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We have all been bitten, at some point in life, by the “love” bug. Certain “in your face” traits are absolutely hard to overlook. But certain hidden facets (of the bug) reveal their true self only after you’ve been battered and shattered, crushing many a dreams and aspirations.   Ankit Uttam, a published author/ software engineer, reveals the true nature of the bug in a very realistic manner in his first published work – Beyon...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Childhood and early adulthood are amongst the most cherished phases of our lives. We indulge in really goofy, crazy, silly, yet amazing stunts that, usually come too naturally as a part of growing up. And it’s funny how thinking about some incidents that made you cry back then now bring a smile on your lips. A great way to relive most of our memories, in today’s fast-paced, workaholic schedule, is by reading Shaiju Mathew’s debut novel – Knocked ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Writer, editor, voracious reader, techie, Paritosh Uttam wears many hats. His first novel, Dreams in Prussian Blue was published by Penguin India under its Metro Reads banner in January 2010.     He has also edited Urban Shots, an anthology of 29 short stories.  While his latest offering, Urban Shots hits the shelves this week, we get talking about his first novel, Dreams in Prussian Blue, writing and much more. Read on...      &n...
Post by: Alpana Mallick
Book launch of Another Chance at Crossword, Pune.  Friday, 3rd December 2010 With the “winter-monsoons” still working their way out of the country, dropping the temperature way low than usual, we warmed our hearts by attending the book launch of Ahmed Faiyaz’s second novel – Another Chance – at Crossword recently in Pune.   Renowned authors – Deepak Dalal, Sonja Chandrachud and Paristosh Uttam too graced the e...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Samit Basu, novelist, screenwriter, writer of comics and local monster, talks about his latest book Turbulence and writing among other things. You wear the crown of India’s first SFF genre writer.  Eight years down the line, how do you feel with that title on your head?  Ambivalent. It’s not a crown in particular, and I don’t particularly believe in book categories. I don’t see myself as a genre writer – if I did, I would be ...
Post by: Alpana Mallick
Book launch of Another Chance at Crossword, Mumbai. A starry evening at Crossword (Juhu) saw Bruna Abdalah, Nauheed Cyrusi, Anupama Varma, Ash Chandler, Maria Goretti, Director Punit Malhotra and Tullika Wangdi, grace the book launch event of author Ahmed Faiyaz’s second novel – Another Chance. Everyone unanimously voted the novel to be “An engaging read- highly interesting and relatable with a deep emotional connect.”   Bruna Ab...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Knocked Up – Mumbai Launch Saturday, 11th December, 2010. Magic Moments and Reliance TimeOut launched Shaiju Mathew’s debut work – Knocked Up on Saturday (11th Dec.) at Reliance Time Out, Bandra, Mumbai. Though a late start to the event got almost everyone waiting a bit “knocked out” but the overall event presentation more than made up for the agitation. The book was unwrapped by Mr. Radhakrishnan Pillai, an expert on Chanakya&rsq...
Post by: Sonia Safri
A versatile new-age writer, Rashmi Kumar represents everything a “girl in the city” should. Glamorous, smart, intelligent and very humane. Currently working for Business India, there’s more to this lovely lady than just being a journalist. Read on to know more… Coming to your first book: Stilettos in the Newsroom-What brought about the ideation of the story? I’ve been a journalist for the past eight years and this book reflects...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Ahmed Faiyaz, Managing Director, Grey Oak Publishers and a prolific writer with a deep insight to relationships, as they exist today in the urban cities, shares his thoughts and views with BookChums.   Beginning with the mundane/clichéd question: When, where and how did the writing bug bite? I’m not sure actually, to be honest. I guess being a voracious reader (as I am) is what pushed me towards writing in the first place. Back when I was 10 years o...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Advertising, writing books, being a family person, Anuja Chauhan has been there, done that, and with much elan and grace. We get talking to the lovely lady to see what makes her tick.   Before we get down to writing, tell us something about your career in copywriting at JWT. I loved it! It never felt like working...and to think I drifted into it completely randomly! I can't imagine any other career where I could've worked so happily and for so long.....
Post by: Sonia Safri
  Faraaz Kazi, a new age author with a passion for the written word recently graced Sympulse 2011 (the annual fest of SCMS (UG)) with his presence, to interact with the young crowd, judge the Creative and Poetry Writing Competitions, and to promote his new book, “TRULY, MADLY, DEEPLY”.   Faraaz caused a flurry of excitement amongst eager fans as they awaited an opportunity to interact with him; and ask him questions related to his book, his wri...
