Let’s Talk Embroideries

No wait. It is not what you think it is.

Embroideries need patience. In fact, tonnes and tonnes of it. And I don’t have that reserve of patience in me. What I am talking about is the book of the same name by Marjane Satrapi.

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Image Source: Amazon.com and I hold no rights to it.

It is not a book per se, but a graphic novel and a fine one at that. A quick read, you can actually finish this brilliant piece at one go. On a flight, on a long drive or on a day when you want to take a break from everything and need a change. It is rib-tickling and there are moments that would make you laugh out loud. Really LOUD.

I am afraid of giving away spoilers and hence, I steer clear of penning down more words and not including any quote. You have to enjoy it one word at a time. All I can say is that the book is a masterpiece and this is only the first of her many books that I have picked up to read.

I have targeted her book Persepolis next as a friend highly recommends the same to me.

Have you read Embroideries? What do you like about the book/graphic novel?

 

 

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I Never Read Non-Fiction, Almost…

Non-fiction is the dark sheep of my reading expeditions. Biographies, autobiographies, memoirs, self-help books etc. are never picked up by me from the shelves, apart from gifting purposes.

Not that I never tried reading them, or haven’t ever read them. But beyond a few pages, I start yawning and can’t seem to focus. My heart and soul wanders away and I long to pick up a work of fiction as soon as possible.

Such is my condition.

Till date, the only non-fiction works that I read (and remember) are :

  • You Can Win by Shiv Khera
  • Who Moved My Cheese
  • The Diary Of Anne Frank (Read it numerous time)
  • Timepass by Protima Bedi
  • Letters from a father to a daughter
  • Ogilvy on Advertising

And I guess that’s all.

I am still figuring out the WHY of non-fiction aversion. And I have concluded that it is because of the fact –

  • If I can learn it from a story, why read someone else’s account?
  • Self-help never motivates me and I find it to be a bit “preachy”. I don’t like being “preached”.
  • I feel lost. Every single time I pick up a non-fiction work. Sometimes, I feel I am losing my identity and questioning everything when I read excerpts. Whereas, I am overall a very optimistic person who never compares and contrasts her life with others. So, no.
  • I can’t visualise anything when I read a work of non-fiction! I can’t imagine a scenario where person X and person Y meet at an office and then person Y becomes the bigshot and blah. No. Not happening. Give me names! Give me imaginary setups please.

Having said that, I believe that I have learnt more from Harry Potter or The Sisterhood of The Traveling Pants than from a Men are from Mars. I learn more from Jodi Picoult and Jhumpa Lahiri than the who’s who of non-fiction world.

I know I am biased, but this is how I function. Hopefully, I do aim to read more non-fiction in the coming days (one book is already shortlisted), but I am not promising that I won’t wander off! 😉

What about your equation with non-fiction works? Suggestions are most welcome.

 

 

Giveaway on Goodreads: Myth by Erin Ritch

Hello folks!

I have news. Erin Ritch, the author of Myth is hosting a giveaway on Goodreads. If you are interested, then head straight to Goodreads and enter the giveaway! You can always get lucky! 🙂

The Giveaway ends on October 12th, so hurry up!!!!! And don’t forget to tell me if you win! 😉

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Myth by Erin Ritch

Myth

by Erin Ritch

Giveaway ends October 12, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

Guestpost: We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves Review by Nam H Nguyen

About Nam H Nguyen

Nam H Nguyen is a Melbourne based freelancer. His publications can be found online at The Australia Times magazine and on his personal blog, Scratches and Scribbles. An Australian by birth, Nam is a major in Creative Writing and English literature. He can be found perusing Melbourne’s many laneways blanching at the prices of tea.

Do visit his blog to read more write-ups: www.scratchesandscribbles.com


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 We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves By Karen Joy Fowler

Published 30th May, 2015, by G.P. Putnam’s Sons

ISBN 0399162097 (ISBN13: 9780399162091)

310 pages

Man Booker Prize Nominee (2014)Nebula Award Nominee for Best Novel (2013)PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction (2014),California Book Award Gold Medal for Fiction (2013)John W. Campbell Memorial Award Nominee (2014)

Specsavers National Book Award for International Author of the Year (2014)

“In the phrase ‘ human being,’ the word ‘being’ is much more important than the word ‘human.’ ”

Imagine if your father operated your childhood as a social experiment. That is the life of the younger Rosemary Cooke, a life of the apathetic notes and scientific assertions. Now older, her twin sister, Fern has disappeared and her older brother, Lowell, has run away – leaving her with only her mother and father. Weeks after having finished the novel, I still stare at its cover and her voice still echoes with her grief.

Awkward and lonely, Rosemary hides from many things in life, but she doesn’t shy away from everything – and it’s with this determination, that she won’t lose her parents, or herself too.

Author of the 2004 critically acclaimed Jane Austen Book Club, now a film, Karen Fowler has again brought to us a modern work of art.Interspersed with her natural charm, Rosemary Cooke makes for an endearing protagonist. With such talent that couldn’t be done otherwise, she comes too readers as isolated, and then ordinary – and suddenly she leaves you unique and profound. Now older, her voice she echoes with youthful jubilance, and her intelligence and wit leaves you with observations that you can take with you for life.

It’s this complexity –Rosemary’s voice and Fowler’s skill that reshapes your typical family drama into something more relevant today. Readers would forgive the authorsdiscourse, only because it integrates so seamlessly into the structure of the narrative.

What happens when you remove the word human from human being? That’s what half the people I knoware today. Humans or beings, both aspects are important to the modern representation of humanity. Fowler’s greatest achievement is not her innovation on family drama itself – but rather how she sets about asking questions which otherwise are so heavy handed.

Ultimately, the narrative asks us to accept the reality of the world which we live, but leaves us with emotionally charged knowledge to decide our own.

 “I didn’t want a world in which I had to choose between blind human babies and tortured monkey ones… that’s the sort of choice I expect science to protect me from, not give me.”

It’s through novels like these, where we can ponder a little bit, and put the word ‘human’ back where it belongs – right beside the word ‘being’.

 

My Pick From The Most Beautiful Literary Quotes Of All Time.

Book readers and avid fans of literature are suckers for quotes. Some hold on to them forever, some, like me, tend to forget them as soon as they close the pages. Thanks to this blog, I will be able to preserve some of my most favorite quotes, which I have come across while reading or while stalking words on the internet. Take a look and tell me how many of them do you love as well!


“Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.” -Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

“In our village, folks say God crumbles up the old moon into stars.” — One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich by Alexander Solzhenitsyn

“You forget what you want to remember, and you remember what you want to forget.” – The Road by  Cormac McCarthy

“I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart; I am, I am, I am.”
— The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

“Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change.” – Frankenstein by Mary Shelly

“The pieces I am, she gather them and gave them back to me in all the right order.”
— Beloved by Toni Morrison

“Sometimes we get sad about things and we don’t like to tell other people that we are sad about them. We like to keep it a secret. Or sometimes, we are sad but we really don’t know why we are sad, so we say we aren’t sad but we really are.” The Curious Incident of The Dog in The Night time by Michael Haddon

“And now that you don’t have to be perfect, you can be good.”
— East of Eden by John Steinbeck

“One must be careful of books, and what is inside them, for words have the power to change us.”
The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare

“Call me Ishmael.” – Moby Dick by Herman Melville (not a quote per se, but it is magnetic)

“Neighbours bring food with death and flowers with sickness and little things in between. Boo was our neighbour. He gave us two soap dolls, a broken watch and chain, a pair of good luck pennies, and our lives.”To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

 

 

How To Lose Friends By Reading Books!!

Call this insane. But I have seen this happen with my own two eyes. You can lose friends by reading books. Not that you SHOULD. But I digress. Here is how you tend to lose friends as you read books:

  • Books on your to-be-read list outnumber the friends you currently have in your life.
  • You’d rather curl up in your bed or couch with a comforter, book, torch and coffee/tea than go out with friends on a weekend.
  • When someone attempts to snap you out of your reading phase, you mentally cut them off, even if its only for that very instant.
  • You love the smell of books – old and new, more than you love the smell of people!
  • You don’t dream of matching curtains and bed covers. You dream of a room full of books and reading nooks.
  • You gravitate towards people who are as obsessed with books as you are.
  • You often judge people based on your current read or a book you read in the recent past. This doesn’t go down well with them I suppose!
  • Nobody can understand bookspeak.
  • Books are your BAE. Period.

9 Valuable Tips For Turning A Non-Reader Into A Reader

A classmate of mine was a non-reader. For a long, long time, he had aversion to the world of words. One day, he discovered the joy of reading and there was no looking back for him. He was in his mid-twenties when he started.

Takeaways?

A. It is never too late to begin reading.

B. With the right books, anyone can become a reader.

So, how do you make the transition? How do you go to the other side of the fence and have all the green grass? Maybe, these points will help you.

  1. Physical book vs Ebook. And the debate rages on. I would suggest you to opt for the former. But if you are more comfortable reading on a screen, invest in an Ebook reader such as Kindle, for distraction-free reading. But if your will-power is strong, then you can always read on a tab or any other device.
  2. Become a member of a local library. This way, you can get access to each and every genre of book without spending all your life’s savings!
  3. Or read online. Archive.org, Project Gutenberg and a number of other websites allow you to read books or sample chapters online for free. Go for them!
  4. Choose a reading nook. Where no one can come between you and your book. Just saying! 😀 Any place where you can comfortably sit and read at a stretch will do.
  5. Dedicate a time of the day for reading. Go for a digital detox and  indulge in reading. Even if it is for fifteen to twenty minutes, dedicate yourself for reading completely. Over the time, you can always increase the duration.
  6. Choose a book by its cover. If dull and drab book covers don’t make you feel interested in reading, switch to books with a lovely cover design. Or maybe, you can switch to a different edition of the same book with a different cover design. Hey! Cover designers get paid for this! 😉
  7. Read books based on movies. This will get you interested, somewhat. Goodreads has a list and so does Listchallenges. Take your pick.
  8. Read fanfics. Reading fanfics is a fan-tastic exercise. It gives you a fresh perspective and answers a number of ‘what-ifs’ you always had in mind. Best part is, you can read them online for free!
  9. Read books that have lesser number of pages. When you complete a book, you get a sense of achievement. So, why not begin with books that can be completed easily?  Here are some lists:

Want to add to the list? Be my guest.

7 Reasons Why ‘Buying Books’ Wins Over ‘Buying Makeup’ For Me

Nope. I am not against those who buy makeup and love it to the core. It is just that they are a different species and I am a different species. And after buying makeup with a friend, for the friend, I have come to a definite conclusion and that is – I rather invest in books than makeup. My reasons would be:

  1. Makeup has a poor shelf life. 3 years max. Books, well no such limit on them!
  2. Spending a grand on a makeup fetches you maybe a handful of products or just one product. Spending a grand on books, can fill up your entire shelf (if you purchase from sales and book fairs).
  3. You need to practice with a steady hand – how to apply makeup. No such skills are required to read a book.
  4. Can you multitask while applying makeup? I bet you can’t. Books allow you to multitask in more ways than one. 😉
  5. Makeup trends change with season and time. Books refuse to do so. That is why we have classics.
  6. You cannot inherit makeup products passed down several generations. With books, it is a possibility.
  7. Precision is a must for makeup. But books let you be an oaf.

These are my excuses of not investing in that perfect Marsala lipstick or the latest eye liner. I would rather have a rare copy of To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee, plop on an unshapely bean bag and start reading it nonstop.

Book Excerpt: People We Love by Jenny Harper

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This is an excerpt from Jenny Harper’s latest release – People We Love. If you like it, please feel free to share your feedback here and with Jenny. You can also read her interview here.

Webpage       http://jennyharperauthor.co.uk/

Blog                http://jennyharperauthor.co.uk/

Amazon           Buy the book


Chapter One

Catalogue number 15: Child’s shoe. 16th-century? ‘Concealment shoe’. Found in rafters of agricultural worker’s cottage outside Hailesbank. Donors: Eric and Sheila Flint, Forgie. ‘Concealment shoes’ have been found concealed in wall cavities or among roof rafters of many old houses. They were thought to ward off evil.

When Jamie was alive, AlexaGordon wore hippy dresses in luminous colours and danced barefoot on the lawn at midnight.

When Jamie was alive, they ate drizzle cake and made scones heaped high with cream and jam.

When Jamie was alive, she had a future.

And then it all changed.

I don’t know what you thought you were doing,she saidsilently to her brother for the hundredth time, getting into that car that night. You might have accepted the risk for yourself. But you had no right at all to ruin everyone else’s lives.

She looked down at the bowl in front of her. Breakfast cereal stared back, sodden and limp. She pushed the dish away.

‘You must eat, Alexa dear,’ her mother Martha said, capturing a stray grey lock that was hanging in front of her face and twisting it round her fingers.

