Sunday, February 18, 2018

The Big Switch - It's never too late by John Thomas

I had mixed feelings when I have got this book. It was highly praised book looking by reviews. Though fictional, it was a story of an IT guy and that's why I was bit hesitant. Still, I started this book, and I really liked the was story progressed.

Book Blurb
What does a 24-year-old man want in life? Love? A decent job?
Keith has both. He is a software engineer at a reputable company and has a girlfriend whom he loves a lot. Yet, there is something missing in his life. He is not even close to being happy. Only after losing his girlfriend, he realizes what the reason for his unhappiness is. He realizes that he is caught up in the wrong career. With time running out, he knows that he must switch to a new career — one that makes him happy. But, is 24 too late to do that? Is he making a mistake? Find out as Keith follows his heart in pursuit of an impossible-looking dream
The protagonist of our story is Keith. Being a solely responsible guy for his family economic responsibility he was giving his 100% in his current IT job. Captured between insensible boss and over-expectant girlfriend his life had become frustrating, boring & monotonous. His frustration crossed limits when his annual appraisal & girlfriend both dumped him. In the mix of leaving the company or doing something else, he got chance to work with a new manager for the duration of 2 weeks. And that was all he could have asked of the God. His life got new direction after meeting that guy. I don't want to reveal more information. So do check the book for the same.

Talking about writing style, I was finding book "okay-okay" in first few chapters. Maybe I have worked in IT industry, where I have seen a similar situation in the day-to-day. Maybe for the people from other industry/mindset find it more interesting. Having said that story takes an interesting turn once Keith meth new manager, Ramesh. Their conversation was having inspirational material. Every few pages you can find a life-changing quote or line. I have shared more than 10 such wonderful line on Twitter while reading the book.

Talking about characterization, the author has used optimized detailing to create them. You won't find too much use of words to explain or describe a thing. The storyline was also to the point. The pace was medium to fast, appropriate for the genre.

My suggestion to the author, when the book goes for printing edition (and I think it will go), do get some a better cover design.

Talking about ratings
  1. Cover - 3/5 
  2. Content - 4/5
  3. Concept - 4/5
  4. Overall - 4/5
Book can be found at Amazon India & Amazon USA
Review from other readers can be found at GoodReads

Draupadi by Kajal Oza Vaidya

I wanted to read "Draupadi" by Kajal Oza-Vaidya ever since I heard praise of it from Vimmy. I could have borrowed it but I wanted to have a copy of the same. And finally I got my copy and I read it in 4-5 sittings. I must say it's an implacable read.

Book Blurb
આ પુસ્ર્તકમાં દ્રૌપદી વિશે કહેવામાં આવ્યું છે કે વિશ્વની કોઈ પણ સફળ, સુંદર અને બુદ્ધિશાળી સ્ત્રીએ પોતાના વ્યક્તિત્વને અકબંધ રાખવા સંધર્ષ કરવો જ પડે છે. પ્રશ્ન પૂછવાનો અધિકાર એ કાળમાં પણ સ્ત્રી પાસે નહોતો અને આજે પણ પ્રશ્નનો પ્રતિઉત્તર મેળવવા માગતી સ્ત્રીએ સમાજ સાથે સંધર્ષમાં ઊતરવું જ પડે છે. એક સ્ત્રીનાં લોહીમાં વહેતી,એના મનમાં ઊગેલી,એના હ્રદયમાં ધબકતી અને મસ્તિષ્કમાં રહીને સતત એના અસ્ત્તિત્ત્વને તહસનહસ કરતી એક સર્વાગ સંપૂર્ણ, સંવેદનશીલ નારીની આ કથા છે.
Dhrupadi by Kajal Oza Vaidh is a Gujarati novel based on Mahabharat 's character Dhrupadi. This book is written in Draupadi's perspective of Mahabharat. What must have gone through her mind at that time and what was her opinion on Mahabharat's battle.

The book is written wonderfully. Though the book is written on an ancient character, still a modern day woman could also relate to it. Draupadi's friendship with Shree Krishna is also written impressively.

All I want to say is that in my opinion, every woman should read this book at least once. It is always an experience to read Kajal Oza's book.