Post by: Sanya Kaushik
  Anjum Hasan is a poet, novelist, and a chronicler par excellence of our times. She has published two novels, a book of poems, short fiction, reviews and essays in various anthologies and journals. Her first novel, Lunatic in My Head was shortlisted for the Crossword Book Award 2007 and her second novel Neti, Neti was on the longlists for the 2008 Man Asian Prize and the 2011 DSC Prize for South Asian Literature and was shortlisted for the Hindu Best Fiction ...
Post by: Alpana Mallick
It is quite unlikely that you would have not heard of Gurcharan Das. Gurcharan Das is a world renowned author, columnist, speaker and a 'corporate' man. He graduated with honors from Harvard University in Philosophy, Politics and Sanskrit, and later attended Harvard Business School (AMP). He was CEO of Procter & Gamble India and later Managing Director, Procter & Gamble Worldwide (Strategic Planning). In 1995, after a 30-year career in six countries, h...
Post by: Manasi Kakatkar Kulkarni
We live in an interesting era. New-age Indian authors are on the rise. The market is flooding with authors churning out English books that revolve around campus fiction, contemporary fiction, murder mysteries, local everyday drama, and the commercial story sorts. They give an almost accurate picture of society as it exists today. The real and sometimes pretentious situations; the fictionally honest thoughts; and the simply elaborate settings gel remarkably to make up for...
Post by: Sonia Safri
We did not know much about this brilliant, “new-age” author, Aditya Sudarshan, apart from the fact that he has penned two books – A Nice Quiet Holiday and Show Me A Hero; written a play, Sensible People, and several short stories and television scripts. He also writes literary criticism for The Literary Review and other publications. Having reviewed his second novel - Show Me A Hero recently, we managed an interview with the tall, dark and handso...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Having read the impressive Some Of The Whole I couldn’t wait to know more about the author – Abhijit Bhattacharya. Enter Google. The author is a Marketing professional in the field of broadcast media for more than 9 years now and has worked for media conglomerates like NDTV Media, CNBC-TV18, The Times Group and Viacom 18 Media Pvt. Ltd. (MTV). He was born in Kolkata; attended St. Augustine’s School; headed to Delhi to graduate in Economics from Hind...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Manu Joseph – a renowned name in the field of journalism seeks no introduction. But we shall tell you a tad bit about him anyways. Formerly Features Editor of the The Times of India, Manu Joseph has also written for Conde Nast's wired.com, and the UK Independent.  He was shortlisted for Society magazine's Young Achiever Award and in a website survey among Indian journalists, he was voted 'The Most Stylish Writer'. In 2007, he was a Chevenin...
Post by: BookChums
April 14th, 2011. The road blocks (literally!), due to Ambedkar Jayanti celebrations did not deter book enthusiasts from attending the book launch of Grey Oak Publishers’ new offering – Down The Road. An electic anthology of 28 campus tales by 16 authors brings back unforgettable memories of life in the campus. We all have had our share of school and college incidents that bring out emotions and feelings attached to the carefree life we truly miss now. And...
Post by: Sonia Safri
All ye aspiring authors around…lend me your ears. I need to share with you a bubble of thought that burst in my head. It derailed my cognitive train and killed about a million brain cells in the vicinity. Investigation is on and I know serious damage has been done. But that story is for another time. What I want to highlight today is the present situation of our nation. Nope, not the political one. We have other flag bearers and upholders of truth, honesty, etc. ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
From Kuwait to India via refugee camps; from being a Brand Manager and winning awards to now writing short stories by the beach and photographing the mountains, Sneh Thakur has lived quite an exciting life. BookChums gets talking and digging for more about this beautiful, chirpy and multi-talented lady. In a nut shell, tell us about Sneh Thakur. I would best describe myself in 6 words as: Pint Sized Rapunzel. On a Cloud. I'm 29 years old, born to a ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
What is it about fiction that attracts more readers as well as writers? Is it the whole idea of "making up" things or the liberty of "exaggerating" normal ideas/scenes of daily life to add more color, flavor and spice to it; or the limitless possibilities of creating a whole new world to explore with words and imagination? Why is it that not many new-age authors venture into the world of non-fiction with that ease? Does the presentation of actual fa...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Last week we spoke about how the author's writing style and character sketches within any given novel enrich the book reading experience. This week we shall touch upon autobiographical traces and visuals, something that again adds greatly to the entire reading experience.     Autobiographical traces Sons and Lovers by DH Lawrence is a good example of semi autobiographical work. The setting, premise and characters of such novels borrow heavily from ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
A man is known by the company he keeps. And a book is any day good company. It reveals more about your character. It reflects your tastes, your desires, your perspectives, and a bit of the real you. Books have a deeper impact on your mind and heart. They become a characteristic trait. Research shows that most of the successful people, read. And read books that broaden their perspective and their knowledge and their thought process. They have more information; learn ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Walk into a book store and you are sure to find a heap of novels lined up meticulously. But how many are anthologies compared to the full length novels? Hardly a few! I really can’t say what I like reading more – short stories or a full length novel. Though both have equal, if not less, rewards, they suffer their downfalls too.   My love for short stories began (and somewhat ended) during the school days, where in our “Gul Mohar Reader&rdq...
