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Saturday, April 20, 2019

Review: Cold Days

Cold Days Cold Days by Jim Butcher
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Productive day, this was third book which I was able to complete today, Almost completed the series, only the 15th part is remaining and after that it would the short stories collections and the Codex books. So bragging and future plan over now let's come back to this book, which sees Harry come back to life after the last book 'Ghost Story'. Though I liked the last book all fine but that was one book which you may skip too or rather Jim Butcher might have skipped it. But we did get it and I liked it. And I am glad to see that even though we are in the 14th book of the series the more the things remains the same they have also changed lot. I mean Changes was different and then Ghost Story and Cold Days both have been totally different books too.

So nice to see the freshness in the story which Mr. Butcher is able to bring to the Dresden Files. Harry is now the Winter Knight and so he gets his very first assignment and then all the things go to hell like they tend to do around Harry Dresden. This is so far the longest book series I have read after the Jack Reacher series and I love this series too just like that one from Lee Child. This one had a nice little mystery going on and poor Harry has to fight alone and sometimes with his friends before the city he loves and lives in goes kaboom.

Now these books and Harry and his friends almost feel like my own friends as I enjoy their adventures and although it was fun starting the series with 15 books in the bank but now soon they would be over and I would be in the same boat as the long time readers who are following this series for a long time and they had to wait for each and every book to release so that they can enjoy the latest tale. This is kinda like binging the series on the streaming platforms. I missed all these wonderful books as they were not available or I was aware about them but as I come to know about new books and I buy more and more books It allows me binge read eh books in those series.

Let's come back to the book and yes as far as my recommendation for this book go, yeah do pick this book but remember to read the first 13 books in the series and then just Keep on Reading.

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Review: Never Say Die

Never Say Die Never Say Die by Anthony Horowitz
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

After the 9th book in the series ended and the 10th book of the series turned out to be a prequel, I never thought that Alex Rider will ride on for a new adventure but it's difficult to keep a winning horse down so as soon as I came to know about this book obviously I had to read this after all after reading 10 books already in the series it was a given that I shall be reading the next one and next one in the series too.

This book starts with a time gap of six months after the fact that the first 9 books took place in slightly over a one year gap. We find Alex in San Francisco living with Pleasures and trying to move on with the life. And then suddenly Alex gets an incomplete and cryptic email of just 3 words which somehow convinces Alex that his friend and caretaker Jack Starbright didn't die but somehow is alive. And there he goes traveling around the World trying to retrace his steps and trying to find Jack alive and well.

This book works beautifully to ensure that it would be only way where Alex would leave his new home and get in to the action once again and how nicely it was done. This time Alex doesn't have help from MI6 well little bit may be and in the final act nobody even knows where the bad guys and Alex are and Alex has to save himself and others with his quick wit and his training.

This was just the kind of adventure which would have been possible and it was full of action and Alex finds himself from one perilous situation to another and it was glorious fun to read. So yes do go right on ahead pick this one of course this goes without saying that you should try to read the earlier books in the series and then come to this book in an orderly fashion and then just Keep on Reading.

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Friday, April 19, 2019

Review: Rumi: A New Translation

Rumi: A New Translation Rumi: A New Translation by Rumi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

To be honest, I have never been a reader of poetry and this was my very first full poetry collection which I finished. Just to remedy this I have ordered 4 other poetry collections and will try to read them sooner than later. Though my next poetry collection is surely going to be Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur, I borrowed a copy from my friend.

So like most readers of this book I have just read or heard few couplets by Rumi here and there. And I loved the fact that Mr. Dhondy in the translation paid special attention to rhyme and flow. Because I like my poems to rhyme and make sense that was one of the reasons that I hadn't picked up any english poetry books because most of english poems I read were more like stories told in a poem form and rarely rhyme.

But this was just fine and loved reading the couplets and full length poems by Rumi and after the poems there is also notes by the Mr. Dhondy and interview too which I also liked but poems being by the virtue of being poems just flew by whenever I picked to read it.

So if you are on the fence about this one or poetry in general then sure give it chance it's a short quick read and the book is cute to boot. I am happy, i hope you would be too and just don't to Keep on Reading.

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Review: The Sworn Sword

The Sworn Sword The Sworn Sword by Ben Avery
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I am following a kind of schedule where I try to read the original text before I see or read the adaptation. So I had just finished the Knight of Seven Kingdoms few days ago so the story is still fresh in my mind and to boot the book was heavily illustrated so many scenes looked like already seen. This was in full color though and it was a welcome change. Illustrations were again good and the adaptation was faithful in fact all the dialogues were the same. I am just glad that I got to read the graphic novelization too and soon would try to read the graphic novel of the third story and then the graphic novelization of the first book in the Song of Ice and Fire series.

So yeah if you have read the original novella then it would be a nice change and if you haven't read it then still it's a nice read so give it a chance and then just Keep on Reading.

