someday ill be in company of all....

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Book Review: Ten Shades of Life edited by Nethra .A

Title: Ten shades of life
Author: various authors edited by Nethra.A
Publisher: Mahaveer Publication
Page: 240
Price: Rs 139
ISBN: 9789350880418
Genre: Fiction/Short stories
Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Editor
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Nethra has worked her way to bring together ten stories of different genre into one book...For that reason this anthology stays different and an enjoyable read..Though I started systematically after first story, I chose the story randomly..

The Incarnadines by Miss Cheyenne Mitchell: Teenager Liane is a lonely girl, she has no friends and is ignored by her alcoholic parents..She is an expert living a life of being invisible to everyone around..Deeply disturbed by her abusive parents her life starts to change, when Dinga Mason the class topper befriends her, she introduces the subject of Incarnadines witchcraft and so on.. Slowly she discovers lot of secrets about them and surprisingly many family links that changes her life and her mother's forever..The book started well for me with an emotionally deprived girl in the story the story went a step ahead when the secret of Incarnadines started unfolding, but thereafter I lost it,..Mitchell somehow couldn't pull off well after that for me...Still an enjoyable one,I felt Mitchell could have done it better...

Red and Gold by Monika Pant: The story brings alive the true flavor of Indian spices with all its grandeur from the by gone days...Set in 18th century Lucknow it is a story of  Love struck couple Kishan and Shagufta ..The rich Muslim culture and the inter religious battle a love struck couple from different religion and socio-economic background status face..In spite of  a dash of gloom with pensive aura, the love carries a spark ...Can they unite in the name of love for the years to come as a family..Read to find out..Pant has painted the wonderful period of history every beautifully..

Harry's Bluff by Dr.Roshan Radhakrishnan: This was my personal favorite with its racy pace and assailant's assignment gone haywire, worse the group trying hard to put things on track...Radhakrishnan has incorporated every element to make the suspense thriller a total hit ..The story also tells how a person carry their own burden of cross which they live...I thoroughly enjoyed it and kudos to Nethra to have included this one in the collection..

Something Like That by Shankar Raman A: This is a kind of story that we could come across anytime around our working space.An elderly Mr. V and Chetan are the examples of people we stumble upon any day..How some people very cunningly take advantage of other's weakness and make a dig at them at every possible moment...I loved the end where the hunter becomes the bait...Raman's writing is simple and very enjoyable..If you expect it to humor you it might disappoint you but works well on satire..

Weekend in The Country by Bruce Memblatt: In the beautiful English land on a wonderful weekend when two friends go camping, you expect fun and happiness but murder and betrayal lingers in the air..It is a horror story that really didn't work for me.. Nevertheless a good read..

A Nootropric Eggress by Karthik. L: A very good attempt on the extra terrestrial story..Rohit the extra brilliant curious brain that been working right from his childhood with n number or things..He is even selected to pursue his higher education in exchange program and that is when his encounter with the E.T happens..With his narrow escape and his subsequent behavior makes up an entertaining read...

The secret of Ahiraah by Reshmy Pillai: This is an historic fiction, I loved the way the story unfolded.Reading this novel one gets a gist on the general history of India too..The Oswals',  Seths'  all stay bright throughout the story and this was one among my personal favorite, many Urdu, Hindi, and old style of Indian language has added to authenticity of the era..

Where did you go by Deepa Duraisamy:This one is a contemporary story with a old prevalent society stigma attached to having a baby boy..The pressure on the couple especially the daughter-in law is too much...The pressure even make people to travel along the track of destruction, breaking relationship..This story explores one instance with suspense and drama..Motherly love, care and parental care is effectively delivered...

Barren Harvest by Vinaya Swapnil Bhagat: Again a genre which is not the kind for me..It has the metaphysical elements with deep logical thoughts in them..Reaching out to reach with the likes of authors  like H.G Wells..

A Good day to die by Rahul Biswas: This is the highly dramatic story among the book were humane  fallacy that complicates life.The three character bring alive everyday turmoil of  fire fighters..Their friendship, their hatred mixes to form a highly striking story..The end I felt it to be too dramatic..Biswas has done justice in portraying the working class in Mumbai city with their naive language and style well..