Post by: Sonia Safri
I do not like chick-lits. Yes, you read that right (*looking at EvilDevil). I feel it is not really a genre, but simply the book description. And I do not like chick-lits. At all. Spattered with pink (eeuu!) and margaritas and martinis and cosmopolitans and lotions and stockings – rather than soaking in literary awards, or IQ for that matter, I’m surprised such books sell like hot cakes. The image that pops in my head (when a book is termed as chick-...
Post by: Sanjana Kapoor
A large segment of our generation today dreams of being a published author. Well, that’s what it seems. And surprisingly it is not really difficult to get self-published, provided you follow systematic (and logical steps) towards getting known. And yes, let’s not forget the (small) amount of money involved. Not many budding authors, today, follow the path of traditional publishing. Given the delays and the snail’s pace of work being delivered, self-pub...
Post by: Sanjana Kapoor
Having attended the book launch of Salil Desai's debut novel, The Body in the Back Seat in Pune recently, we were intrigued by his work and impressed with his background of film-making and having contirbuted to many anthologies. We got talking to the author and here's the unabridged version.  You have been a filmmaker for a long time now. Why did you move to writing a mystery novel? Wouldn't a film have been a more effective medium of bringing your...
Post by: Manasi Kakatkar-Kulkarni
Nikhil Rajagopalan’s interests are very different from the degree (Bachelor’s degree in Biotechnology from VIT University and a Master’s degree in Bioscience - Infection and Immunity - from the University of Leeds, UK) he holds. A complete anthisesis to his academic interests, Nikhil in his spare time simply loves writing flash fiction on his blog and has been regularly posting blogs since 2008. In his posts he explores the kind of love, relationships a...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
I like the fact that some young authors are exploring the lost art of humor writing and coming up with funny books. Here are some of the recent few helpings (of books) that I relished. Horn OK Please - HOPping to Conclusions by Kartik Iyengar, is a fun-tastic read. It chronicles Kartik's journey across the country with his friends. The book is hilarious. It has anecdotes from the journey and snippets of randomness that end up instigating brain waves to ponder on...
Post by: Sanjana Kapoor
5th July, Mumbai. Landmark at Inifinity Mall was crowded as ever. But this time it was Landmark garnering most of the attention. And why not!?! Anurag Anand’s fifth novel, a fictional one, Reality Bites was launched at Landmark by eminent personalities of tinsel town – Sudhir Mishra (Director), Randeep Hooda (Actor) and reigning Pantaloons Femina Miss India World 2011, Kanishtha Dhankhar.     (L to R: Randeep Hooda, Anurag Anand, Sudhir Mish...
Post by: Sonia Safri
You-Know-Who is instrumental in changing the entire setting of the young-adult (YA) fiction world and upping the stakes, don’t you?   Hagrid and his Baby Dragon, Hedwig, the chocolate frog, moving beans, Dumbledore, the muggles and the entire Hogwarts have transformed the YA literature genre and breathed in new life. Harry, Ron and Hermione have made Rowling’s dream come true and, along with that, the YA fiction world has reached new heights.   ...
