These are the books I have reviewed till date :-
Book Review – Revenge of the Naked Princess
Oswald Pereira is the author of the widely acclaimed crime thriller ‘The Newsroom Mafia’. ‘Revenge of the Naked Princess’ is his second book. This time he has delved into the history of how Portuguese were involved in the forced conversions of Hindus to Christians. The topic sounds quite unique and interesting. Does the book work? Let’s check it out.
The blurb goes like this –
On a hot, humid morning in May 1545, a joint conversion brigade of the Portugese King and the Pope set out to spread Christ’s message of love and compassion, but they leave behind a deathly trail of murder and mayhem. Armed with a monstrous cannon and scores of firearms, the brigade raids Princess Darshana Kamya Kathodi’s palace in Tana carrying for her and her people the King’s inviolable conversion order… sealed by the Pope’s promise of a new heaven.
The beautiful, 18 year old tribal princess fights back with her ace archers’ poison arrows. Revenge of the Naked Princess shows how brutal forced conversions can blur the line between religion and carnage.
This historical page turner by veteran journalist-turned-novelist Oswald Pereira comes after the success of his widely – acclaimed, best-selling thriller ‘The Newsroom Mafia’.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2013/05/22/book-review-revenge-of-the-naked-princess/
Book Review – Clear Line of Fire
‘Clear Line of Fire’ is Badrinath Nuggehalli’s first novel. He has dabbled for many years in advertising and marketing and has also started a marketing consultancy (Aqumena) of his own in Mumbai. This is his first novel. Does it work? Let’s check it out.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2013/05/01/book-review-clear-line-of-fire/
Book Review – Once Upon The Tracks of Mumbai
“Once Upon The Tracks of Mumbai” is Rishi Vohra’s first novel. From the entertainment industry to pursuing a green MBA and finally to publishing a book, Rishi has done it all. He has also been a guest columnist for various newspapers and a regular writer of wine. So does his novel work? Let’s check it out.
The blurb goes like this –
“Autistic. Schizophrenic. Psychotic…”
‘They’ use these words to describe Babloo – the doctors, his family, his teachers..everyone..except Vandana. She treats him the way he wants the world to see him.
Mumbai..the city that defines his ultimate desires. Will it allow him the love and ‘normalcy’ he so craves?
Vandana..yearns for a soulmate to rescue her from the confines of the Railway Colony they all live in. Is she looking in the right place?
Rail Man..a fearless, real – life hero who succeeds in doing all that Babloo secretly wishes to do..is Babloo his inspiration or..is it the other way around?
A random twist of fate on Mumbai’s endless, serpent – like, jangling local train tracks ties all these characters together in a complex weave of love, heartbreak and courage.
Babloo draws the reader into his fascinating, heart – rending journey through the twisted, choked lanes of Mumbai, into an open space where he can finally be born again.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2013/04/13/book-review-once-upon-the-tracks-of-mumbai/
Book Review – The Karachi Deception
‘The Karachi Deception’ is Shatrujeet Nath’s first novel. In the past he has delved into business journalism and was the Assistant Editor at Economic Times. This novel is published by Grey Oak Publishers in combination with Westland Books and seems to be another addition to the list in the growing and upcoming military thriller genre in India. Does it work? Let’s check it out.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2013/03/25/book-review-the-karachi-deception/
Book Review – Red Jihad
“Red Jihad” is Sami Ahmad Khan’s first attempt at writing a novel. He has engaged in film production, teaching, theater and writing. His short stories, plays and articles have been published in magazines and academic journals. Does his first novel work? Let’s check it out.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2013/02/10/book-review-red-jihad-battle-for-south-asia/
Book Review – Zombiestan
Mainak Dhar has thirteen books to his credit. But to be honest I had never heard of him or this book till I got hold of it. I am a fan of books which deal with terrorism, suspense, thrillers and the likes. But only if our contemporary Indian writers get time to move away from romance and college love stories, would they write something else, right? Anyways, so I began this book with quite some expectation. Did it impress me? Let’s check it out.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/12/06/book-review-zombiestan/
Book Review – Urban Shots: Bright Lights
In a short period of time, Grey Oak Publishers have created quite a name for themselves in encouraging young authors, bloggers and giving a chance to debutante writers. Multi – story anthologies with works from a variety of authors maybe the best thing for first time writers. And this is where the anthologies like ‘Urban Shots: Bright Lights’ come in. This one has 29 stories from 21 writers across varied backgrounds.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/10/27/book-review-urban-shots-bright-lights/
Book Review – The Dust Will Never Settle
Mukul Deva has lived, breathed and slept the ‘Lashkar’ series for the last couple of years. Whether it was ‘Lashkar’, ‘Salim Must Die’, ‘Blowback’ or ‘Tanzeem’, Mukul put his heart and soul into ensuring that these books were loved by his audiences. So what next after this?
