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We have all been bitten, at some point in life, by the “love” bug. Certain “in your face” traits are absolutely hard to overlook. But certain hidden facets (of the bug) reveal their true self only after you’ve been battered and shattered, crushing many a dreams and aspirations.   Ankit Uttam, a published author/ software engineer, reveals the true nature of the bug in a very realistic manner in his first published work – Beyon...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Childhood and early adulthood are amongst the most cherished phases of our lives. We indulge in really goofy, crazy, silly, yet amazing stunts that, usually come too naturally as a part of growing up. And it’s funny how thinking about some incidents that made you cry back then now bring a smile on your lips. A great way to relive most of our memories, in today’s fast-paced, workaholic schedule, is by reading Shaiju Mathew’s debut novel – Knocked ...
Post by: Sonia Safri
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
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
Book launch of Another Chance at Crossword, Pune.  Friday, 3rd December 2010 With the “winter-monsoons” still working their way out of the country, dropping the temperature way low than usual, we warmed our hearts by attending the book launch of Ahmed Faiyaz’s second novel – Another Chance – at Crossword recently in Pune.   Renowned authors – Deepak Dalal, Sonja Chandrachud and Paristosh Uttam too graced the e...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Samit Basu, novelist, screenwriter, writer of comics and local monster, talks about his latest book Turbulence and writing among other things. You wear the crown of India’s first SFF genre writer.  Eight years down the line, how do you feel with that title on your head?  Ambivalent. It’s not a crown in particular, and I don’t particularly believe in book categories. I don’t see myself as a genre writer – if I did, I would be ...
Post by: Alpana Mallick
Book launch of Another Chance at Crossword, Mumbai. A starry evening at Crossword (Juhu) saw Bruna Abdalah, Nauheed Cyrusi, Anupama Varma, Ash Chandler, Maria Goretti, Director Punit Malhotra and Tullika Wangdi, grace the book launch event of author Ahmed Faiyaz’s second novel – Another Chance. Everyone unanimously voted the novel to be “An engaging read- highly interesting and relatable with a deep emotional connect.”   Bruna Ab...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Knocked Up – Mumbai Launch Saturday, 11th December, 2010. Magic Moments and Reliance TimeOut launched Shaiju Mathew’s debut work – Knocked Up on Saturday (11th Dec.) at Reliance Time Out, Bandra, Mumbai. Though a late start to the event got almost everyone waiting a bit “knocked out” but the overall event presentation more than made up for the agitation. The book was unwrapped by Mr. Radhakrishnan Pillai, an expert on Chanakya&rsq...
Post by: Sonia Safri
A versatile new-age writer, Rashmi Kumar represents everything a “girl in the city” should. Glamorous, smart, intelligent and very humane. Currently working for Business India, there’s more to this lovely lady than just being a journalist. Read on to know more… Coming to your first book: Stilettos in the Newsroom-What brought about the ideation of the story? I’ve been a journalist for the past eight years and this book reflects...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Ahmed Faiyaz, Managing Director, Grey Oak Publishers and a prolific writer with a deep insight to relationships, as they exist today in the urban cities, shares his thoughts and views with BookChums.   Beginning with the mundane/clichéd question: When, where and how did the writing bug bite? I’m not sure actually, to be honest. I guess being a voracious reader (as I am) is what pushed me towards writing in the first place. Back when I was 10 years o...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Advertising, writing books, being a family person, Anuja Chauhan has been there, done that, and with much elan and grace. We get talking to the lovely lady to see what makes her tick.   Before we get down to writing, tell us something about your career in copywriting at JWT. I loved it! It never felt like working...and to think I drifted into it completely randomly! I can't imagine any other career where I could've worked so happily and for so long.....
Post by: Sonia Safri
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
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
We did not know much about this brilliant, “new-age” author, Aditya Sudarshan, apart from the fact that he has penned two books – A Nice Quiet Holiday and Show Me A Hero; written a play, Sensible People, and several short stories and television scripts. He also writes literary criticism for The Literary Review and other publications. Having reviewed his second novel - Show Me A Hero recently, we managed an interview with the tall, dark and handso...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Having read the impressive Some Of The Whole I couldn’t wait to know more about the author – Abhijit Bhattacharya. Enter Google. The author is a Marketing professional in the field of broadcast media for more than 9 years now and has worked for media conglomerates like NDTV Media, CNBC-TV18, The Times Group and Viacom 18 Media Pvt. Ltd. (MTV). He was born in Kolkata; attended St. Augustine’s School; headed to Delhi to graduate in Economics from Hind...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Manu Joseph – a renowned name in the field of journalism seeks no introduction. But we shall tell you a tad bit about him anyways. Formerly Features Editor of the The Times of India, Manu Joseph has also written for Conde Nast's wired.com, and the UK Independent.  He was shortlisted for Society magazine's Young Achiever Award and in a website survey among Indian journalists, he was voted 'The Most Stylish Writer'. In 2007, he was a Chevenin...