Post by: Uttiya Basu Majumdar
This week we chat up with Preeti Shenoy, an avid blogger, author of two bestsellers, an artist, a poet, a writer and a mother of two – or should I say just a mother of two (that’s what she calls her blog). Her two books, 34 Bubblegums and Candies and Life Is What You Make It, though poles apart, met with the same end: they were instant hits and went on to be declared national bestsellers.    Know about why this Bangalore-based author moved on...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
  Shabia Ravi Walia, like every woman, dreamed of being a mother. However, it was not easy for her. She waited for 3 years to conceive after she decided to make an addition to her family. And her first book - Mamma Mania - is an account of all that happened from the time she decided to go for it till it really happened. The book is part funny, part emotional and completely informative. From the funny incident of acting pregnant when she was not, to moments of ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
There are a lot many books being published nowadays. Keeping a tab on them all is a bit difficult. We were hoping our members would help us by jotting names of recently published books, so that we can add them to our club, and start some discussions. Let us know about the books you've come across recently, and we shall add them to the club. Better yet, go ahead...add them here! -Admin
Post by: BookChums
The Landmark store in Andheri was in limelight once again, this time for the launch of Faraaz Kazi’s debut novel- Truly Madly Deeply, which was published last year.   Present for the event were: renowned Indian Ad-film maker Prahlad Kakkar, Supermodel Aditya Singh Rajput, along with fashion designer and socialite Pria Kataria Puri. Writer, blogger, and now an author, Faraaz spoke about his debut novel, the ideation, the process, and the rave reviews i...
Post by: Sonia Safri
The launch of Growing Up In Pandupur in Mumbai gave us a chance to interact with two very versatile and creative authors - Adithi and Chatura Rao.   Growing Up In Pandupur is a marvelous collection of 13 short stories for children. And parents alike.   The writing is mature and stable, but at no place does it feel commanding or overbearing. So kids will have no difficulty breezing through the stories.   Talking to the author-sisters would really ma...
Post by: Sonia Safri
  Corporate World seems like a parallel Universe. It is intriguing, fascinating and yes, shocking! And capturing a bit of the "shock" is Sumit Aggarwal's debut novel "Office Shocks".  The novel encapsulates the protagonists' first day at work. Filled with humor, the shocking incidents make for a quick read. BookChums got talking to the author for his take on the book and the corporate world.     What got you interes...
Post by: Sonia Safri
  Right from childhood days, most of us have grown up with stories of prince and princess’, of kings and queens, of fairies and witches and of God and his magical ways - of casting spells, swishing wand, riding dragons and brooms, and zipping-n-zapping people in to animals and vice versa. Most of us grew up reading (or listening to) stories from the desk of Enid Blyton, L. Frank Baum, Terry Pratchett, Rick Riordan and the like. The mystical land was le...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Many bloggers today have moved on to writing short stories and novels. Writers like Preeti Shenoy, Aseem Rastogi, Sneh Thakur, Naman Saraiya, Nikhil Rajagopalan, Rohini Kejriwal, Kunal Dhabalia, Rikin Khamar and many more have all been avid bloggers first and then moved on to writing novels and short stories. This week we should try to examine what is it that prompts bloggers to try their hand at publishing and do such authors have an upper hand over other first time wri...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
I’m sure (almost) everyone can write a nice piece of fiction. But ever thought about presenting a story in less than a 1000 words? That my friend, is Flash Fiction. Yes, I know it sounds a bit…weird? But just so that you know it is one of the most sought after practices in writing fiction currently.   Writing Flash Fiction is an art. Though it has been around for quite a while, it has become popular recently with contests and enthusiasts spreading...
Post by: Sonia Safri
A "lesser known poet", a brilliant author, and an extremely charming young girl - Ismita Tandon Dhankher made waves with her debut novel- Love On The Rocks earlier this year. BookChums got talking with Ismita and here's all that we found out. We saw your blog and it has some real good poetry. So let’s begin with the clichéd one first – when and how did you start writing poetry? Poetry happened to me at the age of twenty-six when I went...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Amongst the very many habits, the one that I would certainly like my daughter to inherit is the habit of reading. Seeing her seated in her own private corner devouring good books, being able to use the most fitting words, discovering the importance of pronouncing words rightly and making use of the right punctuations and pauses as and when necessary, would make me a happy mother . But for kids to inculcate such a skill set, it is important for parents to step in and br...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Some authors write after calculating how commercially successful a subject would be, while some write for the pleasure of expressing and sharing their feelings/observations. For some, writing is as natural an activity as eating or sleeping. And one such contemporary writer is Sweta Srivastava Vikram. Sweta began writing chapbooks titled  Because All Is Not Lost, Kaleidoscope: An Asian Journey of Colors, and Beyond the Scent of Sorrow and has now released her...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Why steampunk fiction: Enter the zesty and uncanny world of steampunk fiction that is a rich assimilation of alternate history, fantasy, sci-fi elements, and speculative fiction. It forms a cult of its own with a backdrop of steam power and Victorian England. It is defined by a Victorian sartorial style, architecture, and culture. It was a time when people dreamed of submarines when none existed and let alone deep-sea exploration! Therefore a touch of illustration and cr...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
