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Author-cum-journalist Rashmi Kumar’s first book “Stilettos in the Newsroom” was recently launched at the hands of Padmashree Lila Poonawalla at Landmark bookstore, Pune. Madhur Bhandarkar, acclaimed director launched her book in Mumbai on April 21st.    Rashmi Kumar was born in Pune, and  graduated from Jesus and Mary College, Delhi, with a degree in English Literature. She later pursued a degree in journalism. Her first book Stilettos ...
Post by: BookChums
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
An engaging evening with renowned actress Suchitra Pillai at Crossword (Kemps Corner, Mumbai) saw Grey Oak Publishers launch their first book – URBAN SHOTS. The book comprises 29 short stories (urban tales, as they call it) by 13 different writers. The fast, breezy and relatively fresh stories revolve around present day relationships (friendship, love, family, longing, etc) in the urban cities. The writers, (from different age groups) contributing to this coll...
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
It’s been some months since we re-re-launched BookChums, and what a ride has it been! For those of you who’ve stayed away for a while, here’s what we’ve been up to. Revamped Site Features : Add books to shelf- We’ve turned around our search-and-add book process. Now you can add any book to your personal bookshelf within few clicks. While adding, you can also add a review, your rating or participate in ...
Post by: BookChums Team
Book Launch of Urban Shots at Landmark, Pune. Friday, 26th November 2010.   I don’t know what I was expecting from the launch of Urban Shots in Pune, but whatever it was, the event turned out to be a whole of lot of fun, much more than what I was prepared for. Present at the event were contributors Sahil Khan, Naman Saraiya, Paritosh Uttam and moderating the talk was Aditya Bidikar. As far as timing goes, the event started only half an hour late, which me...
Post by: Alpana Mallick
I never thought I’d be writing book reviews, more so a guide to book reviewing. But thanks to a good man I know through Twitter and who shares the same liking for blogging and books that I do, I am now going to lay down a ten seven step guide to the art of review writing.   Disclaimer: This is meant for the simpler folks who don’t  review books professionally and who have just started or want to start book reviewing.   1) It is not roc...
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
The Lost Flamingos of Bombay by Siddharth Dhanvant Sanghvi - Book Reading and Paperback Edition Launch Crossword, SB Road, Pune , 17th December   Any event which has Sonja Chandrachud, a children’s author popularly known as the Desi Rowling, Anjali Joseph, author and journalist who’s featured by The Daily Telegraph (UK) as one of 2010’s Top 20 Novelists under 40 and the man of the moment Siddharth Dhanvant Sanghvi, hailed as India’s nex...
Post by: Alpana Mallick
Life does lead you to your passion, ultimately. Who better to vouch for it than Mr. Prem Rao himself? Turning to writing after 36 years of professional work as a Talent Management Specialist and Executive Coach, he is an avid blogger whose professional blog People at Work and Play  has gathered a huge fan following. And his recent blog Writing To Be Read is soon catching up globally. Alumnus of The Lawrence School, Lovedale; Loyola College, Chennai and XLRI, Jamshe...
Post by: Sonia Safri
We hope you all had a very good Christmas. For us, Santa (you know, the guy who dresses extravagantly and gives gifts to people who have been nice throughout the year) gave us a present in the form of a feature done by Indian Express' Pune Newsline.   You can read the piece online here. http://epaper.indianexpress.com/IE/IEH/2010/12/23/ArticleHtmls/23_12_2010_582_006.shtml?Mode=1   Here's a peek:     We hope you enjoy the piece and learn more...
Post by: Alpana Mallick
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
Inauguration Though we were tired, given our travel schedule a day prior to the fest, our spirits immediately escalated to a whole new level as we walked in to the Diggi Palace for the inaugural ceremony of the Jaipur Literature Festival 2011. The bright and colorful décor of the palace and the vibrant atmosphere welcomed authors, celebrities, dignitaries and guests with warmth and love and soon the dropping temperature was almost inconspicuous. Noted Schola...
Post by: Sonia Safri
DAY 1 Thankfully I was scheduled to attend all the events held at the Mughal Tent. Given the fact that I was proudly flaunting and parading in my knee-length boots, the situation saved me the trouble of running from one venue to another. But towards the end of the day as the crowd multiplied four folds, I was lucky even to be able to attend the sessions.   Kuch Sheher, Kuch Ped, Kuch Nazmon ka Khayaal (On Writing Poems) The first session of Mughal Tent ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Day 2 If we thought Day 1 was crowded, Day 2 surprised us even more. It seemed like the crowd had multiplied over-night.   The first session at Front Lawns was titled “Why Books Matter”, presented by the British Council. The dias had eminent authors including Patrick French, Sunil Sethi, Kiran Desai, John Makinson in conversation with Sonia Singh. Their discussion was intriguing and interactive. Talking about how and books matter, they touched up on t...
Post by: Sonia Safri
DAY 3     The day began on a very light and rejuvenating session that had Ruskin Bond in conversation with Ravi Singh. Aptly named Boys Will Be Boys, the session saw Ruskin Bond read a few excerpts from his various books and a poem he had recently penned for kids. Ruskin Bond is truly one of the finest story-tellers of all times. He proved it yet again as he made up a story, almost instantly, of how escaped a tiger attack when he was 12. And boy! What a ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
DAY 4       Mumbai Narrative saw Gyan Prakash and Sonia Faleiro, in conversation with Madhu Trehan, discuss their books set in the urban cities. Gyan Praskash’s Mumbai Fables and Sonia Faleiro’s Beautiful Thing set in the backdrop of Mumbai reveal different aspects and facets of an urban city in a fascinating way.                              ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
DAY 5     The first session on the last day of the fest that I attended was Duet that comprised readings by Kavery Nambisan and Sarita Mandanna. The duo was introduced by Namita Devidayal. Kavery and Sarita spoke about their evolving styles and subjects during the course of their readings.                   I managed to attend a part of Translating the Classics, at the Durbar Hall, wherein Arunava ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Everyone has had their share of news to report, their accounts, and their observations and quickly arrived upon conclusions about the Jaipur Literature Festival 2011, so far called the biggest literary extravaganza happening this side of the hemisphere, and being compared to cult festivals like Woodstock. Given it’s been a good 5 days since the fest ended; I thought it’s time I put down my two cents worth of experience.   Once the festival kicked off...
Post by: Alpana Mallick
  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
We’d been planning the interview for over a month, but time and other constraints kept coming up. It has been my experience that most authors prefer to do a “quick one” over email and sometimes take an awful long time to revert. It was thus a pleasant surprise when Faraaz expressed his wish to do a proper interview instead of answering an email questionnaire and what’s more, was easily accessible and quite accommodating. We finally met up on ...
Post by: Alpana Mallick
  An economics graduate from Wellesley College Massachusetts with an MBA from Columbia Business School, Ira Trivedi is the personification of beauty and brains. After having interacted with her during the Jaipur Literature Festival 2011, we were more than eager to interview her and know about her experiences of being an author, a model and about her internship at JP Morgan. This is what she shared with us.    What made you participate in the Mis...
Post by: Sonia Safri
  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
Anybody even passingly familiar with the Indian blogging scene knows Jai Arjun Singh. A freelance columnist, reviewer and prolific blogger, he has recently written a monograph on the classic Indian cult film Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro, and has also edited an anthology of film writing called The Popcorn Essayists: What Movies Do to Writers.   In this Q&A, I talked to him about blogging, freelancing, and cross-country interviewing.     Tell us a bit about...
Post by: Aditya Bidikar
Hi Which is the best Business related book/books you have read? Share with the club members.   Regards Pulak
Post by: Pulak_Barua
Read my post, Not So Well Recorded: The Journey of the Hindi Film Song on books on Hindi Film Music at my blog Nothing to Declare
Post by: shyamanuja
  Devdutt Pattanaik, by some standards, is one of mankind’s last great hopes . Through his work on Hindu mythology and its many nuances, he has been building bridges across the respective cultures of the west and the east, enhancing their understanding of each other. Additionally, he works for the Future Group as their Chief Belief Officer. A broad picture of what his work involves can be had at his website here. His most recent book is JAYA -- an illustrated...