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Sunday, April 14, 2019

Review: Persepolis 2: The Story of a Return

Persepolis 2: The Story of a Return Persepolis 2: The Story of a Return by Marjane Satrapi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Wow like I said in my review of the first book of this set. I had seen the movie way way back and wanted to read this since then and now I can safely remove it from the list of my unread books hopefully I shall be able to reduce by TBR pile a little bit before this year is through. This book tells us Marjane's story of her life in Vienna and her ultimate return to Tehran, Iran and how she copes up with all this. This was an honest and heartbreaking memoir and to boot the illustrations are killer.

This was wonderful, having read the memoir I can only say that there are lot of similarities in the Iranian thought and Indian society. Like Not answering elders disrespectfully, Family values etc. Though rightly so Iran was far more westernized before the revolution.

This gave us a sneak peek behind the memories of a graphic artist who lived through the war and sometimes saw the war for the smokescreen it is and sometimes not. Sometimes she was the rebel other times she struggled.

But like all the great heroes it's also a story where our protagonist was able to grow beyond the norms and can afford to live the way she wanted to, granted it was possible only because of her family which was pretty liberal and had money too. But then again if her family was poor then her thoughts and life would have been completely different.

Yes everyone lives their own lives and despite wishing it no one has go ahead and live someone else's life. So yeah now I shall go ahead and try to watch the movie again to see the similarities with the book which would be plenty considering the movie adopted the graphic style of the book itself. Yeah do pick it either in this two parter set or the single issue one but do give it chance if somehow you missed it so far and then just Keep on Reading.

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Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Review: Changes

Changes Changes by Jim Butcher
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I wanted to read this series for a very long time and I came to know about the series after the TV series was announced. And then I bought some Graphic Novels based on first two books of the series and that prompted me to finally started reading this amazing series and now that I am done with the 12th book in the series, I can't say enough good words to convey that I dream of writing books like these which feel fresh and wonderful despite being 12th in the series and this one definitely changes lot of things just like the title said.

The book starts with Harry getting a call from Susan that their daughter has been missing. Harry has a daughter about whom he never knew anything about. And soon he comes to know that his daughter has been kidnapped by the Red Court vampires and they plan on doing something nasty and thus begins Harry's journey with his friends to get his girl back.

We meet powerful beings, Gods, Demigods, Wizards, Fairies, Other netherworld characters and all is wonderful, all changes and all was fun. Oh and don't forget the first cliffhanger ending.

I would recommend this book with complete confidence that you would like it but remember to read the first 11 books to get the proper perspective of the changes done here. So go ahead and read the series pick the first book then second and then just Keep on Reading.

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Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Review: The Sadhu: The Birth of the Warrior

The Sadhu: The Birth of the Warrior The Sadhu: The Birth of the Warrior by Graphic India
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wow colour me impressed, I didn't have much expectations from this reboot having just finished the second part of the original series but boy was I wrong? Chuck Dixon is a master story teller and I salute thee.

Okay while the major story remains the same but that's the only part that remains same except for that almost everything about the original book has been changed and all the boring parts from the original two books has been chucked away to keep all the fast paced action and wonderful story beats which beat from one page to another even in the different issues they pick up from the last scene and the story just flows through and I just kept on reading through even though I should have been asleep by now but no that damn wonderful book had to keep me awake and I just couldn't sleep before finishing that.

That's one way to reboot a story and all the good for it, now where's my next amazing adventure in this reboot. That would be totally out of it as it would have to be a new story, Graphic India work on it and keep it as tight and wonderful as this one.

So yeah no matter if you have read the original two books or not this one is must own graphic novel and with it's fast paced action and awesome art it would keep you staring at it for a long time. So pick it and then just Keep on Reading .

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Monday, March 25, 2019

Review: The Sadhu Volume 2: The Silent Ones

The Sadhu Volume 2: The Silent Ones The Sadhu Volume 2: The Silent Ones by Saurav Mohapatra
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I am very confused about it because the graphics were good but the story was jumble of ideas. At least they are trying something new but the more the thing change the more they stay same. In the end let's go with easy way out 3.5 stars.

This is the sequel to the original Sadhu, i say original because after this book they rebooted the series which I would be reading soon. The story picks up after some time where the last book ended and opens in the sea of humanity that is Kumbh Mela. James "The Sadhu" finds and fights some mysterious silent tattooed freaks, who speak telepathically and after that he learns that his son Jack is alive and thus begins his quest to find and save his son.

The graphics were world class but the story was just so so, originally it was published in individual issues so the story takes a detour in some strange place every few pages. But I would still applaud the team for trying something new and at the same time I would you to read it yourself and form your own ideas about how you like it. So without further adieu go ahead and pick this graphic novel but before that the first one and then just Keep on Reading .

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Review: Proven Guilty

Proven Guilty Proven Guilty by Jim Butcher
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Poor little giant Harry just can't catch a break, what with Wardens of White Court of Wizard order to Faeries of winter and summer courts.