When one refers to Speculative Fiction, it usually dates back to ancient Greece. It is a work of historical invention. As the phrase suggests, dramatists, poets, and authors speculated and usually caught the ire of the audience. Take the instance of Euripides’ Medea. He wrote a dramatic version of Medea where she murdered her own children in a fit of passion and avenged herself. Euripides displeased the Athenian audience with his dramatic tragedy. A lot of previous...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
ASTON: More or less exactly what you... DAVIES: That's it ... that's what I'm getting at is ... I mean, what sort of jobs ... (Pause.) ASTON: Well, there's things like the stairs ... and the ... the bells... DAVIES: But it'd be a matter ... wouldn't it ... it'd be a matter of a broom ... isn't it? - Dialogue between Aston and Davies in The Caretaker, a talked-about Harold Pinter play. The Theatre of the Absurd belongs to a genre of absurdist fiction, writ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
  From a business journalist to an author, Sudha Menon’s journey hasn’t been an easy one. Her debut non-fictional, Leading Ladies, inspired her all the way to show the different facet of the lives of women who have indeed made a difference to society by sheer determination and focus.   The book covers the stories of: Amrita Patel, Anu Aga, Kalpana Morparia, Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Lila Poonawalla, Mallika Sarabhai, Mallika Srinivasan, Meher Pudumj...
Post by: Sonia Safri
  Not many authors choose to write for a cause. While most fiction writers are happy talking about relationships and other humdrum stuff, Saptarshi Basu, is a new author who is writing to make a difference. Through his writings Basu is determined to make things better for people around. His latest book titled Autumn In My Heart, touches upon the sensitive issue of student suicide.     Bookchums chats up with the author of Love, Logic And The God's A...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Good children’s books have wooed many adults. The story, well-etched characters, marvelous imagination have compelled many individuals to stack their classics and chick-lit right at the bottom and pick up the rich collection by revered authors like Anant Pai, RK Narayan, JK Rowling, Christopher Paolini and Ruskin Bond. Interestingly Dr Louise Joy, a Cambridge University academic, had reasoned that traditional children's tales are popular among older readers ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
It's not often that you get to read a book so powerful that keeps you up, and moves in your mind even after you are done reading it. Prey By The Ganges, by Hemant Kumar, is one such novel, with its far-reaching imagery and an utterly spine-chilling thrill. I couldn't resist the opportunity to interview the author to know more about the ideation and the writing process. Here's all that the author shared with us.     To begin with, we suddenly saw Hemant ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Being a young mother I am continuously on the lookout of good parenting ideas and techniques to help raise my little one. While reading one of my favourite blogs I chanced upon a line that said the Montessori school of thought is against reading fairy tales to children. While I was shocked at this revelation I decided to dig deep into this theory. Here are the arguments: Stories like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella and Rapunzel  are not read out b...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Rightly said, “never judge a book by its movie” stands tall and true with so many books and their weird movie versions. Here’s a list of some books that ruined the reading experience of the books.     The Time Traveler's Wife   The Time Traveler's Wife was the debut novel of American author Audrey Niffenegger. It is a love story about a man with a genetic disorder that causes him to time travel unpredictably, and about his wife, ...
Post by: Sonam Kapoor
An MBA by profession, Nishant Kaushik, an author with three books to his fame certainly has come a long way. BookChums managed to rope in this entertaining author for a few questions.   How and when did you begin blogging/writing? I began writing well before blogging existed as a concept – only that my writing was awry and all over the place. I wrote mostly on a notepad during a boring lecture, and those ‘blogs’ often did the rounds in ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
He enters and he is welcomed with a thundering round of applause and a standing ovation. All of a sudden you overhear people say, “He’s here… Wilbur Smith’s here” and he walks in and flashes a warm smile. As soon as he sits and gets comfortable, this writing phenomenon, Wilbur Smith, takes the mike and clarifies, “I am NOT here to sell my books but to gain sympathy as a writer!” And this is how begins this hour-long warm, candid...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Reading is an expensive pass time. Considering we read books (talking about fictions here) once, we really need to pick them carefully. For instance, I remember buying Mistress Of Spices and was stuck with the book. I had paid a reasonably large sum for it and it was such a drag. It was then that I made a promise to myself to buy books only after reading book reviews. In other words I pledged to begin judging a book by its review (and not movie) before I bought it. ...
