by Anuradha Goyal
381 Book Reviews
365 Authors
106 Publishers
32 Author Interviews

 

Why I’m still Married by Karen Propp & Jean Trounstine

by Karen Propp & Jean Trounstine24 women writers talk about being married – to be precise why they still continued to be married to the man they are currently married to. All these women are American, at least by their citizenship if not ethnicity always and most of them have been married multiple times. Editors have divided the book into 4 parts – depending on the age of marriage. It begins with those ho have been married for more than 20 years to their current husbands, then those with 10+, then 5+ and then recently married ones. Initially I thought it is an easy way to classify the pieces, but as I read I realized that age of marriage has a lot to do with how women perceive it and deal with it.

First few pieces sounded very similar and I actually thought of putting the book down, but by the second section it got interesting and a wide variety of marriage confessions and adjustments coming into the picture. I admired editors for choosing wide variety of marriages Continue reading


Kingdom Come by Aarti V Raman

Aarti V RamanIs it a romantic fiction or a crime thriller – is a question that I kept asking as I read the 300 odd pages of the book. There is a wild kind of romance between the two protagonists – both of who are strong people, but the love happens only in the end. The two are running after a faceless criminal and the situations and circumstances bring them together. Author has tried to set her romance in the midst of a crime / mystery thriller. Set in various continents it covers places like Kashmir, Ladakh, Tibet, London, Scotland, Mexico….though I wonder if this landscape was really needed for the plot or it was author’s familiarity with this place that brought them into the scene.

I liked the story – the unfolding of it was also nice. The constant dose of romance makes the narrative juicy when it begins to get dry. The constant tension between the protagonists has been well presented. The building up of their restrained yet passionate relationship is well done. Continue reading


Love Among the Bookshelves by Ruskin Bond

Ruskin BondRuskin Bond would hands down top the list of most loved authors of India. His simple stories based in the surroundings of Dehradoon that he called Dehra and Mussourie take us to the quaint hills and its simple people. One is amazed at the sheer volume of work he has churned out.

In this small book, he talks about his love for books and how he discovered books and how they became his companion every time he felt lonely. The book is anecdotal, with small incidents from Bond’s life shared along with some pieces from his favorite books by his favorite authors. The book wraps up with a list of his favorite books.

Bond takes you through his childhood, his boarding school routine in Shimla and his holidays that he spent with his parents. He was born before Indian Independence, and his parents were fond of going on Shikaar. He brings out his disgust for Shikaar as a kid and how he would stay back in the guesthouse in the jungle Continue reading


Travelling In, Travelling Out Ed by Namita Gokhale

Namita GokhaleTravel can mean so many things to so many people. It essentially means getting out of your surroundings – internal or external and stepping into an unknown and discover it through a juxtaposition of your own backdrop. Namita Gokhale has picked up 26 established names of contemporary literary circuit and asked them to describe a journey for this anthology. Lot of these pieces were published earlier elsewhere and has been brought in, while I assume the others were written afresh for this edition.

I loved the piece by Ipsita Roy Chakraverti on her visit to Bhangarh and her description of the place from her experience of sensing the spirits that lived there and her attempt to free the place from them. We do not hear such experiences very often and not from someone who is a trained Wiccan. Urvashi Bhutalia’s piece on visiting Pakistan for a radio program and taking an Indian to his native village Continue reading


How to become a Millionaire by Selling Nothing by Aditya Magal

Aditya MagalIt is very easy to review a good book or a bad book. It is the books in between that make you think and re-think to pick up what worked in that book for you and what not. Let me give it a try for this book.