The book sums up for an easy breezy read creating different mood, since all ten stories belong to different genre one may not enjoy all stories alike still a read worth it...This would be a treat to a reader who loves every kind of genre..Nethra has an impressive profile do go through them..

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Book Review Poor folk by Fyodor Dostoevesky

Title: Poor Folk
Author: Fyodor Dostoevesky
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Source: Online

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Buy Poor folk from

Review (from the back cover)
Written in the form of letters, it recounts a blossoming romance amid St. Petersburg's slums between a middle-aged writer and a much younger seamstress. Compact and easy to read, it represents an excellent introduction to Dostoyevsky's work.

As the name suggests the story revolves round people ridden with poverty..The two protagonist of the novel Makar Dievushkin a clerk and Barbara Dobroselova a seamstress are poor and Makar is deeply in love with Barbara ..The story spans for a period of eight months through exchange of letters between Makar and his distant relative and orphaned Varvara who is sick and is flirting between the line of prostitution and a life of dignity...Coming back to our main story, Barbara never confesses her love for him nor she encourages the generous gifts Makar bestows upon her with whatever he has and at times depriving himself of his basic needs, yet she never refuses him entirely... A love which is destined to doom and you know  what to expect in the end , yet you keep on reading...Unlike Dostoevesky's other works like Crime and Punishment, Brother K and The notes from the underground this story is pretty simple and the characters do not carry the depth of grey that are usually predominant in his other books...The letters in spite of its somber mood is a clear depiction of people who crave for love,care and affection and a self loathing for their life of ruin ... Makar consistently tries to win Barbara's hand even when he knows deep inside that he would eventually lose his side..Barbara goes on to marry Monsieur Bwikov whom she has no particular affection to, still takes such a decision to drift herself away from poverty..Makar even knowing Barbara's decision asks her to right back may be for one last time...Makar's fate

Misery of a poor man is portrayed in a way that earns compassion from the reader than that of sympathy.. Readers get a feeling that they are quite happy about their tattered state...Apart from the state of people and their behavioral psychology,  Dostoevesky also explores the history of Russia with a dash of melancholy and its fall to disgrace... Life of lower middle class society  and their battle to stay afloat leaves us bit disturbed at times..There are also reference excerpts from other authors and writers were Dostoevesky tries to make his opinion upon them...This is a short novel where you get a peek on to the lives of  poor, down trodden, impoverished mass of people of the gone by era...

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Book Review: The Nun by Denis Diderot

Title: The Nun
Author: Denis Diderot
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Price: Rs 743
Page: 189
ISBN: 9780199555249
Genre: Fiction/ Classic
Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Borrowed
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Diderot's The Nun (La Religieuse) is the seemingly true story of a young girl forced by her parents to enter a convent and take holy orders. A novel mingling mysticism, madness, sadistic cruelty and nascent sexuality, it gives a scathing insight into the effects of forced vocations and the unnatural life of the convent. This new translation includes Diderot's all-important prefatory material.

Set during 18th century France, the story is about Suzanne who is forced to become a nun by her parents..Growing up unloved, as she is born to her mother by a secret lover...Suzanne though dares to refuse when asked by the priest at the alter on the day of sacred vows, but then fates has it hard on her..Her parents die and she has no where to turn to..At the nunnery she is subjected to n number of agony both mental and physical..Taunt and harassment becomes an everyday event as her dark days unfolds.. The story moves on as is acquainted with different personalities, some good, some sweet, some kind to wicked to shrewd finally she is molested at the hand of a lesbian...At some point I expected Suzanne to run away from all this distress for good...One really feels bad for Suzanne, who is put in the convent as a plot to get rid of her from her parent's lives..Taking order against her wish made her to retaliate it that is evident through actions ...Her life in the second convent seemed all the worse where she encounters the rest of the horror , she is thrown into a cell, she is stolen and she is always a victim all the time...