This book starts with a trial and execution where in a 16 year old warlock is beheaded and leaves Harry disgusted and then he gets a missive to look for dark magic in Chicago and it gets tricky and slow here as Harry tries to learn how come Movie Horror icons are coming to life and attacking people in a Horror movie convention. Harry also finds himself in some plan hatched by Tattooed and Pierced Molly daughter of Michael and Charity Carpenter.

Things get hairy when a spell to send the monsters behind the dark wizard who cast the original spell finds the monsters at Carpenters house now Harry has to deal with the fact that Molly has been abducted by them and so a rescue team is created which involves Harry, Murphy, Thomas and Charity along with help from some other quarters.

This was another nice addition to the Dresden files and I thoroughly enjoyed it. And if you left the series in the middle or haven't started it, now's the time to pick the series and to keep on with it. Pick the first book if you have yet to start or just start and then Keep on Reading .

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Review: White Night

White Night White Night by Jim Butcher
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I am very happy to know that even in the 9th book in the series the things are still awesome, Great job Mr. Butcher. Bravo, All the best for your future ventures,

So let's come back to the book, the story this time is someone is killing off women who practices magic and although all the deaths appear as suicides Harry doesn't think so nor does Murphy. After some initial tests it looks like that Dresden's half brother the Vampire Thomas is the killer and this is something Harry can't handle and works to find the truth of it all.

The book is full of action and now that Harry has a apprentice in Molly he has to devote time there as well. In the usual Dresden Files manner nothing is easy as Harry has to deal with danger from every corner while still trying to stay alive and keep the people he care about alive. Mystery in Harry's life just gets twisted and twisted as evident by the threat in the book 10 which I am reading now.

So yes this is still as good, in fact this series is getting better as it's progressing which is more the reason to pick this series if you are still unsure about it. Once you do that remember to just Keep on Reading .

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Friday, March 15, 2019

Review: Fahrenheit 451

Fahrenheit 451 Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This Sci-Fi/Dystopian book imagines a world which is very terrifying because it's very probable one. But people like me and countless others are trying to not bring this version of future true. The future where people are lost in visual media converting entire walls to the TV covering the entire wall (reminds me of Barney's TV from HIMYM - Maybe show got the idea from this book). The most horrible thing is that the houses are fireproof so there are no fires so firemen are tasked with a new task to burn things specifically books.

Man I would be first of the people to burn with my books if something like this happened but maybe I would be like a professor or writer quietly waiting to bring the books back to the world. The most wonderful thing about the book is that despite starting at a low point and travelling towards even a bleaker point it ends with a message of positivity and hope. I loved the book and hated the version of future hated the people to turned their backs on the books and lost themselves in the giant size TV screens and the non-stop videos. Youtube on steroids anyone :P.

So yeah this was one classic which I wanted to read for longest of times and had even read the graphic novel adaptation of it but reading the original work is something else. So now after finding myself on a journey of classics and Goodreads top 100 books I am going back to Dresden Files Book 8 here I come.

So yeah it's a no-brainer pick this up if you haven't read it yet. If you have read it, read it again. and then Keep on Reading.

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Review: Fahrenheit 451

Fahrenheit 451 Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This Sci-Fi/Dystopian book imagines a world which is very terrifying because it's very probable one. But people like me and countless others are trying to not bring this version of future true. The future where people are lost in visual media converting entire walls to the TV covering the entire wall (reminds me of Barney's TV from HIMYM - Maybe show got the idea from this book). The most horrible thing is that the houses are fireproof so there are no fires so firemen are tasked with a new task to burn things specifically books.

Man I would be first of the people to burn with my books if something like this happened but maybe I would be like a professor or writer quietly waiting to bring the books back to the world. The most wonderful thing about the book is that despite starting at a low point and travelling towards even a bleaker point it ends with a message of positivity and hope. I loved the book and hated the version of future hated the people to turned their backs on the books and lost themselves in the giant size TV screens and the non-stop videos. Youtube on steroids anyone :P.

So yeah this was one classic which I wanted to read for longest of times and had even read the graphic novel adaptation of it but reading the original work is something else. So yeah it's a no-brainer pick this up if you haven't read it yet. If you have read it, read it again. and then Keep on Reading.

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Thursday, March 14, 2019

Review: Of Mice and Men

Of Mice and Men Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Wow such a short but impactful book/novella/short story, my journey so far through the classics and Goodreads Top 100 books has been blesses to say the least almost all the books I have loved and despite series which I left in the middle the urge to read one more book from the list wins. This time the next book I picked is the one which I wanted to read for a long time 'Fahrenheit 451' by Ray Bradbury. But will talk about that book in that book's review. We are talking about another classic which is not a fantasy, dystopian or some other genre but it's a simple tale of two friends who go from farm to farm finding work and how people are just so so mean.

This is story of George and Lennie, George the caretaker, Lennie the simple giant. They have a dream and they just want to work toward that dream but reality interrupts them always. And the shortness of this book also works in establishing the quick events and how quickly can things go bad.