‘The Dust Will Never Settle’ is his first book after the Lashkar series ended. In this pacy fusion of fact and fiction, he unravels the private tragedy of the Gill family against the high-stakes backdrop of international politics and deadly intrigue.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/09/12/book-review-the-dust-will-never-settle/
Book Review – You Never Know When You’ll Get Lucky!
“You Never Know When You’ll Get Lucky!” (YNKWYGL) is written by Priyadarshini Narendra and is the next book from the ‘Fingerprint Publishing’ stable. Priya has spent several years in the advertising industry and has many interesting campaigns to her credit. This is her first attempt at portraying life in the fast lane of the advertising world. Does she succeed? Let’s check it out.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/09/02/book-review-you-never-know-when-youll-get-lucky/
Book Review – You & Me: Our Relationship
“You & Me: Our Relationship” is Nikhil Mukhija’s first novel. To be honest, the first time I heard the name of this one, I thought to myself “Oh no! Not another college love story.” But then, when I turned to look at the back cover, I was surprised to read that this one is a non – fiction / self – help book. So does it work? Let’s check it out.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/06/13/book-review-you-me-our-relationship/
Book Review – Marathon Baba
‘Marathon Baba’ is Girish Kohli’s first novel. Or as the book puts it, it is his third book which has been published first. Along with the quirky title, what catches your attention as soon as you get hold of the book is the cover design. The colours, font sty;e as well as the map on the back cover give the book a very unique feel. Does the book work? Let’s check it out.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/06/10/book-review-marathon-baba/
Book Review – Fate, Fraud & A Friday Wedding
“Fate, Fraud & A Friday Wedding” is Bhavna Rai’s first attempt at writing. In a career spanning 14 years across nations, she has worked with some of the top leading technology firms of the world. To be honest, I didn’t have the slightest idea of this book until the author contacted me herself to review it. Does it work? Let’s check it out.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/06/03/book-review-fate-fraud-a-friday-wedding/
Book Review – Zero Percentile 2.0
‘Zero Percentile 2.0’ is Neeraj Chhibba’s sequel to ‘Zero Percentile’ which was a bestseller when it released a couple of years back. Frankly speaking when I got the book from the author, I presumed that it was going to be another college love story, something which has become too common these days in the contemporary Indian literary world. Does it live up to those expectations or traverses a completely different path? Let’s see.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/04/03/book-review-zero-percentile-2-0/
Book Review – Miracle in the Andes
‘Miracle in the Andes – 72 Days on the Mountain and My Long Trek Home’ is the story of adventure, courage, tragedy, horror, terror, love and much more of a group of individuals who survive for 72 days at more than 12000 feet in the Andes. Penned by Nando Parrado (one of the survivors) and Vince Rause, it is an autobiographical account of the days Nando and his comrades had to face high in the Andes.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/03/26/book-review-miracle-in-the-andes/
Book Review – Messiah of the Scarlet Silence
“Messiah of the Scarlet Silence” is the Arun Chaturvedi’s first writing attempt. Interestingly this book is available only in very select bookstores across the country. Maybe the author decided that he wanted to see the crowd reaction before printing more copies. Nonetheless, I bought it because crime thrillers are something which greatly interest me. Does it work?
The blurb goes like this –
There has always been a conflict between justice as a temporary phenomenon meted through a procedure, and the eternal conscience embedded deep within every subconscious state. Justice delayed, or even denied has had reverberating repercussions prompting individuals to mete out justice in a manner they deem as justified.
Molestation and rapes are rampant, and very few woman get their true justice. Many shy away from the courts fearing the stigma as well as the caustic remarks from the society. The trauma is intensified in court when the accused defense attorney attempt at character assassination to belittle the victim or make the incident look like a consensual act. The outdated legalities and the legal process itself are too slow, while the punitive punishments hardly serve as deterrents.
In this fictional incident based at Mumbai, a young girl is raped and murdered. And extraordinary situation demands a different remedial, and down the line, a bereaved sympathizer is created, who takes on the role as the messiah of the silent death, the scarlet silence.
