Saturday, 17 February 2018 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

I Owed You One by Madhu Vajpayee (Book Review- 3.75*/5) !!!

1626th BLOG POST -->>

I am finally done reading Dr. Madhu Vajpayee’s 2nd book named “I Owed You One”. The book is published by Lifi publications and consist of almost 260 pages. Being a female, authoress have chosen to write the book in first person for a male protagonist. Nowhere while reading can you guess that the book is not written by the same gender considering how the authoress have managed to get a male protagonist’s emotions right. The book is very dark as it’s about a boy who has suffered all his life due to his father’s cold attitude towards him and his mother. And that particular thing leads to one and other events in life which does not leave him till a long time.

Madhu’s writing style is very intriguing and impresses the reader with the first chapter itself. The timelines in the book is nicely managed which does not confuse you because of several characters and multiple twists and turns. As this book is more about the emotional journey of a boy, authoress has very nicely captured all of them. You will be able to relate with the character and his pain. The good thing about the book is that it keeps changing its plot every 30-40 pages in the first 60% of the book while the rest 40% is about one particular plot that is been discussed. All the characters are treated very well and you won’t find any character disappeared at all after a point of time.

The pre-climax does get little slow and uninteresting as the story gets stuck at a particular instance and could not grow due to the limitations in the plot written by the writer. But the climax is ended well without making the book seem incomplete. Though I expected a lot from the story the way the first half was going but second half is little boring when compared to that. Overall, the book’s narrative is very poetic and you can feel the emotions throughout. I give this 3.75* out of 5. 


Thanks.

ABHILASH RUHELA!!! 


Sunday, 11 February 2018 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Review: Padman: Another feather in Akshay Kumar's hat! ***½

1625th BLOG POST -->>

Seeing Akshay Kumar’s movies are a delight these days. When we wanted to see something else in 90s except romance, he presented us with action movies and entertained. When in 2000s after Govinda lost his charm and audience were hungry to watch some good comedy movies, he emerged out with some epic comedy genres which have repeat values. And now in this era when there is no one who makes films on patriotism and social issues, Akshay Kumar is delivering movies back to back on the same concept winning audience’s heart.

His latest release, Padman, is another movie which is made on a very sensitive issue of women’s menstrual hygiene. Living in cities, the urban citizens do not even know the kind of lives the women in the not so prominent areas of the country lives. The movie discusses how the wife of Lakshmi has to stay out of house for the 5 days of her periods which he does not like. He tries his best to make his wife agree to use sanitary pads but all his efforts go into vain. Later on, he tries to explain other women in his village but in return gets snubbed and humiliated. And this makes his resolve to make the lives of women easy by producing sanitary pads himself so that it is available easily at affordable costs.


The movie has flaws in its screenplay but irrespective of that, the way the writers have tried to make the message reach the audiences without sounding vulgar or disrespectful towards the women is commendable. Also, the dialogues are entertaining which keeps the humour and seriousness alive in the movie in right proportions. The music is not so excellent in the movie and almost all the songs are forgettable. The movie also becomes repetitive at times with the same thing being discussed again and again. The climax is very well executed. Talking about the performances, above everyone, Sonam Kapoor is the surprise package of the movie and every frame in which she is, she brightens the screen. Her role is very well written and she executes in the best possible manner. Akshay Kumar, as always, makes the audience laugh, smile, cry and weep with him. Radhika Apte is also apt in her role but does not have very much to impress the audiences.

Overall, the movie is a perfect one-time watch and you should go to watch with your family. That’s the essence of the movie. I give it 3.5 stars out of 5.

Thanks.


ABHILASH RUHELA!!!
Thursday, 8 February 2018 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Let Me Go by Shriram Iyer (Book Review- 4*/5) !!!

1624th BLOG POST -->>

There are plenty of books upon love and friendships in the Indian market but very few are able to generate emotions among readers. I am just done reading another book based on the same genre written by Shriram Iyer named “Let Me Go”. The book also has the tagline which says “To Friendship… With Love”. By the title, I had termed this book as another cheesy stuff by an Indian author but after completing the same, I am surprised by the fact that this is one of the best books I have read which is purely based on the concept of deep friendship along with a backdrop of a love story.

