Seema Seth offers her thoughts on love – Some Love Only Once: The drone story for young audience

Some Love Only Once is a distinct book from all the other books of contemporary literature. I haven’t read this kind of book before. Trust me, reading this book was a sheer pleasure. This is unique. There are no chapters. There are no parts. There are no sections. There is no antagonist, so no planning and plotting. And as such there are no heroes and heroines. The book just flows irrespective of anything and makes a memorable ending. Now you may be curious to know what this book is and to who it is targeted?

Fact: The book has less than ten pages. (Surprised? Read on.)

As the title of the book suggests, this book falls into the romantic genre. If we try to interpret the title, it broadly portrays two perspectives. Firstly, it points out the love that is prisoned in the cage of the poor or cheap mentality of a couple. In spite of being Free, it is not been given enough freedom to fly in the boundless sky. And thus, it is limited to physical intimacy or pleasure. Secondly, if we observe more closely, then we will realise that it talks about pure love. The love that happens only once in a lifetime. And when we allow love, we feel calm, we feel serene. It fills us with clarity. It completes two souls who embrace love. How do you see it, I leave it to you.

The story of the book starts off with the birth of honey bees in a hive. It pictures the beginning and culmination of the lives of male honey bees (the drones). But, in its womb hidden an important lesson of life. The story indirectly tries to put forth the issue of Fleeting Love or Love that changes over time. This issue has become really big and seeks the attention of people. It is apparent that today’s youth are unable to emotionally and mentally settle in their life. They are in search of love that is unconditional. They are struggling hard for it. And in their hunt for true love, they sometimes become so vulnerable that they give mere attraction the name of love. And once the newness of this relationship wears off, love starts to change.

In the times when we are seeing a huge overflow of love stories with no heads and toes in the market, this book by reputed author Seema Seth speaks volumes. She hasn’t spoken anything about anyone or anything in particular. She has just narrated a love story in a very unique style and readers will surely interpret the message correctly – I do believe so. And let me also put it forth to the readers of The Book Blog that Seema’s book is not only for a young audience but for anyone who wants to read something peculiar, once in a time and meaningful. Reading this book will not take more than a few minutes of your busy life. However, the way this book has been written makes all the difference and the message that it delivers makes it totally worth the time you invest in reading it.

Buy the book from Amazon – get a copy here

 

Opinion piece by the blog team, The Book Blog

The Great Indian Bust: A Coming of Age Fiction – Review

Rishabh Bhatnagar’s novel The Great Indian Bust: A Coming of Age Fiction was read by our blogger Akash recently and he has offered his review and opinions about the experience with this emerging novelist’s attempt at writing a personal, subjective and yet effective piece of fiction. You can read the review below and also find the link to buy this novel from Amazon at the end of the review. We hope you will enjoy it.

This is the recent development that I am tracing. The Great Indian Bust: A Coming of Age Fiction suffix added to it proves that the author is not keeping his readers under any false impressions. He has given it out outrightly that his novel is about someone growing – in the terms of age as well as in the domain of intellect and understanding. So, the first point scored by Rishabh at the very first impression. Well, let me introduce you to the guy himself – Rishabh Bhatnagar, the novelist, is a young law student and he wants to write ‘different’ and he has done it, to a very great extent.

In terms of content, the novel is simple, easy to understand and very easy to read and even easier to enjoy. You should not have any difficulties getting the numbers right on a jumbled number box. There are no elements of secrecy or hidden agendas in the work. It is about the life of a young man named Sidhartha who represents the author himself and a large part of the novel matches with the life of Rishabh himself. So, you can even call it a partial autobiography and it would not be wrong.

There is a very simple and like a straight line plot in the novel and the major program is to trace the development of life around and inside the protagonist. However, within this limited scenario, there are instances that will give the readers their chance to laugh, think and even get angry and sad. Well, who might not want this? Complex things are rather kept out of the plot and there is no place for crooked impressions because the author wants to offer the readers something to keep them out of ‘worries and life’s boredom’. He might have succeeded as well!

About his childhood, about his younger friends, about his school life, about his coaching classes, about his scooter, about his friends smoking around him, the abuses… you will find many things in the novel that may relate to anyone’s early days… the novel is simple and its simplicity is the thing that can make the readers a part of it. This is something to be appreciated. However, there are also some low points in the novel. In fact, the biggest absence is of an agenda that binds your things together. There is nothing of that sort offered in The Great Indian Bust and this will haunt some of the readers because they will spend a few important hours of their lives wrestling with this text… However, if you are a serious reader, you can wrest what you want out of any text!