Post by: Vijayendra Mohanty
Abha Dawesar, an internationally-acclaimed award-winning novelist, is amongst the finest contemporary writers of the country. I first saw her during the Jaipur Literature Festival 2011, during a session named “Migritude” (click here to see the session) where she was amongst the panelists. And when I heard her speak about the attitude of migrants, their thoughts, their creative balance, her demure appearance immediately took a back seat and she came acros...
Post by: Sonia Safri
  The Jaipur Literature Festival 2011 was more than just a festival for me. It was a celebration of ingenious minds. And it gave me an opportunity to know many wondrous authors and writers of the country. Amongst them all, I prominently grew a certain fondness for Sonia Faleiro. And it’s not because we share the same name. It was the kind of substance she brought with her - her second book (and her first non-fiction offering) “Beautiful Thing: Inside th...
Post by: Sonia Safri
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
Dhondutai’s ‘Little Kesarbai’ grew up to be a prolific writer, a tenacious journalist, a good mother, a lovely friend and a singer. Part of hers is this, part – that and so on …   Namita Devidayal clad in a pink sari looks just like my next-door neighbor, when she passes by with a warm smile you feel like talking to her – if you have had a taste of Aftertaste and entered The Music Room, you would love to continue with the journ...
Post by: Uttiya Basu Majumdar
It all began with author of the famed The Rozabal Line reminiscing Pune as this hill station where tourists could relish the very famous Shrewsbury biscuits at Kayani Bakery. We know Pune has metamorphosed into a hep, busy city just like author Ashwin Sanghi, who after The Rozabal Line (a mythological fiction) has now picked up Chanakya's character from Indian history and intertwined another story of politics, revenge and manipulation to put together Chanakya's Chant, a ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
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
Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni who has authored celebrated works of fiction, such as, The Mistress of Spices, The Palace of Illusions, Sister of My Heart and her latest, One Amazing Thing,  is known for conjuring  up a world of fantasy in her novels. Her works have been considered a welcome relief from what writers of pulp fiction come up with these days. Her subjects revolve around Indian migrants settled in the US and their immigrant experience. With these intere...
Post by: Bookchums
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
When my child was born I promised myself that I would consider myself a good parent only if I am able to gift my child a love for books. At a time when console video games, television and school homework claim all of a child’s time, making sure the child makes time for a good read can be challenging. Considering the kind of advantages reading has on kids, this is definitely not an activity that kids do away with.   Here are a few fun (read workable) tips on ...
Post by: guddu
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
There is something about Aashish Mehrotra that cannot be missed. And we are not talking about the twinkle in his green eyes. Along with those mysterious, soulful peepers, the fact that he is a film writer, producer, assistant director and a short story writer, all rolled into one, will force anyone to sit up and take notice of this talented young man.   When most teenagers prefer to chill, Aashish choose to work as an Assistant Director for a TV show at the age...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
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
We have all lived on classics. From Charles Dicken's Oliver Twist to Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice to George Orwell's Animal Farm, we have cried, laughed, chuckled at the various episodes, not-to-be-forgotten scenes from these memorable novels. But have you ever thought about what keeps bringing us back to these timeless pieces of fiction? We tell you what makes the classic what it is today   * The plots of most classic novels are lengthy, c...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
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
I have been leaving in pune since last four years and i must say Pune has given me the best memories to cherrish. What about you?
Post by: Ashish
Book Launch - Indira Gandhi - The Final Chapter by Suraj 'Eskay' Sriram Friday, April 29, 2011 Pune.   Crossword, at ICC Towers, saw a houseful of audience gathered for the book launch of Suraj 'Eskay' Sriram's latest book of illustrations - Indira Gandhi - The Final Chapter. A book of illustrations, Indira Gandhi - The Last Chapter, lampoons the political figure through witty cartoons. It draws a satirical portrait of the Indian leader while ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Last week BookChums got the opportunity to moderate the launch of Suraj 'Eskay' Sriram's latest offering- Indira Gandhi – The Final Chapter. A book of illustrations, this, it lampoons the political figure through witty cartoons. It draws a satirical portrait of the Indian leader, while humorously depicting certain behind-the-scenes political and social affairs in our country. The book launch was a wonderful experience and so was the interactio...
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
Anurag Anand, a marketing professional by day and a passionate writer by night (wait…does that make him sound like some “pseudo Superman/Superauthor”!??!) – recently launched his fourth book –The Quest For Nothing. It is a contemporary love story, tracing the trials and tribulations in the relationship of a young working couple in light of the never ending career aspirations and the zest to succeed professionally. And for those who still...
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
Not many know about the man whose first book has garnered rave book reviews and is topping the bestseller charts steadily. We are talking about a bright new author Rikin Khamar and his first book The Lotus Queen. There’s more about this bright author who grew up in London; enjoyed his vacations in India; professionally is a business strategy advisor; a passionate photographer and artist; and a poet by choice.   BookChums brings to you an exclusive inte...
Post by: Sonia Safri
In the past few weeks we spoke about how autobiographical traces, visuals,  writing style and character sketches can enrich a book reading experience. In the final part of the series we shall tell you a little about how sub plots and choice of words bring a sea change in the book reading experience   Sub plots Subplots are important to any novel since they weave dimension and complexity into stories. For instance in the novel There’s No Love On Wal...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Despite a college romance being released every other day, love stories today have very few takers. And this is completely justified because these stories don’t have any depth – no pain, no longing, no determination, no romance, no feeling at all. The lovers are not committed; are not passionate for each other the way lovers of a romantic flick were known to. Love stories were known to motivate people, to win their love. But the stuff being churned out now, is...
Post by: guddu
After Vibha Batra’s grandfather passed away, she chanced upon his work Ishaavaasya Upanishad, which combined philosophy, mysticism and spirituality. Intrigued and fascinated by what this book had to offer, Vibha began translating it, and despite working as a full time copy writer she stayed at it. Though this task got too time consuming and hectic she feared, feared that she will never be able to complete the task.     So to ensure that this book saw t...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
We all love going through the small comic strips that appear in newspapers. There is something about them that always catches our attention. No, it not just about the instant smile that they bring, but the satire on certain socio-political or other critical issues that hooks us on to the graphical representation. The works of R.K. Laxman and Suraj ‘Eskay’ Sriram are cases in point. Come to think of it, amongst the first things a baby is taught or shown...
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
When a former police officer tells you that your book has the perfect blend of lucid writing, well dispersed clues, tension and intrigue you know you are on the right track with your first mystery novel. And I guess Salil Desai, self proclaimed pathologically terrified author, must have heaved a sigh of relief as he listened to Mr. Jayant Umranikar, retired IPS officer, talk about his first crime novel, The Body in the Back Seat at its launch at Landmark (Pune) on Friday...
Post by: Manasi Kakatkar-Kulkarni
When I contacted Rohini Kejriwal, for the first time, she came across as a 20-year-old, who, like Alisha, her protagonist from her short story - Learning & Unlearning, a short story from Down The Road - was interested in Maggi parties, masti and friends. But just like Alisha’s character had a lot of depth and acute understanding of life, this girl too knows what she wants to do in life and how she could go about it. With blogging, writing short storie...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
The challenge of raising a child can be reduced a great deal if you have a good parenting book handy.  Previously we had shared with you how you could distinguish a good parenting book from the average ones. Now we shall share with you the benefits of laying your hands on them     Preparing well in advance One of the advantages of reading good parenting books is that it prepares you for the upcoming challenges and also tells how you could avoid the dif...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Like most first-time-writers Shrenik Mutha’s novel Broken Hearts has a strong autobiographical influence. The novel talks about love, separation, loss, happiness and romance. Dressed in a white blazer and white trousers, this suave, attractive looking guy, spills the beans as he says, “This love story has originated from my own life,” and blushes just as he was seated between his friends and was being teased about his lady love.   We seldom meet ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
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
Not many budding authors end up harnessing the power and potential of social media platforms. And we were pleasantly surprised when Harsh Snehanshu smartly “crowdsourced” the title of his new book. Wait…we shouldn’t be doing all the talking. Here’s Harsh talking about his inspirations, ideas, wit, social media and more!   What inspired/provoked you to write “Oops! I Fell In Love…just by chance”? How did you stu...