‘Don’t fuss, Mum,’ Lexie answered without thinking.

Martha bit her lip and hunched into herself as she pulled her tired-looking peach candlewick dressing gown closer round her thin frame.

Idiot, Lexie chided herself. It’s the anniversary of Jamie’s death. Think before speaking, today of all days.

The problem was that her mother’s tendency to fuss had become an obsession with her wellbeing. It was understandable, but sometimes hard to bear. Lexie looked down at her plate. She had barely touched the cereal.

‘It’s gone soggy,’ she said, trying to be conciliatory. ‘If I make toast, will you have some?’

Concern could run both ways.

She saw Martha’s mouth twitch at the corners. Whatever else she might be, her mother wasn’t stupid.

‘A little,’ Martha touched her hand lightly. ‘If you have time.’

Lexie stood up and cleared her plate from the table. Living at Fernhill again was both strange and stiflingly familiar. She was thirty years old and once believed she could build a career as an artist. Now all she had to remember this by was a tattoo round her thumb and hair the colour of a flamingo’s wings, plus a tendency to see everything in terms of how it might be captured on canvas.

Thanks for nothing, Jamie— 

‘Brown bread okay?’

‘Fine. Thank you.’

She cut two slices and pushed them into the toaster. Outside the tall sash window, the garden was blanketed in an early morning mist. In the far corner, by the pergola, she could just see the blossom on the cherry tree, delicate and wraithlike.

‘I do appreciate this, Alexa. Your being here, I mean.’

A blackbird took off from one of the branches and a small flurry of petals swirled softly towards the grass. Lexie pursed her lips. How could she fail to know this? Martha’s thanks were expressed ten times a day, their utterance a delicate trap. She was all her parents had left and she had to be there for them. This meant, she told herself, that she didnot regret marching into Patrick Mulgrew’s gallery in Edinburgh a year ago and telling him she was withdrawing her exhibition.

Even though it meant the end of their relationship as well.

Her throat swelled with unshed tears and she had to summon all her willpower to push away the hurt she still felt at their separation. Thinking about Patrick wouldn’t do any good. Instead, she retrieved the toast and rearranged her face into her customary jaunty smile before she turned round.

‘I know you do. Come on, Mum. Let’s eat. Then I must get to work. I take it Dad left early?’

She didn’t really need to ask. Where her mother was all dependence, Tom Gordon had turned into The Great Provider – strong, uncompromising and utterly resistant to any kind of conversation about his son.

Martha’s eyes glazed over.

Some family we’ve become, Lexie thought. Surely we weren’t always like this?

‘I’d better go, Mum. Dad’s called a special meeting.’

‘Please be tolerant, darling. I know he’s obsessive about the store, but it’s because he wants to show he loves us.’

‘I am tolerant. Most of the time, anyway.’

She and her father were two of a kind in many ways. They certainly both threw themselves into work as a diversion.

‘Will you be all right? What are you going to do today?’

Martha stood up. Her dressing gown hung off her body in loose, sad folds. Once she’d been a legal secretary – smart, efficient and very organised. Grief was eating her up.

‘I’m going,’ she said, ‘to do some gardening. I think.’

Lexie found the shifts in her mother’s character profoundly unsettling. And now she had to prepare to be unsettled all over again, because her walk to work would take her past Patrick Mulgrew’s house.

Ten minutes later, Lexie stepped through the front door of Fernhill and pulled it closed. It was eight thirty in the morning and she tried to leave the ache of loss behind her in the gloomy spaces that had once been filled with laughter. She tugged her old tweed jacket closer, glad of its warmth. There was no point in being bitter. It was a waste of time to think about the things that might have been.

Despite the obvious truth of this, there was no way of avoiding Patrick’s house. It took seven minutes to cover the distance between Fernhill and The Gables. Seven minutes of separation. For a brief time she and Patrick had both found it amusing that he lived in Hailesbank near her parents while she lived in Edinburgh, near his gallery. They hadn’t been together long enough to change that.

Three minutes. She reached the end of James Street and crossed onto Darnley Place. Patrick’s continued proximity was a fleabite that itched, she reminded herself, nothing more. She didn’t care about him now: she could never have sustained a relationship with Patrick because they were too different. The way she saw it, she put family first and Patrick thought only about profit. Better to find that out sooner rather than at some point in the future, when they might have become knotted together, like roots round a boulder, so that separating would tear at the fabric of life.

Six minutes. Patrick owned a smart art gallery – or, to be more precise two, one in London and one in Edinburgh. People saw him as either discriminating and astute or snobbish and arrogant. Lexie lengthened her stride. She found it impossible to forget Patrick because everything that mattered to her was so tightly entwined with him: ambition, career, and passion. Was that why she’d loved him so much? In the short time they’d been together, he’d taken her heart, her body and her brain – the complete package – and made them all his.

Seven minutes. There it was now, a million pounds’ worth of sandstone and lawn, the epitome of everything the man stood for – style, statement and substance. Crow-stepped gables, baronial turrets and an old Scots pine standing sentinel by the gate.

Lexieglanced down at the tattoo round her thumb. ‘Artbollocks’ it read – an indelible statement of belief about art and honesty.

‘Why disfigure your beautiful hands like that?’ Patrick had once asked, tracing the letters with his long fingers as they’d lain limb to limb, half drugged by ardour.

‘So that I never forget,’ she’d answered fiercely, ‘about pretentiousness.’

He’d lifted her thumb to his lips and kissed each letter, one at a time. Eleven feathery kisses.

‘You’re very different,’ he’d said, ‘but I think I might just be in love with you.’

His car wasn’t there, she noted, which was a relief. They’d learned politeness this last year, but kept their distance. Too many words had been spoken that couldnever be unsaid. Still – he didn’t know it – but  fending off the hurt she felt about their break-up was like rolling back the tide:­ impossible.

By the time she arrived at the Thomson Memorial Park, the mist was beginning to lift and the park was already alive with its quota of elderly dog-walkers and mums with buggies. She glanced right – a habit she had developed – to catch a glimpse of the river as it flowed past the foot of Fisher’s Wynd. She found the water soothing and it worked its magic again this morning because at last she was able to put Patrick firmly out of her mind and focus on Jamie. This was his day, after all, and despite her anger about his death, he’d always be a part of her.

Stay with me, bro.

When she reachedKittle’s Lane she turned right, so that she’d pass Cobbles. If Pavelwas in the shop already, she’d wave to him.