Loved it and can't recommend it enough, do read it it's not a huge ask for your time which would be enriched due to this, so then pick it up and then just Keep on Reading .

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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Review: The Color Purple

The Color Purple The Color Purple by Alice Walker
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

My continued run through the classics and Goodreads Top 100 books, finds me on another Pulitzer prize winner and a classic one. This time it's a story of a tortured little black woman called Celie who faces nothing but hardships and disappointments all the way. This is the story of how she finds the happiness through all the troubles. How despite all the odds she finds love and confidence and success. This is a life story of her and most of it is told through letters written between Celie and her sister Nettie who has to run away from the house at a young age due to the toxic man around her.

Ah well it's a statement of Feminism and a powerful one at that. This book very truthfully and beautifully showcases the USA of 1930s and beyond. The one person who can be credited in bringing about the most change in our heroine would be Shug Avery the singer the enigma who comes and live in her home and they fall in love. Shug is the one who motivates Celie and guides her to be her own woman who can do what she wants to do.

The book tells the story of Celie since she is 14 years old to when she becomes older with Grey hair. Another good read thanks Goodreads. So yeah do pick this book and then Just Keep on Reading.

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Monday, March 11, 2019

Review: The Night Circus

The Night Circus The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

"The Circus arrives without any warning." "Circus will open at night till dawn." This book is magic, full of magic, and magic my only issues was frequent time jump and all the different characters so much so that some times I wasn't able to follow the characters but still I loved it and would look to read it again some day in future. This read was done with a borrowed book which is a rarity for me for I already own too many books but still not enough :P I know you would know the feeling.

Well coming back to the book, it's a story of a unique and mysterious circus which appears in the city without any fanfare and advance notice and disappears as quickly. Like my first line says it opens at night and closes at dawn. It's the story of Celia and Marco who are pitted against each other since they were kids and now they have to continue the game even when they don't want to. enough of the story :P let's talk about the book again.

Again, this book is full of magic and which is just is there's no explanation for it as it doesn't need any explanation. You just feel that this world is full of magic and we just follow the circus and it's members and performers through time jump after time jump and there just magic all around. I loved it and hopefully you would also love it or fall in love with the book or the night circus itself. I love when the books are self contained and not part of the trilogies or series of more books. Don't get me wrong I also love the books which goes on for 3, 4, 5 or 7 books but not all the stories are meant to go on for multiple books. This is it like it, love it, hate it. Night Circus is here and it will be gone without any information :).

If you like romance, mystery, magic, fun do give this one a read maybe you will find magic too in the pages on this book and then maybe you would just Keep on Reading .

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Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Review: A Clockwork Orange


A Clockwork Orange A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another day, another book which is part of Goodreads 100 books to read list and another book which made an iconic movie possible, I haven't watched the movie somehow so far and would be able to watch it now having read this book. This is a dystopian novel set in terrifying version of England where violence rules and young guys go around hitting and robbing people for fun and enjoyment. So as it's ought to do, combination of stupid hijinks and some betrayal sees our narrator in jail with a long punishment to endure.

Alex comes to know about a revolutionary technique which might allow him an early release from jail, this is a technique which claims to cure violent tendencies in the criminals to ensure that rather than costing the country by staying in jail they can go out and be regular lawful citizens. But this treatment affects Alex that he can't see any violent act now. And now he is a non-violent person in a violent world. What would happen now.

If you watched the movie or heard about the book, you might have heard about all the slang words used here and that made difficult to follow the book in the beginning but by the mid way through most of the slangs were understandable. This is wonderful book which asks some important questions and demands answers.

Do pick this book if you haven't read it and then just Keep on Reading .

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Monday, March 4, 2019

Review: Siddhartha

Siddhartha Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was beautiful little classic book which might have been a poem in German but in translation it became a story and a simple but effective story. The story is about a young brahmin called Siddhartha and his journey towards his salvation as dissatisfied with the current knowledge he tries to find more and unable to find what he is looking for he moves ahead and tries his luck and moves through life experiences.

This translation was easy to follow and the introduction had already explained few minor points already so it was a doozy to go through this smallish book. I am happy to be able to experience this story. This is the story of a common man whose thirst and desire for knowledge takes him through so many different experiences. My only issues were with the fact that like all classics it sometimes gets a little slower even in the small size, but it's another book which people should read once and it was perfectly part of Goodread's 100 top books.

So yeah if you are going through classics or just want to get to read a good book pick this and hopefully you would be happier for it too after that just Keep on Reading .

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Review: The Last Star

The Last Star The Last Star by Rick Yancey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

So yeah let's tackle the rating first it will be high 3.5 :)

And coming to the third and final book in the 5th wave trilogy, I wouldn't discuss the story details as you know spoilers spoilers. Going ahead Earth is still what it was after the alien invasion and our main characters race against the clock to try to save the earth from the final step in the invasion which might destroy all humans from the earth but before that can happen we have a ragtag group of kids trying to stop them. After All most of the adults are already dead.