Post by: Lakshita Grover
“Books make great gifts because… [they don’t] come in any particular size, so you don’t have to be embarrassed if you bought somebody the wrong size.” –Valerie Bertinelli, actor With Christmas and New Years being just a few days away, it’s time to show your loved ones how much you care. Be it a parent, spouse, child, friend, in-laws (yes you should gift them too!!! LOL) a thoughtful and useful gift is sure to touch everyo...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Gothic fiction is usually illustrated along stereotypical lines. A gothic story is usually imagined to have a medieval setting of a Gothic castle, a damsel in distress, a villain with blood-curdling intent, and a knight in shining armor. While all of these could be true while cohesively presenting a gothic story, it would be unfair to write off this genre as puerile or kitsch. It is not as unappetizing as it appears to be. It has evolved over the ages and surprisingly, s...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
  21st December 2011, Pune.     As I walked in to Landmark for the book launch and reading session of Judy Balan’s debut novel - Two Fates: The Story Of My Divorce, I looked around to see if I could spot her. Amidst the crowd she easily passed off as a kid...alright a teenager! Yes, you read me right. A teenager. A young, chirpy one (and I’m tempted to add bubbly too) at that. Her smile, definitely infectious…and her book – o...
Post by: Sonia Safri
  As I walked in to the bookstore for the launch of Judy Balan’s debut novel, Two Fates: The Story of my Divorce, I was greeted with a sweet smile and a hint of a rollicking time! I managed to get Judy’s time and attention before the launch and indulged in a candid interview. On enquiring about the ideation of the story, she was quick to respond, “I happened to be in a store and noticed Drink, Play, F@ck, the parody of Elizabeth Gilbert&rsqu...
Post by: Sonia Safri
The first time I met author Manasi Vaidya was at a book launch event in Pune. She happened to tell me that Penguin was releasing her romantic comedy No Deadline For Love under the Metro Reads section. As soon as I got back to office, I read her blog, I fell in love with her writing style. Her topical subjects, situations and reactions were incredibly funny. From how she ran to the loo to key in her novel or how she came across a group of daughter-in-laws who faked linger...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Not so long ago, Barbara Cartland wove history, fiction, and romance to set a stage of really popular romantic fiction. Although it carried a lot of mushy romance, to the keen reader or observer, it also shed light on the prevalent society and history. It set the ground for future writings on historical fiction. A largely noticeable chunk of Mills & Boon literature from the yesteryears also has settings of romance against an exotic milieu of historic locations and th...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Even if you are an avid reader, you are sure to come across some books that are extremely difficult to complete. The reasons can be many. You may find the books too descriptive or the subject may not interest you much. Also, at times the language or the word usage by the author can be very difficult to comprehend, or in some cases the plot could be too convoluted with too many elements introduced every now and then. But since you have begun, you should do all that you ca...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
People know him as "a Chartered Accountant and Management Consultant by accident, a civil servant by day and a writer by night. A voracious reader and a lover of cinema. And of course the Managing Director, Grey Oak Publishers." But this barely sums up the personality of author Ahmed Faiyaz. Those familiar with his previous work will vouch for his insight to observe and meticulously jot human emotions and relationships. And with his latest offering Scammed: ...
Post by: BookChums
Nostradamus’ prophesies inspired and awed several writers with a penchant for apocalyptic fiction. However, the apocalyptic genre is not a new genre. It is evident from the works of the Babylonians and the Mayans. Mesoamerican literature is a rich source of history, prophesy, time, astronomy, and the apocalypse. Drawing a reference to the Mayan calendar, it has caught the fancy of several painters, writers, and film makers. The movie Apocalypto was a stark portra...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
One of the comments on the back cover of Kankana Basu’s books - “With Basu around, you don’t really need Jhumpa Lahiri” – is sure to raise the bar about what you expect from the work, but her writings definitely meet all the expectations.  Cappuccino Dusk (novel) and Vinegar Sunday (collection of short stories) offer a very interesting take on Bengali families, their lifestyle and culture, and the way they these people have adapte...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Love’s Journey is the debut novel of Rashmi Singh, a freelance Personality Development and Soft Skills Trainer at Faridabad. From talking about her personal and professional life to her take on love, Rashmi gives us an insight on present day society woes and much more. Read on. Tell us a bit about your professional background. How did you steer towards becoming a Personality Development and Soft Skills Trainer? I had been quite active during my school/colle...
