31 December 2022 | By: Writing Buddha

Doglapan by Ashneer Grover (Book Review: 4.25*/5) !!!

2042nd BLOG POST

36th Book of 2022

Well, at one point of time, when December begun, I had posted that I would not be meeting my Yearly goal of reading 36 books but here I am, right on 31st December, sharing the review of the 36th book. I have just completed reading Ashneer Grover’s very first book named “Doglapan” which got released just few days back. It is always a delight to be one of the first readers of a book that is about to get extremely popular.


This 256-pages autobiography by Ashneer is special because of his personality of calling spade a spade without worrying about what you’ll perceive of him. The founder of my 1st company would always say “We are not here to win an election. Whenever there’s anything wrong, go ahead and tell it on the person’s face”. Ashneer has been just the same through his Shark Tank experience which made him popular and the book is also written in the similar fashion which makes you understand from where does this confidence reflect in his personality.


You must have watched Bollywood movies where they show the protagonist being handcuffed or defamed in public in the very 1st scene and then immediately navigate to the flashback which leads to this prologue section how the character ended up being in such state. In the similar fashion, the prologue speaks about a segment of the whole Bharatpe saga which happened early this year and immediately, Ashneer takes us to his childhood where he describes his background and with utmost respect, speaks about his parents, grandparents and every member of his family.


He gives insights on how he ended up being so studious that he is part of two topmost institute of our country. He is proud and delighted about everything he has achieved in life and that reflects every time he talks about his achievement – either it’s about academics, personal life, corporate life or start-up success. He doesn’t try to sound modest because he knows how much effort he has put in to achieve success in each of these sectors. He is a typical family person and the part on how he started missing his grandparents when they started staying separately to give him space for studying and how after reuniting with them in a new home, he started feeling happy again made me emotional.


The whole section of him joining MBA just because that was last chance for him to find a good partner and how he even got successful in it tells a lot about his conviction behind achieving anything. Haha! How he had to actually win trust of his in-laws makes you remember the whole “2 States” segment of the protagonist with his in-laws. The way he speaks about each of his corporate experience and what he learnt from them is quite beneficial for every corporate or start-up employee. He emphasizes on the fact that anything you do or learn while working never goes waste and comes out in rescuing you later in your career or life for sure. He also speaks about creating and maintaining relationship in the same space which is a great take-away from this autobiography.


The 2nd half of the book is more about how he moved into the start-up world. Everything right from the 1st page till the last is written as if you are reading a fiction novel. Ashneer always insists on speaking Hindi as it clears things better than English, even in this book, he has not shied away from writing few sentences in Hindi. The whole start-up section is about learning from his experiences and knowing how to keep your product customer-centric and move ahead with pitching for multiple rounds to raise funds. Though, here, I felt that too many figures and technical terms made it hard to understand few events but overall, it was great to know how a single person can create a product which can earn such kind of money for an organization. Unbelievable!


The last segment of the book, as I said initially, takes us to the same prologue scenario where the whole Bharatpe saga happened due to which he ended up resigning from his own company. This is interesting to read as I knew that the whole book has just been written by Ashneer to share this story and reveal for once whatever he wanted to say about people who ditched him. Unfortunately, the whole thing sounds like a rant while reading than an honest account as Ashneer only speaks from his point of view and never talks about what must have gone wrong from his end for all his team members to go against him – that too when he got famous as public figure and they knew that eventually, it is only going to make him more famous than them. Anyway, Ashneer doesn’t try sugarcoating anything and directly calls out name without thinking of repercussions of saying such harsh things about people sitting at powerful positions.


He makes us understand things like GST complications, how investors start bossing startup founders, how wrong hiring can screw you badly etc. The last chapter speaks about 5 things success and failure- both taught him which is a nice ending to the book. There’s obviously a chapter before this on his Shark Tank experience and it is all goody goody stuff about how it went for him.


Overall, the book is interesting and shouldn’t take more than one sitting or 5-6 hours to finish the same. I give this book 4.25 stars out of 5. I received whatever I expected from it.






23 December 2022 | By: Writing Buddha

Inni & Bobo find each other by Soha Ali Khan/Kunal Kemmu (Book Review: 4.5*/5) !!!

2041st BLOG POST

35th Book of 2022


Well, as a Blogger and Book-Reviewer, I have received many opportunities to meet authors in several literature festivals and other events. Unfortunately, I have not been able to be part of many book launches due to their schedule on week-days as I had to earlier attend college and now - office. But it is always a distinct experience to be reading and then writing about the books of which you have been part of their launch. The 1st launch that I attended this year was for the book “Inni & Bobo find each other” written by none other than Bollywood couple- Soha Ali Khan and Kunal Kemmu. I also got an opportunity to meet them and have a short conversation regarding this. Unfortunately, the review couldn’t come soon after the event but yes, let’s do it now before the year ends.


This is 1st book in the “Inni & Bobo adventures” series of which the 2nd book has also got published around October this year. The author-duo are being quite consistent and serious about this writing spree. This is a children’s book with a story that is spoken in around 32 pages with less texts and more illustrations and drawings – definitely to appeal it to children. The book is published in hardcover format with beautiful cover page and well-written synopsis. The team has definitely worked upon the packaging of the book brilliantly as every kid will love to have it. I just wished that the costing of the book could have been affordable as every parent might not purchase it for Rs. 399/-.