Post by: Sonia Safri
The health books being released today target people, who are health conscious, who are trying to lose weight or maintain their current weight. And if not for all this, readers today want to feel fit, active, look and feel good. Every woman wants to look like she is out of a glossy magazine and can carry every outfit she watches on TV. As for the men, they dream of being active and having a well-toned body.   So in a series of blog posts we shall examine the kind...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
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
BookChums got a chance to interview the versatile and prolific Chennai based freelance writer, Malathi Jaikumar, who was earlier senior sub-editor/ chief sub-editor, Indian Express, Delhi; Deputy Head Press and Public Affairs of the British High Commission (Delhi); and Communications Consultant for UNDP doing Post Tsunami advocacy work after her retirement. Receipient of the prestigious MBE award, she was also awarded the first prize in the Femina All India Short ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
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
Last week we spoke to you about how health recipe books are the talk of the town and have become a part of everyone’s book shelf. Be it recipes to deal with acidity or healthy juices to help you lose weight or food that goes with your body type, these books have all the knowledge you would require. This week we shall take a closer look at the fitness-related health books being released these days Figure It Out: The Ultimate Guide To Teen Fitness by Na...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
We hope you are enjoying the series of health books we are doing. In the last two weeks we spoke about the books that concentrate on healthy food and a healthy fitness regime. This week we shall chat up about the books that concentrate on mental health and well being.   Zen And The Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values by Robert M Pirsig One of the most important and influential books written in the past half-century, Robert M Pirsig's &q...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
An avid blogger, a stickler when it comes to editing copies, a dreamer who writes on love, life and everything in between and an experimental photographer. That’s Naman Saraiya for you. He loves each of these roles and hopes to reach a stage where he can say it's a perfect balance between all these. Ambitious and a multi-tasker is what we shall like to add to this long list of epithets that best describe him. The stories he contributed for Urban Shots ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
  Humor does rule the world. At least my world. Reading humorous pieces livens up our day. It breaks the monotone of work and life. Most problems can be fixed with a dose of laughter. But what I like most about humor pieces is the fact that the point under scrutiny is communicated with much effect and quite intelligently. It also reflects a bit of the writer’s character trait. A writer with a good sense of humor will make sure his/her pieces amuse people....
Post by: Sanjana Kapoor
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
   A renowned blogger and a lover of…words, Kunal Dhabalia is a software  professional who enjoys traveling and capturing images for life.     BookChums gets talking to this young man. Here’s all that he told us.      Where do you draw inspiration from? Any author/book that has had the most  impact on your or your writing?  My inspiration for writing can be anybody. Most of my sto...
Post by: Sonia Safri
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
In the last few weeks we spoke to you about how books on healthy eating, fitness regimes and mental wellbeing are the talk of the town and have become a part of everyone’s book shelf. Be it recipes to deal with acidity or fitness programmes to suit a particular body type, or books that teach you how to feel good, there are quite a few lessons you can learn from them. This week we shall take a closer look at the pregnancy-related health books that were released rece...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
  Social Media Revolution is taking the globe under its stride. A lot has been explored and a lot still needs to be uncovered. In this scenario, “Social Media Simplified” is a great attempt by Vijayendra Haryal and Anandan Pillai that points out key aspects of social media strategies, along with case studies based on Indian brands highlighting their success. BookChums got talking with the two authors to unearth the story behind the book.   ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
So, who all have faced the proverbial random blankness of the mind that blocks all thoughts and imagination even though the hand itches and the pen (or the keyboard in today’s context) twitches to let words flow on the white background?      Ok hands down. I see you all have faced that dead-end at some point.  That my friend is the dreaded “Writer’s Block”.    Imagine reaching a dead-end, after especially a ...
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
Of late, I’ve noticed quite a few online and offline book clubs spring up. But not many takers. So I got thinking as to why someone should (or not) join a book club. Come to think of it, there are quite a lot of advantages of being an active book lover.   1.    Freedom Of Expression Oh, this sure ranks #1 for me. The freedom to express your opinions about the book, the characters, the plot, the author –to a larger audience is quit...
Post by: Sonia Safri
From Muscat to Pune, via South India...Aseem Rastogi, a consultant with Infosys, is a writer, a proficient blogger, a content creator, and a talented young man with an undying love for music.   BookChums caught up with him to know more about his versatility. Read on...     How different was life in Muscat compared to life in India, esp. Pune? If you see at the outset, life in Muscat and India is much the same. With Indians all around, going to...
Post by: Sonia Safri
24th July, Mumbai: So I had quite an eventful Sunday. While all of you were busy sleeping and lazying around, I was on my way to attend the book launch of Growing up In Pandupur, by authors Adithi and Chatura Rao. A bit cranky and a bit annoyed with the early morning travel, I reached Landmark at Kemp’s Corner at 11am sharp…only to find it shut! My first thought: Was I mistaken about the launch date??? But thankfully a kind lady (with a really cute k...
Post by: Sonia Safri
With the number of fiction books being released in the market, it is no surprise that people from all walks of life are trying their hand at writing stories. The purpose behind writing could be to educate, entertain, or simply narrate a tale that they feel deserves to be spoken about. But before any more writers decide to take the plunge we would like to tell you the qualities you need to make it big as a well-read writer.    Discipline: For every writer to...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
There was a blog by Rosemarie Urquico on “Date a girl who reads” that created ripples. That was a response to Charles Warnke’s “You should date an illiterate girl”.   Since I was almost facing a “writer’s block” and couldn’t think of a blog idea, I thought, why not jot points for people who wish to date. So we can take a look at pros and cons of dating people who are well read, vs. others who disregard books....
Post by: Soina Safri
  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
  For years together man has found great company in books. Books are known to narrate a story, surprise readers and also make them laugh. But a good book can do a lot more than this. There is a thin line of difference between a good and a great book.   Here’s how you can differentiate between them.       You know you have found a great book when… Every time somebody turns on the TV set, you go in the other r...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
There are a lot many distractions nowadays for everyone. Work, Internet, Playstation, Xbox, or simply the idiot box. Who has the time or patience to read? Right?? But if you put your mind to it, you’d see it’s not that difficult. Here are some pointers to help you: Gather good reading material: There is no dearth if you just look around. With so many books stores, book stalls (those small road-side vendors have to make a living too and more often than ...
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
A good cookery book is much more than a compilation of recipes people would like to try out and taste. Writing a cookery book calls for precision, vision, creativity, great food pictures and knowing the kitchen inside out. This week we shall tell you all you need to know about writing a great cookery book Theme Before compiling recipes a writer should zero in on the theme of the cookery book. It could be recipes to suit any occasion (or festival) or kind of food ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
The Macmillan Dictionary describes the word “controversy” as: a disagreement, especially about a public policy or a moral issue that a lot of people have strong feelings about. Now to think that a book can cause a disagreement about social or moral issues is not all that astounding. Don’t get me wrong, but the multitude of such books has only risen with time. I know we say we don’t need reassurance from anyone regarding our selection of reading...