While the story remains focused primarily on the police, the plot weaves into place the role of the judiciary, media, politician, underworld, and the public. It questions the role of these external elements that transform an honest person into a hardened killer. It raises hard questions on a crime that is rampant and continues unabated. It speaks of the core of the system that needs to be transformed. By including factual incidents, readers can co – relate those with this story that links the facts and fiction, to give it a realistic dimension.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/03/05/book-review-messiah-of-the-scarlet-silence/
Book Review – The Newsroom Mafia
“The Newsroom Mafia” is the debut novel of Oswald Pereira, a journalist with over thirty years of experience. Published by the Grey Oak – Westland combine, it was one of the most recently awaited novels off late. A racy crime thriller which promised to expose the unholy nexus between police, politicians, underworld and the press, the book garnered quite some interesting previews. Does it work?
The blurb goes like this –
When Supercop Donald Fernandez declares an all – out war against the invincible Don, Narayan Swamy, he fights back with a formidable Mafia – a private army of armed thugs and a motley gang of corrupt police officers, backed by powerful politicians. What follows is a battle of raw power, sleaze, wits and dirty tactics by both the law breakers and the law enforcers, blurring boundaries between good and evil. To save his skin, the Don fires his most lethal weapon, the Newsroom Mafia.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/02/26/book-review-the-newsroom-mafia/
Book Review – Scammed: Confessions of a Confused Accountant
“Scammed: Confessions of a Confused Accountant” is one among the latest releases from the Grey Oak – Westland stable. Interestingly the author has decided to go with the pen name “Anonymous” rather than his real identity. On seeing that, I presumed the book delved into something really explosive – frauds, scams etc. which may shake the country and may have had the potential to give the author enough sleepless nights. So did it live up to the expectations?
The blurb goes like this -
Life is miserable for Hitesh Shah despite his coveted job in a top accounting firm. Labeled a nerd by colleagues, ignored by women and rebuked by parents, Hitesh cannot resist when offered a lucrative job as the CEO of an offshoot of the failing automobile company, Supreme Motors. So what if the owner Venugopal Reddy, a sleazy businessman with political connections, actually wants Hitesh to fix the company to save his skin? Hitesh’s drive and quest for success helps turn the Company’s fortunes around; he is seen a rising corporate star, he begins dating a model and is pampered by parents.
Championed as the poster boy of emerging India, Hitesh’s fairytale ends quickly. As his cursed luck would have it, he is soon on the run from the law – allegedly as the perpetrator of a financial scam and accused of defrauding thousands of investors! With his back against the wall, and growing public and media opinion against him, will Hitesh come out of the mess he finds himself in?
Book Review – A Godly Blunder
“A Godly Blunder” is Parimal Kalikar, a hotel management graduate and a former credit card salesman’s first attempt at writing. Truthfully speaking, I hadn’t heard of this book even once before he contacted me to review it. I found it a bit different immediately after reading the synopsis and couldn’t say no. Even though I already had around 6-7 books in my ‘To-read’ list, I couldn’t resist picking up this one ahead of the others.
The blurb goes like this -
Oliver, a quality control manager in a premium car company in Germany dies in an accident and reaches heaven. He is enjoying the lavish lifestyle of a movie star..till God decides to send him on a short ‘assignment’ due to a technical snag in the Soul Management System (SMS) of Swarga. He wakes up in the body of an Indian middle class man Siddhesh. Thus starts his rollercoaster journey to India. He is baffled by the extent of corruption and dishonesty in the country as he is warmed by the affection that binds Indian families. To add to his woes, his two maverick escorts from Swarga keep disappearing without notice.
What happens at the end of the unusual assignment? And what happens when God tells you that you don’t need Him? A Godly Blunder is a hilarious ride to heaven and back to earth, which will keep the readers amused all the way.
To read more log on to – http://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/02/20/book-review-a-godly-blunder/#more-1336
Book Review – Tanzeem
Tanzeem is the fourth and final installment (After Lashkar, Salim Must Die and Blowback) in Mukul Deva’s series of military thrillers. He has written these books at such breakneck speed that he released the 4 books over a span of 4 years from 2008 till 2011. I like many others am in love with his Tom Clancy style writing. And ever since I read Blowback, I was waiting for the day I could lay my hands on Tanzeem.
The book begins where Blowback ends. After the confrontation with the heads of the Indian Mujahideen, Iqbal, the undercover Force-22 operative decides that he needs to go into the heart of Pakistan and take out the killing machines with his own hands. Despite attempts by the top brass to prevent him from taking such a decision, he doesn’t heed their warnings and takes on the arduous journey. The rest of the story deals with how he succeeds in finding and befriending the group of terror masters waiting to unleash a wave of urban global terror. Does he succeed? Is he killed? You got to read it.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/01/31/book-review-tanzeem/
Book Review – The Suicide Banker
After “If God was a Banker” and “Devil in Pinstripes, “The Suicide Banker” is the third novel I have come across on the inner workings of the banking world. But this book was sent across to me by the author himself as he seemed impressed with my unbiased book reviews. So I began reading the book in the hope that I would find something different from the earlier banking tales. Does it succeed? Let’s see.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2012/01/22/book-review-the-suicide-banker/
Book Review – The Patriot
To be truthful I hadn’t ever heard of this book or the author. A couple of weeks back I got an email from him asking me to review his labour of love. I immediately checked out the synopsis and was hooked on. A novel on marine terrorism and that too by an Indian author is as rare as it can get.