The story shows a very different perspective to the life of nuns..It makes a point that no matter how pious certain things are if it were forced upon you things would turn pretty ugly...The book must have created real havoc for dealing with homosexuality back in 18th century that directed against the catholic church..The book was published after Diderot's death and believed to be a true story of nun in someway..At many instances the book carries an air of satire humor and you can't help but laugh too...Suzanne's prayer to god after being caught going against her sacred vows was in the list...The plot speeds away through the melancholy  to misery ..The first person narration makes it  even more earnest as we see things through Suzanne's head as she goes about a life that she never intended to live..At times the events and her torture seemed sadistic too..

The description of the homosexuality amazed me as it were written some two hundred years ago and I couldn't help but wonder if Diderot had got carried away bit too much at times...But the best part is Diderot doesn't attack religion and he stays away from going against God..On the other hand Diderot is nailing down hypocrites who do live a double lives in the name of living a pious life as the messenger of god..The book is an interesting read for unveiling events that  go behind the walls of convent...

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Sunday Post

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer..It's a chance to share the news...A post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books and things we have received  and share news about what it is coming up on the blog  for the week ahead.

Its been a while that I have participated in Sunday post..Monsoon is back and I'm enjoying every minute of rain and bliss of it...I had a great week in terms of books and blogging..Have a great ahead..

And here are the post the blog saw

Book Review:
The beauty myth by Naomi Wolf
The female eunuch by Germaine Greer
Smart phones dumb people by Parthejeet Sarma

Short Story
The Crocodile /The dream of a ridiculous man by Foyodor Dostoevesky!!!

Short story: The Crocodile/ The dream of a ridiculous man by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Title:The crocodile/The dream of a ridiculous man
Author:Fyodor Dostoevsky
Rating: 5/5 nd 4/5
Genre: Parody

I read two short stories by one of my favorite authors Fyodor Dostoevsky.I chose  The crocodile and  The dream of a ridiculous man..First one I chose because of the story line that really didn't sound like Dostoevsky, the later I chose for its title..

The Crocodile 
The story really came as a surprise for me in the beginning..It is about Ivan Matveich ( I have always had problem with getting the names right, I'm not even sure if i'm spelling them right till the end) who is swallowed by a crocodile live at a public exhibition in St. Petersburg..He teases his way to get to this trap...He is accompanied by his wife Elena Ivanovna and a friend Semyon Semyonitch to the exhibition..The crocodile is being is  touring all over the country run by a German couple...Ivan's wife make an appeal to the couple to cut the crocodile to rescue her husband while the couple demand a ransom in return...Elena is unable to make all that money while Ivan gets accustomed to his new environment comfortably , he even starts enjoying the attention he gathers by his new found place of life...On the contrary Elena begins to appreciate her freedom and life without Ivan...

Like I had mentioned earlier,  I was quite taken aback by the plot initially, but then it dawned to me that it was a parody..Through Ivan's situation Dostyovaesky points at various social issues...The story is amazingly engaging, and very much enjoyable with its strange story-line and pace..Only a master story teller like Dostoevsky can put a strong and powerful message wrapped in a soft touch...He makes dig at the writers, newspaper and every socially responsible authorities who publicize the man inside a crocodile.. I would say it can come under the contemporary writing with a classic feel...The humour and wit are just perfect for a wonderful reading  that makes you smile and think at the same time...
Loved this one and I would recommend to anyone who likes Russian writers and classic short stories..

The dream of a ridiculous man
The story is about a man who is questioning and debating upon his existence and life..I wouldn't that he is depressed  but he is totally taken away by disturbing thoughts that takes a plunge  to commit suicide..On his way he meets a gal in total tatters who comes for help for her dying mother..In spite of being aware of the complete state he shoos her away but then  is filled with remorse later with himself .. This instinct of self loath doesn't let him shoot himself and he  eventually falls asleep..The whole story is about the dream there after...A fantasy world something like an identical earth inhabited by  very innocent people contrary to people around him..They are kind and love without any expectations, they are not overcome by jealousy or anger yet.. There he learns what is love and what is it to be loved , yet he depreciate the standard of living by injecting practicality, dividing them in the name of self improvement and degrades them by vengeful ego and concepts of jealousy and intolerance...The paradise transforms into a wrathful hell with all filthy semblance... But he wakes up as a transformed man for good..