The story is about Inni – a little girl and Bobo – a puppy that she adopts eventually from an adoption center. There are several instances where authors have tried to teach values to the children belonging in the target audience age group. One of the main lessons is obvious that it teaches human beings to have compassion and love towards animals as much as we have among our own species. It also speaks about how parents teach their child that she can’t have all the dogs but only one. This reflects about how one can’t have everything they want in life but can only get one or fewer options and they need to find peace with it.


Authors also try to inculcate the value of protecting the beings who need and deserve it as the protagonist picks up the dog which is the most vulnerable of all and scared. It tells that we should always think from humanitarian ground than wanting to have best option for ourselves. The situation where other dogs who protected Bobo until then feels happy about him finding a family where he’ll be always taken care of – teaches that we need to let go of our favorite person/thing if we know they are finding a better place than us.


The story is really sweet which speaks about children’s innocence and unbiased nature also. The book would have seriously been incomplete without illustrations by Rituparna Sarkar as the visualization and colours it has provided to the story is unbeatable. I was forced to first go through all the pictures and then again start reading the story from the Page 1 onwards. How the text and illustrations are related with each other seems that the authors and illustrators thought of the story with the same mind.


Overall, this is a nice attempt. I just hope that the pricing is worked upon and authors can come up with anthologies for children rather than having just one short story in a book that costs so much. I give it 4.5 stars out of 5.






Get Epic Shit Done by Ankur Warikoo (Book Review: 4.75*/5) !!!

2040th BLOG POST

34th Book of 2022


It’s quite obvious that publishers are now interested in publishing Youtubers, Influencers or Start-up founders as the new generation is following them religiously. I recently completed reading Raj Shamani’s 1st book who is a Youtuber and just now, I have completed 2nd book published by Ankur Warikoo, who was a Start-up Founder and is a Youtuber and Content-creator now. His first book “Do Epic Shit” got tremendous response last year and its quotes were visible almost everywhere- Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and where-not. The 2nd book is named “Get Epic Shit Done” which Warikoo says is a next-level thing and not a sequel to his 1st book. I have been an ardent follower of his life-related videos on Youtube and never missed them. I watch it with my parents. Watching him makes me feel as if a big brother is talking to me, someone I didn’t have in my life to guide me. Unfortunately, I couldn’t read his 1st book continuously but read it in parts hence couldn’t talk about it on my Blog. But I was very sure that I am going to read his next book as soon as it comes out and here I am.


The one issue that I always had with Warikoo is that he talks about happiness generally and advices people to not shy away from taking unconventional or undefined paths without worrying about what parents, family or near ones think about you. This is one reason why I feel scared because I have young cousins and I don’t want them to take extreme decisions just for the sake of it. I could never understand why doesn’t Ankur talks about hard work, hustle and efforts as he has been someone who has worked as an Entrepreneur which involves lot of work. Finally, with this book, all those complains have gone away.


As the title of the book says, author continuously empathizes on how to get big things done and executed in life ensuring that we don’t become mediocre or relaxed about growth and success. The previous book I read by Raj Shamani was a very aggressive speech on working hard whereas this is the same thing but spoken like a friendly senior/elder brother to make you realize where you are going wrong in life. The book is written in Teacher-student conversation format which is very similar to Bhagavad Gita where a confused Arjun is asking Lord Krishna questions and he is clearing all his confusions by letting him know the principles of life, success and righteousness without directly telling what actions to perform. He leaves it to him for deciding and executing. Similarly, here, the Student is someone who is at an age where education, career, relationships, personal growth are all important and something about which he is clueless because no one has taught him about it. Teacher, here, gives him friendly answers which makes him understand the root cause of every derivation and learn the art of helping himself in any situation.


The writing style is very simple. There’re no tough words used. You will not have to run for picking up dictionary at all. The book helps you uncover a lot of doubts about yourself so you’ll not even pick-up that God-damn phone in between while reading it as you’ll feel that this is one-time opportunity in life to learn about ourself. It seems that Warikoo is able to look inside you and find what’s making you confused and unhappy these days. All the questions that the student asks him – most of them are something you wish you had known at the time when you needed to know them or you are actually thinking of it right now. I’m at an age where relationship and career growth are a big issue in my life and the way it is covered helped me a lot to understand what actually needs to be done to get better in both the departments.


The book has some cool illustrations which you’ll want to redraw in your notebook so that you can retain it for a longer time. It helps you understand the textual contexts better. The book is divided in 4 different sections such as – Managing your life, career, people and yourself. There are total of 36 major questions that are asked in context to these four topics which then follows multiple questions inside to ensure that you understand the crux of the message that author wanted to deliver. There are many such quotes which can change your whole perspective or stay with you and guide throughout your life. For social media folks, they are worthy to be shared in the Stories/Status and get likes from it. Haha!


I would like to mention few things out of many that I liked from the book:

  • The chapter on Writing our thoughts talks about how we pick only important ones as process of writing is slower than thinking and we want to capture only the best ones which later tells us about our priority.
  • He also helps understand power of listening over anything else for being a good communicator.
  • While taking decisions, thinking if we can bear the worst-case is something that can change life of many people fearful of taking decisions.
  • I liked where it is explained how we have to deal with criticism from family members by separating the GIVER and what is GIVEN as criticism. Amazing advice that can help students and people in their 20s develop healthy relationship with their family.
  • Nicely elaborated the difference between reading and watching videos. How reading enables complete focus whereas video ensures we are distracted by something regularly. I am glad Warikoo always promotes reading books.
  • What a right career looks like is such a wonderful diagram to understand how to choose our career even if we want to convert our passion into it. You need to get the book to view the diagram, of course. 😊
  • In the chapter about how to handle first 90 days in a job, Warikoo gives a very great advice to engage with people on personal level so that it becomes easier to then deal on professional level. This is a tried and tested thing even by yours truly. It works. 
  • Living by ourselves and the factors that comes with it such as investing money, managing relationships, disciplined lifestyle, paying bill taxes etc.


