Monday, August 20, 2012
Picture from google.
Author: Lata Gwalani
Published in 2012 by Frog books (An imprint of Leadstart Publishing Pvt Ltd).
Book Editor: Oswald Pereira
Design Editor: Mishta Roy
Price in India: 195/-
“If Rome was foreplay, Venice was consummation”.
This is one of many lines that struck me as brilliant from the book. There are many such under toned gems scattered around for the reader to pick. Say like,
“I slowly picked up my thoughts, and carefully strung them into a series of actions that I would take”.
"We walked on, he calmly, I cautiously".
"We walked on, he calmly, I cautiously".
While reading, I found the language engaging. To the point, where I wanted to finish the book at one go. It easily pulled me into the world of high romance and low self esteem, of jealousy and murder, of perfect men and unconvinced partners.
I could not help but notice the author’s skill as a narrator or as a story teller. Nowhere does she slips to capture her reader’s attention. One just glides along the story, cruising exotic locales like Rome, Venice, Cochin, Mussoorie and Raichak (Kolkata).
This is a story about four people, no make that five people. All four of them have had trouble falling in love. When they do, they ultimately grow insecure in their respective relationships and plan a murder. Each character is from a different background and their reasons to kill are assorted. What binds them together is their love for their subject of desire/hate. Their need to end it all is abrupt and all encompassing. The author leaves you longing for more. And that is a rare feet, to say the least.
The author has taken pains to sketch each personality with a lot of insight and research. The last character, the most mysterious one is a close witness to all four murders. How and why is the question, that comes out only at the end. To say more on the plot would be unfair. This is a book that has all the masala for a pot boiler. I would not be surprised, if one gets to see a Bollywood movie made out of this, sometime soon.
If I have to pick a negative attribute for this book, it would be that I would have preferred a different ending. A more disturbing one. Somewhere, as a writer, I began to expect this ending. However, it would be refreshing for a regular reader.
In conclusion, I recommend this book to those readers, who like me, are exploring new Indian authors for varied genres. This is not your ordinary boy meets girl story. It is a psychological thriller. Yes, a murder mystery with a romantic angle attached.
Here is an excerpt from the book:
Anjali let a few moments pass as she gathered herself.
“I have a confession to make”, she said haltingly.
He smiled and nodded encouragingly.
Her tongue froze, stuck to the roof of her mouth. She opened her mouth a couple of times, but no sound emerged.
He pushed a glass of water towards her.
“Thank you,” she muttered and sipped the water watching him over the rim of the glass.
He sat patiently, watching and smiling.
“Murder,” she whispered.
His face was calm. His nod prodded her on.
“Four of them,” she continued to whisper.
“Would you like to me about them?” he asked.
“I want to tell you everything,” she said looking into his eyes.
“Well Anjali, where would you like to start?” he asked returning her steady gaze.
“Shall I tell you the way they told me?” she asked
About Lata Gwalani from other source: “As a behavioral trainer, Lata conducts workshops on Emotional Intelligence, and during these workshops, she met many people experiencing emotional turbulence. Somewhere along this journey, Lata realized that many people go through life with a baggage of unfulfilled aspirations. She also recognized the fact that there is a huge gap between our real selves and our ideal selves. This was the seed on which Lata grew the plot for the book,Incognito”.
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
Disclaimer: Pictures of postcards courtesy google.
Note: Both love letters are 55 words micro fiction. In the first letter, the address part is for presentation alone. In the second letter, 786 is just a touch to personalize the letter and is not counted as a word. In both cases date is not included in the word count.
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Happy Independence day!