Post by: Sonia Safri
A graphic designer and copywriter by profession, Vibhuti Bhandarkar began blogging a few years ago and ended up churning a fast-paced and delightful collection of ten short stories, Not Totally Unbelievable. Talking about her life and her passion for writing, Vibhuti told us upcoming work as well. Read on.     Tell us a bit about your professional and personal background I was born and brought up in Mumbai, India. I was a student of G.D. Art at The Sophia...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Dr. Vivek Banerjee, the author of ‘The Long Road’ is a self-confessed “full time pediatrician (by choice) and part time author (by chance)”. Also known by his pen name Ben, for his blogs earlier, Vivek shares snippets of his writing career with us. Read on.   Could you share with us your earliest memories of writing? What got you blogging and finally writing a fictional tale? The earliest memories in writing are contributing to my sch...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Arnab Ray aka Greatbong, was in town to launch his new release The Mine at Crossword, SB Road. This book is a deviation from his previous collection of essays on Bollywood and politics May I Hebb Your Attention Pliss. The Mine is a horror-ridden, psychological thriller which was a reaction to the fact that Indians are not interested in good and genuine horror. Ray made it clear that horror here did not mean the horror pertaining to vampires, haunted homes and...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
In a repressive country like ours, where even the mention of sex education is considered as some sort of crime, the overwhelming interest in erotic fiction is understandable. After all, the more you block the expression of what is natural in you, the more it will reveal itself in awkward ways. Anyway, we talk here of erotic fiction and its unrivalled popularity when it comes to eBook downloads on the BookChums site. ...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
When it comes to macabre fiction, A Sight for Sore Eyes is a brilliant tale of the macabre, morose, and low life. Here I’m reading one of the many best books by Ruth Rendell. Teddy Brex’s eyes feast on Francine; she is the treat and a sight for his sore eyes. She is an object to him: an object to be treasured, loved, and admired. There is a strong undercurrent of obsession and the question that good looking Teddy Brex has an eye for beauty yet regards human b...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Two years ago, Arnab Ray decided to play it safe. After tasting immense success and a steady fan following on his blog: greatbong.net he compiled his first book, May I Hebb Your Attention Pliss with detailed essays on two of his favourite topics – Bollywood and politics.  He says, “In my first release I experimented with styles of comedy but not with the subject. My latest The Mine is experimental with respect to writing style and subject matter.&rdquo...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
From discussion on varied writing styles, hike in divorce rates and writing about sex, the Pune book launch of Preeti Shenoy’s third book Tea For Two and A Piece of Cake had it all. The blogger and writer, a Bangalore-based writer was in town to promote her third release, Tea For Two and A Piece of Cake. Preeti Shenoy was in conversation with Sonja Chandrachud. The event began with Chandrachud complimenting Shenoy on her writing style. Chandrachud commented th...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
  Love is an emotion of exultation, of extreme happiness, bordering on delirium and superficial onlookers may term it as insane, as many things of the heart are so readily termed. As far as books are concerned, the most popular of the love stories are the oft-repeated boy-girl romance sagas. Look at the most downloaded book of love st...
Post by: Bookchums
Most creative writing experts argue that writing is all about evolving and improving continuously. It is also about beginning from a certain end and imagining the unimaginable. It is also about describing what it feels like or something that a person should never feel. This is the first of  a three part creative writing programme for all you budding creative writers to follow and hone your writing skills. And remember this is just the beginning… Exerci...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Payal Dhar is one of the few Indian writers in English who have succeeded in creating a whole new parallel world; a world, where she is God, where she gives birth to so many characters, and dictates the situations and their reactions. In her four novels, Dhar also creates her own cultures and laws of physics. The author of Satin and Shadow Trilogy speaks about what it takes to write good speculative fiction and what editors would love to see in a finished manuscript. ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Food and family mean the world to Mita Kapur. It’s no surprise that both her passions found her way into her first book,The F-Word, which is a part travel, part recipe and part memoir. This book should truly be bought and reread by every foodie, as it is multi-dimensional and a textured read. We talk to this freelance journalist, founder-CEO of Siyahi, a literary consultancy, who apart from providing creative and professional help to new writers believes fi...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
This week we interviewed Annie Zaidi who has consciously experimented with various forms of writing. From short stories to non-fiction to scripts to poetry to blogs, she has pretty much done it all. Annie Zaidi takes a break from her constant bouts of writing, improvisation and experimentation to answer questions about her books Crush, Known Turf Bantering with Bandits & Other True Tales and The Bad Boys’ Guide To The Good Indian Girl along with her views on bl...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
A fiction writer can write about candy floss romances, innocence associated with childhood, issues plaguing the society or simply be a how-it-is writer. This week we speak with Palash Krishna Mehrotra, the author of Eunuch Park (short story collection) and The Butterfly Generation (novel) who chooses not to “write polite books which can be discussed over tea in drawing rooms”. In the interaction, Mehrotra mentions that he likes exploring gray areas without ju...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Back in 1989, the streets of Kolkata wore a deserted look after 8 PM. Each and every person rushed back to their homes, scared and terrified. Office work never bothered them and catching up with friends or relatives was a rare thought. For them their lives were more important. Someone or something was out there; something that would mercilessly kill people and in the most brutal manner.   The Stoneman; a name given by popular English language print media of Kolk...