Talking about the drawbacks – well, the book doesn’t have any but, in this case, Warikoo has. Haha! Because he has been so much active on Social media almost through all the platforms such as Instagram, Youtube, LinkedIn, Twitter, Newsletters etc. that there is very less that he has still not talked about. Hence, if you have been his follower like me, you’ll realize that 70% of what has been written has already been shared by him on Social media. Like, he has announced that his next book is going to be about “Make Epic Money”. Now, he has already created multiple financial videos that I doubt the book will have anything new. His content is facing his own contents as its enemy now. Haha!


Overall, I give this book 4.75* out of 5. Highly recommended to everyone!







20 December 2022 | By: Writing Buddha

Build, Don’t Talk by Raj Shamani (Book Review: 4.5*/5) !!!

2039th BLOG POST

33rd Book of 2022

I remember when lockdown had hit all of us, we didn’t have any new movies to watch or restaurants to try. The only saviour that was left for our entertainment was Youtube. This was the time generally when Youtubers and Influencers grew like anything. There were many new names that got introduced to us. One such name that Instagram algorithm made me aware was of Raj Shamani. His reels would occasionally appear on my feed. Initially, I thought who’s this boy giving so much of gyaan but eventually, I started agreeing with few of his viewpoints. I finally subscribed him on Youtube when he started Podcast named “Figuring Out” and I love the way he dwells into important questions with the entrepreneur guests on his show. I was surprised when I saw that his book has also got published recently named “Build, Don’t Talk” by the No. 1 publisher of India, Penguin. It didn’t take me two minutes to order it’s Kindle version and start reading.


The book basically claims to teach us things that weren’t taught us in school. Now, frankly speaking, schools had a set of subjects and they never thought of teaching anything beyond it. The life skills were left upon parents to teach their kids. Unfortunately, parents also kept insisting us to focus on the subjects as good marks meant good job in future. It was surely true because when all of us were growing before the Internet culture came in place, we didn’t have much option to explore except getting a good degree and job to feed ourselves and our family. It is a good initiative by these influencing youth of 25 years old speaking about what they have learnt from their own experiences while walking on an unconventional path.


The book is divided into 39 chapters. Raj’s writing style is very simple. Anyone – who is even in 5th standard would be able to read and comprehend the life-transforming meaning behind the sentences written in this book. Raj has a good reading experience which can be seen in the way he has written it. Every chapter has Key takeaways marked in the end for us to note it down which can give us the summation of the whole chapter as reference. Raj has not shied away from telling things which might sound hard to accept as it challenges your belief system continuously. I had smirk on my face in initial few pages but when I understood that Raj is not going to speak anything which can give me dopamine rush, I pulled up my socks to read things I am going to completely disagree with. And that’s the beauty of this book.


The book covers various topics such as personal growth, habit formation, Raj’s personal experiences and his learnings from it, skills to possess as a student, goal-oriented preparation, start-up ideas, money-building attitude, being a content creator, starting Youtube channel, investment tips, personal branding, creativity and what not. He unapologetically promotes hustle and hard-working culture which is inspirational and agreeable. He doesn’t speak of terms like work-life balance, traveling, making loads of friends because he has been a practical guide throughout the book which is actually needed to be successful in your studies, job or business – whatever you choose for yourself. If for nothing, one should read this book for his honesty.


Let me point out few points/advises given out of many that I liked in the book:

  • More than goals concentrate on habits and set a process and routine to get to your goals
  • I liked the truth about copying others by getting inspired rather than focusing on innovating as not everyone can do that.
  • Being a Producer on Internet than just being a Consumer echoed my own thoughts – The reason why I review books and talk about it.
  • Shamani talks nicely about how to increase price of your product gradually by charging more to your customers – and why it’s better to have less customers giving more money than having many giving less.
  • Negotiation chapter is great where he tells how to shift power to another person wittingly and rather than reducing price, adding services is a better option while selling your product/service.
  • He asks people to stay off social media and start doing things rather than only planning or waiting for the right time.
  • The chapter on failure is the real hustle talk that Raj gives which tells about the mindset with which few people work - something not everyone is agreeing these days.
  • The 5 investing tips author gives for beginners really sounds effective. Anyway, someone can authorize it only after implementing. 😊
  • The way his 7 sources of income stream started one after another and just at 25, the way he is earning money is really inspiring and something to learn from. I really got motivated from that chapter.
  • It is always interesting to read how content creators work Behind the Scenes and Raj Shamani tells how he plans everything. It has given me lot of insights as to how I can also up my Social media game which is having a slow run.
  • He has also spoken in length about communication and people skills which are highly effective as some techniques have been applied by me in past which were really helpful in getting opportunities later on.


