Archive for February, 2018

Blackout 

February 27, 2018

Book : Blackout

Author: Joey Paul

Rating: 3/5

Synopsis

Imagine having everything you ever wanted. A perfect family, a perfect boyfriend, perfect friends – the whole group that only exists because of you!
Then imagine waking up one morning and discovering you don’t have any of that.

It was a dream…a dream you had in a coma that was supposedly brought on by drugs.
Imagine having to start again at school, desperately trying to fit in and prove that the “drug” thing must have been a mistake – that you do deserve to be one of the ‘elite’. Trying so hard to remember what really happened that night.

Welcome to Tally’s life…only problem is someone doesn’t want her to remember

Review

This is the story of Tally, who is the most popular girl in school. She  has a boyfriend, great friends and a perfect life. One day she attends a party, later wakes up after  6 months  from a drug induced coma, with no memory of what happened to her. Her whole world is turned upside down, when she comes in terms with reality. The perfect life was a dream, and everyone believes that she is a druggie. The story takes us through Tally’s struggle to remember the past ,as well as how to fit in school, where she is an outcast now.

Did Tally actually take drugs?

Will Tally be able to remember that night?

Can Tally become the girl in her dreams?

Read to find out
At the starting I didn’t like Tally at all, she was too preoccupied with her looks. Later you begin to sympathize with her, as she struggled to fit in . I couldn’t connect much with Tally as being popular was never one of my aims.The plot was unique , i enjoyed it . The first part of the book was bit dragging, as Tally’s monologue was pretty annoying,but yeah she was a typical teenager. The story brings forth the issue which most teenage girls face, they want to be popular,date the hottest guys,have lots of friends,get invited to parties. My favourite character was Lisa ,in the later part of the book , she is Tally’s best friend. The underlying mystery of what happened to Tally,makes the rest of the book interesting.

 

No Ordinary Star Series Trailer

February 25, 2018

The No ordinary Star series by M C Frank tells the story of Astra and Felix, the story takes place in year 2525 and is inspired by Ray Bradbury’s short stories

A soldier is summoned to the North Pole, days before the year changes, told to fix the great Clock for a celebration. He has no idea what to do. 
A girl, hunted for the crime of being born, almost dies out on the ice. She is rescued by the last polar bear left alive. 
A library waits for them both, a library built over a span of a hundred years, forgotten in the basement of an ice shack. 
The world hasn’t known hunger or sickness in hundreds of years. It has also forgotten love and beauty. 
The year is 2525. 

 

 

Check out the NOS trailer here

 

There are 3 books in this series

  • No Ordinary Star
  • No Plain Rebel
  • No Vain Loss

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The covers are so beautiful that i want to keep staring at them . I finished the first book in the series , looking forward to read more of Astra and Felix

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There is also a giveaway conducted by MC Frank , please Click here for that

Who burned the moon 

February 22, 2018

Book : Who burned the moon

Author: Rahul Vishnoi

Rating: 4/5

Synopsis

Who Burned the Moon?’ is a fun-filled fantasy thriller with supernatural elements and a superhero. Yep, India’s first doctor superhero
This novel has a superhero, but it’s not about him. It’s about his best friend-Rehan Saxena. He couldn’t even pass class XII, but his mother wants him to become a “dactar”. Thanks to a duplicate marksheet, he’s sent packing to Lala Purabnath’s Medical College
Here Rehan befriends Namak, who happens to be a superhero in the making. Namak doesn’t wear a back-hanging dupatta like Superman, but he does have this kickass-looking burning moon between his tits and he can fly, too (occasionally though). So are you thinking it’s pretty cool to have a superhero as your BFF, right?
Wrong!
Namak is an heir to a superpower that Lala Purabnath has been seeking for decades. As Lala discovers his identity, Rehan finds his life stirring into an epic mess that involves gilchis, flesh-eating apes and sex-crazed professors. Dragged through tunnels; thrown down the hostel; forced to participate in a ferocious blood game called Moontrack, Rehan has to pay the price of being friends with a guy whose superhero cherry hasn’t popped fully yet.
Can Rehan survive beyond the first week of MBBS-I YR?