This one moved a lot among the available viewpoints and some surprising secrets are revealed and the end is appropriate and kinda realistic. I enjoyed it but could only read it in patches. So now that another trilogy is in the bag let's move onto some more Non-Fiction, Gandhi anyone? from ultra violence to the man who was all for nonviolence.

Yeah do pick this after all you need to finish the trilogy and once you do that just Keep on Reading .

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Friday, March 1, 2019

Review: The Sadhu

The Sadhu The Sadhu by Gotham Chopra
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Another day and another graphic novel down, I do love comics and really applaud Graphic India team to try to work on different story lines and ideas. But I guess it's about time that you stopped collaborating with Deepak Chopra. The Art work is wonderful but the spiritual mumbo-jumbo is here and there. Story is fragmented, with abrupt end like others said and more coming in next paragraph.

Once again it's a story with a White Hero, Another story where a White Man saves the day. The storyline could have been much better but alas! what's the point in crying over spilled milk. This looks like that it wasn't a single book but a volume of individual issues which most of comic publishers do and it suffers from the same issue where the next issue may not continue the story or the flow might be totally different. I have read the graphic novels which tell a single story even from the house of Graphic India and those efforts were better, still I am happy and only troubling fact is that this was released way back in 2014 with few sequels later which I would be reading next but what new content are they working on in 2019? I think I have bought all their work well most of it for sure but are they still releasing new stuff?

Well I for one surely wish that they are still active and that they keep on pushing themselves to work on new and innovative storylines which are just not another rehash of same storylines from our past or from outside India :) I liked and loved the work done by GI team but more needs to be done to ensure that we have more and varied stories to tell all the readers.

I have always loved comics, and I hope that I will always love them. Even though I grew up reading local Indian comics like Raj Comics or Diamond Comics or even Manoj Comics now's the time to catch up on the international and classic comics and Graphic novels. I am on my quest to read as many comics I can. So you also give a chance to comics and Graphic Novels and always remember to just Keep on Reading .

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Review: A Hero Of Our Time

A Hero Of Our Time A Hero Of Our Time by Mikhail Lermontov
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I had always thought that my first russian read would be something by Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, or Chekhov, but as things are ought to do I instead got to read this book which was written in 1840 and is supposed to be the first major Russian novel which actually influenced Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, or Chekhov, so all's fine, Thanks @Vishnu bro for providing me a Gutenberg ebook for this book.

Coming to the book it's not a single story but 5 short stories on a single individual twenty-five-year-old Pechorin. Two are narrated and others are in his own voice. The stories are written as if they are diary entries and reading this just after Wuthering Heights it might have been Heathcliff as well if only he was as handsome as our hero. Who wants nothing from the world and the World keeps throwing itself on his feet.

The story is based in the mountains of Caucasus and there is detailed description of geography and the this was very interesting to know about the history limited as it might be. This again seems to be an innovative work which talked about an anti-hero at the time when the societal norms would have been way different. I liked it and happy that I got to read this one through my run of Classic reads which I find myself on.

Yes, do read it, it's a short read and hopefully you would like it too, till then just Keep on Reading.

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Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Review: Wuthering Heights

Wuthering Heights Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

So yeah I am finally done with my first read of a Bronte sister book and yay it's Wuthering Heights the name of a house which sees so much through a short period of 50 years or so. The story is mostly told through the flashbacks or recollection by the housekeeper Ellen Dean and in the last part by the tenant Lockwood. So sad to know that it was only novel by Emily Bronte would have loved to read more of her work.

Coming to the next stop in my classic train, we arrive to perhaps few of the most famous literary works in the world. The story though by now many of you would already know this after all this book has more than a million ratings so more than a million people have read it on goodreads and countless over the year who didn't have access to internet or awesome Goodreads . This is as much as a love story as the tale or love so passionate that it destroys multiple families in the heat of it's passion. Or it's about hatred of an anti-hero who sucks the joy out of everyone he touches till everyone is as miserable as he is. This was the original 'An Abundance of Katherines' here are two Katherines a mother and the daughter. Both love stories and oh how can I forget in the second go all were cousins and cousins and cousins. Even Heathcliff was a foster brother or maybe just a servant as they treated him as such. I guess it was the first book to tell the tale of such bright love that it burned everyone it touched and drove the people in love mad and even after they died they roamed around as ghosts, oh yeah there are ghosts in here too, lurking here and there. But it's a love story, it's a hate story, it's literature, it's classic now what it's not is a horror story. Oh but it contains horrors, the horrors of cruelty, horrors of love, horrors of misunderstanding in love, horrors of anger, horrors of passion.

If you don't already know, my consumption of E-books has changed and I mostly listen to them now due to this I am able to finish way more books and it also lands some extra character to the storytelling. Also as is the case with classics this also has introductions and notes explaining the story and book and the life of Bronte sisters. I am just happy that in this current run of my catching of the classics so far I have loved all the ones I have read let's see how far the streak goes or I might just stop it here or move back to Harry Dresden saga after all that poor Wizard for hire has more suffering in his life. But that's the talk for another book.