Post by: Madhu Nair
  Isaac Asimov was a science fiction writer way ahead of his time, as is evident in his famous three laws of robotics that first appeared in his 1942 short story 'Runaround':   A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm. A robot must obey the orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law. A robot must protect its own existence as long as suc...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
            Jules Gabriel Verne, popularly known as Jules Verne was born on February 8, 1828. Also referred to as the ‘Father of Science Fiction’, he would have been 186 years old today! Writing in the science-fiction and adventure genres, his writings continue to thrill and captivate the minds of millions with his heightened and fresh imagination. He enhanced the minds of several writers from different genres later. &n...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Recently, team BookChums chatted up with Indian author and journalist, Oswald Pereira. He has authored The Newsroom Mafia (his debut novel thriller) followed by Revenge of the Naked Princess. The latter is based on the tale of forced conversions in India with an element of the supernatural. While we discussed his latest work of historical fiction, he also revealed how long it took him to complete this book, how difficult it is to write a novel, beating the writers&rsqu...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
The theme for this week may seem odd and even puzzling for many of our readers. We have thus embarked on an elaboration through this article. We live in an age of short, concise communication. Abbreviations used in cell phone SMS’, online chats, the ROFL’s and LOL’s, the 140-character limit on Twitter – all signs of getting the message across in the least possible time. Rapid urbanization and the resulting homogeneity can be attributed as reason...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
Ismita Tandon Dhankher's new book, Jacob Hills has created quite a stir with its titillating storyline set in an army camp in the 1980s. After having read the book and amazed by it, we sat down with the author for a quick chat. Here is an excerpt.   Congratulations on your new book, Jacob Hills. It would not be a stretch to say that the book is rather scandalous. Could you walk us through the writing process for this book? Perhaps, 1980s was a scandalous period...
Post by: Manasi Kulkarni
    Science Fiction as a genre has much to do with the future. The question- 'What will happen next?' often gets our attention. How would the world be a hundred years from now? How would life change, what would the world look like then? As sci-fi (as the genre is popularly called) takes imagination to new heights, there is no dearth to what could occur in this world. Time-travel, aliens, parallel universes, robots, rocket packs, telepathy - there is no end to...
Post by: Imtiaz Ahmed
  Any mention of the word 'spy' brings to our imagination thrilling, tense moments of suspense, action and intrigue. The most famous of all is of course Ian Fleming's James Bond. It is not so much that we love James Bond; it is more about our envy of him, that we want to be like him. A man with a license to kill and a natural ability to hook in the girls, while decimating the enemy in an action-filled chase. Who wouldn't want to be like him?  It is not ...
Post by: Imtiaz Ahmed
  It has indeed been a long run. When I look back, I can sum up my entire year and it will be of two words and two words only, BOOKS and MOVIES. Reading has always been a passion of mine. Some books were a surprise package for me, while others were a bitter disappointment, whereas others were downright irrelevant. I wondered why did I even pick that one up, and some made me miss those good old days I used to curl up on my bed with the ‘Gold is Gold’ c...
Post by: Kamalini Mukherjee
2013 has taught us lot of lessons, and I see no other better way to put it except for the fact that it prepared us for 2014. We did lose a lot of gems pertaining to the literary world this year. With these losses we also had a few addition to our bookshelves. Here is my tribute to 2013 by stating some of the best reads this year.   Battles Half Won - India's Improbable Democracy by Ashutosh Varshney Ashutosh Vashney gave a quite impressive take on why Democracy s...
Post by: Kamalini Mukherjee


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