Overall, this is a great motivational book. Do pick up if you are in need of motivation recently. You can also gift it to your friends, younger siblings, cousins etc. who have big dreams but remain unfocused and indiscipline. I am really a Raj Shamani’s fan now. This book has done wonders to me. I give this one 4.5 stars out of 5.








19 December 2022 | By: Writing Buddha

Shitala: How India Enabled Vaccination by Mitra Desai (Book Review: 4.25*/5) !!!

2038th BLOG POST

32nd Book of 2022


I read another book this weekend within few hours named “Shitala” written by Mitra Desai. This 97-pages book also has a tagline which says “How India enabled Vaccination”. Initially I thought that it must be about Covid vaccination drive by its title due to the pandemic times but when I read its synopsis, I understood that this is more about how vaccination actually originated from India in ancient times. So, this is a story about a girl, Tara, who keeps indulging in conversation with her grandfather. In one such conversation, the topic of vaccination comes up. They start talking about smallpox where her grandfather claimed it’s vaccination to have been derived from India. It took Tara only few moments on Internet to search and tell him that it’s not India but a man named Edward Jenners from West. This conversation then takes her towards researching more and finding out facts which not only surprises her but even the readers reading this book.


Talking about Mitra’s writing style- it’s very smooth. You will be able to complete reading this book within a sitting itself. It took me around 4 hours because I was also creating notes. The book has lots of knowledge – not only of ancient Indian techniques but also about how vaccination was worked upon in modern era. I am glad that author didn’t try to sound biased in his narration of story but keeps discussing both the sides like a debate which makes reading this story more interesting. I am glad that author chose this fictional way of telling such important facts which otherwise goes unnoticed due to boring way of representation.


Author has only gone up to the details which was actually required for proving the point for which the story was being told. There is no unwanted or unnecessary detailing. Through Tara, the way whole Edward’s journey of vaccination is detailed is very informative. I liked how Desai revealed Westerners for twisting the facts and removing the important inputs from Indian land which was provided during the treatment of Smallpox. Later on, when Indian way of treatment is explained, it’s such a matter of pride that we were involved in such inventions from as long as 7th century.


The references of Ayurveda help reader understand that it’s not only about what diet to eat and not eat but also about other informative medicinal and medical practices. There is a detailed reference section after the story ends which proves the kind of research author has gone through to write this interesting and informative story which I believe should be made part of every school’s library in India. The narration keeps mentioning the Hindu rituals and praying in the home of protagonists which is a nice way to represent our culture and make the new generation aware of it without being preachy.


The story also teaches that we should keep our ego aside to learn new things in life otherwise we will stick being adamant with our perspective and miss out learning the real facts. There’s also a dream sequence of Bhagavad Gita in the pre-climax. It gave me goosebumps. I just couldn’t stop imagining Lord Krishna in my mind after reading it. I had almost a similar experience 2 years back and I am surprised to see how something similar has been scripted so perfectly. In the last chapter, there’s a segment which gives you immense motivation. The way the character of Tara has been treated enables a lot of possibility for readers to learn not only about our ancient achievements but attitude and approach in life.


Overall, this is an interesting read and I recommend everyone to give it a chance. Take it with you on your next flight or train journey and you’ll never forget that trip ever. I give this book 4.25* out of 5.






Maxims from Mahabharata by Sridhar Potaraju (Book Review: 3.75*/5) !!!

 2037th BLOG POST

31st Book of 2022


Since last decade, the way Sanatan Dharma is being spoken and spread to its own people who didn’t even know that the Dharma they follow is called Sanatan and not Hinduism – the word we keep referring in religious context. I must have read more than 100 books which speaks about our ancient history which few people refer as mythology in either fiction or non-fiction formats which is great as people are getting to learn about our own religion in easier language. I recently completed one similar book sent to me by Indica Books called “Maxims from Mahabharata” written by Sridhar Potaraju.


This is a short-book not even of 100-pages with 12 different chapters. You must be wondering what is the meaning of the word “Maxim”. So, it basically means “few words that express a rule for good or sensible behavior”. Here, author has read Mahabharata and he feels that it’s an ocean of knowledge which talks not only about religion but a lot about human beings and their philosophy and psychology. He tried to pick few which he had noted down or highlighted while reading the same. The 12 Maxims that is discussed in this book chapter-wise are Dharma, Truth, Principles Governing Punishment, Karma, Hygiene as Good Conduct, Nature, Faith, Anger, Reputation, Eternal Values, Mental Health and Power of Words.


Each of these chapter consists of shlokas picked up from Mahabharata which are written in the Sanskrit text itself along with English text for English readers to help them pronounce it. It further has its one-liner translation and the exact chapter or parva in Mahabharata from where it’s picked up. Author also provides context before providing the shlokas so that the reader is able to understand who spoke it to whom and under what situation. This helps in avoiding misinterpretation of the shlokas and referring to it in wrong context – something that atheist or people not believing in our ancient history regularly do to disrespect it.


The book helps you understand how advanced our ancient texts are where they not only cover the then contemporary issues but also speaks in context that it sounds relevant in our modern time too. In the chapter of truth, there’s a mention that if a person is truthful, it’s a bigger good karma than reading all religious books. I evaluated and found it to be so true. If a human being restricts himself in being truthful always – the kind of image he’ll have in society plus the kind of people who’ll want him to be on their side or have him in their team will give him great fortune. Not only this, it also mentioned 13 forms of truth which are Impartiality, Self-control, forgiveness, modesty, endurance, goodness, renunciation, contemplation, dignity, fortitude, compassion and abstention from injury.