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
Hussain S Zaidi’s books – Black Friday and Mafia Queens Of Mumbai – are controversial, packed with saucy details from the underworld and are full of drama and action to say the least. The non-fictional accounts of the incidents and lives of the people are so spicy, interesting, well-researched and varied that these books are bound to put any fiction to shame… We chat up with journalist-author Hussain S Zaidi who wrote his books after keepi...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Audio books have been used extensively in schools and public libraries to help children read. Though audio books were invented around 1930s it was only in the 80s that people began using it as a substitute and/or a supplement to reading books. It is no surprise that the concept of audio books was brought about to get more and more people into reading or listening – literary materials. The plus point here was that such books cater to more than one person at a...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Writing is an enjoyable exercise, for most. It is a great way to express your thoughts and feeling with words.   And to garner appreciation for it just adds to the charm, doesn’t it? Further, the thought of “earning” a bit through your work sounds intriguing enough…true? The number of bloggers turning into writers speaks for itself. But not many writers/bloggers find it easy to promote their work. The key word here is “driving traf...
Post by: Sonia Safri
We have all fallen in love when we were 17. We have all experienced the happiness, positivity that first love brings in our lives. But when the same love fades away, we have all cried, felt extreme sorrow and vacuum. But when Pune-based teenager Shrenik Mutha, fell in love with ‘his angel’ and things did not work out for them, he choose to write a novel Broken Hearts based on his diary. The book was released a couple of months ago and has been praised liber...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Every day is a battle. Managing a home, a busy work schedule, unannounced meetings, attending book launches and a trillion other things, is challenging, if not a struggle. And despite all the challenges that spring up, I managed to get at the venue (Landmark Store, SGS Mall, Pune) on time to enjoy the book launch last evening. It seemed nothing short of an achievement and in that sense I had won! Winning is a habit and gives you a high that only people who have won ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Books have known to entertain, express and educate. Once bitten by the reading bug, there are very few people who can be tempted to not take refuge in books. Be it science fiction, self-help, romance, fantasy, short stories or chick-lit there are just countless books written in each genre. When you soak yourself in this treasure (world of books), it is up to you to fish out pearls, corals or just pebbles. Would you like to become an avid reader? If yes, here’s a...
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
While some authors are synonymous with comic-fantasy fiction, it is worthwhile to spend some time looking for books by lesser-known comic-fantasy authors too. One could stumble into a book that is equivalent to a Thursday Next or a Nursery Crime . Such a book could be a pleasure to begin with and open a reader’s mind to a new frontier of imagination. It thrills the senses and leaves the reader yearning for more of such literature. Comic fantasies bring humor i...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
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
Having a family of voracious readers is an absolute blessing. And setting up a library at home not only makes better readers, but it can help develop interest of family members in a completely different genre of books. So here are a series of blog posts that will help you build a personal library that you would be proud to own. To begin with you just need not fret about developing a library. A home library is simple to develop, does not involve too much expenditur...
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
Swati Kaushal is one author we loved chatting up with. An email interview with her and we know she is one independent woman who loves people who stand by their mistakes, very much like the protagonists of her novels in Piece of Cake and A Girl Like Me. During the chat, Swati revealed what makes her novels a delightful read and how she goes about shaping the characters of her novels. And all you aspiring writers, don’t get disheartened, she has some very interesting...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Remember how when we were young, nursery rhymes were amongst the first fun things we learnt and recited almost all day long? I am told that in some cultures, those fun verses were verbally passed down from one generation to another. Imagine their longevity, and “richness”! But do you realize that most nursery rhymes are extremely violent in nature, with tales of death and suffering and tragic endings?!?! Read on…    Jack and Jill ...
Post by: Sanjana Kapoor
After we have discussed how to accommodate a personal library at home and what are the advantages of a personal library, we shall take the series forward by discussing how you could go about enriching your collection of books. Checking up what parents have A wholesome library is put together after years of reading and appreciating books. And when you are just starting out, along with buying collectables, you could also check what you or your family already have. ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Reviewers claim that Chitralekha Paul’s writings are similar to Jhumpa Lahiri and Anita Desai’s treatment and writing style. The dilemmas, issues and small pleasures of the protagonist of Delayed Monsoon, Abhilasha, has given critics and reviewers enough reason to applaud this lawyer-cum-writer’s debut venture. The way in which Abhilasha and Arvind fall in love, the anticipation of meeting her beloved for the first time (she fell in love with Arvind onl...
Post by: Sonia Safri
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
  Viva Steve – Jobs implied Design and here is Apple … Subdued, charismatic, crazy, genius, drop-out, CEO, showman, pillar – in John Sculley’s words in the beginning of personal computer revolution “Steve was thinking about something entirely different” – dearth of words leads to call him the ‘Fake Turtleneck Magician’. Black polo-neck, ragged jeans and sports shoes – the Man still stands Tall and...
Post by: Uttiya Basu Majumder
For Prakash Iyer, the CEO of Kimberley Clark Lever, there is a winner inside every one of us. It is just a matter of realizing and acting upon. And to help Iyer share his experiences, he first began blogging and then contributing motivational and inspirational columns in Careers 360. Eventually, when Iyer realized that he was doing a good job at improving people’s success rates, he came out with a book titled The Habit of Winning that has some great stories on visi...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
“Surrealism is destructive, but it destroys only what it considers to be shackles limiting our vision.” – Salvador Dali Origin: The 1920s experienced paradoxical times on different parts of the globe. Most importantly, it was a time of angst, creativity, confusion, irrationality, skirmishes, industrialization, and political upheaval. It was the ‘Roaring Twenties’ or the ‘Jazz Age’ for the US and Canada while other parts of ...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
In the concluding part of the series on setting up a library at home, we shall now look at a comprehensive list of 10 must haves in your personal library. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller The novel describes the wartime experiences of an Army Air Corps Captain John Yossarian. Captain John Yossarian, a bomber pilot is trying hard to make it through WWII alive. But the only excuse the Army accepts for refusing to fly a mission is insanity. So Yossarian constantly devises...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
A reading log (or a book journal) is a great way of keeping a track of what you have read, or are and will be reading. And truth be told, not many of us make or maintain a reading log. It is in fact good practice that helps you record your reactions to a book, and its characters. You can note your thoughts and gain further insight about the theme, the plot, the appeal and even its relevance. This will help you expand your overall enjoyment of reading and going ba...
Post by: Sonia Safri
You might pass Shrabani Basu as any other lady with a warm smile. But this lady clad in a white top and a green shrug, is much more than the lady-next-door. Author of three very successful non fictions Curry, The Story of Britain’s Favourite Dish; Spy Princess, the story of a descendent of Tipu Sultan who spied for the British during World War II and Victoria & Abdul, Shrabani Basu has solved many a jigsaw puzzles pertaining to important but relatively unknown ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
“For myself, I always write about Dublin, because if I can get to the heart of Dublin I can get to the heart of all the cities of the world. In the particular is contained the universal.” – James Joyce     As the political landscape shifted in many parts of the globe in the nineteenth century, Ireland was struck by the Potato Famine or an Gorta Mor (in the Irish language) in 1845 – 49. It left behind immense poverty, death, and diseas...