‘Who Burned the Moon?’ moves at a breakneck pace of a thriller. It won’t let you breathe easy unless you finish it. Rahul Vishnoi has dusted all the twisted corners of his neurons to bring out a book that will not only enthrall you with its lovely characters and bullet-like pace, but will also make you want to go back to the college.

Review

The story starts off with the introduction of Lala purabnath, our villian, the most feared man in Dimakiya,  who is out to find the boy who will claim the gold-bones. To ensure that the youth don’t leave the valley, he opens a Medical College for the students of Dimakiya. Then we are introduced to Rehan Saxena, our hero’s sidekick, he failed in his +2 exam, but his mom Damayanti manages to him a fake marksheet as well as a seat in Lalaji’s college. The college is actually the fort of King Zarakhet, Lalaji’s ancestor.  There Rehan comes across various old classmates and meets few new people. A chance encounter with the supernatural cements Rehan’s friendship with Namak, our hero. Rehan realizes that Namak is a superhero and the boy whom Lalaji is seeking. The story takes us through few days in Rehan’s life, how everything turns out of control. 

Will Lalaji find that Namak is the boy he is looking for?

What will happen when the gold-bones are claimed?

What is the story of King Zarakhet?

Read to find out

I enjoyed the book, at the starting i felt it had too much of guy jokes, but it got over soon.  I think boys who have lived in boys hostels would find it easier to connect to Rehan & Namak,though it does remind you of college life. For people who have lived in college hostels, this story will take you down the memory lane at times. After reading a lot of romance from Indian authors, a different genre was a welcome relief. Though I was skeptical at the beginning, loved the world and all the supernatural characters. Favorite character :Piyali, she was cool. It did remind me of little of Harry Potter, maybe because of the magic, prophecy and all. 

Recommend for readers who love fantasy 

Ticket to Syria 

February 17, 2018

Book : Ticket to Syria

Author: Shirish Thorat

Rating: 4/5

Synopsis

Beneath the clear blue skies of Maldives, a beast slouches towards Syria to be born.
Zahi has led a perfectly normal life until one day she heads out for a family vacation but finds herself in the conflict stricken sands of Syria. Unknowingly signed up for Jihad along with her family, Zahi is now the newest recruit of the Islamic State. In a hostile environment with no support and where a single misplaced word could mean death, she is able to make contact with her brother back home. Thus is set in motion a web of deception, courage and tragedy as she attempts to escape.
Based on the little known and insidious operations of the Islamic State this book is a startling account of how the Islamic State has perfected a cross-country operation that converts thousands to a depraved cause. Taken from real life events, this gritty account describes in horrifying detail not only the very real and very elaborate functioning of the Islamic State but the motivations that operate behind it.
An authentically written portrait of life in the Islam State, this book will force you to tread carefully as it shatters your illusions. Combining research and accurate information with the heady pace of a political intrigue, this is a ticket that you cannot miss out on.
In a world that is rocked by the violence of a rising Islamic fundamentalism, A Ticket to Syria is that disturbing thriller which is actually true.

Review

I received a paperback review copy from Bloomsbury in exchange for an honest review

The story starts off in Maldives ,Dr Sameer learns that his 4 siblings have left to join the Jihadi movement. He is perplexed and ends up contacting Ahmed Idris, whose sister, Zahi is married to one of his brothers, Munsiu . Idris seeks the help of his old friend, whose is known as “The Contact” throughout the book. In the meantime Zahi feels betrayed as  her husband, Munsiu had brought her to Syria under false pretexts. She doesn’t understand why the family has joined the IS, and feels stifled between the watchful eyes. She gets hold of an old Mobile and contacts Idris. From then on starts the rescue plan of  Zahi directed by ” The Contact”. The story switches between Maldives, Syria,UK . We get to know of different associates of “The Contact” who help him throughout the plan. Through of one the conversations of the “The Contact” we learn about the history of IS .

Will the contact be able to rescue Zahi?

Why is everyone hell bent on joining the Jihadi movement?

How did the  Islamic State originate?

Read to find out.