Similarly, I liked the way forgiveness has been explained where it is asked to forgive someone who has made mistake so that he/she can get a chance to improve in future. Punishment always is not the right solution. It also talks about punishing someone definitely if the mistake is repeatedly being committed knowingly. I felt this to be so relevant in our professional and corporate life these days. Some managers don’t have these basic skills of understanding when to punish and forgive due to which the career is affected of many employees.


In the Karma maxim, you will just get into the self-evaluation mode when you will read that it has been said – everyone knows their deed – if what they are doing is right or wrong. Still if one chose to go with it, the karma will definitely return back. I was wowed by this. We, as human beings, definitely know about the quality of our action if it’s good or bad still we do it thinking that we will never suffer by it. There are chapters which tells about the significance of protecting nature, maintaining good hygiene, concentrating on our reputation and managing our anger. All this talks about the variety of topics on which Mahabharata is able to guide us upon.


The chapter on mental health again open our eyes as we think this is a modern concept whereas our texts have given its challenges and remedy thousands of years ago. The book also teaches about humility – speaks on son and daughter equality – the consequences of having ego and how it takes everything away from you. Overall, the book is a good beginning for people trying to understand a little bit about the kind of lessons our epics deliver.


Now talking about the drawbacks- firstly, the same context is repeated multiple times which makes it boring and monotonous. Author could have someone arranged the chapters in a manner where for a single context, listing down all kind of lessons we can learn for different maxims. Secondly, the English text for Sanskrit is not appropriate. If you’ll read it, you’ll pronounce it completely different than what it is. Thirdly, I feel that the book could have consisted more shlokas with detailed explanation like a full-fledged book rather than a short read.


Overall, this is a fine attempt which must have taken lot of efforts to compile and put together. I would give the book 3.75* out of 5.






15 December 2022 | By: Writing Buddha

3 TIPS: The Essentials for Peace, Joy and Success by Meera Gandhi (Book Review: 4*/5) !!!

2036th BLOG POST

30th Book of 2022


I remember reading snippets from Ankur Warikoo’s first book “Do Epic Shit” all over on Instagram and LinkedIn. It is written with a very user-friendly strategy which allows reader to open any page and read it as every page is independent and insightful. Author, Meera Gandhi, has gone a little more creative with her style of writing in her latest book which I have just completed named “3 TIPS: The Essentials for Peace, Joy and Success”. As you can find that the title of the book describes the number “3” along with three words i.e. Peace, Joy and Success. Similarly, the book is divided into sections which again talks about three main aspects of life: Work, Life and Self. Further, drilling down into this, in every chapter that author has written to guide us about something, it begins with Three basic tips to deal with it. Hence, reading every chapter will make you feel as if you are watching an Instagram reel which is trying to guide or inspire you in as less words as possible.


Meera’s writing style is very easy-to-go which will allow every age group to read it easily without being lost in difficult words or unwanted jargons. The chapters are of just 1-2 pages which makes it easy for you to keep turning pages and finish the book within 2-3 hours itself. Though, I would suggest to read 2-3 chapters everyday and journal your thoughts about it before moving ahead as it will prove more insightful and effective in this manner.


I liked how Gandhi has mostly mentioned events and experiences from her own life in order to make the reader understand the concepts she wants to speak about. It all then sounds real and something you tend to believe in. Generally, self-help books only speak in bullet points or hypothetical situations but here, authoress’ attempt to speak to us as an elder sister who is sharing her own instances with us and how it made her learn the same, helps us adopt it immediately.


In the Work-related section, author has not been unreal like many articles these days which only talks about how work should be done casually prioritizing only yourself. She has ensured that she covers important aspects to be professionally or entrepreneurially successful by emphasizing upon academics, hard work, leadership, ownership, entrepreneurship, goals creation, conflict resolutions etc. Starting book with such aggressive content makes you feel over-charged and motivated to give your best in whichever field you are. This has been a good approach over starting the book with other two topics which are mainly on calmness.


The chapters in Life and Self sections are almost of the same kind hence there’s nothing prominent about isolating this into two separate parts but yet Meera has tried to focus on few pointers in each of these bifurcated categories to make it easily graspable. She speaks about how we can keep our life positive, radiant, balanced, abundant and active. She gives tips on how we can deal with problems and difficult situations in life. The importance of friendship and holding onto these special people is given prominence in one of the chapters.


Further, in the last section, author takes bit of a spiritual turn and repetitively tries to bring light upon the importance of yoga, meditation and mindfulness. I loved how she tries to speak on these topics without getting into depth but how she felt after participating in it is elaborated which will make the people wanting to get into this side of activities give it a try. This section basically covers two of the major topics mentioned in the title of the book – Peace and Joy. The closing thoughts – which is the last chapter in the book explains a concept with the example of an acorn. It was such a great way to finish this book. It gives you sense of positivity that we are limitless and powerful enough to bring big changes through us. Author’s way of talking in the book also teaches how to remain grounded and humble even after achieving success in life.


Overall, this is a short book which you can easily finish in hours and learn a lot from it. I would basically recommend it for students as they need these insights early in their life to understand the priorities well. I give this book 4 stars out of 5.






7 December 2022 | By: Writing Buddha

The Protectors of Kavaach by Pranay (Book Review: 4.25*/5) !!!

