pay.

And so he lifts his obliterated hands,
and thrusts her neck, and pins his claws in,
with outrageous agony, her winces multiply,
he digs deeper, as if into a self-destructing abyss.

Until he's derived enough pleasure, until his sadism declines,
he rips her ugly flesh, like tearing a cloth in two,
he twists the bits until he can twist no more,
and batters the disgusting meat, till its left no more.

And in this void, this blind sweet night,
the beast transforms, into someone he once knew,
and while his rage is still the hero, he welcomes the ritual,
he torments the dead some more, and throws 'it' into the fire.

With ambers trying to escape, the orgy of disgust,
the villainous blobs, now exit the fleshy state,
but the heart that he once loved, is yet to expire,
that red mass of shit, remains untainted from the fiery ribbons.

His hatred illuminates, his emaciated hands lift,
a ruby-studded golden dagger, and commence the penultimate action,
of stabbing the inhumane organ, until the flames around him,
grab his arms and pull him inside, the inescapable pyre.

The treacherous flames burn his face, and burn his soul,
till an epiphany to live, an overpowering will within,
repels the iridescent warmth, that engulfed him in,
he lashes out, on the tender green grass, a life after all.

Burned, bruised, repelled, damaged and ugly,
his physique is scarred, his soul is weakened,
with the ultimate inch of energy, he closes his eyes,
to find the bleak shard of life, if it still exists within him.

He rises, with a dwindling body,
coated with blood, not her's, but his own,
with wounds not only self-inflicted, but those lent by 'her',
he feels the utmost pain, between shades of black and orange.

For in the sky, a stillness wanders,
and on the ground, Satan's crime has now faltered,
an appalling site, will soon disappear,
into the ashes of the dead, into the death of 'love'.

And what is the 'human' to do now?
Live like a beast by night, to reclaim his lost right,
with solitude as his faithful companion,
will he survive the guilt he brought upon himself?

And the alternating emotions, of hatred and love battle,
he wriggles in fury, he wiggles in pain,
when the clouds give way, to a white spec of disgust,
he transforms into the 'beast' again, and lies loosely in dust.

And ardently he wishes, to be stripped off of this face,
and this heart and brain, that no longer lay safe,
and the reverberating agony, slipped gradually out of him,
like water being sucked in by a sponge, only this was vice versa.

And everything went still, everything was quiet,
everyone died in shame, for there was no sorrow,
and the stone cold eyes left open, still gazed into the sky,
as the body lay there emancipated, alone in the dead of night!

P.S.: Pictures used in this post are courtesy: RoHiT Iyer of Memoirs of a Drunken Junkie

Also written for: The Gooseberry Garden: week 6: Stories from mythology, Culture and of life.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


I see the bright blue light,
I see the only happy smile,
as fresh as a flower just blossomed,
as delicate as the morning dew.

With those enigmatic eyes,
I look at the morning glories,
swaying into the wind,
swaying, only to smile.

Walking through the field,
wet grass touching my naked feet,
letting the life within me,
acquiesce to the fragile force of 'insanity'.

And yet my questioning eyes,
are in search of the repelling answers,
for life is a comedy of errors,
or errors of comedy is it?

The fields transform,
the flowers wither,
the smile shatters,
the 'insanity' prevails.

And the world that stands together,
its them against me,
forever and for always it will be,
always an alien, always a misfit i shall be.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Chanakya's Chant - Blogadda Book review

When I first heard about a book called Chanakya’s Chant, I wasn’t very excited about it, to be honest. I thought it would be just another book based on history, brutally tweaked, miserably adapted and would torture the reader exponentially. However, in constant mood for experimental reading, it so happened that the day I was planning to buy this book online was the day I read that Blogadda was releasing the book as part of its Blogadda Book Review program. I applied and was selected to review it along with 49 other reviewers. 