I have read about AL Queda and ISIS in news, I have never understood what prompts the well educated youth to join the Jihadi movement. The book throws light on many of the factors involved. The author has done a lot of research on the history of Islamic State. There are many descriptive parts, but on whole the book is fast paced. The rescue plan formulated by “The Contact” is beautiful in its intricate details. I enjoyed the book

Rattlesnake Hill

February 16, 2018

Book : Rattlesnake Hill

Author: Leslie Wheeler

Rating: 4 / 5

Synopsis

It’s November in the Berkshires, a dreary time of dwindling light when the tourists have fled along with the last gasp of fall foliage. So when a stranger shows up in the sleepy hilltown of New Nottingham and starts asking questions, the locals don’t exactly roll out the welcome wagon.
Bostonian Kathryn Stinson is on a deeply personal quest to solve a family mystery: the identity of a nameless beauty in an old photograph an ancestor brought with him to California over a century ago. But, as Kathryn quickly discovers, the hills possess a host of dark secrets – both ancient and new – that can only be revealed at the price of danger and even death.
Her suspicious neighbors on Rattlesnake Hill, named for the timber rattlers that haunt its rocky slopes, become openly hostile when Kathryn starts seeking answers to a more recent mystery: the murder of Diana Farley, who once occupied the house Kathryn is now renting. Was it Diana’s husband, who killed her to keep her from divorcing him, or her lover, Earl Barker, a backwoods charmer and leading member of a wild clan known for their violent tempers?
When Kathryn plunges into a passionate affair with Earl, she puts herself on a collision course with past and present. She must find out if Earl killed Diana, or risk becoming a victim herself.

Review

The story  starts off with Kathryn coming to live in a small town in Berkshires.  Kathryn has a photograph of a mystery woman, which was brought to California by one her ancestors. Her aunt was interested in finding out the identity and history of the woman. As her aunt passed away , Kathryn is on the quest to fulfil her aunt’s wishes. . The investigation leads her to Emily ,an old woman, with whom her aunt had corresponded. The house that Kathryn had rented is owned by Gordon, whose wife Diana was killed recently. Kathryn learns that Emily and Diana were close. The townspeople are reluctant to talk to her, but she strikes up a friendship with Earl Brekker.The search for the mystery woman gets entangled with Diana’s murder.

Who is the woman in the photograph ?

Who killed Diana?

Will Kathryn have answers for all her questions ?

Read to find out.

I enjoyed the book. I did find out Diana’s killer before Kathryn.I loved the parallels drawn between the mystery woman and Diana.The history was fascinating.It is a fast paced book , with a good plot.Favourite character, Kathryn herself. I loved the setting of the novel, it has that perfect mystery feel throughout. I loved the cover 😍

The Lying Kind

February 15, 2018

Book : The Lying Kind

Author: Alison James

Rating: 4/5

Synopsis

Six-year-old Lola Jade Harper is taken from her bedroom. Her mother is distraught. She is convinced her estranged husband, Gavin Harper, has abducted their daughter.

Detective Rachel Prince is leading the investigation but is soon out of her depth as she searches for the most high-profile missing child in the country. To uncover the truth about Lola’s disappearance, Rachel must untangle the Harper family’s complicated web of secrets and lies.

As the case progresses, the body of a local woman is found. The death at first seems unrelated, until a trail of social media posts lead Rachel to a chilling discovery.

And then another little girl is taken…

With growing pressure from the public and the appearance of someone from her past she’d rather forget, will Rachel be able to solve the connection between the two missing children and the murder – before it’s too late?

Truly addictive from start to finish, The Missing Child is a tense, enthralling crime thriller by one of the best new voices in crime fiction. Perfect for fans of Angela Marsons, Peter James and Karin Slaughter.

Review

I’m grateful to the publishers(Bookouture) and Netgalley for providing me with an eARC in exchange for an honest review

DI Rachel Prince is assigned the investigation of the missing 6 year old girl, Lola Jane Harper.The mother Michelle Harper reported the case to the police, and the primary suspect is the estranged father, Gavin Harper. There was a divorce and custody case going on, on top of all that the father is missing . Rachel is lost in the mess of lies told by Michelle and Gavin ,only when she can see past the lies can she move further on the case.

Will Rachel find Lola ?

Who kidnapped Lola ?

Who is lying Gavin or Michelle?

Read to find out.