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
You know a book has lived up to its promise when it engulfs you in a world of its own and keeps you there till the very last page. This is especially true for Mystery, Suspense, Thriller and Crime novels. If they keep you captivated for hours together and give you goose bumps, rest assured that your time was absolutely worth it. The mesmerizing “who-dunnit” reads, or the old fashioned mysteries complete with red herrings, or the more contemporary puzzle ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
BookChums chats up with the warm, friendly Sujata Massey, who has authored a series of 10 mystery novels including the very famous The Salaryman's Wife, The Bride’s Kimono, Shimura Trouble and The Flower Master. Her books follow the story of Rei Shimura, who in the author’s words is “half Japanese, half American and young enough to be brave and fun and romantic.” In the interview Sujata talks about how she came about etching Rei Shimura&rs...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
As the moment of joie de vivre has dawned, it is time to participate in and celebrate the festival of lights. On Diwali, most of us want to take it easy, let our hair down, just about vacation and chill out. It is also the approach of winter and we are already beginning to feel a nip in the air: the world seems to be so much of a happier place. There is the aroma of food wafting in the air, the smell of cracker bursts with a lot of litter bugs and litter all over the pla...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
As the moment of joie de vivre has dawned, it is time to participate in and celebrate the festival of lights. On Diwali, most of us want to take it easy, let our hair down, just about vacation and chill out. It is also the approach of winter and we are already beginning to feel a nip in the air: the world seems to be so much of a happier place. There is the aroma of food wafting in the air, the smell of cracker bursts with a lot of litter bugs and litter all over the pla...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Continuing the list of top mystery / suspense novels, here are the remaining ones that make up for a thrilling read.       A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Sherlock Holmes makes his debut in the mystery of a corpse found in a run-down, abandoned house. He encounters a strange clue, the word RACHE written in blood on the wall near the body. Only the astute mind of Mr. Holmes can make sense of such a cryptic clue.      ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
  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
“My philosophy, in essence, is the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute.” – Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)     The line quoted above by Ayn Rand explains the Theory of Objectivism. This concept is illustrated in Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead. The Fountainhead sketches Howard Roark as the epitome of in...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Romance, Love, Passion. What more do you need on cold winter days as you snuggle up in bed, enjoying your vacation with a warm mug of hot chocolate and a lovely romantic book?! Sometimes I feel the characters have come alive with each line of intimacy and desire, making each romantic read an unforgettable one.  The sometimes unconventional settings, the moods and the description of the scene evoke the senses. The hero, I believe, is all out to get her lady love. ...
Post by: Sonam Kapoor
  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
Existentialism is synonymous with the futility of human existence, angst, ennui, alienation, uncertainty, and absurdity. These emotions in people were likened with the myth of Sisyphus. Sisyphus, a cruel king from the Greek and Roman mythologies was punished for his crimes by the gods to carry a boulder up a hill and he miserably failed each time he tried to climb the hill with the boulder.  In the 20th century, a lot of intellectuals identified man’s hard wor...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
They danced down the streets like dingledodies, and I shambled after as I've been doing all my life after people who interest me, because the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones that never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue center ligh...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Continuing the list of romance novel, here are a few more to keep you engrossed this weekend!   A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux Vacationing in England with her lover, Robert, and his spoiled teenage daughter, heroine Dougless Montgomery is abandoned by them in a remote country churchyard near the tomb of Nicholas Stafford, an earl who died in 1564. Almost immediately, an armor-clad swashbuckler materializes--Nicholas himself, reincarnated in the ...
Post by: Sonam Kapoor
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
P.G Wodehouse endearingly called Plum by his family and friends is known for his so-called quintessential British humor. He wrote novels, plays, and short stories delighting readers with stories that were reminiscent of his crème de la crème upbringing, schooling, and society. And to top it all, his works are timeless! He wrote some of the most elegant prose in British literature and this is obvious in all of the Jeeves and Blandings Castle books. His chara...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
In today’s day and age we are all bombarded with information. Be it the Internet, emails, morning newspapers, novels and reference books there is a lot of reading we are expected to do on a daily basis. Due to this surge of information, we just cannot afford to read slowly because loss of time means loss of information. Loss of information further translates to ranking below your peers. In order to help you win this crucial race we shall share with you a few...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
  Technology has always given us proud moments that have turned our lives around many pivot points. And the advent of ebooks has been one such turning point in the lives of avid readers/writers.     Storage Duplication and storing data is a lot easier than ever. The ability to hoard gigabytes of information (books) has brought around the ability to store and reflect upon every book you’d have ever read – as a child, as a teenager, as a c...
Post by: Sonam Kapoor
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
Magic Realism as the phrase suggests is not just about mere magic or dreamlike suggestions, content, or fine arts. It delves beyond the arena of fantasy. It observes and describes the banality of human existence via magical lenses. It has been portrayed time and again in literature and paintings and several contemporary writers such as Ben Okri, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Haruki Murakami, and Salman Rushdie write along the lines of magic realism. The beauty of it lies in fi...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Speaking of macabre literature, the first person who comes to mind is Roald Dahl. After a reading of Skin, one realizes why his macabre writings are immensely popular. Drioli, a man with a prized tattoo on his back disappears after the promise of a fine life by the dubious owner of the Bristol Hotel in Cannes. And what the reader discovers later is that there is no Bristol Hotel. All that chillingly emerges after his disappearance is a varnished painting, a dead-ringer v...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
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
"Women, then, have not had a dog's chance of writing poetry. That is why I have laid so much stress on money and a room of one's own." – Virginia Woolf An avant garde who was far ahead of her times, Virginia Woolf introduced an entire movement of thought and of course highlighted the stream of consciousness technique. These works also highlighted feminism, bipolar disorder, post- traumatic stress disorder, and existentialism. A Room of One&rsqu...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
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
All it really takes to hook a person to a good book, is the opening line. Though they are stand alone sentences, they lure and entice (sometimes quite literally) the readers to discover more.      I recently happened to glance at the opening passage of Gary Shteyngart’s forthcoming novel, Super Sad True Love Story and it read,  “Today I’ve made a major decision: I am never going to die. Others will die around me. They will be ...
Post by: Sonam Kapoor
Debutant author Parinda Joshi is one talented lady. Armed with a Masters in Computer Science to an MBA in marketing and working in Analytics along with being a blogger for GQ and a professional photographer, she has entered the world of fiction by penning an urban, young romance set in two very vibrant cities. Needless to say that she has been able to play all these roles with élan. BookChums caught up with this young author to know how Live From London ha...
Post by: BookChums
“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
“Let us go then, you and I,  When the evening is spread out against the sky  Like a patient etherized upon a table;” - From The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock (TS Eliot)     The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock has always been regarded as the hallmark of modernist poetry and most of us would agree. It draws a vivid picture of Prufrock who is given to procrastination, has a sense of aging and unrequited love, and pinched by ind...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Here are some more opening lines of certain books that i've liked in the recent past.     "Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun. Orbiting this at a distance of roughly ninety-eight million miles is an utterly insignificant little blue-green planet whose ape-descended life forms are so amazingly primitive that they still think digital watches are a pretty n...
Post by: Sonam Kapoor
•    "[Mother Teresa] was not a friend of the poor. She was a friend of poverty. She said that suffering was a gift from God. She spent her life opposing the only known cure for poverty, which is the empowerment of women and the emancipation of them from a livestock version of compulsory reproduction." •    “[George W. Bush] is lucky to be governor of Texas. He is unusually incurious, abnormally unintelligent, am...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Rajeev Ranjan, who has been serving as an Indian Coast Guard Officer for the last 15 years one fine morning began scribbling his thoughts and ideas in a secret little notebook that lay by his bedside. Slowly he started finding this activity de stressing and he continued to write. After a gap of some days when he opened the book, to his surprise he felt that the book had some potential. After his brother seconded his opinion, Rajeev developed his work and thus was born A ...
Post by: BookChums
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
When I had just started off as a writer I would hear these admired editors say: “Your writings style is different… Your style is now like that of a professional writer… “ Okay, now I knew this was something positive and something I could be proud of, but what does ‘writing style’ mean is something I could never exactly gather. Maybe it is the words you choose, maybe it is your unique style similar to your fashion sense or maybe it is...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
  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
“A country without a memory is a country of madmen.” George Santayana     When Francis Fukuyama wrote The End of History and the Last Man, most people wondered about the phrase in itself: that with the collapse of the Berlin Wall, it literally brought socio-cultural evolution to a standstill. Most debate on the infamous time when the iron curtain was pulled down in the rest of Eastern Europe. Yes, the Eastern Bloc was disintegrated; however his...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
No. I am not an aging granny who cringes and lectures students to stop creating a nuisance. Nor am I that lady who sits in the reading hall and continuously does a tch tch when I hear people discussing recipes or boyfriends or the TV soap… But not adhering to norms of social decorum definitely irks me beyond measure. I am not against enjoying or having fun, but doing so in a library in a way other that devouring books is a heinous crime. Here’s a checkl...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Some books leave an everlasting impression. And they are enjoyed more every time you read them. I always find something new to admire in the books I read after a span of time. Sometimes I notice a different aspect of a character or sometimes I think about the story development from an entirely new perspective. Whatever the case, I enjoy the company of books the most. Here are some books I find most intriguing. The Kite Runner Khaled Hosseini Pride and Prejud...