So yeah it's a classic and has already survived for more than 170 years so already know it's good and good enough to stand the test of time and if like me you missed it so far then remedy that read this masterpiece immediately and then just Keep on Reading .

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Monday, February 25, 2019

Review: Sharp Objects

Sharp Objects Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

So I generally prefer to read the books by an author from their first book if I can help it but for Gillian Flynn I have literally done the exact opposite. I read 'Gone Girl' first then the 'Dark Places' and finally now this and this was also in the service of to be able to watch the TV series based on this book. Now let's come back to this book. So let's begin with the summary:

Our heroine Camille is a reporter in chicago and has to return to her hometown to cover a murder and abduction of another girl and it soons turn into a serial killer case and Camille has to deal with her toxic family along with all the people she knew way back and try to find the truth or does she want to?

This was a disturbing book and I have always loved the twisted imagination the author brings to her female characters and to the family dimensions. I for one wasn't able to figure out the actual murderer well sorta but the killer somehow never came into my focus I don't know why and now if I ever re-read this I would see the signs but again this is nicely written thriller where acquaintances doesn't mean much and in a town of 2000 odd people gossips reign supreme. And yeah Camille also liked to cut her and carve words on her body hence the title of the book. For She craves sharp objects to cut herself once more but her family is really toxic with worst family members.

Now I am prepared to watch the series with the smug feeling that I know the story and would compare the scenes with the book. This is my usual pattern now where if some movie or series is based on a book then I will read the book before watching the adaptation, such fun.

So yeah this is wonderful debut book by the author of Gone Girl and if you read that you already know how wonderfully twisted Gillian's mind works so then pick and read and then just Keep on Reading.

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Saturday, February 23, 2019

Review: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Having seen the movie a long way back and loving it, I was excited to read this book and finally got around to seeing the movie after founding myself in a run of reading list which contains classics and Top 100 books to read. So yeah I was finally got around to reading it and my oh my how it was. So thinking of movie if followed the book almost page to page and was a very faithful adaptation so yay to that.

The story is set in a mental institution like most of us already know through the movie or having read the book and is told through the viewpoint of Chief Bromden a gigantic half-Native American who is an inmate who is playing deaf and dumb to be passing his time and all inmates are under the thumb of the head nurse Ratched who is tyrannical figure in the asylum.

All is shaken up after the arrival of a new member McMurphy who may or may not be crazy but his upbeat behavior brings a spell of improvement in the life of the inmates. Since the book is told through Chief who himself is mental patient his narration is flaked out with unreliable details but this book is remarkable and funny and sad and unreliable and very reliable narrative set in the asylum and we learn about the lives of the members staying there and I so hate Nurse Ratched that I can sparsely speak or even type and that's why this review got delayed while I allowed the hate to brew and rise up and it still wasn't enough. The movie villain was hateable and oh boy did I hate her but reading about her ugh I can't even. Well let it be the end of it then.

So yeah watch the movie, read the book both are wonderful thankfully and remember to just Keep on Reading.

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Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Review: Brave New World

Brave New World Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Wowee what a terrifying future and to think that it still feels plausible and this book will complete 100 years in just few more years. This book like most of you already know imagines in a future society which has eliminated happiness, religion, education and people just produced for different tasks. In this "Utopia" comes a "Savage" a person from natural reserves they keep and questions and challenges their believes and society.

The start of the book is very dry and technical but I guess that was necessary to show the supposed progress and also to show the dry world. I loved it and I am happy that at least this current batch of classics is going great for me and I am liking all these books let's see how high the streak goes. So far it feels good. Another thing I noticed is that because it was a sci-fi book it doesn't feel dated. As helicopters might have been futuristic for 1932 but I can still a modified model of it being used in the future too. So awesome work and no wonder it's so highly regarded and I am better of by reading it.

So yes do pick this up too and see how far things can go in the future and then just Keep on Reading.

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Review: The Picture of Dorian Gray

The Picture of Dorian Gray The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have suddenly found myself going through the classics and also the list of 100 books to read before yada yada yada! So after Romeo and Juliet I found myself reading this and loved it. And it was funny to see Romeo and Juliet performed in this book having just reading it prior to this book. Since it's been more than 100 years that the book was published and due to the movies. Almost everybody knows about the plot. There's a picture and somehow it takes the brunt of times and actions but our hero remains as he was when the picture was painted.

It was fun reading the way Dorian falls deeper and deeper in ways to try to see the limits of what he can get away with. And what lengths does he fall to. It was definitely fun and like somebody already said that for a novel printed more than 100 years ago some parts surprisingly held up. And it was fun to read about all the different ideas and suggestions thrown around and as it was mentioned in the introduction now with our updated brains the homoerotic theme can easily be judged and found.

As a character study it is good and fun to read, though some parts are just a list of different trees, jewels and poisons etc. And it goes on where it would delve into related but boring stuff but mostly and as a whole this was fun and like always it's easy to see how it survived all these years. I am just mostly happy that I got to read this when I did and now I can mark it off the all time read list.