The book starts off slow, I had bit of trouble getting into the story. Once it starts off it is good, a huge page turner. I couldn’t put it down. Though I did suspect the kidnapper, the way it was pulled off was awesome. Another badass detective, Rachel Prince to my ever growing list. Favorite character Mark Brickall, the partner. It had lot of nail-biting suspense. I enjoyed the plot and the writing style

Recommend for suspense thriller readers

About the author

Alison James was born in the Cotswolds but spent most of my formative years abroad.  She studied languages at Oxford, then became a journalist and author, returning to university after her two children to take a law degree. After a three-year stint as a criminal paralegal, she  worked as a commercial copywriter and then a TV storyliner, before coming full circle to write fiction again.

Seconds: The Shared Soul Chronicles 

February 14, 2018

Book : Seconds: The Shared Soul Chronicles

Author: Brindi Quinn

Rating: 3 / 5

 

Synopsis

“The scarlet tattoo marked him as one who’d never been born. It marked him as a Second.”

Newbie huntress Tide Yondo is an airhead. She zones out, possesses freakishly good climbing skills, and claims to have a serpentine demon after her. Simply put, she’s abnormal.
And it’s about to get her into trouble.
When Tide meets a fanboy named Rye, she thinks she’s found her match. He’s cute, he’s quirky; but there’s a problem: Rye shouldn’t exist. Can Tide find a way to make Rye whole before his existence kills?

It’ll take more than just love and luck to discover the secrets of the soul.

Review

I received a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review

The main protagonist of the book is Tide Yondo, daughter of Nero Yondo, the King  of the mechanised west. Tide doesn’t get to interact with her father much, as he is a scientist and always working. Tide’s best friend is Wyona, who calls herself Y. The St Laran city,where our story takes place is always shrouded in fog, Tide finds this stifling. Tide keeps forgetting things, and there are mentions of a demon. Tide wants to enjoy life outside so she is off to become the Weighted dome’s professional hunter. For that she had to climb up a gigantic pile of scrap. The first three who reach the top without hurting themselves win. On the way  back ,Tide meets Rye, a Second. Seconds are like split personalities, they are born out of the despair in their Mains.  Due to the inventions of Nero Yondo the air is filled with chemicals and this aids in the creation of Seconds.

Why is Tide forgetting things?

How are seconds born?

Who is the demon that is lurking?

Read to find out.

I loved the concept of Seconds.I  found that the ending was rushed and the last few chapters had too much information. It was fast paced and there was never a dull moment. The starting is pretty confusing, but you get all the answers by the end of the book. Favourite character :Rye ,a Second, he was so adorable. There were times i was reminded of the impact we make on our environment , how we are also moving towards a world filled with fog, it is frightening

About the Author

Brindi Quinn is a young adult / teen author from Minnesota, speaking “quirky” in a variety of genres, from paranormal to sci-fi to fantasy.

Quinn has published a plethora of highly-rated works, including novels, compilations and miniseries, all geared toward a young adult audience. Her series have been hailed as addictive, unique reads within the genre by reviewers across platforms.

Three Daughters of Eve 

February 11, 2018

Book : Three Daughters of Eve

Author: Elif Shafak

Rating: 5 / 5

Synopsis

Peri, a wealthy Turkish housewife, is on her way to a dinner party at a seaside mansion in Istanbul when a beggar snatches her handbag. As she wrestles to get it back, a photograph falls to the ground—an old polaroid of three young women and their university professor. A relic from a past—and a love—Peri had tried desperately to forget.

The photograph takes Peri back to Oxford University, as an eighteen year old sent abroad for the first time. To her dazzling, rebellious Professor and his life-changing course on God. To her home with her two best friends, Shirin and Mona, and their arguments about Islam and femininity. And finally, to the scandal that tore them all apart.

Review

The book starts off with Peri and her daughter who are on the way to a party. She gets mugged and comes to realization that she could actually kill a person. The mugging brings forth an old photo from her bag, which has her 2 friends : Shirin, Mona and her professor Azur, the guy who taught a seminar on God in Oxford . Peri’s past and present are weaved together in the following chapters.