Post by: Sonam Kapoor
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
    Here are some more books that you shouldn’t miss. A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth Nineteen Eighty-Four – George Orwell War And Peace – Leo Tolstoy Clan of the Cave Bear – Jean M. Auel The Unbearable Lightness of Being – Milan Kundera The Little Prince – Antoine de Saint-Exupery The Secret History – Donna Tartt Possession – A. S. Byatt Perfume – Patrick Suskind The House...
Post by: Sonam Kapoor
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
It is that time of the year again, for the Man Asian Literary Prize 2011 shortlist is out! Seven novels feature in this shortlist for the 2011 edition of the prize, the list is in alphabetical order: AMITAV GHOSH, India River of Smoke (John Murray/Penguin India/Hamish Hamilton) BANANA YOSHIMOTO, Japan The Lake (Melville House) JAHNAVI BARUA, India Rebirth (Penguin India/Penguin Books) JAMIL AHMAD, Pakistan The Wandering Falcon (Penguin Indi...
Post by: BookChums
The store was full of literary banter. The people on the dias were discussing about books, new trends in publishing, and how crime stories are truly entertaining. All this and much more happened at the book launch of Salil Desai’s second literary offering, Murder on A Side Street, at Crossword Store, Senapati Bapat Road on a balmy Friday evening. Dharmendra Jai Narain popularly called D. J. Narain, director of FTII, and Abhay Vaidya, Resident Editor, Daily N...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
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
To an aficionado of archaeology and for a good archaeology read, the first book that comes to mind is Agatha Christie’s Come, Tell Me How You Live. In her own words, she said that it was not meant to be taken seriously. She said that it was a ‘light-hearted and frivolous’ read and that she meant to relive the ‘poignant remembrance of our days in Arpachiyah and Syria’; however it also set an interest in archaeology among children in several p...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Through our lives we all attempt selling in some form or the other – selling your tale to your mother after robbing your neighbour’s guava, or selling a proposal of a coffee date to that interesting girl, or selling your product to your client, or selling yourself to get that attractive salary package. There are a lot of marketing skills each one requires to use to get the very best in life. BookChums looks at the top options you have with respect to boo...
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
  Friday, 20th January, 2012 Landmark, Pune:  I was recently invited to the book launch of two of the most awaited anthologies -  Urban Shots Crossroads and Urban Shots Brightlights.   I walked in to the store, towards the book launch area, recognizing a few familiar faces, and smiling at the new ones. I could sense the excitement. It reminded me of the launch of the first Urban Shots anthology by Grey Oaks and the launch of Down the Road th...
Post by: Sonia Safri
"The ego refuses to be distressed by the provocations of reality, to let itself be compelled to suffer. It insists that it cannot be affected by the traumas of the external world; it shows, in fact, that such traumas are no more than occasions for it to gain pleasure" – Sigmund Freud   Gallows humor could be incomprehensible to most people and I’m not being a snooty one at that if I say so. And gallows humor is not about being indifferent...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
I recently read about some cult literary traditions for literature fans. And I wish to share those with you today. But before I begin with the traditions and their essence, let me give you an idea of what literary tradition is. As I tumbled upon recently, literary tradition is a collection of works that have an underlying interconnectedness and coherence. It is not simply a group of works sharing geography or group. Writers may not belong to a particular place or er...
Post by: Sanjana Kapoor
Acceptance is something we all desire. To be appreciated and loved obviously comes after that. Queer writers R Raj Rao and Hoshang Merchant reflected upon how this very basic desire (that is often taken for granted by others) is something that does not come easy to queer writers. All this and much more was discussed at one of the sessions called Whistling In the Dark at the recently concluded Jaipur Literary Festival 2012. Hoshang Merchant threw light on the dile...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
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
    The threat of a ban, the artist’s dissent, self-expression, it was all there, in between the uttered words, at the inaugural session of the Jaipur Literature Festival 2012. The session was aptly called, Bhakti Poetry: The Living Legacy.   After an introduction and welcome by Festival Producer Sanjoy Roy; poet, literary critic, academician and activist Purushottam Agarwal spoke on bhakti poetry over the ages. He talked about the element of G...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
Now we all want to access Facebook, Twitter and our personal email accounts from office. But in most organizations our kind bosses and even kinder management, put these websites in shackles. But Ankit Fadia’s new book, How to Unblock Everything on the Internet, which was recently launched in Crossword store, SB Road, explains how one could break open these virtual chains and access all the information you want.   Ankit Fadia, is a cyber security expert a...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
  How well can you translate Gulzar’s works into English? Pavan K.Varma has walked the tight rope and gone on to do so. As a result, in a brand new bilingual poetry collection, we have Gulzar’s Hindi originals on the left side of the page, to Varma’s English translations of the same, on the right.   The story behind the book title goes like this: One day, after a long gap, Gulzar abruptly called up Varma and told him, “As several ...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
“And when white moths were on the wing, And moth-like stars were flickering out, I dropped the berry in a stream And caught a little silver trout.”     From The Song of the Wandering Aengus     While Yeats was influenced by the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood and Shelley, there was a transient sense of his imagery moving across Irish folklore and Irish Nationalism.  Needless to say, he was influenced by the Irish mythological cycl...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
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
  Ever since there have been humans on earth, or more precisely, the male and female species, there has been the omnipresent fatal attraction that goes around by the name of love. It is thus no wonder that writers from time immemorial have featured love in their stories. One of the few early examples includes Indian poet Kalidasa and his poems Sakoontala and Meghdootam. The latter is the tale of an estranged couple, and a cloud who acts as a messenger to the husb...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
  Ever since I read Hanif Kureishi’s The Buddha of Suburbia, I have always looked forward to his other writings. In the first place, I did not start reading The Buddha of Suburbia because it seemed to have courted a lot of brouhaha talk and controversy. That happened ages ago; however it is timeless in its narration, language, style, and story. It is a brave novel that makes one cringe because it is extremely real and shows the lives of thinking people (...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
  Software professional and a Principal Architect with Yahoo! R&D, India, Vivek Kumar Singh steals time for writing. He talks about his influences and how family and friends helped him through the writing process. Read on. What prompted you to writing the book – The Reverse Journey? On my way back to India, I had a long transit at Singapore. I saw bunch of young Indian professionals, enthusiastically taking their flight to USA as if they are about ...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
      You have got only three lines to say it. You have lesser characters than you have on twitter to write it down. To be precise, you shouldn’t be exceeding more than 17 syllables. The traditional number of syllables for the three lines is in this order respectively – five, seven & five. We talk here about the ancient form of Japanese poetry called Haiku.   The origins go back to 17th century Japan, where the form was then cal...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
 Reading about other people’s lives often gives us a fresh perspective on life and changes our attitude towards it. In this blog we shall look at three such memoirs/autobiographies that are entertaining, informative and very enriching.     A Long Walk to Freedom – Nelson Mendela “There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.” -   ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
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
“The stars are not wanted now; put out every one, Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun. Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood; For nothing now can ever come to any good.”   Funeral Blues by WH Auden   Gallows humor reveals tremendous courage and a stoical side in man. Kurt Vonnegut demonstrated an entirety of it in his novel Slaughterhouse-Five. Although sick and numb with the Dresden experience, he went on to survive and tell the world...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
  A bunch of writers and a book-loving audience made for an entertaining exchange of words, ideas and humour. For this was a book launch of the now popular Urban Shots short story collection series held on February 22, 2012 at the Landmark Store, Pune. The latest collection is titled Urban Shots: The Love Collection. The book features 31 stories by 27 authors; eight of these writers were present at the event along with well-known writer Ahmed Faiyaz and actress...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
  An architect, urban regional planner and management expert, Raj Doctor talks about the difficult times during which his first novel ' Melancholy of Innocence' was written. A writer who divides his time between Amsterdam and Jaipur, Doctor took some time out to answer our questions. Here is the interview.     You are an architect, urban regional planner and management expert. What prompted you to write a novel? I remember that since a young age ...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
In this blog, we make an attempt to highlight some of the best short-story writers. Moving into the abyss of psychoanalysis, Leo Tolstoy (September 9, 1828 – November 20, 1910) wrote some of the best short stories. The Imp and the Peasant’s Bread is an example of Tolstoy’s concept of good and evil. He highlighted the naivety and goodness of human nature juxtaposing evil. His thoughts and characterization bordered on the ascetic and the real and his writ...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
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
  What makes a man turn to crime? I’ve often asked myself this question. Why is it that I commit murders and revel in dead bodies?   Well you could blame it on my upbringing – I was brought up in circumstances where crime was a way of life. My mother devoured Agatha Christie, my father adored Alfred Hitchcock. As a school boy I was introduced to Sherlock Holmes and the Hardy boys and in college I fell into the violent company of James Hadley ...
