27 September 2020 | By: Writing Buddha

Afsaane by Ameya Bondre (Book Review: 4*/5) !!!

1871st BLOG POST

 30th Book of 2020!

I have generally stopped reading short stories and poetry books but I am glad I tried one recently which didn’t disappoint me. The book is titled as “Afsaane” written by Ameya Bondre consisting of 11 short stories. It is published by Bluerose Publications in around 190 pages. The book is very interesting with each story giving a totally different dimension to the situation through human emotions which doesn’t stay balanced at few crucial points of one’s life. The author’s writing style represents the Indian-ness which makes it easy to relate with the stories. Even when one of the story shows a character migrating to a foreign land, author keeps his narrating and story-telling style similar to other stories without getting influenced by the set-up of the location.


All the stories have a basic premise on which author has scripted this whole book i.e. Human emotions. How, in a relationship or in difficult circumstances, each person behaves differently is what has been highlighted in the stories which shall also make you nostalgic as you shall end up remembering vulnerable incidents from your life. Author has used very simple language to tell all his stories without trying to be nazi by introducing unwanted tough vocabulary. He has only played with his characters which tells about how much time he must have taken to draft each one of them. Most of his stories are based on the life of a couple -where either they are in love, hatred, involved in relationship with no commitment, betrayal, extra-marital affairs, trial of reinvesting in the relationship etc.

Talking about the few stories that impressed me- “Distance”- the very first chapter is nicely written about the final day of a couple when they are heading for separation. How Ameya has used nature as a form of teacher in this story is a nice example of philosophy embedded in the storyline. “Dreams” is also written in a very unique style which sends the message of how an Indian woman has to sacrifice her dreams for family and has to await their permission for every dream she wants to fulfil post marriage.


“Blinkers On” was an eye-opener for me as I didn’t know that few couples have to face challenge from the family itself when they take decision of adopting a baby. The conversation of boy with his parents for the same tells a lot about our society even in this era. “Trapped” is a very unique narration as author uses a non-living thing as a character which speaks in first voice about how a human being gets addicted with it and is unable to stop even when life is about to change for good.


“A Healthy Home” tells us about the rural India and how a mother has no information about how to feed the baby post-birth which always keeps her worried regarding why her baby is not consuming food. Author also gives insight about the human behaviour where a mother is told about what shall be good for her baby but still she is resistant about it. “Long Lost” is a very nice closure to the book which is a very beautiful story about a couple who meets years after breaking-up in a different country altogether. The awkwardness of both the characters are very well represented.


Overall, all the stories in the book give you a good feeling. No story confuses you with its timeline or difficult narration. Yes, I would say, in few stories the beginning is little complicated but I think that is purposefully done by author for readers to concentrate to understand the scenario of the story. Few stories have potential of being in a full-fledged novel. I would give this book 4 stars out of 5. This book is not like other short story compilations where you get to read simple love stories. If you are a short story lover, go for this one.

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3 September 2020 | By: Writing Buddha

The Hungry Cow by Sandeep Kumar Rana (Book Review: 4*/5) !!!

1870th BLOG POST

29th Book of 2020!

There are times when you want to read a short book in between of your long reads for refreshment and you just expect a short good story from this book and not some kind of “Moral of the Story” as generally, authors write short books just for telling the story without any mission behind it. But the one I picked up last evening surprised me with its content- The book is named “The Hungry Cow” and is written by Sandeep Kumar Rana. Sandeep has written this book based on the Haryana Police’s initiative called “Mission Stray Cattle”. The book can be a very great influencer as it talks about how we, as human beings, treat animals with no empathy and just to ensure that we get as much benefits out of them without worrying about their emotional and health conditions.

The book is of around 1.5-2 hours read which is written in a very simple language with an equally easy narration. The great part about the book is that it can be read even by an eight years old kid or someone who is aged as well - as it speaks about the concern that has resonated all of us once in our life – how badly we treat animals. When I was a kid, I had no empathy towards animal until I saw a kid loving and caressing a puppy after it got hurt by some vehicle. It changed my mindset completely towards animal and since then I have never thrown stones towards them or kicked them out of frustration. In fact, I have started thinking as to how I shouldn’t end up causing them any kind of trouble. This book just brings the same emotions to you right from its first chapter.

I was amazed as to how even in such a small story, author has been able to add multiple characters such as the protagonist – 11-year-old Raju, his father – Gopal, Qasim – Raju’s friend, Rehman – Qasim’s father and the veterinary doctor along with many other policemen and people with authority. The USP of the book is the character of Gaura Maan – who is a cow domesticated by Gopal with a unique quality of talking like us. This makes us understand how a Cow sees human beings and why they are being referred as “Mother” by Hindus. She is capable of telling stories and discussing life with Raju as he loves her like a real mother unlike his father who just wants milk from her for selling and doing business without even worrying about how she will eat and have proper diet required for an animal.

The book portrays how human being has classified itself as a superior creature and all the other beings into a classification of “Animals” who are only supposed to provide human beings comfort without human beings doing anything for them. How we let cows and other animals eat stray and garbage which leads into hurting them as they end up eating sharp items like blades etc. and we don’t even blink an eye towards them. How important a Cow is for the religious people following Hinduism is also portrayed in one of the chapters. How cow vigilantes are only behind creating ruckus but aren’t actually caring for the cows is also portrayed in one of the chapters which discusses the current scenario of cow lynching. How a Muslim family supports a Hindu family in ensuring the cow can be saved tells us that at the end we are brethren and there is nothing to fight about it. The book makes you emotional at many occurrences and through cow, it lets you understand the plight of all the animals around us.

Now, talking about the drawbacks – the only complaint I have is that the book is very short which is actually good as many children will end up reading it and getting influenced for good but this story had potential for more considering the cow being a character who can talk which could have conveyed a lot many things about religion, spirituality and human’s attitude towards cows and how they think about us in any scenario. I wish if this could have been a full-fledged novel.

Overall, this is a great book for kids and youngsters and gives a strong and essential message. I give the book 4 stars out of 5.