The story is on a philosophical note, on man and his behavior that has to be in check time and again for a balanced character and life...He points out how a self centered man destroys a whole group without actually doing vile things  to others around them...The right perception for life and social responsibility is the main theme of the story...I loved the theme and the inspiration it surrounds the reader with...This again will make up for  a wonderful read if you are looking for a meaningful short story...

Friday, June 14, 2013

Book Review: The beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf

Title:The beauty Myth
Author: Naomi Wolf
Publisher: Vintage books
Pages: 348
Price: Rs 405
Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Personal
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Summary:(from the back cover)
In the struggle for women's equality, there is one subject still shrouded in silence - women's compulsive pursuit of beauty. The myth of female beauty challenges every woman, every day of her life. The author exposes the tyranny of the beauty myth through the ages and its oppressive function today, in the home and at work, in literature and the media, in relationships between men and women, between women and women. With examples, she confronts the beauty industry and its advertising and uncovers the reasons why women are consumed by this destructive obsession

This book falls into the third wave of feminism..The female Eunuch reminded me of this one by Wolf and  its been there in my folder for sometime now..The book is about  beauty myth that women fall prey to, the false believes and impression that is been around the world all over the century... Wolf explores the extend of women running fast, inviting pain to attain the flawless face and imprint the airbrush touched images of the celebrities....Seriously there would be very few women who wouldn't bear pain at least for the sake of  wonderful eyebrow or to get rid of those white black heads..Though there were certain instincts that pricked me for the facts she has put forth openly I would  only wish if the book to sustain the tempo throughout...The chapters "culture" and "sex" appealed to me the most...According to her it all starts with the  pre-conceived notion on beauty that goes with the fair skin tone , perfect waistline, fuller lips, longer legs and so on and failing to achieve leads to depression in many..Though it is important to be healthy, what happens as a result of diet plans are often unhealthy too much of wrong type of exercises without considering a person's physique, capacity  leads to extortion  mounting on mental agony...

This book is a result of years of research and countless interviews by Wolf..Though she is onto feminist mode, certain figures can slap you on face...In spite of all this, to me the reading went slow still it was all worth it...Woman want to change everything that nature has bestowed upon her, right from her hair color to texture to size of breast and bust, color of eye, even to the extend to go under the knife in the name of cosmetic surgery to get those perfect size of nose,chin, lips, jaw ,etc etc..Though some do end up looking better but many others end up looking just a shadow of their older selves for which we have names of celebrities to add to the list..I have always felt that people are bit harsh towards the to so called perfect image of a celebrity in a show bizz where they are always expected to look in shape no matter of their physical state be it pregnancy or any other ailment failing which, media creates a hype going far on creating a collage of their photos that has their older self with that of current state, based on which they are thrashed severely for not looking in shape while lucky men are not treated in the same light, but why is that so??.

 I have many wonderful women around me who are battling their way with their self image and the image, the  beauty industry is trying to commercialize...To be honest I too have my moments though off late I have learnt my to clearly distinct between beauty, health, and self image..For me beauty is not just the thing that one can see in mirror but something that carries more shades and meaning on how one feels about oneself...

Wolf covers violence , sex, culture parallel to beauty and how the problems are often interconnected to women..She accuses the advertising companies, the corporate world  and media who cast a kind of image that often creates insecurity in the mind of women who don't fit into the terms the industry is trying to project... Selling their product at the expense of stakeholders who do things in vain...She explains how the concept of beauty is often misinterpreted giving a whole new wrong dimension to it...

The problem is that these images of celebrity images are unattainable for many as those image are a collective effort a group of people who are working towards the looks of this particular person, while this does not hold good for a normal girl who tries hard to to attain her so called size zero image failing which leads to a lower self esteem..

Only problem I had with this book was the opinions which were quite generalized..Not every woman feels the same way towards beauty and looks so it would have been great had she given the benefit of doubt to that creamy layer...Wolf  takes are bit harsh upon certain religious projections which could spoil  the mood of reading..

In spite all these problems the book does paints a clear picture on the perception of beauty and the danger it poses on women who push themselves to much to look beautiful...In spite of being a social critic she has exaggerated and generalized many beauty myth but then it could have been the case back  in 20 years..But the funniest part is many women want to look like an image of a celebrity who don't look anything like the image that the magazine carry.. That being said, when and how  can we really break free from all these and begin to be proud of  looks, nature has blessed  with!!! Well that is another topic of discussion entirely...

