Sunday, 15 October 2017

Book Review: And Then There Were None

And Then There Were None, a murder mystery by Agatha Christie. I had been going through reader's block since long and the review I am writing is breaking my writer's block.

First things first. Agatha Christie who is dead long back, as Wikipedia says. I have started admiring her writing skills after reading this book. The kind of reader I am, I generally despise all that is archaic, written long back and has pale pages. But this one has changed my perspective to some extent. I am going to get another Agatha Christie book now.

About the book, its a murder mystery. Ten people are invited by the murderer on an abandoned island for a house party and are murdered one after another. The only clue for every consecutive murder is a childhood prose. As and as the plot unfolds, reader's curiosity to know the murderer grows. The end is unexpected. The mystery unfolds itself unpredictably. The end will amaze you.

If I write any further, it would be a spoiler!

I rate this book 4 on 5 and recommend it to those who want a shift of genre from fiction to mystery. This is my first mystery novel but not the last one for sure.

(PS: the reviews expressed here are based on my personal reading experience, and do not intend to defame, derate or 
degrade the sale or vice-versa for the book. I am not paid for writing this review.)

If you are an author and want your book to be reviewed, drop an email at

Friday, 21 July 2017

"If you can solve your problem, then what is the need of worrying?
If you cannot solve it, then what is the use of worrying?"

Friday, 14 July 2017

“If you understand others you are smart. If you understand yourself you are illuminated. If you overcome others you are powerful. If you overcome yourself you have strength. If you know how to be satisfied you are rich. If you can act with vigor, you have a will. If you don't lose your objectives you can be long-lasting. If you die without loss, you are eternal.”

- Lao Tzu

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

The Perfect is the Enemy of the Good

"If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as a Michaelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, 'Here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well."
-Martin Luther King Jr.

Sometime back last year, PV Sindhu and Sakshi Malik adorned the name of India with medals in Rio Olympics. Apparently, the streets of Indian cities lay galore with flex banners painted in passport size pictures of politicians welcoming and congratulating the proud winners. That makes me wonder, what about those 118 other athletes who represented India but were less fortunate than Sindhu and Sakshi.

Undoubtedly the conclusion is- "No one ever talks about you if you don't win! Either be the first or the forgotten".

Success is boolean- Similarly, either you succeed or you don't. If you are doing good, you are doing injustice to the better. Although there has to be a tradeoff between what you are, what you think you are, what you should be and what you think want to be. At that point satisfaction comes into picture.

As Voltaire quoted- Le mieux est l'ennemi du bien. (The perfect is the enemy of the good.)

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Book Review: Arranged Marriage

I picked up this book as my third one from the author Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni. I was fantasized by the feeling of reading all her books since the time I finished these exemplary ones- The Mistress of Spices and The Palace of Illusions (which I have reviewed here). But this one broke my heart and shattered my dream of sinking in another supposed great work of hers.

This book is a collection of short stories on arranged marriages. But let me first tell you, it is not solely about  "arranged" marriages, but marriages, and not even marriages, sometimes complicated relationships. It highlights the vices like live-in, infidelity, affairs,suffering, pain, injustice to women, distress  etc. I was expecting it to be a collection of sweet and sour stories of arranged marriages in India, of which some might be successful and some unfortunate. But this is entirely different, not even a single story created aura of positivity- all ridden of happiness. Moreover, most of them are not narratives of India but mostly of the US- Indians, mostly Bengalis in the US.

However, if asked to choose some stories which I liked a bit are- The Maid Servant and Meeting Mrinal, which are little lengthy but captivating. After every installment of reading the book, I felt dull and gloomy, and upset for no reason! It gives off a negative vibe. Strangely, people have given so good reviews to this on the web that I was hopeful that at least the subsequent story would be different, but disappointed later.

The way marriages are portrayed here let you feel as if arranged marriages are the worst that can happen to women in India, with a demanding spouse, atrocious in-laws and the patriarchal mindset of Indian culture. It almost did not focus on the other side of it, which is progressive and fairer to women.

I give it 2 on 5 stars and do not recommend this book to anyone.

(PS: the reviews expressed here are based on my personal reading experience, and do not intend to defame, derate or 
degrade the sale or vice-versa for the book. I am not paid for writing this review.)