2035th BLOG POST

29th Book of 2022

Long time since I have been away from books and wanted to get back to reading as I am still around 7 books behind my yearly target and a week has already passed for the last month of the year. I needed a book which could generate interest within me not only to finish but enjoy it too. Knowing that I love books based on mythology, epic and ancient history, I picked Pranay Bhalerao’s latest release named “The Protectors of Kavaach” which is also the first book in Kavaach trilogy. The book is published by the author himself in around 309 pages which seems to be a lengthy book but once you’ll start reading it, the surprise elements and the thrilling aspect keeps you glued. You’ll be able to finish it before the estimated time for sure.


The book speaks of three different timelines- 600 BCE, 570 BCE and the present times. The characters from the 600-570 BCE are the same whereas the ones in the present day are another set of people trying to understand the super-natural activities happening with and around them. While reading the ancient history, you will get the references of Mahabharat and you’ll love relating those parts with the epic characters. The present-day section has characters which makes you relate them to the ones you read in the ancient history section and this fight keeps the reader within you excited and curious. It’s mainly about safeguarding Kavaach which is being secured by someone in every generation and the ritual should continue.


Talking about the writing style, Pranay’s command over the language is impressive. The way he has been able to explain the action scenes between the characters – mostly the fighting scene of Kaal in the jungle is something which tells about his calibre. Similarly, as he is a technology professional, the implementation of cyborgs in the present-day story gives an amazing thrilling angle. His choice of separating the ancient story in two different parallel sections of 600 BCE and 570 BCE has been such a perfect implementation that more than present day, I wanted to just keep reading about these two sections and know why the relationship dynamics have changed between the same characters within the time span of 30 years. The way Pranay defines the whole aesthetics of mine, kavaach, coals, Trishula tells us about his creative and imaginative prowess. His creativity is embedded in almost every segment.


The characters are treated beautifully. The emphasis given on Aryana and Kaal is commendable. The way their camaraderie and growing maturity of their relationship is portrayed makes you imagine the whole segment as the one we saw in the recent RRR movie. Similarly, the present-day section makes you relate many scenes with the Brahmashtra movie. Saharshee’s character and the whole ambience of ashram is again done justice with. His views towards Kaal and the kind of treatment given to Kaal by him is an interesting section to read. It reminds us of Dronacharya-Eklavya scene or the whole Karna section in Mahabharat. Similarly, Rudra and all the characters along with him are given an emotional touch which makes you cheer for them whenever they are involved in a fighting or action scene. Rudra’s relationship with his grandfather is applaudable. I just feel that more coverage could have been given to the team of Shaurya, Teena and Shaksheet too. They sound like an isolated gang in the story. Haha!


Initially, the book might be a slow-read as you are trying to understand the three different timelines plus the multiple characters where each of them are being given certain importance in the story. But the moment you start understanding the characters and their persona, the story starts getting on you. The blend of fiction, fantasy, mythology, religion, history, science and super-natural elements make this book an outstanding attempt of making the reader visualize everything in their brain. Author has been successful enough in making you see the world he has created. I was very skeptic in the pre-climax section of the book as things were being narrated very slowly so I thought if there would be an amazing set-up with which the book will be ended - Thankfully, the climax has been such an astounding experience that I just can’t wondering how the story would proceed in the second book of this series.


Talking about the drawbacks, I must say that the book could have been edited well – atleast by making it shorter by 30-40 pages. I felt that the story had lots of scope of adding philosophical element which has been missed out by the author. Adding that would have given many great insights about human minds and life in general. As I mentioned above, I found few characters little ignored – giving equal weightage to them could have made it more actionable. The whole section where a story is written in the italic form which a character reads sounded quite underwhelming as it didn’t have a very strong bond with the current plot. Lastly, I felt that the author wrote the book from pitching it to movie-makers for adaptation hence many scenes sound more like reading a movie screenplay than book.


Overall, this is an interesting read and one of the fresh stories I have read this year from this genre. I would give this attempt 4.25* out of 5. Looking out to read the 2nd part of the story soon. Hope Pranay releases it by 2023.






18 November 2022 | By: Writing Buddha

Rethinking Money and Capital by Swapnil Pawar (Book Review: 4.25*/5)

2034th BLOG POST

28th Book of 2022


I have actually never read books on economics though I have read many books on personal financial management. I recently picked a book named “Rethinking Money and Capital” written by Swapnil Pawar which is of around 365-pages. It also has a tagline which specifies the subject covered in this non-fiction book- “New Economics for QE, Stimulus, Negative Interest, and Cryptocurrencies”. Author has tried his best to explain some concepts in easier language to ensure that every reader reaps benefits out of it. There are some parts which are really easy to understand whereas there are few terms and concepts which are difficult to comprehend. I believe people from economics background would love deep-diving into the concepts that author tried explaining but for a layman like me, the book will be effective only in sections.


Author discusses nation’s economy in detail and tries to elaborate on what all aspects impact it – either positively or negatively. Swapnil tries to make us understand how things actually works from a nation or world point of view. The concept of supply and demand is thrown a light upon through which how money is not a resource like other constraints like land and minerals is proven. The role of both- businesses and government is specified in various chapters in order to make us clear about who can drive what and how. I liked the way author explains inflation and factors resulting to it and what remedy can be taken against it.