Lexie adored Cobbles. She loved the jumble of antiques Pavel seemed able to conjure up from nowhere. Each object, however humble, had a story to tell. A stone hot water bottle shivered out a tale of freezing nights in icy beds; a moustache cup in fine porcelain whispered of male vanity; a carpet beater, twisted from rattan into a Celtic knot, hinted at the hard labour that housework once was. Most of all, Lexie loved the vintage clothes that peeked tantalisingly from cubbyholes or begged for attention from serried ranks of hangers on rails at the back of the shop. She was addicted to vintage.

Half way down the lane, she spottedPavelSkonieczna sashaying out of the shop. He placed his sandwich board on the pavement and stepped back to admire it, his hands wafting up to his mouth with characteristic grace. Cobbles, read the elegant copperplate script, Antiques and Collectibles. Lexie smiled. Pavel(always dressed in vintage, always colourful) was the perfect advertisement for his own shop. Today he was smart in green tweed – his favourite suit – teamed with a mustard moleskin waistcoat and brown brogues.

She speeded up. ‘Pavel! Hi!’

Shoulders straightened and tweed turned. ‘Lexie. Darling. You’re early today.’

Lexie grimaced. ‘I know. Dad’s called a staff meeting before we open.’

Pavel shook his head. ‘You shouldn’t be working in that place. It’s not right for you.’

Spot on, Pavel. Like trying to shove a jelly through a sieve and expecting it to come out whole on the other side.

‘I know. But what can I do?’

‘Stand up for yourself. You always used to. They use you.’

‘It’s not that simple.’

She let her parents use her, because she had to. It was the only way she could think of to make things better. It was her way of helping herself as well.

‘You’re a good daughter.’

Lexie hesitated. Pavel confided recently that his partner Guy had died some years ago and he’d moved to Hailesbank to escape the sad memories. His only family now was a snake of a sister who had disowned him and, because he never talked about it, Lexie guessed how much it hurt him.

Pavel spared her the embarrassment of having to think about what to say.

‘Is it about that marketing plan?’

‘I expect so.’

She’d spent the last month working with Neil Taylor, the assistant manager at her father’s furniture store, on a plan designed to drag the old family business protesting and spluttering into the twenty-first century. Or rather, Neil had been working on it, in his careful, business-like way, and she had been attempting tomodernise the store by selecting more stylish stock and updating the layout. At least, that’s how she sawher role.Her father was proving resistant to change.

‘I’m a bit nervous, Pavel, to tell you the truth.’

‘Do you think he’ll veto it?’

Lexie shrugged and pulled her jacket across her chest. The sun might be dappling the river already, but it hadn’t dropped in on Kittle’s Lane yet.

‘You know Dad.’

Compassion glowed in Pavel’s eyes and Lexie looked away. Sympathy was always the hardest part of friendship to accept.

‘I must dash,’ she said. ‘Sorry.’

‘Good luck, darling.’

‘Thanks!’

The store where Lexie was heading was at the east end of the high street. It was part of a run of shops built in the mid-nineteenth century when Hailesbankhad been at its most prosperous. Her great-grandfather had taken up the first lease, and the sign he’d proudly commissioned to run above the entire shopfrontwas still there.

Gordon’s Furniture Emporium (Est. 1892)

The elaborate letters were painted in pure gold leaf on a forest green background and the whole sign was covered in protective glass so that, a century and a half later, it still announced its presence with undimmed glory.

‘The trouble is,’ Neil had observed when they’d studied the frontage as part of their research, ‘that sign is probably the last smart thing left in the whole place.’

He’d put his finger on the problem. Was there really any need to look further to discover why Gordon’s was struggling for survival?

Lexie pushed open the heavy oak door and marched in. A man was standing by the overstuffed chesterfield, the tartan one she particularly disliked. He was around six feet tall and strongly built, with wide shoulders and narrow hips, and he was casually dressed in a rugby shirt and jeans. One of the new guys from the removal firm, probably. She hadn’t seen him before.

Or had she? Although he was facing away from her, towards the back of the store, there was something disturbingly familiar about the figure.

‘Can I help you?’ she said, the nagging in the recesses of her brain making her voice sharper than usual. ‘We’re not actually open yet.’

He whipped round.

‘Christ! Where’d you materialise from? I didn’t hear you come in.’

Lexiewasn’t breathing. Why wasn’t she breathing? It should be simple, shouldn’t it? She did it all the time. She’d done it all her life, for heaven’s sake.

‘Cameron?’

The man stepped forward.

‘You haven’t changed a bit. Not even the hair, I ssee.’

Six years was a long time, yet it disappeared in an instant. Lexie’s lungs inflated with sweet oxygen before a sense of devastation caught the back of her knees. She was drowning in desire again, just as she always used to be. Shocked by her reaction, she forced herself to look amused – one humiliation by Cameron Forrester was enough for a lifetime.

‘Well, well, the wanderer returns. Have your folks killed the fatted calf?’

‘Nah. Mum won’t buy meat at the supermarket and the butcher’s closed since I was last here. She made apple crumble for me. I’ve missed crumble.’

His grin was just as Alexa remembered it: irrepressible. The smile faded as he scanned her face. He’d changed. Once, he would just have flashed a wink and cracked a joke; now there was something more observant – or was it more calculating? – in the way he was studying her.

‘Crumble, huh?’

The words emerged as a croak and she cleared her throat.

Cameron Forrester had been a member of the Hailesbank Hawks until injury had put him out of rugby for good. He still bore the scars: a broken nose that gave his face a lived-in look, and a scar under his chin from where a studded boot sliced it open in a hard-fought league game. ‘Badges of honour’, he used to say, when Lexie teased him about the nose or ran her fingers along the white seam of the scar.

‘You’re looking terrific.’

He took another step closer. Instinct made her edge away. How was it possible that he looked so like the Cameron she’d fallen in love with all those years ago?

‘Am I?’

Her reserve seemed to fluster him.

‘I’ve been away,’ he said needlessly. ‘Running activities for children on a cruise ship. Children! Me! Can you imagine?’

‘Not really, no.’

Questions scratched at her mind like horsehair. Does he know about Jamie? Does he know I’m back living in Hailesbank? Is that why he’s come?

‘So how are you, Lexie?’

He edged towards her for the third time. She clutched at a high-backed recliner, upholstered in gunmetal and steel blue chenille. The cloth felt coarse and unfriendly under her fingers, but this time she managed to stand her ground.

‘Why did you leave, Cameron?’

Why didn’t you write?

‘I heard about Jamie,’ he said. ‘I’m so sorry.’

‘Thank you.’