The book seems to be a satire on people who want to become fly by night millionaires and use the route of stock markets to suck the money from millions who invest there. It is also a fan’s dedication to the known big bull of Indian markets Rakesh JhunJhunwala. I am not too sure of the idiosyncrasies of his personality, but looks like the author has put a magnifying glass on his personality and blown up every small little thing he knew about him, like his plush home, his out of the world possessions, his fat body, his food habits including certain Pav Bhaji / Bhel puri wala on Dalal street. To begin with it looked like a spoof on JhunJhunwala, but it actually ends up showing him a wealthy man with morals and conscience. Author ends up mocking up the people Continue reading


An Author you wish was your Granny

Manju Dasgupta

I met Manju Aunty as my friend Subhorup’s mother at his place. She lovingly signed her book for me and said, she would be happy if I reviewed the book. I read her book When Your Granny was a Little Girl and fell in love with her and her writing. I wanted every grandmother to write a similar book for her grand kids. In this interview I discover some more facets of her dynamic personality.

Tell us something about your background, where you grew up, what did you study and what other things you do?

I was born on 4th.July, 1938 and brought up in Kolkata in joint family. Both my mother and father belonged to joint families with deep village roots. So in spite of being a city girl I was well-connected to village life and visited the two villages every year. Continue reading


Book Give Away XI: Bucket List of a Traveloholic by Sarika Pandit

Travel Tales from Around the world

This month’s Book Give Away is sponsored by Fingerprint Publishing. They are giving away 5 author signed copies of their bestselling book Bucket List of a Traveloholic by Sarika Pandit. All you have to do is answer this Question creatively:

Tell us about a destination that you think only you know about and the world is ignorant about.

About the Book: 

Bucket list of a Traveloholic is a journey of falling in love with globetrotting. This book is an account of author’s travel encounters to 20 countries before she reached the age of 30.

From learning the local language in Spain to an alcohol trail through Greece; from a tryst with Shakespeare and Jane Austen in the United Kingdom to an encounter with the Vampire in Romania; from straddling the border of two countries in the Middle East to a road trip through Morocco to the Sahara; each experience bringing her a little closer to reaching that final destination on her passport. Continue reading


Completing a Circle with Limca Book of Records

Anureviews National recordThis year in the 25th edition of India’s premier record book Limca Book of Records, this blog AnuReviews.com found a place as a record holder. I take this moment to look back at a very special relationship that I have shared with the book and the people behind the book.

25 years back, when I was still in school, I remember looking at the Limca Book of Records (LBR) at a bookshop in Chandigarh, behind a glass window. Something happened to me, I wanted to be a part of that book. I had no idea – how, but there was a strong urge to be a part of the book. After that, every time I visited bookshops I browsed the book and in my mind wished that one day I would make a record and be there. What record – I had no clue. I made no effort whatsoever for any records that could lead me there but the thought or rather a wish always remained there. I guess I am not being too different here, many school going kids would have had the same urge. Continue reading


Aisle Be Damned by Rishi Piparaiya

Rishi PiparaiyaI do not remember reading a more childish book than this. A highflying executive trying to give you humor filled gyan on flying – from check in to checking out and taking a taxi.

If you have taken a few flights in your life – you would have more insights and may be imagination than the author.

The 200-page book is actually worth only 60-70 pages if you remove the pictures, quotes and blank pages. No wonder he wrote it in under five weeks.

You can finish it in 45 mins maximum and wonder what did the author want to say – except flaunt the fact that he has taken more than 1000 flights – and once he was seated next to Raveena Tondon and another time next to the CEO of Unilever. People usually achieve sitting next to a celebrity in much less number of flights. Continue reading


Bucket List of a Traveloholic by Sarika Pandit

Travel Tales from Around the worldI have been writing a travel blog for a decade now, and I must admit I have not read much of either travel blogs or travel writers of the day. Why I have not read is a question that I partly know the answer to, but there are unusual gems that come sometime that you are happy to read. This is one such book that I am happy I read.

Sarika talks about the usual throwing her job to travel around the world, though in her case sensibly enough she only took leaves initially and then a sabbatical, and I assume she is back to business after that sabbatical. She talks about her urge to travel, to put measureable and achievable targets for travel and working towards achieving them.

She describes her travels through the lens of a unique experience from each of them, so its learning Spanish in Spain, tracing the literary trail in UK and discovering wine in Greece etc. While describing these, she takes you through the landscape of the place Continue reading