The book talks about the improvement needed in both- developing and emerged economies. The chapter on Savings and Investment is my favourite as it spoke about concepts I knew prior and getting to learn it from an economist’s perspective made it more interesting. It was very new for me to know about how investments are funded and the whole procedure of it. While giving examples or talking about the whole evolution of few theories, the way Pawar explains the whole curve starting from 17th century is interesting to read. It’s like knowing our history from financial aspect too along with reading a throughout economics book.


There is a very good example where author tries to explain the value of Rs. 100 currency note against Rs. 100 meal. Reading it made me change my whole perspective towards having money as savings with me or valuables purchased from it. The difference between expenditure policy and fiscal policy is written almost in a way that you’ll feel as if you are reading some research paper on the topic. It’s so apt and resourceful. Author uses the concept of Money multiplier model to help us understand the concept which many financial influencers speak upon i.e. compounding effect of money. Similarly, Swapnil elaborates on what he means by modern money and that’s another new term and perspective I got to read about.


The whole loan system and how bank makes money out of it vs how we can look at the credit system from customer point of view is thrown light upon in the last few pages. I really liked the way author has divided even the chapters into sections and further, sections into sub-sections. Within the sub-sections, there are bullet points which makes it evident on the kind of determined knowledge and research author has invested his time in. Overall, this book is great for economics experts but little overwhelming for laymen. I will still give it 4.25* out of 5 for its focused detail on the topic and doing justice with it.






18 October 2022 | By: Writing Buddha

How Self-Neglect is being sold on the name of Self-Love...

2033rd BLOG POST

I remember when times changed on social media during the lockdown and people started consuming content nonstop. This led many influencers create contents around depression or self-care because all of us were going through tough times. Many of us were also self-analyzing ourselves. We were trying to change our thought process. We were nullifying few of our assumptions. I was also reading many things on Internet and following what people were actually trying to project through their Youtube videos, reels, posts and blogs. I was personally going through a very heavy phase so I was trying to find some new ways in life to get on with it and see what the inclusion of new philosophy does. As it is said- Class is permanent, Form is Temporary – I realized something on the same lines. All that I had read in the popular self-help books in the last decade turned out to be the truest and real lessons whereas whatever these people on social media were projecting was nothing but click-bait content and life-ruining advices.


Social media mainly talked about the logic of Self-love something that we missed when we were indulged in the fast-paced academics or corporate life which is all about completing important stuffs before the deadline. Hence, when we got little time in WFH and when someone asked us to be comfortable with ourselves and love ourselves for what we are, there was no second thinking needed. We liked hearing it so much. In our loneliness, all we wanted to hear was good thing about the only person we were spending time with – Ourselves. Initially, it did help. We stopped worrying about others because anyway, they were not to be seen anywhere around us. We started living the way we wanted. We also became convenient with our lows – such as less finances or bad body shapes etc. We started eating whatever we liked. We started spending time on couch watching series after series and being happy about not missing a single trending content people were talking about online.


Eventually, the world started racing again as the virus started getting weak with the help of vaccines or herd-immunity or whatever it was, we started interacting with others – getting out of the home – and realized what we have done to ourselves. We were less healthy – less enthusiastic – less skilled – less progressed – less in relationships and less in almost everything which we would have definitely been better if everything was normal. How did this whole Self-love thing work against us whereas it was meant to make us feel more peaceful, content and satisfied? It happened because we were sold Self-Neglect in the name of Self-Love. There wasn’t a single thing about loving self. It was all about neglecting ourself. Hence, we thought if we are sleeping more, we are loving ourself as we are finding peace and love in it. We were ordering food as it was the only thing ON and were thinking we are providing love to ourself by making the soul feel accomplished by feeding it the taste it was craving for. We were okay with watching OTT, Youtube and Reels as it was giving the dopamine rush all of us feel charged up with.


This affected us in almost every way possible – physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, financially, progressively etc. We forgot that the real wealth is actually being healthy- exercising more – eating right nutrition – avoiding junk food – sleeping on time – waking up on time – taking the required sunlight or supplements. We forgot that meditation, classical music, yoga will make our mind relaxed and will allow us to take difficult challenges more positively and enthusiastically. We didn’t identify that upskilling ourselves by watching courses online or getting that long pending certification will eventually help us get a better position or job which we will love doing rather than being in touch with the OTT series/movies that everyone was watching and talking about on social media. Resisting from ordering that unwanted mobile, earphone, dress, smartwatch etc. would have made us financially stronger enabling us to spend money on better objectives.


All of these are the self-loving elements in our life rather than getting comfortable with our failures, procrastinations, weaknesses. Over that, also hanging them on our head as a crown for the world to see & ask us about it and then retaliating to tell them how it is all okay to not be successful and driven. Self-love is all about taking your care just like you do for your loved ones but do you ever ask your parents to stop doing yoga and eat unhealthily? Do you ever ask your siblings to stop upskilling and learning and be okay with less knowledge and no competition? Do you ever ask your children to stop studying and being okay with those failed marksheets? You want them to do well with the things important at their age. Isn’t it? So how could you believe in these tactics that prescribed not being the best version of yourself is okay? How spending day on your bed if you don’t want to work is self-care? If you need rest, it’s great. But if you want rest, it’s laziness.