The stock response slipped out before she could stop it. It was what she always said whenever anyone offered condolences. Damn him! Using Jamie as a personal shield was unforgivable.

‘What a bloody waste,’ he blurted out.

People didn’t usually say things like that. They tiptoed round the subject, they never trampled right through the heart of it.

‘Oops,’ he said, seeing her expression, ‘Sorry. Me and my mouth. But honestly, it’s true, isn’t it? Jamie had so much going for him.’

‘Can we leave this?’

‘Shit. I’m not good at—’

Lexieswung away. She spotted a sagging cushion on a nearby sofa and grabbed it, bashing the middle to plump it up. What are you good at, Cameron? Apart from breaking hearts.

‘Did you want something? I’ve got work to do.’

‘Just to say hi. And see if you’d meet me for a drink after you’re finished here.’

Meetyou?’

‘Well,’ he muttered, dropping his head in a semblance of repentance so that all she could see was a mass of thick, sandy hair. She didn’t need to stroke it to remember how it felt.

‘I owe you an explanation.’

‘I really don’t want to hear it.’

Liar! She really didwant to hear it, but six years of hurt got in the way of admitting this.

‘No. Fair enough.’

The grin was back, but wry – another new trait. Cameron had never been one for navel-gazing. He was a physical contact man. A cheerful, generous, blunder-in-feet-first-but-in-a-well-meaning-kind-of-way man. The absolute antithesis, now that she thought about it, of Patrick Mulgrew.

‘Take your point.’

He ran his hand through his thatch so that it stood momentarily on end before tumbling, in the old way, down across his eyes again. When he turned to go, she was conscious of disappointment. At the door the grin reappeared, spiced this time with mischief.

‘It’s okay, I can see you need time to get used to me being back. It doesn’t have to be today, we can meet up tomorrow. I’ll call you.’

Infuriated by his presumption, her spirit returned and she hurled the cushion at him.

‘Don’t bother! I won’t change my—’

But it fell, softly, a yard short and the heavy oak door swung on empty air.

Six years of silence and now he was back. Where did this leave her, for heaven’s sake?

We Are Readers

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

We are readers…

There are chances you will spot us. In a park, on a bench.

At the cafeteria, probably by a window.  In the tube/sub or at a quaint little street.

On rooftops in the setting sun. On rooftops in the rising sun.

In transit from one continent to another – airport lounges and mid air.

At bookstores, catching a whiff. Fillings carts with books and filling lungs with the smell of books.

In libraries, amidst our kith and kin – having lived similar lives, embarked on similar journeys through stories.

We also hide books within books to let not the world know we are ‘UP TO SOMETHING‘.

Strain eyes to read under sheets with a torch. Take our books everywhere. Even the loo.

Raise your hand, if you are a reader too!

Lessons Learnt: The Book Thief

I stumbled upon The Book Thief while combing through new arrivals at the library of a school, where I worked as an educator. Unfortunately though, I did not have the time to pursue the book and had to return it without reading a page. It was the first edition of the book and it was in 2009. After many years and many jobs later, when I turned a writer – of a different sort of course, I chanced upon The Book Thief again and decided to give all my extra time and undivided attention to the book. Having a deep set curiosity about the Holocaust and Holocaust literature in particular, I kept on reading the pages till one fine day, there were no more pages left for me to explore. I have been meaning to write a review ever since that day but I think with so many reviews of the wonderful book, I will crumble and not do justice! Instead, I thought of this post series where I will write about the lessons learnt from the brilliant work by Marcus Zusak. Let it begin 🙂


Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

  • You will find the most unusual narrator for your books. Death is the narrator for The Book Thief. And he does a wonderful job of it. No, not death. Marcus Zusak!
  • You will never feel like wasting food at the table. Never. Or at least think of the situations in a WWII era with limited rations.
  • You will find a Rudy Steiner and a Liesel Meminger in your friends. Maybe a Max as well.
  • Reading will look more appealing to you and so will be writing.
  • Maybe, you will know how to prioritize things in your life. You will understand why “the most important things in life aren’t things” in the true sense.
  • You will be thankful for having so many privileges. You really will.
  • You will get a new perspective about Death.
  • You will have a bunch of quotes to guide you in your life.
  • Saukerl and Saumensch. You will learn how to swear in German. Like a PRO!

Read the book guys and girls. It is lengthy but it is speedy. It is a tearjerker….saying for those of you who need tissues with some books. But it also has its share of laughter and bittersweet joys!

Guestpost: Happiness is part of the Self by Erika

Prologue: First of all I want to pass on a big, big hug to Sucheta for inviting me not only for an interview on her blog but also for this guest post. It came to me out of the blue and I feel honored I was considered. Feel strongly hugged again, Sucheta!

My book I’m Free – Awareness of Who You Are by Discovering Who You Are Not!Is a guide from fear, self-doubt, and misunderstandings accumulated over a life time to awareness, clarity, and a conscious reconnecting with the powerful and creative spirit we are. When we feel this connection, we have access to unlimited possibilities in order to live the life we always dreamed of. Happiness  – real solid happiness– results from it. I thought this might be an interesting topic for this guest post. I hope you enjoy it.


Image Source: Wikimedia

Image Source: Wikimedia

Everybody wants to be happy. But still so many people believe that happiness is something they get from outside. But that’s not true.

True happiness is an aspect of our Self. We don’t need to hope for it, beg for it, or even fight for it. Don’t fight for anything. Fighting for something says that you believe in a lack. You believe that you lost something or something was taken from you. Fighting for happiness would mean that happiness is something you have to get, something you could lose, or something you are gifted with. Fighting for happiness is a conviction that you need to get it from outside.

But this whole fight is a big misunderstanding. You are created from the image of God which means you are love with everything you are. You are light and bliss into the deepest core of your being. Happiness is an inseparable part of this love. So how could you ever need to fight for happiness when it has always been part of yourself?

Let the outside world be outside and make yourself aware of who you are. You will find happiness and any empowering feeling always (and only) within you. Yes, we can be inspired by the outside world to rediscover happiness. But even then it leads us inside again where this flame has always been burning. Everything you were looking and fighting for so desperately lies within you waiting patiently for the moment to be called from its sleep. It has been never gone but only unseen because of a misunderstanding due to the belief into an illusion.