So, intrigued by the name, impressed by the cover and almost satisfied with the end of the book, I would say this book has lived upto its name and reputation. It’s an interesting and easy read. The innovative idea of bundling history with contemporary time while sailing on the common boat called politics, was a winner perse. 

The year is 340 B. C. and the sole aim is Bharat’s unification. The protagonist is Chanakya and the protégé is Chandragupta Maurya. The fictional evolution of the story with underlying facts (that you’d be happy to know), from scratch till the very end, is commendable. The historical part of the book manages to keep you engrossed, forcing you to keep reading till you tire yourself out. Chanakya’s astuteness and wacky wickedness which is void of moral principles to some extent, is well researched and well-portrayed, ultimately resulting in the achievement of the sole positive aim – the unification of Bharat.

The time is now and the sole aim is that of a united India. The protagonist is Pandit Gangasagar Mishra and the protégé is Chandni Gupta. Following the footsteps of his long gone avatar (Chanakya), Gangasagar paints the Indian political landscape with his shrewd mind – all for the betterment of India. The current political scenario has been justly portrayed with a few scenes leaving you awestruck. The element of surprise has been aptly captured in this contemporary period in India sending a shiver down your spine. 

The parallel connection of Chanakya and Gangasagar is spell-binding though at some places in the book, the story could have gone on more smoothly. Some of the clichéd quotes in the book don’t surprise you and it would’ve been better if there was freshness there. But nonetheless, the quotes have been relevantly exploited in a good way – in both the stories. Though Chanakya might keep you glued to the book, Gangasagar might bore you a tad bit since somewhere along the rapturously quaint story line, a few interventions become predictable. The end, in particular, I felt had a bumpy ride and was abruptly shoved there which I think could have done a better job otherwise.

Apart from that, I must say that I was impressed by the author’s language style. With an interesting amalgamation of powered language with quick-read trait, you are left a happy person with an improved vocabulary and knowledge in your arsenal. Overall, I would recommend this book for a refreshing read and a break from all those mushy-romantic/thriller novels that keep flooding the best-seller charts.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Halfway gone

What do you want from me, 
why don't you just answer and see?
Throwing pebbles, rubbles and plinths at me,
you want me to deduce all on my own, my life's mystery.

I'm hanging on, I've been scraping through
the entire journey so far, I haven't been astute,
damaging all the strings attached, I absorb the pain,
only to always be the one to lose, rather than left to gain.

And yet this is what I chose for myself,
and yet this is the only option I leave on my life's shelf,
but how is it that you bless the whole world but me?
And how is it that I'm so complicated, and you're so free?

You've not given me a heart to love, to feel,
but you've given me a brain to comprehend, to deduce and heal,
and the machine that's built inside of me, is finally alive,
only to realise everything around me, is nothing more than a lie.

Is this how my life will proceed, into the short future that I have?
Why do you give me things, only to take them away, I ask?
There's always a good reason, behind everything that happens,
but I'm exhausted searching for the reasons, my mind's lost its haven.

How much do I have to fathom and still hold on?
How detached do I still have to stay, isn't there an explanation, here somewhere?
When will the inimical end draw near, I ask?
What is this life left to be? Just as contradicting as the shroud of Turin's mask.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

An aberration called Emotions...

Efface that facet, off of your face,
embrace that new alibi, adorned with lace,
let go off the past, it's not here to stay,
embroil yourself into the madness, the madness of your prey.

The violent force is blowing, all through your soul,
the latent emotion is imploring, to be released on parole,
the foliage scatters down, laid in the path of your ravage laughter,
you look back with a serene perplexity, and only chose to move forward.

Leave all that that is bygone, you shall not need it any more,
for you now have a new role to play, a more efficacious lore,
the rhythms will now dance, to your tune of rancorous sanctity,
it's time to switch to aquarelle, and leave the shoddy oil paints to bleed.