Post by: Salil Desai
We converse with the effervescent media personality Kalli Purie who heads the India Today Digital business and has authored Confessions of a Serial Dieter, a weight loss memoir. In this book, which she began writing as a lark, became a therapeutic activity for her. The memoir is motivational and a very personal account that elaborates how Kalli went down from 104 to 60 kgs in 18 months! Please throw some light on your professional life. What does it take to be th...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
With Women’s Day fast approaching, there is a bunch of books that stand out as an inspiration for people. Generations come, and generations will pass, but certain human qualities shall always be appreciated, like courage, freedom, self-expression, calmness, and other positive aspects of the human nature. Let us look at some books that make our list of inspiring books for women. ...
Post by: BookChums
Writer, trekker, mountaineer, motivational speaker and philanthropist, Bear Grylls is an individual who dons several hats and he inspires today’s teenagers. Synonymous with the popular television series, Man Vs. Wild, he was the youngest Briton to climb the Everest and he has narrated his dare-devil climb and experiences in The Kid Who Climbed Everest . His believes, “The difference between ordinary and extra-o...
Post by: BookChums
“A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction”. Virginia Woolf   Thus spoke Virginia Woolf in A Room of One’s Own; avant-garde, writer, woman and feminist, she was way ahead of her times. What gave birth to the book was a collection of lectures that she delivered at Cambridge University in 1928. This book throws light on several issues such as sex discrimination, lesbianism, right to women’s education and financ...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Interview with Prionka Ray We chatted up with debutant author Prionka Ray who has penned Sia, a novel that tells us about the different hues of the relationship shared by sisters. The book is also a departure from the kind of novels being released these days.  In the conversation, author Prionka Ray talks about being an educator, living in many cities and what kind of writing appeals to her. You have written on your blog that biographies in general are r...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
Inspiring quotes from books They say authors have seen it all. They are able to pen books, poetry, fiction because they are sensitive, sensible, observant and articulate. Here are some words of wisdom from authors that we have loved reading. Their profound knowledge and simplicity is something you will enjoy and gain immensely from. We vouch for that.    “Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much.” Oscar Wilde, who was ...
Post by: Bookchums
Now what does it take to inspire man? Tales of heroes, men who stood their ground in the face of death for freedom, singers, directors, leaders who broke convention to make the world a better place. So are men inspired, and these traits are universal. The unconventional owner of the Virgin Group Richard Branson shares his life story and how he took the risks to become what he is today. The book ...
Post by: bookchums
There is nothing like a business venture to change your life drastically. You could either end up down at the dumps or be soaring high with amazing profit margins. Or, you could be doing just about okay. Anyway, there is a hoard of business books out there that is sure to inspire you. When you get an idea that how people found their way out, they are are sure to be inspired.   ...
Post by: Bookchums
In a world of finances, savings, salaries, recession, bulls and bears, economics plays a huge part in our daily lives. Over the last century many important books on Economics have been published and here we try to zero in on the best of this lot.     ...
Post by: Bookchums
Investment has been a reluctant favourite with several of the general public; it has been looked at as a risk, but no longer. People are now investing more than ever, be it in shares, property, mutual funds, or just at the pretext of saving taxes, but they are certainly doing so. So here is a list of books that are to do with investment.   ...
Post by: Bookchums
This week we speak with author Astha Suneja who has authored two fictions: Owe You My Fate and Yes... I Flaunt My Diamond. This young author talks about blogging and what inspires and compels her to put pen to paper. You work with TCS and writing is not what is demanded of you professionally. So how did you go about releasing two novels in quick succession? I have always had my interests in the field of communication. In spite of having a technical academic degr...
Post by: BookChums
The book summary on the back cover of the book can deceive. It has deceived people, many-a-times. Books can appear fun, educative, appealing, coherent and grammatically correct in that one page or online book summary (if users prefer to buy online). But when the reader finally opens the book, he/she can often be flabbergasted by incoherent, innovation-free, boring, substandard content and experiences. Now given that books are expensive and demand an investment of t...
Post by: Deepti
Magazines for Entrepreneurs Niche business magazines offer great advice, business tips and throw light on all that is happening in the industry. People in the fraternity should ideally subscribe to all these magazines and go through the publications to keep tabs on what’s buzzing in the world of business.    Forbes Forbes magazine is certainly the big daddy in the magazines being brought out for entrepreneurs. The first issue of Forbes was brou...
Post by: BookChums
Nayana Currimbhoy’s first work of fiction, Miss Timmins School for Girls, elevated this non-fiction writer and journalist’s repertoire of work. In fact, her boarding school descriptions were compared to Enid Blyton’s writing style! Currimbhoy’s account of this all-girls British boarding school in Panchgani where rich Indian girls studied in the 1970s was applauded for the wonderful world that it created. Nayana Currimbhoy talks to BookChums ...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
    It has been a while now, but we still do remember Oliver Twist walking up, trembling to the cook of the workhouse and asking for a little more. Food has featured in various books of literature, sometimes as key characters. How would have, say, Robinson Crusoe survived without scouring for food on the island he ends up in after a shipwreck.     For all those with the love for chocolate, Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a tre...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
Economics as a social science benefits academic and learning enthusiasts with a vista of knowledge. It is one of those streams that should be inculcated early in schools. It is not just mere rhetoric but takes a student or a reader across the dynamics and equilibrium of production, distribution and consumption of goods and services; it is pragmatic knowledge. Previously coined, Political Economics, economists in the 19th century decided that the subje...
Post by: Bookchums
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
Business books add a flavor to a reader’s thought. These books stir imagination, entrepreneurial insights, and leadership skills and inspire to take a first step towards self-realization in terms of business aspirations. The market has showcased some of the best business books that drive individuals towards innovation; after all it is business and innovation that drive the world today.   In this blog, we make an attempt to highlight some of the best ...
Post by: BookChums
Joseph Pulitzer was a man who came, he saw and he conquered. His was a tale of riches to rags and rags to riches. Born on April 10 in 1847 into a Jewish family in Hungary, he witnessed and experienced a lot in one lifetime. After his father’s death, the Pulitzer family’s business empire crumbled and they were left in utter penury. Pulitzer traveled from Hungary to the United States after making an attempt to get enlisted in numerous European regiments. He s...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
    Some weeks ago, I attended a retrospective on Amma (Kamala Suraiya nee Das) at which Suresh Kohli screened a video interview of hers, where she spoke of her grandmother and her great-grandmother. I told Suresh that this was typical of Amma, for to her by far the most important influences in life came from the maternal side. She never let me and my brothers forget how disappointed she was that all her children were male, or how happy she was in being bor...