Whenever you think you had to fight for love, peace, happiness than just because you started to believe more in what you see outside of you instead of what you are always connected with, always have, and never can lose. Of course there can be events in our lives which can make us sad. But sadness is not the same like unhappiness. I was very sad when my father died, I was sad when my pets died. I was sad when I had to let go of dreams. But what kept my feet on the ground was the carpet of happiness I have been walking on. This happiness as a basic condition. It is the reason for my power and strength during sad times. Happiness is an aspect of love. Love is God and you are an aspect of God. Carrying his spark within you. Happiness is always with you.

Whatever good you have is all from God.

Whatever evil, all is from yourself.

– The Koran

In Love and Light!


I thank Erika for this lovely post. You can go through her own blog by clicking here.

 

The Fangirl Tag

Image Source: Pixabay

Image Source: Pixabay

I came across this lovely blog of Kayleigh and I am all up for her Fangirl Tag. So, here I go ahead with the tag. Enjoy the read and feel free to use the tag and post 🙂


1. First Person I ever obsessed over?

I think it must be Alan Rickman. He was so perfect as Snape. A role, he carried out with great elan.

2. Current obsession?

Marvel’s Daredevil is my current obsession. It is just so sleek. I love the concept totally.

3. Favourite band?

Nothing specific. I listen to very few songs to be honest. I like Paramore, Linkin Park, Snow Patrol, The Rasmus etc. to name a few.

4. Favourite singer?

I have a lot of favourites. Currently, I love Agnes Obel for singing the Riverside. I also love Katy Perry, she is just different and recently, I listened to Rose Lambert’s Secrets and have been a fan ever since 🙂

5. Favourite YouTuber?

No one in particular. I use YouTube for reliving my childhood in the 90’s 🙂

6. First concert?

A college fest. That’s it. Not a fan of crowdy places.

7. Favourite movie?

There are so many……gah! I will name a few.

Hachiko

Freaky Friday

The Conjuring

Rang De Basanti

Maid of Honor

and the list will go on….and on…. 😉

8. Favourite actor/actress?

Irfan Khan and Chris Pratt and Tom Hiddleston and Jim Parsons and Benedict Cumberbatch and Michael Huisman and Kit Harington and Pedro Pascal…

Lena Headley and Kaley Cucco and Rose Leslie…..

This has to stop. I like a lot of people. :-p

9. First celebrity crush?

No one in particular. I loved Launchpad though. From Ducktales. Because he is just so awwwwww-dorable 😀

10. Ever got made fun of for what I like?

Yes. But then, people have their choices and I have mine. I don’t mind really.

11. Favourite book?

A Thousand Splendid Suns and Harry Potter Series. The two frontrunners of a huge list.

12. Favourite TV show?

Game Of Thrones and Grey’s Anatomy. I also love Full House. And also, a huge fan of Big Bang Theory!

13. Favourite fictional character?

Fred and George. Period.

All characters from GOT.

14. Something I love about a fandom I’m in?

Dragons. Direwolves. Dorne. I love these in Game of Thrones. It is very interesting a series and I can’t get enough of it.

15. Something I hate about a fandom I’m in?

Game of Thrones – Almost everyone gets killed. 😦

16. Would you ever take a bullet for the people I fangirl over?

No. Plain no. 😉 I want to live my life and enter more fandoms 🙂

17. Do I ever hide the fact that I like someone out of fear of getting teased?

No. Everyone knows who I Fangirl over 🙂

18. Have I ever met any of my idols?

Hell no 😦 But I would want to!!

19. Do I have any merchandise of the people I fangirl over?

A few. Not of people, but series. I often give them away to friends who would want them more.

20. Favourite fangirl moment?

Everytime I flip through a book I love or watch a show online and on TV, I have my fangirl moment. 🙂

Guestpost: Never Letting Go by Adi (The Happy Lifeaholic)

Prologue: There are some books, which refuse to fade from our memories, no matter how hard we may try. Most of such books are classics and it will not be surprising if they have been passed down thorough several generations. As the very first post of my guestblogs, I present Adi, who is a talented young gun having her blog called The Happy Lifeaholic.


Never Letting Go

Once upon a time Adi used to be an avid reader. I was the kid who read through math and physics classes. I walked into walls because I was so intent on whatever book had caught by imagination on that day. I wrote a book report on The Merchant of Venice (an abridged version) in Grade 3 while my classmates were still on fairy tales. I also managed to ruin my eyes at the tender age of 9, all because I would stay up past “lights out”, reading by the diffused beams of a streetlight filtering in through the curtains of my room. I loved books. Even the word “loved” sounds like an understatement!

But alongside all the abridged classics that I wolfed down as a kid, were books by an author who I grew to love over the years. Dame Enid Blyton wrote books like no other. She wrote stories of mysteries, and of school kids and of escapades and treasure hunts. She was an English writer (as if Dame didn’t give that away) and her books have been bestsellers since the 1930s. According to my trusty friend, Wikipedia, she’s since sold over 600 million copies of her books, and has had them translated into over 90 languages! Of those 600 million books, I probably own about 50.

Part of my humble collection:

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These are only some of the books that I chose to bring back to Oman with me.

My relationship with Dame Blyton started long before I started reading any of her books – it started with a series of her books that was made into a television show that eventually got dubbed into a very obnoxious Hindi version that would make its round on Saturday morning television channels in India. That’s right, folks! I’m referring to the wooden wonder boy from Toyland – Noddy!

For years I didn’t realize that the series was but another one of Enid Blyton’s works, and trust me, I watched that show for yeeeeaaaars. At some point mom bought me all the books as well, so that’s 24 Enid Blyton books right there.

Enid Blyton is today, most remembered for series such as Famous Five and Secret Seven – both juvenile detective series, featuring (as the names suggest) five and seven kids, respectively, solving crimes and getting into all sorts of shenanigans. Those books were, and still are, widely read across India – and I remember those being some of the most borrowed books in our school and local libraries among kids from my age group, right alongside all the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books. The books really were a hoot – all the adventure kids could ever dream of, and E.B’s writing was always very simple to understand and yet, she had a way with words. She never really used flowery language, but she described everything perfectly. In fact, I blame her for my longtime obsession with wanting to become a detective. Once I was a little older, TV shows like NCIS etc did nothing to lessen that obsession.

My favorite E.B books, however, were her comparatively less famous ones –  The Naughtiest Girl series, St. Claire’s and Mallory Towers series. All three are boarding school series, and now that I think about it, perhaps that is why they weren’t as popular. I remember that when my friends and I were young, sending a kid off to boarding school was the ultimate punishment – India’s take on the boogyman scare, if you will. I think it still is.