The book goes with the tagline: Terror on the High Seas. Going through the cover with the image showing a very rough sea and a ship – INS Indraprastha in the background, you start thinking that this is going to be a real thrill ride.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2011/12/04/book-review-the-patriot/
Book Review – Of Dreams
Now this is the 1st book for which I was asked to write a review. Obviously it wasn’t a paid one before you start thinking I am being paid to write good things . But instead I got this opportunity because my couple of book reviews till date seem to have been liked by some people around. Anyways let’s get to the point.
‘Of Dreams’ is the first attempt at writing by Aditi Talwar Sodhi whose different from our regular out of college writers in the sense that she is an MBA professional with pretty good experience in the advertising industry. When you read the synopsis you realize that the book is about three girls and their dreams and what happens within. 3 girls? Now that’s something different than the regular boy-girl love sagas or gang of boys stories floating around in the Indian market.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2011/11/27/book-review-of-dreams/
Book Review – Devil in Pinstripes
Devil in Pinstripes is Ravi Subramanian’s third novel after “If God was a Banker” and “I bought the Monk’s Ferrari”. But this is his second attempt at talking about his life and experiences at Citibank which he did pretty well in “If God was a Banker”. So does his third book manage to capture the interest of the readers? Let’s see.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2011/11/13/book-review-devil-in-pinstripes/
Book Review – Revolution 2020
Revolution 2020 is Chetan Bhagat’s fifth book after four successive best sellers. With over 5 lakh pre – orders you could be forgiven for thinking that his latest offering was keenly awaited by his fans after a 2 year drought with his “2 States: The Story of My Marriage” releasing way back in 2009. With a title like “Revolution 2020″ and Love.Corruption.Ambition as its tagline / slogan, you expect something different from Chetan Bhagat this time. So does this book succeed? Let’s see!
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2011/10/09/book-review-revolution-2020/
Book Review – Blowback
“Blowback” is the third in the Lashkar series by Mukul Deva. With his amazingly vivid descriptions of what goes in the mind of a terrorist, to how terrorist attacks are planned to even describing weapons in great detail, Mukul has brought alive the concept of military thrillers in India.
“Blowback” begins where “Salim Must Die” ends with Iqbal (The terrorist turned Force 22 officer) and Tanaz having to stay back in Pakistan. After spending a few days in a terrorist hideout they manage to reach India only to find out that a group called Indian Mujahideen (IM) behind terror strikes in Surat, Jaipur and Varanasi . The rest of the book deals with how he is sent undercover to destroy the group and save millions of lives.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2011/07/05/book-review-blowback/
Book Review – Salim Must Die
‘Salim Must Die’ is the second book in the Lashkar series by Mukul Deva. If you enjoyed Lashkar, you will love Salim Must Die. If you are craving for the growth of the thriller genre, Salim Must Die is for you. If you want a dose of reality and fiction intertwined, Salim Must Die should be your next read.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2011/06/20/salim-must-die-book-review/
Book Review – If God was a Banker
“If God was a Banker” is Ravi Subramanian’s first novel published way back in 2007. As an IIM Bangalore passout who works in HSBC, he seems to have the quintessential characteristics a young Indian writer needs in today’s world or so it seems. I wanted to pick up the book since quite a while and finally when I did, it took me few months to come up reading it. Not because it was boring but because I was busy.
It is about two guys – Sundeep and Swami. Both are as different as chalk and cheese. While the former is money minded and would even sell his wife to make some quick bucks, the latter is the idealistic man who would give his other cheek if slapped on one ala Mahatma Gandhi. And true to what you must be thinking right now, both are adversaries in the true sense of the word.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2011/05/17/book-review-if-god-was-a-banker/
Book Review – Another Chance
Another Chance is Ahmed Faiyaz’s second writing venture after his bestseller “Love Life and All that Jazz”. This book has come out pretty close on heels to his previous book.