Try understanding these small differences. It will clear all your doubts. Either with a set goal or a freestyle approach, your agenda should be to create days in your life which will remain memorable for you because of that one great thing you did, you learnt, you achieved or you read. Remember all those days when you were perfectly fine but yet did nothing for your growth. How do you feel about them? Angry on yourself, right? Or just remember the time you spent today watching those short videos – someone dancing, singing, speaking, acting in it. What did it serve you? How do you feel investing time in it which gave nothing in return except few hours wasted of your precious time today? Now, remember all those days when you were sick and rested throughout the day and did nothing. Are you feeling bad about them? Not really, right? Why? Because it needed you to pause, take care of yourself in order to get back to your best life. That’s the difference between self-neglect and self-love.


Whatever you can change and improve about yourself, please do. Today is the only day you are living. Don’t wait for tomorrow. Plan for today. Just today. And do all the tasks. That’s how you will create a good life for yourself which will be all about loving yourself and giving yourself priority over everything else. Be with family and friends but understand the limits. Go on vacations to refuel yourself but not because some social media post is making you feel like going somewhere. Stop craving. Start resisting to such temptations. You are powerful. You need to love yourself – but in the right way. In this case, you can’t even tell anyone that you have been toxic to yourself – the word we so easily use for our family, partners and bosses. Isn’t it? Haha! Stay away from such relaxations before you start blaming yourself for everything that’s gone wrong in your life.





17 October 2022 | By: Writing Buddha

The Forgotten Palace and the betrayed prince by Shalini Ranjan (Book Review: 4.5*/5) !!!

2032nd BLOG POST

27th Book of 2022


I remember reading Shalini Ranjan’s book named “The Imperfect Deception” just 3 months back. As I had liked how she had balanced the story and most of her thoughts synched up with mine in terms of issues like marriage and parenting, I didn’t take much time in ordering her new book on Kindle named “The Forgotten Palace and the betrayed prince” which released just 2 weeks ago on my birthday- 4th October. This 365-pages book has a tagline - “A time travel romantic fantasy”. Frankly speaking, I get very scared when I see a book mentioning its story based on fantasy-related elements because there have been instances when I could never relate with author’s imagination. Another factor – time-traveling as a concept can be very tough to understand hence, I was again skeptic about how easy it would be for me as a reader to go through this.


I must tell you – Shalini’s writing style made both these elements so easy for me that I could very easily read such a long book without getting confused. The treatment given to these complex structures of storytelling and concept tells you about the author’s vision while writing the book. I must also specially mention how beautiful her command over English language is. The way she forms her sentences – the word she uses to define her characters or their expressions – the size of paragraphs – the ease in the conversation between different characters – everything has been articulated very nicely. Both- author and editor should be credited for the same. I could not find typos in the book which is generally not the case with Kindle and self-published books.


The character of Priya is given a very proper description that you are able to understand her at every juncture of the story. Her decisions, confusions, stands are not an easy-going thing but the way her character is established makes you empathize with her and you stand besides her throughout the story. Her relationship with her granny, friend Anjali and Simran, Arnav, Satya, Devyani, Mansukh, Siddeshwar, in-laws are dealt very significantly where you are able to comprehend her connection with them well enough. Even though the story is written in a form where you might feel it’s a love triangle which involves Priya, Arnav and Satya but the time-traveling concept makes the reading experience very fresh and distinct.


In the 1st half, there’s a confusion as to how the character of Priya time-traveling between two different eras – in 15th Century and 21st century but it eventually becomes crystal clear with the way author starts unveiling things. I started enjoying the unsaid explanations as I wanted to understand if this is really happening or author will give it a psychological disorder turn at the end of the book. Also, the time-traveling aspect makes the love story interesting as you know that the protagonist will have to choose one of the two eras for her future and which one would she go with. And in case she chooses both – how is it going to become a possibility. Author has kept such surprising factors wrapped very strategically and its only in the final pages where everything gets confirmed to you.


There are many beautiful philosophical statements included along with the story that will stay with you as a perspective. There are couple of intimate scenes in the book and I must say that they are very sensuously written. You will crave for someone while reading it. Every scene is handled so differently than the other tells about the author’s writing prowess about how she can give the same thing different treatment every time. Shalini also ensures that she covers the new-age romance and its issues very effectively. How exes come back in life and make your current relationship problematic. How it becomes bit difficult for the girl to adjust after marriage with in-laws and new rules and regulations. How the expectations in relationship change after marriage. How loyalty and infidelity are another issue which raises trust issues after which marriage never remains to be the same. How having friends is so important at every step of your life as you need someone in whom you can confide. There are many such guiding factors in the story that will make you feel as if you are also getting to learn about life along with it.


The whole 15th century aspect is nicely dealt with – showing a very rich family who are living in palace with all the luxuries lying around them. The whole family politics and issue are structured well. The way Priya gets accommodated in their story while time-traveling and the way the character from the current life is connected with this family is very nicely scripted. I just felt problems with the name of the characters. Most of them start with D and it becomes tough to remember who is who in case you are not reading the book in one or two sittings. I wish if author could have given unique names to make it easy to remember.


Overall, this book is a very fresh read and I haven’t read anything like this before. I have become fan of Shalini Ranjan’s writing after this and I must say, she is someone who needs lot of attention and appreciation for her work. Read synopsis of every book written by her and not a single story has an easy-going plot. There’s some out-of-the-world element in every book. I give this particular book 4.5 stars out of 5. Yes- because of great story – and – the way author kept the book a perfect page-turner without a single boring chapter even when the book is 350+ pages. Recommended!