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[2 books from the Mallory Towers Series]

 

Enid Blyton, however, corrupted my vision of boarding schools completely. Thanks to her, I grew up thinking of boarding schools as places where you made friends for life, woke up at midnight to throw secret dinner parties where you wolfed down ginger ale with the other gals in your dorm, and where you pranked your professors and went skinny-dipping in the lake at 2am. Hell, she made boarding school sound so exciting that I was probably the only kind I knew who actually used to beg her family to send her to boarding school! I literally used to dream of going to boarding school at a time when over-dramatic India movies and TV serials would show families breaking up over the decision of sending a child to boarding school. Oh the shame! And there I was, begging to go.

image005

[A few books from the St. Claire’s series]

I remember almost joining a boarding school in 8th grade, when we’d just moved back from Oman – I was set on the place till they asked some personal questions in the interview that I didn’t think they needed to know, and eventually that made me cut the school out of my future plans. It was a blow, though, to know that I had been so close to living that childhood dream, attending an elite and expensive boarding school nestled in the Sahyadri Hills of Pune, hobnobbing with A and B list Bollywood kids.

image008

[courtesy: Sahyadri School website]

Ah to think that I could have gone trekking, swimming and skinny dipping with views like this:

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[courtesy: Sahyadri School website]

But that’s alright. I went right back to E.B’s books, and read and re-read them till I knew all the stories backwards. The girls in all those books were the sisters I never had while growing up. They were my imaginary friends and confidants rolled in one, and the time I invested in those books were both satisfying and exciting.

Of the 3 series, the ones I’ve re-read the most are from the Naughtiest Girl series – a title that I had proudly earned myself early in my school life. It was exciting to read the adventures of my literary partner-in-crime, and many a time, I borrowed a page out of her escapades to implement in my life. I literally used to get invited to birthday parties so that parents could “see who the naughtiest girl in school was.”

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[My much loved Naughtiest Girl series]

Elizabeth was the sister I never had, and a lot of my childhood was spent delighting in her mis-adventures, and holding imaginary conversations with her. And yet, when I try and write about her per se, the words that spring to mind aren’t descriptive enough! But perhaps some things are better left to the imagination…

Did you have a favourite character or book when you were young?

THE SECRET LIFE OF A BOOK BLOGGER BOOK TAG

Ojitosperle tagged me for the Secret Life Of A Book Blogger Book tag. And here I go with all the answers. 😉

How long have you been a blogger?

Its been a little over a year since I started blogging. Earlier, I used to blog about everything under the sun. But now, my focus is mainly on books and reading.

At what point do you think you will stop?

When there are no more books in the world 😛 And that is never going to happen. So….NEVER 😉

What is the best thing?

Meeting other likeminded fellows who are as passionate as I am about books and reading or other things in life.

What is the worst thing? What do you do to make it okay?

Worst part is to make time for my blog. I really am short of time and posting regularly doesn’t come easy 😦

How long does it take you to create/find pictures to use?

A minute. I know what I want and I get it easily.

Who is your book crush?

Michael from The Princess Diaries books and Fred and George from Harry Potter series. ❤

What author would you like to have on your blog?

J.K.Rowling, Jeffrey Archer and Jhumpa Lahiri. Though, I would love to feature all authors on my blog. Greedy me 😛

What do you wear when you write your blog posts?

In Halloween costume 😛 BWAHAHAH

How long does it take you to prepare?

I don’t prepare. I blog on an instinct. But with Guestposts, I have to prepare a lot. *something is in the pipeline*

How do you feel about the book blogger community/culture?

I am just exploring it bit by bit and loving everything!

What do you think one should do to get a successful blog?

Don’t hold yourself back. 🙂

Who do you tag?

I will tag Adi 🙂

Oh The Places You Will Go – Tips For Reading While You Travel

Image Source: Pinterest

Image Source: Pinterest

Travel.
Travel is a magic-entwined word. With every journey, you become a little poorer but way richer. You carry back not just the memories associated with a place, its people and everything in between, but also its smell and that requires no extra bag and baggage!

Although I am not much of a traveler, I have had my fair share of reading experiences when I did travel in life. Let me share some of the tips with you today.

  • Pack light. This is THE word, you will find in all the tips related to travel and I make no exception. Pack light also means that you need to pack some light books to read on the go. No hard covers. No heavy GSMs. Lightweight books will be your best companions.
  • Calculate the time you will spend reading. If you are going abroad and spend most of the time sightseeing or collecting souvenirs, then there is no point taking along a 700 page book of some award-winning novel. It is going to fail for all you know. Unless, you are a speedy little mercury when it comes to reading and can polish off a good novel in your flights/ transition. If not, then take along a book that you know you can complete during your travel.
  • Cover your book with a wrapping paper/newspaper. I find this tip very handy, especially when I travel alone. There are pesky strangers at all places, who want to strike up a conversation such as “Hey, you are reading so and so book…” I do not tolerate small talk like this. So, before I pack my book(s), I cover them up with a paper and read on without any interruptions. Haah! 😉
  • Have extra bookmarks on you. I keep losing bookmarks when I am on the go. So, as an alternative I keep more than two bookmarks with me and use them during my travels. I also use ticket stubs as bookmarks, in case of an emergency. Bills are another alternative, if you do not intend to preserve them that is. 🙂
  • Read 5 pages of a book before packing it. Strange tip. I know. But it prevents you from carrying books which you will get fed up of reading midway and then end up getting stuck with nothing to read! Frustrations galore. Else, you can always carry two books at least, to have a backup.
  • Write your name, number and address on the first page of the book. Even if you lose the book in a strange land, there will be chances that the book will find its way to you. 🙂 This way, you will lessen the chances of losing a book that you borrowed from a library or a friend (in this case, write the details with a pencil).

These are my travel+reading tips. What are yours?

Book Review: Those Pricey Thakur Girls and The House That BJ Built

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Author: Anuja Chauhan

Verdict: Grab them for fun-read

My tryst with Anuja Chauhan’s books began with The Zoya Factor. I was in my second year of graduation and I found this book with a quirky cover at Landmark book store (unfortunately the chain of stores closed down). It is after four years of the discovery that I finally read the book from British Council, Ahmedabad. Before I start digressing way too much, let me cut it short and tell you that I fell in love with her book, her characters, her wit and wisdom and her overall writing style.

This is what led me to pick her books – Those Pricey Thakur Girls and The House That BJ Built. There is of course, Battle for Bittora, which is currently on my being-read list.