Shriram Iyer’s writing style is very intriguing which involves the reader and enables him/her to concentrate on the story without getting distracted with uselessly added difficult words or over-exaggeration of not-so-important events in the book. The author keeps the focus on the story itself and gives the backdrop of each instance in such a perfect manner that you won’t feel that you have joined the story through this book but feel as if you were already a part of the story. The characterization is very nicely done where each character is given undue importance which makes you understand each one of them completely.

The way different timeline of 2-3 decades is presented tells how skilful the author is. The way book provides twists and turns and also manages to sustain small suspenses keep the interest of the reader and makes this book a perfect page-turner. The climax is also very nicely handled and justifies the long story perfectly. Talking about the drawbacks of the book, I would say that the story is quite predictable at times and thus, makes the whole purpose of those long chapters null. But overall, talking about the book, do read it for the emotions that it displays through words and scenes that can take you in the world of imaginations and empathy. I give this book 4 star out of 5.


Thanks.


ABHILASH RUHELA!!! 
Monday, 5 February 2018 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Let's have Coffee by Parul A. Mittal (Book Review- 3*/5) !!!

1623rd BLOG POST -->>

There are few authors whom you have seen progressing in the field of writing since their 1st book itself. Parul A. Mittal is one such author whom I am following since her first book itself. I am just done reading her latest book “Let’s Have Coffee”.  By the name, it sounds as if the book is very casual in terms of story but I must say the story has enough ingredients to keep you interested. Parul’s writing style is still very friendly that makes it easy for readers to understand the pace of the story and thus, complete reading the book in a single sitting itself. 

The writing style of Parul is very natural and you can feel the ease with which she pens down her stories. The book starts describing how two individuals meet in a wedding where surprisingly, their respective ex-es are getting married to each other. This is quite undigestible but the authoress takes the plot ahead in a very interesting manner where these two individuals start showing interest in each other i.e. Meha and Samir. Later on, Meha comes to know that Samir has been using her for his own writing project and her heart breaks. Co-incidentally, both of them meet each other again after years in a wedding. The story is totally Bollywood-ish and anyone who loves Hindi films’ drama will love this book. 

The book is edited very well without overly describing small incidents or segments. Authoress has kept her story focused on the characters and maintained the same very well. Talking about the drawbacks of the story, I would say that it’s quite predictable and to make the story sound very fancy, authoress has written some parts which are hard to related with reality. But overall, the book is a nice read which you will enjoy once for sure. I give this book 3* out of 5. 


Thanks.

ABHILASH RUHELA!!! 
Sunday, 4 February 2018 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

The Malhotra Bride by Sundari Venkatraman (Book Review- 3.5*/5) !!!

1622nd BLOG POST -->>

I remember the two authors from Fingerprint! Publication often, Anita Shirodkar and Madhuri Iyer. They write stories about super-rich families of India and their tales are so apt that you can’t leave the book without completing the story. I picked another book from the same publishers written by Sundari Venkatraman named “The Malhotra Bride”. The book carries the same essence as the two authors’ books I mentioned above hence I enjoyed reading this book a lot. The best part about this book is that it has been edited well keeping it up to the mark without useless segments between the story. The book is of 222 pages which you can easily finish within few hours in a single sitting. 

The narration of the story is perfect which keeps you excited in knowing what happens in the next page. The writing style of the author is very simple which makes it easy for the reader to complete the book in a sitting. The characterizations in the story is nicely done where each character is different from the other and each of them is treated equally well without ignoring for some other character. Thee book speaks about the concept of Arrange Marriages in India where the sons and daughters aren’t asked if they wish to marry a person or not and forcibly matched with the person of the parent’s choice. Author has very well put lights on this topic and made the reader understand how idiotic it is and how tough it becomes for the children to agree for such marriages. 

Though the book is silly when the contractual marriage is talked of but the way this particular thing is mentioned at right points makes this book more interesting. The way both these characters couldn’t get through with each other initially and how they start falling just before marriage is very nicely written. The way the contractual marriage topic comes in the story just after the marriage gives the book a nice twist which engages the reader more with the book. The pre-climax and climax is again apt for this book. It is a nice read overall and author has done a commendable work for sure. I give this book 3.5* out of 5. 