For all the readers trying to read this yes you can pick it and read it and do so as soon as possible and then just Keep on Reading.

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Saturday, February 16, 2019

Review: Empire of Blood

Empire of Blood Empire of Blood by Arjun Raj Gaind
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was another original graphic novel from the house of Graphic India and like I said before it is good to see the artists and companies trying to do something original for a change and with this movement we would finally see the medium of Graphic Novel increasing as a storytelling device rather than being viewed as just comics for adults.

Now coming to the book, this is drawn beautifully in monochrome like sephia but with red. Story of this may be from a storyline is some series like The Twilight Zone. This is topsy turvy world where England was able to beat everything in the world war and is now ruling most of the world with blood. it has been often said that the British Empire bled India dry in here that is done literally as the Empire uses the blood for some nefarious purpose.

The story moves quickly enough what with 4 issues in the original run and it was fine just a slight new polish on the What If model of storytelling, we have mostly seen the scenarios where Nazis win the war and here a losing England wins the war with a miracle potion called Aqua Vitae. What is the miracle potion nobody knows but the new World is terrible and racist than ever before. So naturally our hero is a Britisher and has to fall in love with an Indian girl so yeah it's like movie or a TV series but done good enough.

Nice graphic novel and like I said earlier it's nice to see something new tried. So do give the support to the writers and publishers and read the damn thing so that more effort can be put in the future titles, so read and read and just Keep on Reading.

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Review: Romeo and Juliet

Romeo and Juliet Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

"These violent delights have violent ends
And in their triumph die, like fire and powder
Which, as they kiss, consume”

Oh Westworld you nicked it from here and I remember it as your line now :P so the version of Romeo and Juliet I read was so decked full of information about Shakespeare and different versions of Romeo and Juliet. I loved the poems didn't like the play that much because there have been better movie adaptations and I must have seen more than 10 movies both in English and Hindi adapted from this classic. The story might be from 1600s but sadly in India you can still see if happening in so many places.

"Oh young love you shall ever burn with the fires brighter than the sun itself" (My quote)

And I see why it and more Shakespeare stuff has survived the time and I shall try to read and enjoy more of his classics but my re-reading or actually first actual reading of the play and like most of the classics which have been adapted countless times the original comes away lacking in some way especially which you consider the performances in all those movies and adaptations and there has to be said something about the fact as well that a play should be enjoyed in performance and not in reading but sadly reading is I shall be doing with other Shakespeare works because theatre production of Shakespeare is something which I don't see frequently. Though I remember seeing one adaptation of 'Othello' in theatre and it was great.

Well it's a love story nay it's a war story nay it's a tragedy and one for the ages for though the entire thing was stupid it was something which endured and that is something indeed. So yeah it's worth giving time to and cherished and while I go ahead and try to pursue other classics you should pick it and then just Keep on Reading.

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Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Review: Dead Beat

Dead Beat Dead Beat by Jim Butcher
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In his seventh adventure, Harry Dresden, Chicago's only professional wizard comes up against several necromancers whom are all powerful than him and he has to take all the help to overcome this threat or else there would be multiple people will die and yeah Murphy is out of action this time enjoying holiday in Hawaii.

Poor Harry he wants to do good but no good deed goes unpunished so it happens to him and he finds himself facing one of his toughest challenge yet and so many times coming just short of losing his life for fighting for the cause he believes in. Harry Dresden's saga continue and it is as strong as ever and as wonderful a read even in the seventh go and this is clearly the reason why the series is so popular. I have read seven books continuously in this series and now would be taking a short break from the series coming back to it later.

Harry is supported this time by Butters a medical examiner who works in a morgue and Thomas his brother who is a white court vampire. Once more Harry was in one peril after another with no help and he is chased by a fallen angel too who wants to help him as she says but Harry is not ready to believe or succumb to her. Oh well it's also fine and then there were Billy and his gang and Harry has to keep them away to keep them safe.

So yeah then do pick this book or start the series just once you do just Keep on Reading.

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Review: A Corner of a Foreign Field: The Indian History of a British Sport


A Corner of a Foreign Field: The Indian History of a British SportA Corner of a Foreign Field: The Indian History of a British Sport by Ramachandra GuhaMy rating: 5 of 5 stars



This was wow, this was awesome, this was little bit slow but that's for the par for a book on history. This book is wonderful and I didn't even know about it till I get to know about it, funny how things can be. This is a history of cricket in India and it gave so much unknown information that it was informative and eye-opening. I hate that we don't care about history, I hate it that Palwankar Baloo is still not a well known name and thankfully it's changing a bit and Baloo has some information available on net.

But this book's narrations goes before and after Baloo and tells us the beginnings and progress of game in India. Maybe because I am not a big reader of history or maybe I am not old enough and maybe because I am not from Mumbai but I had no idea about the most famous cricket tournament in India before independence, but I guess considering we don't focus on history as much as we should as Indians, it's not surprising.