Post by: BookChums
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
  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
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
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
The launch of Growing Up In Pandupur in Mumbai gave us a chance to interact with two very versatile and creative authors - Adithi and Chatura Rao.   Growing Up In Pandupur is a marvelous collection of 13 short stories for children. And parents alike.   The writing is mature and stable, but at no place does it feel commanding or overbearing. So kids will have no difficulty breezing through the stories.   Talking to the author-sisters would really ma...
Post by: Sonia Safri
  Corporate World seems like a parallel Universe. It is intriguing, fascinating and yes, shocking! And capturing a bit of the "shock" is Sumit Aggarwal's debut novel "Office Shocks".  The novel encapsulates the protagonists' first day at work. Filled with humor, the shocking incidents make for a quick read. BookChums got talking to the author for his take on the book and the corporate world.     What got you interes...
Post by: Sonia Safri
  Right from childhood days, most of us have grown up with stories of prince and princess’, of kings and queens, of fairies and witches and of God and his magical ways - of casting spells, swishing wand, riding dragons and brooms, and zipping-n-zapping people in to animals and vice versa. Most of us grew up reading (or listening to) stories from the desk of Enid Blyton, L. Frank Baum, Terry Pratchett, Rick Riordan and the like. The mystical land was le...
Post by: Sonia Safri
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
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
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
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
  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
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
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
  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
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
  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
A graphic designer and copywriter by profession, Vibhuti Bhandarkar began blogging a few years ago and ended up churning a fast-paced and delightful collection of ten short stories, Not Totally Unbelievable. Talking about her life and her passion for writing, Vibhuti told us upcoming work as well. Read on.     Tell us a bit about your professional and personal background I was born and brought up in Mumbai, India. I was a student of G.D. Art at The Sophia...
Post by: Sonia Safri
Dr. Vivek Banerjee, the author of ‘The Long Road’ is a self-confessed “full time pediatrician (by choice) and part time author (by chance)”. Also known by his pen name Ben, for his blogs earlier, Vivek shares snippets of his writing career with us. Read on.   Could you share with us your earliest memories of writing? What got you blogging and finally writing a fictional tale? The earliest memories in writing are contributing to my sch...
Post by: Sonia Safri
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
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
A fiction writer can write about candy floss romances, innocence associated with childhood, issues plaguing the society or simply be a how-it-is writer. This week we speak with Palash Krishna Mehrotra, the author of Eunuch Park (short story collection) and The Butterfly Generation (novel) who chooses not to “write polite books which can be discussed over tea in drawing rooms”. In the interaction, Mehrotra mentions that he likes exploring gray areas without ju...
Post by: Deepti Khanna
  A bad book is as much of a labor to write as a good one; it comes as sincerely from the author's soul. - Aldous Huxley   Many writers will tell you that the culmination of a novel or a short story is the most difficult to write. Or should we say that to say goodbye takes some doing in literature? Then you might wonder what goes on the minds of writers who go about writing trilogies.   In another context, as a team of book readers and reviewers, we...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
  "I have nothing new to teach the world. Truth and Non-violence are as old as the hills. All I have done is to try experiments in both on as vast a scale as I could do. In doing so I have sometimes erred and learnt by my errors. Life and its problems have thus become to me so many experiments in the practice of truth and non-violence." – Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (1869-1948)   In his little sessions of writing, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi ...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
  Ashwini Bhatt, the renowned 75 year-old Gujarati writer is no longer with us. Bhatt passed away today in the US, he had been suffering from a prolonged illness. Bhatt’s famous works include - Kasab, Ashkamandal, Aakhet, Angaar and Katibandh. These novels touched a chord with the common reading public.   The extraordinary reach of the novels with their publication of the stories in Gujarati newspapers and magazines, and the subsequent distribution o...
Post by: BookChums
  Sudha Menon’s Get Writing Workshop was held this Sunday, December 23, 2012 in the cosy environs of the Oak at Hyatt Regency, Pune. A score of people from different age groups and walks of life were present at the event. There were writing exercises, reading sessions, and discussions even as Menon doled out pointers and valuable tips to aid consistent, fruitful writing. Notebooks, pens, leaflets that had useful suggestions and a page documenting the best f...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
  This post was always in the making, after all even book reviewers have their moment of catharsis. So here goes.   Once upon a time there was an exclusive band of people called writers, people who really had stories to tell, and had the required skill and heart to inject life into words. Then with sly, stealthy steps came the pretender. In one snarl of a tale of college romance, friendship and nothing else, his creation topped the bestseller list, and thu...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
  Few writers write with such an easy assurance as Anita Desai. Her prose exudes eloquence and charm, both rare qualities. Desai won the 1978 Sahitya Akademi Award for her novel Fire in the Mountain and the British Guardian Prize for The Village by the Sea. She has received three Booker Prize nominations so far, but it yet to win one. Ironically, her daughter Kiran Desai’s 2006 Man Booker Prize winning novel – The Inheritance of Loss had characters an...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
Born on this day in 1873, Walter de la Mare was an English writer of extraordinary calibre. Much of De la Mare’s literary reputation rests on his poems and ghost stories. The supernatural is dealt with subtle psychological shades in his stories.   Then there are his eerie and magical poems that create the mysterious aura of something amiss using darkness and silence as appropriate props. De la Mare (1873 – 1956) is also best remembered for his works ...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
  Before I read the Feluda series by Satyajit Ray, I did not understood his contribution to and his world of fine arts and literature. Feluda was one of the earliest reads of my life that developed my interest in reading. To cut a lengthy story short, Feluda or Pradosh C Mitter was a fictitious private detective created by Satyajit Ray. He appeared in some short stories which were first published in the Bengali magazine, Sandesh and later these were adapted to ...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
Harold Robbins was never a great writer, but he had the knack of attracting the audience through sexually graphic content that was embedded in the main storyline like a gift offering. Ironically, he was one of the largest selling writers of his generation – 750 million copies of his books have been sold in 32 languages.   Robbins invited both controversy and fame through his debut 1948 novel – Never Love a Stranger. Though there is a blend of crime...