Thanks.

ABHILASH RUHELA!!! 

"I'm an Average Looking Boy… Will You Be My Girlfriend?" by Roopesh Kumar (Book Review- 3*/5) !!!

1621st BLOG POST -->>

There was a time some 7-8 years ago when people liked the books written by Durjoy Datta because it took you in a world where you could feel yourself sitting in between of a college or school and watching all the boys and girls around you hooking up with each other. It took you to a world of fantasy where romance and sex used to overpower your emotions and feelings. I recently completed reading a book the title of which is somewhat how Durjoy’s books used to have “I’m an Average Looking boy … will you be my girlfriend?” written by Roopesh Kumar. The title of the book is quite cheesy which author should have avoided because it’s hard for readers to share the name of the book with anyone and also feels shy in letting anyone know the name of the book he/she is reading. 

The narration of the story is very nicely managed by Roopesh in his very first book itself which tells that he is ready to write many more books getting better with each of them. The story of the book is also engrossing which keeps you interested as you want to know what happens with each of the characters. The author has included lot of characters in the book which makes it even harder to give equal justice to each of them but he manages to take all the characters ahead in the story. This book is very good for the audience who are either in junior college or just joined their Graduation course as they will find it relatable. 

Author has tried discussing many social elements too. There are parts in the book where author discusses some segments which is hard to believe as generally, such things are not possible in reality. E.g. a girl’s father accepting the baby she produced before marriage, a wife giving divorce to her husband within 6 months itself because she comes to know about his husband’s love story etc. These narratives make the book look silly in intervals otherwise it’s an interesting stuff to read. I give this book 3* out of 5. I am looking ahead to Roopesh Kumar’s next book. 


Thanks.

ABHILASH RUHELA!!! 


Scent of an Undiscovered Writer by Callre (Book Review- 2*/5) !!!

1620th BLOG POST -->>

The biggest risk as a reader is to pick up a debutante’s book of an Indian writer. This time I picked up a book having a very unique title as “Scent Of An Undiscovered Writer”. It is written by Abhishek Mohta under the pen-name of “Callre”. The book is published by Notion Press and is of around 240 pages. The name of the protagonist is the name of the author himself and while reading the book, I felt that I am reading author’s own autobiography itself. Many a times, a person believes that his story is very interesting and worth sharing and those interested in writing, scribble it down and self-publish the same. But the kind of thrilling books getting published these days, it is very hard to attract readers with such autobiographical stuff. 

This book does not carry a story as such but timeline of life of the protagonist divided into different chapters. Thee book is written in a very simple English language. This book is strictly for readers from small towns or who aren’t very much exposed to English language because it carries a lot of grammatical and spelling mistakes. It will not go very well with the avid readers. Also, the book consists of lots of conversation and it is written so plainly where many of them directly gets over with a person saying “Okay”. Few conversations are interesting to read but mainly, it is not quite appealing. 

This book is sort of personal diary of the author and hence, it could not interest me as the book does not have focus of any particular thing. The characters are not very deeply discussed in the book and introduction of new characters keeps on happening which doesn’t let the reader get connected with any of them. Few chapters are totally out of the line and I could not understand why are they even part of this book. Overall, I would say that the book needed lot of work and I hope that author will bounce back with his 2nd book after going through the kind of books getting published in Indian market these days. I rate this book 2 stars out of 5. 


Thanks.

ABHILASH RUHELA!!! 


I Tagged Her in my Heart by Anuj Tiwari (Book Review- 3*/5) !!!

1619th BLOG POST -->>


Though the Indian readers are currently trying different genres but how much the reading tastes might change, the books on love and romance will always have its audience and there is a certain target audience in which the books will surely do well. Getting into the readers’ favorite list in India is very tough where 1000s of books are getting published each day, surprisingly. Anuj Tiwari has been one such writer who has managed to thrill his audience since his debut work. I am just done reading his 4th book- “I tagged her in my Heart”. Reading the title of the book it suggests that the story must be having some connection with the Social media but it is nowhere related to that. 