While Those Pricey Thakur Girls gave you a good dose of romance brewing up between D for Dabbu and D for Dylan and E for Eshwari and S for Steeeeesh, The House That BJ Built – a sequel, was about Bonu and Samar. Sparkling with brilliance at every page, both the books keep you hooked with twists and turns, laughter and gasps. The Hinglish dialogues make their mark and the characters are well-etched to make you believe in them and their actions.

Like every Chauhan novel,every story finds a connect with the audience. There are some loose threads of course, but nothing that can mar your reading experience.

I highly recommend the books to anyone who is looking for a light read, which is a meaty, masala romcom. If you haven’t already tried any of her books, get her box set from any of the online stores.

Happy Reading 🙂

Book Tag: The Coffee Book Tag

Now that we are on the topic of coffee (see my last post), I thought why not let me take up this Book tag. I came across this on THIS blog. Feel free to take up the tag and blog about it, like I have.

Black: Name a series that’s tough to get into but has hardcore fans

The Lord of The Rings. I still am finding my way into it.

Peppermint Mocha: Name a book that gets more popular during the winter or a festive time of year.

No idea. But maybe, its the bestsellers here in India.

Hot Chocolate: What is your favorite children’s book?

All works by Enid Blyton. They taste like my childhood.

Double Shot of Espresso: Name a book that kept you on the edge of your seat from start to finish.

The Da Vinci Code. I can’t even describe how thrilling the book was.

Starbucks: Name a book you see everywhere.

Meluha. Meluha everywhere.

That Hipster Coffee Shop: Give a book by an indie author a shout-out.

Umm…no idea what is that. I skip.

Oops! I accidentally got decaf: Name a book you were expecting more from.

The House That BJ Built. One can’t simply have too much of Anuja Chauhan’s awesome humor.

The Perfect Blend: Name a book or series that was both bitter and sweet, but ultimately satisfying.

That would be – Bridge to Terabithia. Odd book.

Green Tea: Name a book or series that’s quietly beautiful.

The secret garden. It has a different charm altogether.

Chai Tea: Name a book or series that makes you dream of far-off places.

Guys, Chai is the Hindi word for Tea. Chai and Tea are basically the same thing. Ugh…this makes me squirm. I digress.

A song of Ice and Fire series makes me dream of Westeros and the lands around. I am not into the books – yet. But have read most about it on wikia. Harry Potter too. I believe in Hogwarts 😛

Earl Grey: Name your favorite classic.

The Diary of Anne Frank. Period.

Book Tag: Would You Rather

Image Source: Pixabay

Image Source: Pixabay

So, I got to know of this fun, difficult and insanely cruel tag – Would You Rather book tag, from The Reading Hufflepuff. I nominate anyone and every one who wants to enter the challenge. It is an open invite. Meanwhile, you can go through my answers.

1) Would you rather… Drop your favourite book into the toilet OR watch it fall into a wood chipper?

In a toilet….errm…..it can be retrieved, dried. Saved at the very least.

2) Would you rather… Read only 1 book a year but remember everything OR read 100 books a year but remember nothing?

Read 100 books a year and remember nothing. In fact, I remember nothing after finishing a book. Well, most of the books. So, yeah.

3) Would you rather… Read only the first page of a book OR read only the last page of a book?

The last page. The excitement is all in the last page.

4) Would you rather get locked in a library OR get locked in a bookstore?

I would rather get locked in a bookstore. Because I would get to experience many new books firsthand. rubs hands in glee

5) Would you rather… Drop your book in a lake OR accidentally set it on fire?

Do neither. But accidental fire it is. I can’t jump in a lake, but I can put out the fire and still save it.

6) Would you rather… Read a book with a cliffhanger ending OR read a book with a heartbreaking ending?

A book with a heartbreaking ending. Bring it on!

7) Would you rather… Have the book’s ending spoiled OR never know what happens?

Spoilers have NEVER affected me. So, having the book’s ending spoiled is okay with me.

8) Would you rather… read only one genre forever OR never repeat the same genre after reading it once?

I love the genres I read. I will definitely settle for reading only one genre forever.

9) Would you rather… Read a book where the main character is killed off OR read a book where the love interest is killed off?

Killing off characters is a part of the plot. I wouldn’t care anyway. Maybe temporarily, but not for long. I am okay with both. But would rather stick to – where the love interest is killed off.

10) Would you rather… Read a book that’s missing the middle chapter OR read a book that’s missing the first and last chapters?

I have read a book with missing middle chapters. Smooth sailing.

11) Would you rather… love a book everyone hates OR hate a book everyone loves

Hate a book everyone loves. Period.

12) Would you rather… loan a book to a friend who’s known to ruin books OR drop a book in a pit of snakes?

Drop it in a pit of snakes. Snakes will not ruin my books at least!

13) Would you rather…. Be stuck on a deserted island without a book OR be stuck in a library full of books in a language you can’t read

Library full of books. The experience matters of course. Plus, I can always go through the picture books.

14) Would you rather… Bring only 1 book on a 12 hour flight OR bring an e-reader with only 10% left on a 4 hour flight?

Bring a book on a 12 hour long flight. I will take my own slow time to read it.

15) Would you rather… Find out your best friend hates your favourite book OR share a favourite book with your worst enemy?

Share a favourite book with my worst enemy sounds better. I can anyway make my bestie love the book.

These are my answers. I wonder what yours will be? 🙂

Book Review: The Amazing Racist by Chhimi Tenduf-La

Author:  Chhimi Tenduf-La

Published: January 1st 2015 by Hachette India

Verdict: Must-Read

This book was sent to me by the publishers as a part of the Goodreads Firstreads program and was my first ever win at a giveaway.

To be frank, I was initially hesitant to go through a book with such a shocking title. A racist being amazing? How can a racist be amazing? After shilly-shallying with the idea of reading the book, I finally opened the first page and read it. Each day I read two pages and after ten pages or so, the book had me completely engrossed.

The reason? Its amazing humor, the narrative and the characters, with whom you could easily identify and sympathize with. The story based in the lovely locales of Sri Lanka had a charm that kept me interested till the very last page. The humor is of course, the main highlight of The Amazing Racist, but so is the wonderful relationship between two of the main characters, which gives it a fresh perspective. The twists and turns (often hairpin bends) offer more ‘masala’ to the entire story and never lets you witness a dull moment.

I have not read a book this good of recent. The book is a page-turner and although it is a light read, it touches your heartstrings somewhere, especially when you inch towards the end.

The only disappointment…it is too short a book. I wish there were more pages. Reading The Amazing Racist was a joyride. I am now looking forward to read the next book by the author – Panther.

Read more about the book on Goodreads.