Your 'disguise' will be your armour, your detachment will be your shield,
you will fight in a new way now, a fresh victory awaits on the field,
the ignoble valour is glistening, it's ready to be charged,
an epiphany distracts you, and you choose to react.

In the midst of the chaos, a canary deftly flutters your way,
amidst the inimical thumping noise, it only chooses to wisely say,
and sing in a sotto voce, a melodious song, that hypnotises your soul,
your nightmare transforms into a reverie, you stand awestruck in cold.

And then you realise, if it's really worth,
this diabolical transformation, which will only haunt like a curse,
maybe the new dark alibi, is not required just yet,
maybe there's still a song left for you, that you can write when you fret.

Because there is always a choice to do something, I say,
and there will always be a choice to not do something, it's not a cliche,
but it ultimately depends on what you want to do,
you've been encumbered with the decision, be prudent, and not shrewd.

For life always moves forward, it's the people who don't,
with dints, dents, lacerations and scars, our soul intermittently gets stoned,
and when you're on the verge, of losing your grip on it all,
just halt and look back, let yourself realise your life before every fall.

Because it's hope and faith, that guides you from inside,
it's easy to get lured with darkness, but difficult to stand aside,
for there is a final end, to everything that survives,
from the soul to the body, once lost, nothing can be revived.

And release your resistance, let your negativity evaporate,
into the omnipresent invisible air, and feel the residue of happiness,
and hold on to all that you want to, live the moments while they last,
for the 'present' and the 'future', all strive to, one day, become your 'past'.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

I don't remember if I like it or not...

  The clock is ticking, I know it's not for me,
time is flying by, I know it's never meant to be,
an asphyxiated state, I'm fighting real hard,
even though I want to embrace it, I cannot make that positive start.

I'm incomprehensible to myself, for the first time in my life,
I've confused myself to the point, where nothing now seems bright,
am I really moving forward, or am I coagulated in time?
Torn between my mind and invisible feelings, do I really don't care a dime?

The more I think, the more I feel choked,
nothing's ethereal now, I cannot fool myself more,
the nascent feelings, need to wriggle and dissolve now,
for the truth is hard to fight, especially when one's incapacitated to interpret it and how.

The answers will never be laid in front of me,
I'll have to unravel them one at a time with speed,
but I'm on the verge of losing it all, and because of my raging grief,
I want to give up on it all, but I cannot, that's just not me.

There has to be a way, I want to live it all before I vanish,
for the clock is still ticking, and I now know it's for me, it cannot be banished,
but I guess some things are never meant to happen,
no matter how strong your hopes get, they will always lay barren.

In this lightning speed world, I've hidden myself somewhere,
no matter how hard I try, I cannot share it with anyone for whom I care,
and I just stand frozen, still, in the midst of these 'humans',
without a face, without a soul, with an emptiness without the space atoms.

Pondering, muttering, mumbling, I tread the path everyday,
altering decisions, trying to find happiness in every way,
but there's something missing, I know not exactly what,
that gets the best of me, and renders me incomplete like a sentence without a full stop.

And all these passions, that haven't been felt yet,
and all these epiphanies, that are yet to be decoded after tests,
will evaporate without being witnessed by that special person, will die their own deaths,
or they will be buried, deep inside my cage, where they'll flutter with my every breath.

I thought I wouldn't have to bury, anything within me,
I thought I'll keep alive, every little thing that made me happy,
but now I see how life changes your perception,
no matter how hard I try, I no longer feel 'happiness', I no longer see any solution.

But yet, I'm walking forward blatantly,
still in the foolish hope of acknowledging even the slightest of anomalies,
I'm exhausted, I'm tired, I want to rest for a while now,
but it's me against myself, who wants to keep going on, no matter how.

If only I was as weak as the others, I would have written more about my feelings,
but I have an alibi to maintain, a mask without healings,
a soul without dependency, a thinking without faith,
a confidence without happiness, a 'me' without 'myself''s embracing weight.

Girl with a rose image: Tamara Kwan (