Get a copy of this ‘different’ piece of fiction from Amazon India in Kindle version and read it out to find your things yourself. I am rating it 3.3/5 and I am sure I am doing justice with my critique as well as the novelist’s attempt. Get a copy here:

buy the novel – Amazon India

review by Akash for The Book Blog

(NOTE: Many of the best book review websites in India have also rated this novel very favourably. The work is indeed different and it does succeed in creating a different domain around it. So, you should read it before you judge it by the impressions. All the best!)

Why do we celebrate Holi: Holi Festival by Anitha Rathod – Review

I have been reading a few books recently. A few of them were certainly the regular ones you get to read these days – the romantic fiction. However, a few books, luckily, were deliberately picked up from different genres and that saved my reading hours with delight as well as a new experience. Do we ignore something when we become readers? Yes, we all ignore what we did in childhood; do you remember the books you read as a child? Children literature plays a very important role in the life of a grown-up reader. Today, I will be sharing my review of a children’s book – Why do we celebrate Holi? This book has been written by Anitha Rathod, a famous children author from India.

A picture book that perfectly captures the emotions and tradition attached to the Holi festival, a festival of Hindus celebrated by Indians in every part of the world, this will be appreciated by the parents, liked and widely read by the children and also will establish Anitha as an author of children literature on a further pedestal. I could see very connecting images, very aptly written text and also splendidly packed information – why do we celebrate Holi, how we do it and what are the rituals and history associated with it. And this is what I would like to see in a book for children!

Anitha Rathod has wonderfully written many children books in the past as well. However, this one is certainly demanding special attention as it comes when an occasion is nearing – an occasion that we celebrate – Holi. So, what do you think your children would be after they have celebrated Holi and thrown colours on each other? Let them learn more about the festival through this wonderful book and I am sure they will be interested more than ever – in reading books as well as in knowing more about other festivals. So, this picture-book will work in many ways; it will enhance the interest in literature from a tender age and it will also make the readers (children in this case) more and more curious to ask about reasons behind our rituals, festivals and many other things. And that is why many book bloggers in India have praised the book for its usefulness and content.

So, on the basis of my reading experience and also an analysis of the content, I have all praises for this book by Anitha Rathod – I have nothing in my sight that goes against it. I would recommend this to be read by children who are able to decipher and comprehend the English language at a basic level. You can get a copy for your kids from Amazon:

Buy Anitha’s book – click here

review by Chandan for The Book Blog

Elephants in the Room by Suraj Laxminarayanan – Review

Suraj Laxminarayanan’s latest (and the debut as well) novel, Elephants in the Room, has left me stunned, puzzled as well as satisfied. I have finished the novel yesterday and I am truly fascinated by the imagination and subtle thinking that the novelist has weighed in in his very first novel. It covers the events of merely four days; however, the details that have been in the focus in his writing, Suraj has penetrated various layers of narrative and he has been successful in getting the attention of the readers – perhaps more than he might have expected. Let me also tell you that the novel is voluminous and it requires efforts to be read completely.

Unexpected turns and brain-pushing twists are not there in plenty to keep the readers in a dismay like Nolan’s movies. However, as many as are there, have been plotted very eloquently and in a balanced way so that it creates a very tactical impression on the mind of the reader. Elephants in the Room is basically about a bank robber, a case gone wrong type of robbery which does not take place as planned – rather the gangs of the robbers have wars and they create a pandemonium in the bank.

In the novel, big and small events have been stitched together to create a whole piece that you can enjoy as a thriller fiction with a few sentimental or the sighs of relief, that I can put in my words. Otherwise, there are scenes of ghastly murders and crimes inside the bank which must not be read by the children under 14. For comic relief, the names of the characters must be funny for may readers – Bada, Chota, Nari, 800, 801, A1 and so on… sounds quite interesting, doesn’t it? Many critics have pointed it out and it is so tempting that even I could not hold back…

Well, the novel is a little stretched and it runs up to 89 chapters. Something that you don’t often find these days. While the authors are writing microfiction and giving quick pleasing reads to the readers, Suraj Laxminarayanan has decided to step up and offer something which sticks around for a while and you feel like reading a classic fiction but with modern thinking and modern story. It comes with a simple language and an interesting story with crime, stunning word-depictions of inner thinking and everything that a curious fiction reader would love to read. You can surely light up your study lamp this weekend – get a copy of Suraj’s Elephants in the Room and do read it as soon as you can! We are all in for this one!