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Book Review: The Female Eunuch by Germaine Greer

Title:The Female Eunuch
Author: Germaine Greer
Pages: 431
Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Online
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Buy The female Eunuch from

With international woman's day gaining much of global recognition, the word feminism is undergoing a whole radical shift in our thoughts and outlook..Now days being a feminist can  lead to be labelled into certain class whose thoughts are largely ignored as being mental frustration.. but then what is really being a feminist mean??? In early days when women where refused their share of right, a group of women with similar thoughts, theories and philosophy on women decided to fight for themselves, though largely shunned away in a male dominated society, women of today should be thankful to them...According to the history of feminism , feminism itself is divided into three waves..First wave was during the nineteenth and early twentieth century, second during the 60's and 70's the third and final wave began in 90's extending till date...The book The female Eunuch  was one of the major work during the second wave of feminism..

The female Eunuch  is  one of the classic feminist literature..I was specially interested in this book to learn how things were back in 70's  being a woman from a feminist angle...A time when gender equity was absent, women didn't dream of career and an independent life..This book is a comprehensive outlook on how women where looked upon in the despotic time when a woman's position in family was invisible and her status at work place was nil...A time when marriage and love  were looked upon as a mode for financial  and mental security rather than for companionship,she quotes from famous authors to support her arguments...Even today teen girls dream of  magical  kiss and romance when they should be thinking of lot many important things in life...Somehow women are sidelined as weaker sex and noticed for their beauty and glamour than for the essence of it, there are even quotes that say beauty and brains don't go together which is just not true......Even when a man is not good looking he always expects his wife to be glamorous and beautiful which he eventually succeed to find and that is  because of the society that believes that women are supposed to look good with tonnes of make up products brimming up every single day...

Though certain things went over the head for me, she does point out the sexual difference created by force  of society than by nature are all around us...Her skepticism on women buying expensive cosmetics and apparel to look beautiful stands true even  for today...He writing is fierce when fighting for equal legal rights for women...I can imagine the kind of stir it would have caused in those time. She even goes to the extend of nailing down the bestselling romantic fiction for instilling crazy, silly ,magical theme about love and status of women in family and society...According to her right from the day when a woman  is born she is chained under the security of father later on oppressed by a husband.. She speaks about the psychological shaping brought in the upbringing that forces a woman to accept them without any question or regret and be happy in it living a life of an epitome of sacrifice and perseverance..No intellect in woman is appreciated, accepted leave alone valued but admired...I believe she is not speaking for women but also for men to make them look  at women beyond the external texture and nurture the  person in her for a better living..But at times I felt her take where too harsh on men, going too far generalizing her theory I'm sure that could have been avoided to strike a balance of her contemplation...I'm sure there were times when degree were just a better qualification for women in order to find a good  husband..Education and academic degree  really didn't serve the purpose of  enlightening or enriching the lives ..In spite of having in depth knowledge and being a visionary Greer has never stated on how things could be changed..You might feel the heat of too much of blaming and cornering of men all through but  I would like to appreciate her brilliance in it, she hasn't written the book to impress anyone or to mellow down her critic but hers is a solid work of her fearlessness clear and loud...

This book also serves as a historical reference for the feminist outlook for reader of modern age ...Her views and points are clear and  she doesn't waste her writing beating on the bush..Her insights are quite revealing yet witty at the same time..Though I may not be the right person to comment on the reality of the situations back then,  but the very fact that the book is been celebrated over the years is the living testimony of the authenticity (really??)...There are boxed quotes which I didn't find it relevant to any particular subjects. Though many issues discussed by Greer just doesn't fit into the world we live now..I'm so glad that we live in this present era where I don't have to strive hard for my basic rights nor I'm discriminated because of being a woman...Though the contents seems quite outdated for people like us, still  they make you think, some might  hate it or love it ...

Food for thought after reading is the need for clarity of thought and thinking as a woman upon most things around me..