Anuj Tiwari’s writing style is similar to how he had narrated his story in this 3rd book named “It’s not right but it’s okay”. The positive for Tiwari’s fans is that his command over the English language has improved in multiple folds. Even the narration of this book is a bit better than his previous book. The way author has been able to integrate so many characters in the book is applaudable as maintaining each of them with the continuity of the story is not that easy. Though, personally, I felt that author did not handle each character that effectively and ignored most of them while concentrating only on few of his favorite ones. Also, I believe that few characters are given too much focus in the 1st half while another sect of characters are given importance in the 2nd half which makes it difficult for the readers to connect with any of them except Adrika. 

Author promotes his book with the character of Dimpy aunty but I think the character is not very well-managed. It could have been better. This book is said to be one of the inspiring stories but I believe that leaving the pre-climax and climax, the book cannot be sectored into the “inspirational books” genre. Talking about the plot of the story, the book starts slowly in the beginning but takes a very good pace in the middle which asks readers to continue turning pages and know what happens next. The book is basically portraying the power of relationships that one maintains in life and does very good in making the thought reach the reader’s mind. I believe that the book could have been 15-20 pages less as author has elaborated the break-up of one couple a lot in middle pages. Overall, this book is not as good as “It’s not right but it’s okay” but still matches Anuj Tiwari’s style. I rate it 3 stars out of 5. 


Thanks.

ABHILASH RUHELA!!! 


Sunday, 7 January 2018 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Different Beads Of The Same String by Sujay Malik (Book Review-3*/5) !!!

1618th BLOG POST -->>

I am not a great fan of anthologies hence I always feel doubtful about picking any book which has 10-12 short stories. But for a change, I thought of trying something from the new set of releases from an Indian author and thus landed upon Sujay Malik’s “Different Beads Of The Same String” which consists of 10 short stories. The book is published by Notion Press publication and is of only 120 pages which can be completed in a single sitting of 2 to 2.5 hours. 

The best part about the book is that the author has tried to keep the stories versatile where no two stories sound similarly. Sujay Malik has also taken care of the narration very well in the stories where he keeps changing his style as per the demand of the story. His command over the language is also skilful as he manages to create emotions, excitements, wonder etc. on his demand. The choice of stories is nicely edited and selected as it manages to strike the chord with the Indian readers. This book will basically be liked by the young or new readers as author has kept things straight and simple. 

The story also reflects the contemporary societal problems where a girl from North-eastern stretch is a victim of racism and physical violence. Another story talks about how two guys are being taught a small lesson so that they stop smoking. One story discusses about the personal awakening of a person. One story talks about the condition of the law and justice in our nation. All the stories have different parameters and thus, keeps the reader interested in the book. 

Talking about the drawbacks, the first thing I would point out is the number of the stories in the book and the length of each story. I don’t believe a young reader would purchases a novel worth Rs. 200/- for 10 short stories when there are bigger Whatsapp forwarded stories available for free. Secondly, author has kept the language and narration of the stories too simple which might not impress matured and avid readers as they would be expecting a level-up stuff. Otherwise, this book is a light read which is best to read while traveling alone. I give this book 3 stars out of 5. 


Thanks.

ABHILASH RUHELA!!! 

Wednesday, 3 January 2018 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Murderous Greed by Arun K Nair (Book Review-2.5*/5)!!!

1617th BLOG POST -->>

Reading crime novels by debut Indian authors is a great feeling considering all of them are inspired by the successful Western authors but yet try to carve their own path with a unique story. Arun K Nair has also entered the world of literature with a book based on crime thriller named "Murderous Greed" where a set of policemen are trying to figure out the murderers of the two cases that takes places within few minutes. The book is of about 200-pages which I feel is quite applaudable considering how few stories are written in such a stretched manner that the readers start skipping sentences between paragraphs. Author has kept the story to the point without wasting too much time in description. The cover page and the title are also catchy which interested me in picking this book for reading. 