Get a copy from Amazon India – Click here

review by Shilpa for The Book Blog

A Dowryless Wedding – Review

Book – A Dowryless Wedding
Author – Merlin Franco
Published by – Authors Upfront
Year Published – 2018
Page Count – 225
Interested readers might be – Young readers, teenagers, readers who like light and humorous satire

“Come Chetta, let’s talk.”

And in actuality, this is the only thing that doesn’t happen in this novel in a way it should be… the story of a marriage which crumbles… A Dowryless Wedding is a story which will entertain the readers, no doubt. Moreover, it will also throw some uncomfortable but direct questions towards the readers who read it with seriousness in their attitude. Merlin Franco, the author, should be applauded for turning this otherwise amusing story into a novel very successfully!

Franklin, who is often called Pranklee by his mother (amma), is the unlikely hero of this novel who has to be pushed into a marriage and at the time when he really wants to live it, is almost forced out of the marriage which was not going so well… you need to read it because I am not going to spell out the entire verse. A Dowryless Wedding brings us to Kanyakumari where we meet the characters in the novel – a husband, a wife, and a car are the major ones and rest others just complete the cast. Laughing on my mention of a car? Do read it to know why did I do so.

“Not a good omen…”
The novel vehemently attacks the unnecessary rituals to propagate a new idea – a dowryless wedding. That is good; however, if not worked out well, this idea can turn its head and bite the originator. Franklin is almost a victim of this and he certainly needs to think again but he won’t.

Clash of Ideas:
A Dowryless Wedding is majorly about the clash of ideas which often strike the alarm for the readers. The male protagonist is a Communist, an atheist and a modern man. His wife, however, is an almost archaic girl – a follower of her parents. It is but natural to invite the clashes like this.

The result:
This novel goes very smoothly in the terms of narrative and plot. Readers can enjoy the work without any confusion, conflict of interpretations or any other things. Merlin Franco has ensured that his novel is read to the very end by putting interesting and amusing instances here and there.

“Kanyakumari is in Tamilnadu.”

If you belong to the Southern pieces of Indian land, you are going to feel at home reading this piece. All the best guys!

Get a copy of this novel from Amazon by clicking the link below:

Merlin Franco’s Book – buy on Amazon India – Click here

review by Rahul for The Book Blog

American Maharajah by Mark Levy

American Maharajah is a 2018 novel written by American author Mark Stephen Levy. Since the publication, the book has been very buzzy among the readers of contemporary fiction as well as those readers who have a keen eye for a class in the contemporary literature. Mark’s work, to be frank, cannot be dumped in the contemporary jargon box because it has the qualities which make a fictional work stand apart from the rest. What I liked the most in the novel American Maharajah is its simplicity and the idea of the author to keep things simple but impressive instead of giving away the beauty of story to the bombastic language and unnecessary twists in the plot. Mark has excelled here, honestly!

American Maharajah is an easy-read novel and it must suit the readers of all sections – the beginners as well as the pros as well as the experts. It has been designed to offer the best reading experience to everyone who decides to read it – I am talking only about the reading experience.

In the terms of plot and the storyline, the novel does not offer something which is entirely new. However, it does offer a freshness and a subtle art of storytelling with a fairly simple plot. The novel moves as per the expectations of the author save some of the instances where it changes to the colour which is not there in the reader’s imagination of the rainbow. We can take that as a ‘surprise element’ which is not many in numbers in American Maharajah.

Ravi Shankar’s character is a fluid element in the novel. It changes with the external effects on it – be it the break-up with Melissa or a relationship with Aishani or the revelations about his birth and parenting. His personality is the thing in the novel which keeps the readers curious and excited for the next happening to disclose itself to them. His visit to India is full of surprises for him as well as for the readers.

The blend of folk or a mythological tale and the modern-day people is something which brings a fresh reading experience. We might not have read something like this recently and this short-novel (only 204 pages compared to voluminous novels) offers at least the reading satisfaction with a complex issue heading to a resolution which is satisfactory for both – the characters as well as the readers. We will have to admit that Mark has written something which is not clumsy or lacking in clarity. He has written a complete fiction with his limited approach to it and that is, indeed, readable and well managed.

If you haven’t read American Maharajah yet, you should read this novel without any further delay. Enjoy this contemporary fiction with a difference! You won’t regret your decision, this is The Book Blog’s assurance with Mark’s novel and we mean it. Happy reading!

You can get a copy of this novel from the Amazon India link below:

American Maharajah on Amazon – buy now