Post by: Snehith Kumbla
Ismita Tandon Dhankher's new book, Jacob Hills has created quite a stir with its titillating storyline set in an army camp in the 1980s. After having read the book and amazed by it, we sat down with the author for a quick chat. Here is an excerpt.   Congratulations on your new book, Jacob Hills. It would not be a stretch to say that the book is rather scandalous. Could you walk us through the writing process for this book? Perhaps, 1980s was a scandalous period...
Post by: Manasi Kulkarni
  On Award Thursdays this week, BookChums features popular Turkish screenwriter, writer and academic Orhan Pamuk. Needless to say, his most popular literary works include Snow, The White Castle, The Black Book, Istanbul: Memories and the City, The New Life, Other Colors: Essays and a Story, The Museum of Innocence, and The Naive and Sentimental Novelist. He was born in 1952 in Istanbul. He is currently the Robert Yik-Fong Tam Professor in Humanities at Columbia U...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
  1. Many thanks for this interview, Sam. It has been quite a while since we last interacted . What books are you reading at the moment? Is there any book in particular that you would recommend to our readers? A. Thank you for having me again. I just finished reading Umberto Eco’s magisterial “Prague Cemetery”. It provides a completely implausible account of how the forgery widely known and disseminated as “The Protocols of the Elders o...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
BookChums features Abid Surti on Award Thursdays this week. He is a painter, writer, cartoonist, journalist, environmentalist, playwright and screenwriter. Synonymous with the Indrajal comic character Bahadur, he has also written novels and short stories in Hindi, Gujarati and English. His writings include The Black Book, In Name of Rama, The Golf Widow, He is Radha, Munchon Wali Begam, Kathavachak, Adhi Stri, Bahattar Saal Ka Bachcha, Besabab, Biswin Sadi Ka Akhiri Da...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
  On Award Thursdays this week, we feature American children’s writer Lois Lowry. Her books include the Quartet series, Anastasia series, Sam Krupnik series, Tate Family series and Gooney Bird series. Some of her standalone books are A Summer to Die; Here in Kennebunkport; Find a Stranger, Say Goodbye; Autumn Street; The Birthday Ball; Taking Care of Terrific; Number the Stars;  Bless This Mouse; The Silent Boy; Gossamer; Us and Uncle Fraud; The Willou...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
  On Award Thursdays this week, BookChums features American chef, writer and television personality, Anthony Michael Bourdain. He is synonymous with his television shows including Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations and The Layover. His most famous books include Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly; A Cook’s Tour: In Search of the Perfect Meal; Typhoid Mary: In Search of the Urban Historical; Anthony Bourdain's Les Halles Cookbook; The ...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
  On Award Thursdays this week, BookChums features best-selling writer, journalist, screen writer, dramatist, musician, and radio and television broadcaster, Mitch Albom. His books include Tuesdays with Morrie, Have a Little Faith, The Five People you Meet in Heaven, For One More Day, The Time Keeper and The First Phone Call from Heaven. He has won the Associated Press Sports Editors Writing contest thirteen times. Further, his book titled The Five People you mee...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
    This week, team BookChums chatted with American sci-fi writer, Steven Lyle Jordan. In this exclusive interview, he discussed his current projects, the challenges he faces while writing, pros and cons of a career in writing, inspiration, and much more. He has authored Sarcologia, Verdant Skies, My Life, The Kestral Voyages series, Denial of Service Episode 1, Despite our Shadows, As the Mirror Cracks and Robin among other sci-fi thrillers. You can read his...
Post by: Kabita Sonowal
  This week, BookChums chatted up with Indian author and journalist, Oswald Pereira. He has authored The Newsroom Mafia (his debut novel thriller), Revenge of the Naked Princess and Hill Mansion. What keeps readers spellbound is his gift of storytelling across multiple genres: thriller, historical fiction and coming-of-age. In this exclusive, hearty and insightful interview with us, he discusses his latest book titled Hill Mansion, book recommendations, t...
Post by: Kabita


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