Arun’s writing style is average and you won’t find anything to learn from it. This book will be more effective for the new readers trying to associate themselves with Indian novels and wish to start with crime genre. It is an easy crime thriller where you won’t have to remember multiple dates, locations, characters etc. Author has kept things simple for the reader to complete the book in one sitting. I completed this book within 2.5 hours and it’s a wonderful book to carry with you while traveling. 

The first half of the book is very interesting when the two unfortunate events take place. The entry of policemen in the story and the way they start attacking each suspect with their questions and interrogations is a nice read. The first half promises a better second half which is where the book couldn’t fully satisfy me. The revelation of the climax is too simple and does not come with a bang shocking the shit out of the reader. The book keeps discussing only one murder scene throughout and totally forgets the other one which makes the story sound half-baked. Author should have tried writing the interrogation for both the cases happening simultaneously. 

Overall, Murderous Greed stays true to its title and the story is written exactly aligned with it. The Author’s note in the end of the book states that there’s a sequel planned which is releasing this year itself. This came as a surprise and I am looking forward to it. Arun K Nair will have to write a better book than this one to impress his already created fan-base. I rate Murderous Greed with 2.5* out of 5 as it will intrigue the new readers but for the lovers of crime thrillers, this book is too simple to stand out amongst all. 


Thanks.

ABHILASH RUHELA!!! 

Monday, 1 January 2018 | By: AbhiLaSH RuHeLa

Switching Gears for the New Year --> 2018

1616th BLOG POST -->>

Another year has passed by and so many emotions attached with it are just flash-backing somewhere behind in my subconscious mind. 2017 has been a very eventful year for me in terms of professional career. The branch of the big tree that I always wanted to climb and hold has finally managed to stay in my grip. Though with any added responsibility, comes lot of stress and time-constraint but life has to be fought against all these obstacles which come our way. If any of these would have come easy, everyone would have already been sitting on that branch and there would have been no place for me. As I have read it many a times in Robin Sharma’s books that for achieving what only 5% of population can, we will need to do things that only 5% of the population does. Now this sounds very easy but one has to put a lot in training oneself to achieve the excellence that makes one reach heights that no one in the vicinity could.

The major events for 2017 has been achieving some FIRSTS of my life professionally where I received my first appraisal and a great hike that I had not expected and also my first promotion where I moved from being a QA Engineer trainee to Business Analyst. For the second half of 2017, I have been performing my new role and I have tried to achieve many personal goals that I had set for myself. I still need help of the Product Owners who are my seniors some or the other time in taking decisions which I expect to learn as soon as possible in this year. The last week of 2017 has itself been very eventful where I learnt handling the most unfortunate event for a Business Analyst when you have to present the product to the client when it is not ready at all. It has been such a learning experience which will stay with me for life. Handling several projects, clients and internal teams has prepared me very well in the first six months itself of my new role. 

On the personal front, I have seen a tremendous change in my attitude and personality because of my alignment towards spirituality and religiosity. Learning to remain ecstatic in the loneliness and to be able to experience the feelings without having those parameters resulting to those feelings is what I have been able to achieve up to some level. I would like to thank Sadhguru for letting me understand the concepts through his books and videos. Now I have learnt to speak less and concentrate more on the tasks in hand than anything else that is not a priority at this moment. I had been questing to achieve this stage from a long time and I can’t tell you how much pleased I am after reaching this stage in the last one year. 

Another feat that I had targeted was to reduce my tummy fat and lose some inches around my abdomen so that I do not look bulky, tired and under-confident. I had never imagined myself staying on healthy diet for 10 long months without once falling in the trap of aroma and delicacies that the Indian foods and road-side stalls bring with them. The physical transformation has been wonderful and everyone around me is noticing the same and getting motivated by it. What more can you bring as an impact through your daily rituals than changing the lifestyles of people around you by being the doer and not just talker? Now I am able to wear those T-shirts and jeans that I had rejected 2 years back. What an amazing experience this has been!