If you are an author and want your book to be reviewed, drop an email at

Monday, 29 May 2017


नाज़-ओ-हिफाज़त में थे अपने शहर की गलियों में,
तिजोरी में तो सोना भी पीतल हो जाता है,

रखे कदम जो चौखट के बाहर तो समझा,
तराशे जाने पर तो कोयला भी हीरा बन जाता है।

Friday, 26 May 2017

They say "life is difficult", I ask "compared to what?"
-Source unknown

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Book Review: A Thousand Splendid Suns

A Thousand Splendid Suns- another marvel from THE Khaled Hosseini. He has inked the inhumane realities of Afghanistan in such a heart warming manner.

Before this I have read and reviewed The Kite Runner from the same author, which was so compelling that I bought this one too. And now, I am treasuring his third book, And The Mountains Ecoed as well.

The story is a narrative of the struggle of two female protagonists, Mariam and Laila going through the situations where even basic human rights are forbidden. This is the story of the time when Soviet were ruling Afghanistan and later arrived Taliban. The periodic political shift affected the lives and "deaths" of the citizens of the country.

This fiction is a nice portrayal of the grim conditions in Afghanistan which were not known to most of us otherwise. The main characters Mariam and Laila had to struggle through their lives bearing the sin of being born and that too, as women in that society.

To me, this book gives one message, and that is, we often tend to mourn over what we haven't got but forget about what we have. We must appreciate and thank god for giving us this wonderful life, giving us birth at the place where we are, and above all FREEDOM which is the foremost requisite of human existence and unfortunately not available to many.

I rate this book with 4.5 stars on 5, and recommend to all fiction lovers with a disclaimer that this book will give you a gloomy feeling throughout, and is not a happy-go-lucky account! You may sleep with a sad mood at times. It may leave you thinking for long. I personally got attached to Mariam and Laila so much that I used to repent on what was happening in their lives, as if they were some live people around me. Such is the magical spell of Khaled Hosseini's un-put-down-able writing.

(PS: the reviews expressed here are based on my personal reading experience, and do not intend to defame, derate or 
degrade the sale or vice-versa for the book. I am not paid for writing this review.)

If you are an author and want your book to be reviewed, drop an email at

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

खोया हुआ खिलौना और टूटी हुई पेंसिल

छत पर बिछी जब दरी होती थी,
चाँद के पार एक परी होती थी,

ग़मो की गठरी का बस इतना था बोझ,
एक खोया हुआ खिलौना और टूटी हुई पेंसिल होती थी,

कट्टी और सॉरी का सिलसिला होता हर रोज़,
रिश्तों के सौदे कि गुफ़्तगू इतनी सस्ती होती थी,

प्रतिस्पर्धा यूँ शुरू और ख़त्म होती थी,
जब कागज़ की नाव से रेस दोस्तों संग होती थी,

खाली थे हाथ फिर भी ऊँची उड़ान होती थी,
जेब में भरी एक रंगीन तितली होती थी,

कितनी सरल वो ज़िंदगी होती थी,
टूटी गुल्लक से पायी जब चंद सिक्कों कि अमीरी होती थी,

गर्मी कि छुट्टियों में होता शाम का इंतज़ार,
बर्फ़ के लड्डू कि मिठास ऐसी मोहक होती थी,

क्लास में पूछती जब टीचर क्या बनना है,
पायलट और हीरो कहते हुए चहरे पर चमक होती थी,

ऊंची लगती जब मंदिर की घंटी थी,
बड़े होने की बड़ी जल्दी होती थी,

कैसे लौट आयें वो लड़कपन के दिन,
जब सुबह के बाद रात नहीं शामें भी होती थी |

Sunday, 14 May 2017

क्या तोहफ़ा दूँ तुम्हें माँ

वो ख़फा़ हो फिर भी दुलार देती है,
माँ जुदा हो फिर भी प्यार देती है,

हमारी हर भूल को भूला देती है,
वो माँ ही है जो हमें रोज़ दुआ देती है |

माँ वो है जिसने हमें जीवन दिया है और जिसने अपना जीवन हमें दे दिया है | बहुत विचार किया परन्तु इसके समक्ष कोई भी उपहार तुच्छ प्रतीत हुआ | इसलिए कुछ शब्द ही पिरो दिए इस कविता के रूप में |

क्या उपहार दूँ तुम्हें मैं,
तुमने जीवन दान दिया हैं माँ।

मुस्कान होठों पर सदा सजाये,
तुमने हर बलिदान दिया है माँ।

तुलना कैसे करूँ तुम्हारी,
तुमसा कहाँ है कोई माँ।

चाहे तुम हो रूठी हमसे,
चिंता फिर भी करती माँ।

कहा जगत ने जपो हरि भजन,
मैंने केवल कह दिया "माँ"। 

क्या उपहार दूँ समझ ना आये,
शत-शत नमन है तुमको माँ।