Post by: BookChums
April 13, 2012, Pune, India: BookChums is proud to announce its adoption of the Pinterest model and has become the first-of-its-kind web portal in India by doing so. It has adopted the Pinterest concept of ‘organize and share things you love’ to a great effect; fellow bookworms can now share all the varied literary content at the click of a button!   Be it fiction, comics, non-fiction, current affairs or academic books, Pinterest allows BookChums ...
Post by: BookChums
    Primarily associated with theatre, teaching and writing, Hina Siddiqui's story 'Making Out' made it to the recently released story story collection: Urban Shots: The Love Collection. Here is the interview of the writer who is currently based out of Pune.   How did writing come to you? I don't know... it's like an instinct really... when in doubt reach for the pen... or keyboard nowadays. Stories are important to me and they are always buzzing ar...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
  As most people would say that the art of management is an intrinsic quality that is inborn and some individuals are born managers. However this is open to debate; leadership & management qualities can be inculcated too. Adequate training programs, the right set of books on management and the knowledge provided by a really good management and leadership course can set the dice rolling for a steadfast career in leadership and management. Several theorie...
Post by: BookChums
  Noted Israeli author, Sam Vaknin is synonymous with varied portfolios of work from being the editor-in-chief for the online magazine, Global Politician to writing the widely-acclaimed book, Malignant Self-love: Narcissism Revisited, a treatise and discussion on narcissism. He has also worked as an economic advisor for governments in Africa, the Middle East, and Eastern and Central Europe and he served in the Israel Defense Forces.  And the list goes on; he...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
April 23, 2012, Pune, India: BookChums interviewed Sam Vaknin, editor, columnist, psychologist, financial advisor & consultant, and author of the popular book, Malignant Self-love: Narcissism Revisited. This book is a treatise on narcissism and explores the depth of the Narcissistic Personality Disorder and how individuals afflicted with this disorder tend to abuse others; thereby destroying relationships. In this witty and crisp interview, he described his writings ...
Post by: BookChums
In today's world of an increasing obsession with technology, the literary world has not been spared. Be it Kindle or audiobooks or ebooks, the format of reading and writing has definitely undergone a change. Even for someone who enjoys writing, I consciously decided to stick to Blogger rather than writing down all my thoughts in a diary. Why, you ask? Permanence.     It's sad that there is a loss of wanting to feel what you read - the old book smell, the ch...
Post by: Rohini Kejriwal
  Steven Lyle Jordan focuses on sci-fi literature. He has worked as an illustrator, writer, graphic artist, and a web designer. He publishes his own books. Some of his most-prominent writings include Evoguia, Verdant Skies,  Verdant Pioneers — Sequel to Verdant Skies, The Kestral Voyages: My Life,  After Berserker,  The Kestral Voyages: The Lens,  The Kestral Voyages: The House of Jacquarelle,  Chasing the Light,  As The Mirror C...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
    April 30, 2012, Pune, India: BookChums interviewed Sci-fi author, Steven Lyle Jordan whose writings include Evoguia, Verdant Skies,  Verdant Pioneers — Sequel to Verdant Skies, The Kestral Voyages: My Life,  After Berserker,  The Kestral Voyages: The Lens,  The Kestral Voyages: The House of Jacquarelle,  Chasing the Light,  As The Mirror Cracks, Worldfarm One,  and Despite Our Shadows. In this buoyant interview, ...
Post by: BookChums
Where I grew up, cool kids played sports and losers read books. Can you guess which side I belonged to? When my mother came to find me for swimming lessons, I would hide in a bank of violets with The Dark is Rising. I’d nestle in the same spot with The Railway Children while the other kids in the neighborhood enjoyed softball games. I declared my “time of the month” lasted two weeks, with dreadful cramps, to excuse my absence from gym class. Naturally...
Post by: Sujata Massey
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
    It was a meaningful, cheerful evening on 4th May, 2012, at Reliance TimeOut, Pulse Mall, Pune Nagar Road, Pune; the occasion being the book launch of Shweta Ganesh Kumar’s second novel – Between the Headlines. Joseph Pinto, Former Editor, Maharashtra Herald, Pune and a visiting faculty at several journalism institutes, launched the book. Kumar was a student from Pinto’s 2006 Symbiosis batch, thus the connection.   As we mentione...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
          “May your spirit live, may you spend millions of years, you who love Thebes, sitting with your face to the north wind, your eyes beholding happiness.” Epitaph on Howard Carter’s tomb   Howard Carter was the man who lived it up and he emerged as someone larger than life itself. Egyptologist and archaeologist, he discovered Tutankhamen’s tomb from the 14th century BC. He was characterized in literatur...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
                        The stars are not wanted now; put out every one, Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun. Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood; For nothing now can ever come to any good. By WH Auden (1921 – 1973) Mexican writer Carlos Fuentes was synonymous with his widely acclaimed writings such as The Death of Artemio Cruz, Aura, The Old Gringo, and Christopher Unborn...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
LOS ANGELES -  Steve Job’s life will be screened by none other than the Oscar-winning screen writer Aaron Sorkin based on the best-selling biography by the co-founder of Apple and maker of iPods and iPads. The book ‘Steve Jobs’ was published late last year and has been Amazon's best-selling book of 2011, with a sale of more than 2.2 million hardcover copies. It looks like Sony Pictures Entertainment on Tuesday disclosed its plans to involv...
Post by: BookChums
 The twist of the tale, the mix up of words, the literature imagination. and finally whatever! have ur own style of selectino and reading!
Post by: Anudeep_B
Deepti Naval is a celebrated actor, photographer, poet and painter. She made her cinematic debut with Ek Baar Phir and has done more than 60 films since then. She has starred in Chashmebaddoor, Kamla, Mirch Masala, Ankahi, Main Zinda Hoon, Panchvati, and more recently in TV serial Muktibandhan. She has authored Lamha-Lamha and Black Wind & Other Poems and a short story collection The Mad Tibetan that was released last year. We talked to her about how she gives...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
                          Thrilling conspiracies, espionage cover, and speedy literature: Robert Ludlum lived and wrote some of the most exciting and enthralling piece of action literature in which a reader could immerse. And a lot of his literature translated into films. Today, he would’ve lived to see decades of his popularity arising from literature. He certainly lived to tell severa...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
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
  In 1913, Satyajit Ray’s grandfather Upendrakishore Raychowdhury started a Bengali children’s magazine called Sandesh. Roychowdhury passed away in 1915 and it was his son Sukumar Ray who took over the editorial mantle. Stories interspersed with fun, jokes and information made Sandesh a delightful read in a TV absent generation of readers. Subinoy Ray, Sukumar's younger brother took charge in 1923 when the latter passed away. The magazine travele...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
Short Stories are a beautiful offering. In a few pages these quick reads tell so much about characters, their lives and the relationship between them. When compared to the full-length novel, the short stories too are packed with all the necessary elements. Be it Roald Dahl’s drama, Guy De Maupassant’s social comments, Manto’s strange and shocking turn of elements or Jhumpa Lahiri’s study of relationships, the world of short stories are e...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
                                        Debutant author, Upendra Sahani is an individual with varied interests. In this exclusive interview with BookChums, he discusses his first book, Love Cocktail, his interests, and what drives him forward.   Tell us about your days at engineering college. Tell us about the moments of angst, frustration, and...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Celebrated journalist and author S Hussain Zaidi was in town to launch his third book, Dongri to Dubai. After the success and applause for lucid storytelling in Black Friday and Mafia Queens of Mumbai, this was certainly one awaited book. The launch was held at Landmark Store. Filmmaker Sanjay Gupta was at the event to promote Zaidi’s release. At the event, Zaidi the great storyteller, told us all a story; a story of how journalism happened to him, how he look...
Post by: Deepti Khanna