From the prologue itself you realise that this book can be right away made into a Bollywood flick. And that point is affirmed as one gets engrossed in the book. The story moves forward from where Love, Life and All that Jazz ended with the friends just out of college. Here it’s about how the protagonists are able to maintain a consistent work – life balance as well as give time to their loved ones.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2011/01/05/book-review-another-chance/
Book Review – Imperial Life in the Emerald City: Inside Baghdad’s Green Zone
This is the first book I have read about the American occupation in Iraq. Its gives the real picture of what exactly happened during the 2003 war and in the years ensuing that. Rajiv Chandrashekaran is a writer and reporter who stayed in Baghdad for quite some time before and after the war. This book contains a lot of narration and also conversations which he had with various individuals of the CPA (Coalition Provisional Authority) – the administrative occupation force, the police force, army and other citizens of Iraq.
Book Review – The Gamechangers
The Fake IPL Player (FIP) is back and that too with a bang. For the uninitiated, the FIP may or may not be an IPL player but his blog has become more famous than IPL. Be it his internal gossip about the different teams in IPL particularly Punjab, Kolkata and Bangalore or his different nicknames for the different celebrities involved with this hugely prestigious tournament, his popularity has touch sky high levels even in centers where people don’t watch IPL. He had promised to reveal himself at the end of IPL 3 but in the end just posted a video on his blog with his shadow saying that he is just a person who loves cricket and nothing more. And now he has come up with a book on the controversies he has generated over the years. I must say, its an amazing way to keep his popularity sky high.
The “Gamechangers” is about IBL (Indian Bollywood League) which happens at Lords, England in 2009 over 35 days. Some of the different teams taking part include Haryana Hurricanes, Rajput Rifles, Bangalore Bombers, Calcutta Cavalry etc. Each and everyone from Vijay Mallya (Raj Singhania) to Shane Warne (Sheik of Tweak) and even Sachin Tendulkar (God) is a part of this book.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2010/07/03/book-review-the-gamechangers/
Book Review – Connect the Dots
“Connect the Dots” is a book written by Rashmi Bansal (entrepreneur, writer, blogger all rolled into one). It tells the stories of courage, determination and inspiration of 20 people from different backgrounds who chose to become entrepreneurs without doing an MBA. This is her 2nd book. Her 1st book “Stay Hungry Stay Foolish” was a similar story of famous entrepreneurs. But the difference was that all of them had done their MBAs from Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2010/06/26/book-review-connect-the-dots/
Book review – Love, Life and all that Jazz!
Love, Life and all that Jazz is Ahmed Faiyaz’s (Our esteemed alumunus from SIBM Pune = 2004 – 06 batch) first novel. The book is a journey of 4 friends (Tanveer, Tania, Sameer and Vikram) across 6 years from 2003-09. The novel does initially seem to be the run – of – the – mill kinds of novels which we find in our country today among young writers who think they are the next Chetan Bhagat in the making. But as it moves on, you do realise that this guy has a story to tell unlike many others of our generation.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2010/05/05/book-review-love-life-and-all-that-jazz/
Book Review – Dork
Dork is the story of Robin Verghese (Were Geese) or “Einstein” who passes out of WIMWI (Well Known Institute of Management in Western India – IIM A) to get a job in Dufresene Partners. It’s written by Sidin Vadukut. First things first, Thankfully its not the usual boy+girl+other hot girls+thinking of sex etc etc etc kind of novel which youngsters nowadays have come about to write. It is a journey of this Malayali guy into the corporate world and then to stardom.
The book is really amazingly written. Its witty and funny throughout with not a dull dialogue in between. The fact that its someone’s diary entry makes it even more compelling. The first part about the placement where Robin wants to get into Goldman Sachs and a day zero job is so real life which anyone of us MBAs can easily associate with.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2010/04/28/book-review-dork/
Book Review – “A Cause Untrue”
“Combining the pace of Forbes, the action of Ludlum and the imagination of Forsyth…Blacker’s intoxicating thriller is a technical tour de force”. That’s one of the reviews at the back of this amazingly gripping novel written by David Blacker, an ex – Srilankan Army guy who has seen many combat operations with the Liberation Tamil Tigers Eelam during his stint with the army. I picked up this book randomly or you can say after seeing the cover which has different shades of green, brown and black and the fact that the name of the book had a line below it saying “Sri Lanka’s Tigers take their war across the world…”. Till date I have always heard of non – fiction novels based on 9/11, 26/11 and other terror attacks (I am sure fiction must be there too…but never heard of it). So on seeing this, I felt really excited hoping the book would be a great read. And the book doesn’t disappoint one bit. Personally speaking its one of the most amazing novels I have ever read.
To read more log on to – https://aseemrastogi2.wordpress.com/2009/12/30/book-review-a-cause-untrue/