Her father, Me sure is a leftist and her mother, Selma religious, she is  sandwiched in between not knowing what to believe. The God that Selma worships, is someone who according  to Peri is waiting for us to do something wrong, so that he can punish us. Whereas Mensur says ” He wouldn’t mind if I had some fun right?”.We  get to see the little girl lost between a leftist father and a religious mother. The college student who feels left out at Oxford sandwiched between Mona, the believer and Shirin, the sinner. The woman who still doesn’t feel at ease at the upper-class party. 
I haven’t read translated fiction much except for Fredrik Backman and Jo Nesbo.The character development is beautiful and the writing style engaging. This is first time I’m reading about Turkey, the socio-political situation there made me cringe at times.Most of the issues discussed are pretty relevant. I have always chosen dialogue to description, but I have fallen in love with the descriptions in this book. It was easy to connect to Peri , as i have understand the struggle of being confused about God .

Recommended for everyone
Favourite quotes

“Imagination was her home, her homeland, her refuge, her exile”

“There is something about love that resembles faith. It’s a kind of blind trust,isn’t it ? The sweetest euphoria. The magic of connecting with a being beyond our limited ,familiar selves”

“Your idea of you  creates your reality”

“I think God comes in many pieces and colours. I can build a peaceful God, all-loving. Or I can build an angry God,punishing.God is a Lego set”

 

About the Author

Elif Shafak was born in Strasbourg, France, in 1971. She is an award-winning novelist and the most widely read woman writer in Turkey. Critics have named her as “one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary Turkish and world literature”. Her books have been translated into more than 40 languages and she was awarded the honorary distinction of Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters.
Shafak has published thirteen books, nine of which are novels. She writes fiction in both Turkish and English. Shafak blends Western and Eastern traditions of storytelling, bringing out the myriad stories of women, minorities, immigrants, subcultures, youth and global souls. Her work draws on diverse cultures and literary traditions, as well as deep interest in history, philosophy, Sufism, oral culture, and cultural politics. Shafak’s writing breaks down categories, clichés, and cultural ghettoes. She also has a keen eye for black humor.

Book-o-Box : Indian Book box subscription 

February 9, 2018

Book-o-Box is one of the Indian book boxes. I recently started subscribing to book boxes. My friend recommended them because of their choice in books.They are based in Chennai. The boxes are shipped on 15th of every month , i found that they are very reliable and ship right on time. After subscribing to few of the  book boxes i realized, that following up is a job in itself.But with Book-o-Box i never had to follow up even once.Their book selections are fabulous.

They have 2 types of subscriptions

  • World Fiction
    • A translated fiction – A different country each month
    • Art Prints
    • Coffee/tea sachets
    • Bookish Merch
  • Short Stories and Poems
    • 2 short story or poem collections
    • Art Prints
    • Tea/Coffee Satchels
    • Bookish Merch

Things which came in the January  box

  • Three daughters of Eve by Elif Shafak : (The country for Jan  was Turkey) I finished this book and i love it . I’m grateful for have been introduced to Elif Shafak.
  • A 2018 calendar :  A cute calendar which has quotes for each month
  • Reading light : To let you read in the dark 😉
  • Satchels of Assam tea by Twinings
  • An art print by Ananda Menon : I’m in love with it
  • Pine scented candle
  • A writeup about the author, book summary and recommendations of other books by Turkish authors : Loved the recommendations
  • A welcome message

If you are looking for a hassle free book subscription , which brings you great books from all the over the world ,Book-o-Box is the right choice for you .

What are you waiting for ?
Click the link to subscribe
You can also find them in instagram @bookobox

M C Frank’s Couples giveaway 

February 7, 2018

Hi guys , there is a giveaway hosted by MC Frank ,the winner gets 15$ from book depository

First of all let me introduce you to MC Frank’s couples

  1. Dominic and Beatrice  This is a regency retelling of Jane Eyre You can read my review on Ruined here . I finished in one sitting and i loved the banter between Beatrice and Dominique
  2. Ari and Wes This one is loosely based  of Pride and Prejudice, you can read my review of Lose me here. Ari and Wes are my new favourite OTP.
  3. Astra and Felix 
    I’m yet to read the No ordinary Star series , looking forward to fall in love with Astra and Felix. This story is set in 2525 and inspired by Ray Bradbury’s short stories. There are three books in this series

To enter the giveaway check out the link