Well at least it will be changing for me, for i know have read this book, read it slowly but surely and I already have lot of history books by Mr. Guha and other writers and hope to put my ignorance about history of India to a level where it's less ignorant but till then let's hope that more people get to know about this book and they also read after all almost everyone is a cricketer in India and that too All-Rounder.

So yes very big recommendations to pick this book if you love cricket, you would be surprised by the history of the sport in India and then just Keep on Reading .

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Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Book Review - Afterlight by Aditya Mewati

What it is - A new dystopian novel by Aditya Mewati, and it's probably the first dystopian novel by an Indian so kudos there.

Blurb from Goodreads - Despite being raised to hate her own existence, Sayra Green found love after she met Aaron and his family. They gave her hope in a world where everyone is segregated as worthy and unworthy. 

They made her feel safe in a dystopian era where beasts prowl the land, and there are only a few walls to keep them out. 

Now, after turning seventeen, Sayra commits an act which sets in motion an event that starts affecting many lives, and with things going from bad to worse, can she save the people who ones saved her?


Review - So this is the story of Sayra and Aaron who are living in a dystopian city where on turning 17 everyone has to go through mandatory DNA test and based on that 25% are selected as unworthy and they aren't allowed to breed. This is a fast read with multiple POV chapters. Like I said this is probably the first dystopian novel by an Indian and this made me so so happy. This was the first book which I finished in the year 2019 and it was my first review on Goodreads for the year. When you would start the book it will feel like a fantasy novel because of the limited facilities in the city the story is based in and then it turns into proper dystopian level. Only issues I found was that sometimes the event occured too quickly and the story would jump here and there. But still it's a very nice effort by Aditya. 

Final Ratings -      4 out of 5
                               **** out of *****

Friday, January 4, 2019

Reading Plans for the New Year 2019

So Let's continue the conversation from my last blog post. It was all about the journey of last year, how many books I read, how did I read, what was the strategy. Now that we are already three days in the New Year let's talk about the Reading Challenge for 2019 and what books I am looking forward to reading. My initial reading challenge goal is set to 250 books. The number is high because I read lot of comics and I love reading them so very much. Like I did last year, if I manage to get to my goal before the year end I would modify the challenge by 50-100 books then.

Goodreads 2019 Reading Challenge
This year,

I am planning to finally start reading Manga comics hopefully, so that I shall be able to understand the many Manga inspired cosplay in better details. I bought bunch of graphic novels towards the end of the year and hope to continue the trend.

I am also planning or in fact have already starting to pick those books to read which have been waiting to be read for many years. There are lot of books which are waiting to be read for 10 years now, but all I can say is I would get to all, but all in due time.

I am also participating in few extra reading challenges from the groups I am part of on Goodreads. One such challenge is 12 Months, 12 Genres. Where you have make a concentrated effort to ensure that in the year you read books  which belong to the following genres:

♦ Classics
♦ Romance
♦ Fantasy
♦ Humour
♦ Adventure/Horror
♦ Young Adult
♦ Science Fiction
♦ Mystery/Thriller
♦ Contemporary
♦ Paranormal
♦ Historical
♦ Non-fiction

Now if you read a lot like me then it's not such a difficult challenge and this also helps to keep the reading list fresh if the books are from different genres and who knows if you won't find a new favorite from a new which you might not have tried before? So  Cheers to New Decisions, Cheers to the New Resolutions, Cheers to the New Plannings, Cheers to a New Year, May all you have a great reading year and you find new favorites to cherish this year as well. So remember whether you read only one book a year or many books in a year remember to Keep on Reading.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

My Reading Journey of Year 2018

As readers as much as we love to read, tracking our reading progress and the books we have read is also important. Different readers use different methods, and along with tracking the progress, readers also love to use Reading Challenge to motivate themselves to read more than the previous year or simply read more than they would read otherwise. To that end I love to use and am using Goodreads to track my reading progress over the years and I also participate in Goodreads Reading Challenge to challenge myself to read more and read often. It's a simple challenge where everything you read counts, people who want to diversify their reading they can chose to take countless different reading challenge which has different topics which you have to tackle through to complete that point. 

    Having said that I am using Goodreads Reading Challenge since 2013 and I have been able to complete my reading challenge each time so far. So to that end what was my reading challenge for the year 2018. My initial challenge was 150 books which I reached pretty soon, so then I updated it to 200 books and so on and so forth. My final books target was 300 and I ended up reading total 338 books in the last year.


You might be wondering now how did I manage to read 338 books well it's this way that first I always read lot of comics so that helps, second I starting listening to my e-books so that has helped to continue reading while I work or ride to and fro work and then there is good old fashioned reading. So the number you see above is my year long reading journey and I hope to continue that in this new year 2019 as well. My initial target for this year is 250 and let's see how far I can push it then. So Happy New Year and Happy Reading Year to all my reading friends, also share how do you track your reading and do you also take part in any reading challenge or not. So till then Keep on Reading.

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