From being bound to a male all her life , life of a woman has been through a long road of transformation. Today she has her own thoughts and ideas according to which she leads her life, at a time evenhandedly taking over an entire household keeping a good career front and a high social life with her friends and acquaintances..Though there are instances of cases were women are oppressed, we can say that things are on a positive note...I would strongly recommend this book for its historical significance and the revelation that makes us appreciate the life we are leading now...

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Book Review: Smart phones dumb people by Parthajeet Sarma

Title:Smart phones dumb people
Author: Parthajeet Sarma
Publisher: Good times books
Pages: 168
Price: Rs 158
ISBN: 9789380619569
Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: PR
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Buy Smart phones dumb people from

Summary(from the back cover)
Parts of India and the world live in the 21st century whereas parts live in the 19th century. Whilst many of us live in times ruled by smartphones and the internet, millions go without easy access to basics like water and electricity.
We live in an opportune moment today. We have, available to us, the technological tools of the 21st century to address 19th century issues. In a fast changing world, will mankind be ruled by smartphones soon or will mankind use technology in life-changing innovations to make our societies far more equitable? Can technology be used to address the most crying needs in our societies today?
The big picture is built by stories about the modern fruits of technology and how these are being used by leadership groups to combine business with social causes. This is an easy read for anyone interested in innovation, entrepreneurship, social issues and the current challenges like excessive corruption that face us today.

Without any prologue of my long absence from my blog, let me get back to my work.
The book carries a tittle about which everyone might have pondered on at some point of their day..Now  think about it don't we all agree that technology is taking over our lives leaving us dumb at times, rather than enriching us!!..The age of smart phones that has application for everything we can think of according to the author is hampering a man's thinking quotient to a larger extend, and I can't help but second Sarma on this...After the first chapter you really need to forget the title of the book to enjoy the other chapters or you won't go ahead because of  the mental block as the other chapter branches away to other topics.. The book covers  Technology, Entrepreneurship, Priorities and corruption in the next chapters..

Sarma highlights upon how technology has taken over our everyday lives both personally and professionally. Our day begins with our phone's alarm waking us up when our biological clock has stopped to wake up for a long time.Even at work when there is a major power breakdown many of us are clueless on what to be done resulting in gang smoking in isolated area or gossiping away the time...Though the professionals working database are helpless about the situation , this is the same thing is most of departments..This all because of not having an organised plan at work, many wait for a direction from their superiors..Now come on, we all know about it, as many of us live it so what's new that Sarma points out in his book?? well sadly nothing new....It would have been more interesting if there were suggestions to improve upon the situation but then this book is clearly not a self-help book so the author precisely doesn't go over aboard  in doing so...

Good entrepreneurship with high leadership qualities is something which is lacking in our enterprises though there are examples for good ones too.. The problem is when the zeal of good Entrepreneurship is missing in the person heading the ship. Sarma himself being an entrepreneur does all justice dealing with this topic..He explains the situation of a new bud in the field who has no family history of it..With the advent of the very internet boom,  business has undergone a total face-lift with many online enterprises flourishing well with good  service history but the dearth of creative ideas is the major concern..Country doesn't have good innovation tree cropping in spite of having produced good graduates..I really missed solid examples in this chapter, though Sarma has given certain instances where he had chances to meet some really good innovators who are striving to make a difference, I would have enjoyed and appreciated if there were names to be added..

Someone rightly quoted life is all about priorities, its true as it decides upon the things we end up doing and the life that we lead.Sarma addresses the nation's priorities that has to be knuckled down in terms of education, healthcare, infrastructure, water ..He has comprehensively touched on area that need to be worked on for a better nation building...Corruption is the major factor hampering the country's growth..Corruption in every department makes everyday of a common man through government offices a living hell..Though Sarma has given a analytically coherent approach to the subject,  I still found it to be rather vague and rushed through..The solution that Sarma has put forth is carries a vision though someone has to come forth to work on it..

To sum up this book is an easy breezy read for a non-fiction , it has many food for thoughts mixed up with  not so good ones, I expect more from this debutante in his next works..The idea and the inspiration behind the book is brilliant and in touch with the current scenario, yet I can't help myself from feeling that Sarma has more potential than what we get to read in this book..
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