Talking about the academics, I have finally completed my part-time MBA course that I had started since I had joined my first job. If I pass, I will finally be getting my degree in the 1st month of this New Year. The course has taught me so much that now when my company’s founder says something, I understand the origin of that thought and thus, I am able to fulfil his requirements more than before and anyone else at my position. MBA has been a wonderful journey and nothing could have given me the kind of accomplishment in life as achieving this degree has. Just after my graduation, I had wanted to do MBA but because of insistence from my parents, I did MCA for 3 years and waited each year for it to finish so that I can begin with this. And finally, even this has come to an end and I am done with all the professional degrees I wanted to do. Now, only short-term professional courses would be sufficient for life to continue till death. Haha!

Another small targets and memories that I had been able to accomplish that made 2017 more special and complete are: I have managed to watch a season of an English series and more than 5 Hollywood movies as I had committed myself last year. I have managed to write 1600th Blog Post this year even though the year has been my worst in terms of Blogging as I have managed to write only 92 blog posts whereas my target is always to write at least 200 posts. Like every year, I maintained my ritual of visiting Shirdi Sai Baba 2 months back. Another wonderful event has been witnessing and meeting my idol, Amitabh Bachchan, in September, on the sets of KBC and also accomplishing my mother’s childhood dream. I also completed reading 52 books this year too and completed my Reading challenge of Goodreads. I also had my first long car-drive experience when I visited Daman and Silvassa with my parents for 4- days trip. And then, I have also saved more money than all the previous years which is most important thing in life at my age at least. Haha!

Talking about 2018, the year that is standing in front of us all ready to accept us, I am very much nervous because I also have multiple expectations from it. My life is going to change drastically this year- personally as well as professionally. There are few targets that I have set for myself yet again like every year irrespective of just one resolution which most probably fails in the 1st month itself. Let’s mention some of them so that we have something to talk about on this Blog for the whole year:

  • Professional: Switching job for testing myself in a new environment. There’s a fear that’s haunting me that I cannot survive anywhere else than the present organization which is also my first. This fear should be fought as soon as possible before it becomes a reason for depression.
  • Professional: Learning new tools related to Business Analyst field so that I can provide better documentations and understanding to my teams henceforth rather than just textual representation of functional requirements of Software.
  • Achieving 1700th and 1750th Blog Post landmark. 
  • Reading 52 books this year too. 
  • Maintaining the streak of walking/jogging/running 3,00,000 steps each month for at least 9 months of the year. 
  • Converting my whatever left-belly fat into flat stomach.
  • A meditation course has to be done. Also, meditation has to be made a part of daily ritual. My life should be identified with Spirituality if not with anything else.
  • Becoming a member of 5-AM club. It’s time now to stop slogging, sleeping on time to wake up at 5 AM and run life as per my wish than waking in a messy position where everyone has already started life and I need to find space to accommodate myself in it.
  • Learn to swim
  • Watching all the seasons of two English series.
  • Visiting in the greenery farm-like area every once in a month to stay close to nature as its nature that defines us so the better we understand it, the better we understand life.
  • Meeting my friends more often and building new relationships as the academic pressure is off post-MBA so it’s time to give time to others. Also, a trip with friends for more than a day either in Mumbai or better, outside city.
  • A visit to Shirdi
  • Reading Bhagwad Geeta every day and implementing its principle in my life and sharing it with people around me. 


Blah! Blah! Blah!

2018 is going to be the year when my relationship status might change from single to married. 2018 is going to be the year when I would be making my first job switch. 2018 is going to be the year which will make me more peaceful with spiritual lifestyle. 2018 is going to be the year when I would also get physically transformed with a healthier lifestyle. This year again has lots of promises and I am sure that I will be able to execute it at the best of my potentials and make it a better year than all the previous ones I have lived. 

I would also like to wish all of you a happy new year and I am sure you must also be ready with your To-do lists to keep the Year realized in your mind rather than missing it in the fast-streaming flow of life. If you end up living even this year like all the previous ones, remember, you do not add a year of experience in your life. The experience only comes when you live each year differently and that really counts. Let’s consider life as the single best reason of gratitude and submit ourselves to God and perform our best without expecting any fruits. And you will see the results you have never seen before. It’s Tried-and-Tested so pull your socks, on your mark, get set and GO!!!!

2018, Here I Come!

Thanks.

ABHILASH RUHELA!