  1. Cover : - 4/5
  2. Content : - 4.5/5
  3. Character : - 4.5/5
  4. Concept : - 4/5
  5. Overall : - 4.5/5
Book can be found at Flipkart & Amazon 

Review from other readers can be found at GoodReads

Book Review - Soul Warrior Volume 1 - Age of Kali

Book Blurb
Fight fate, or succumb to destiny? 
In the dark Age of Kali, the Soul Warrior alone stands guard over the Human Realm, protecting its denizens from evil-willed asuras or demons. When a trick of fate appoints him guru to a motley crew of godlings, he agrees to train them as demon hunters against his better judgment. Suddenly, Lord Karna is not only battling the usual asuras with sinister agendas, but also rebellious students and a fault-ridden past. 
Spanning the cosmic realms of mythic India, here is a tale of a band of supernatural warriors who come together over a singular purpose: the salvation of Karna’s secret child.
In Mahabharata war the most of the earth warrior died, Danavas / Asuras started spreading chaos on the earth. Yamraja granted Karna special powers and celestial duty of Soul warrior to control & fight Adharma. Few thousand year later, a Rakshasa named Vala was defeated by Karna, but Karna was not able to annihilate him completely. In current time, Karna was handling his job properly, when Tridevas appeared and gave him the job of training six of Draupadi's kids. The shock was that youngest of the kids was Karna's. And as that was not enough he found they were girls. 

During Mahabharata time, Karna was informed by Narayana that if he and Draupadi mate then their first born child can destroy the world. Due to that, he didn't appear in front of Draupadi a night before Swayamwara, which made Druapadi insult him during Swayamwara. Where Karna was trying to understand why he was given responsibilities of Draupadi's kids, somewhere in the Patala Shukracharya was doing something sinister.

As usual Falguni's book is full of the emotional turmoil of lead characters. Though the theme was a mythological thriller, it was more towards mythological emotional drama. The pace is slow, only action parts are fast. Talking about characters they were developed leisurely by Falguni. 

I would like to thank DDS & Falguni Kothari for personally arranging review copy of this book.

  1. Cover - 4/5
  2. Characters - 3.5/5
  3. Overall -  3/5
Book can be found at Flipkart, Amazon India & Amazon USA
Review from other readers can be found at GoodReads

Friday, February 16, 2018

Ira Oberoi's Pursuit of Love by Niti Chopra

"Ira Oberoi's Pursuit of Love" by Niti Chopra is a very nice love at first sight kind of love story. The storyline is gripping and flow of the story is also well maintained. We came across very few Indian love stories which are up to mark but this is the one.

Book Blurb
Sparkling and zesty with a dash of green, a Virgin Mojito is a unique blend up and Ira is one lucky girl to have found her Mojito – tall and handsome with green eyes, he is in every definition the intoxication for her. In a twist of tales, the traditional concept of the boy wooing the girl goes for a toss. Smitten at first sight, she boldly pursues her love interest, every bit candid and upfront about it. 

But what is a concoction if not for a heady mix of elements? Her descriptive personal diary falls in the hands of her mother who, on the verge of a cardiac arrest, forbids her from getting into a relationship with the guy she has fallen for. 
Will Ira stand up for the love that she has found?Or will she be the ideal daughter and keep the promise for her mother’s sake? Will hers be a love story that finds it difficult to have a sweet ending or will it be the perfect fairytaleto be remembered down the years?
The thing I like about this novel is its written with such a simplicity and yet with so much of connecting. The author has actually made the reader visualize every situation precisely.

A nineteen-year college student fell in love with a green-eyed boy. The story covers their journey from being a friend to lover, from confronting the traditional Indian household marital issues to overcome them flawlessly.

This novel teaches us to live and enjoy every moment of life with joy and follows our heart for every decision. Because decisions taken by the brain may seem right but decisions taken by heart will give you the inner peace which is best.

Overall A nice light-hearted novel to read.

  1. Cover: 4/5
  2. Characters: 5/5
  3. Concept: 5/5
  4. Overall: 4/5
Book can be found at Amazon & Flipkart
Review from other readers can be found at GoodReads

Monday, February 12, 2018

Comic Review - Shiva - The Legend Of The Immortal Book 1

I love to read Japanese manga. And I won't feel ashamed to accept that I still follow One Piece every week. I have read Naruto, Fairy Tale, Bleach, Full Metal Alchemist & many more mangas. And I always felt that our culture & heritage is rich enough to create multiple comics based on it. I have seen usual Indian comics like Chacha Chaudhari & Nagaraj but there was a missing component in it. These comics were written for kids & kids only. Whereas in other countries comics were written with different angles for different age groups.

Book blurb
Shiva The Legends of the Immortal submerges readers into the story of origin of the universe & Lord Shiva's marriage to Sati. "The Legends of the Immortal" Lord Shiva is the central figure of the Holy Trinity of Hindu Gods- Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu as the other two. Lord Shiva is hailed as a spiritual guide and destroyer of creation. Lord Shiva taught the Vedas to Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu to facilitate the process of creation. Lord Shiva is the epitome of devotion, spiritualism and vedic knowledge. Lord Shiva is also known as Bholenath(another name for Shiva) who rushes to the aid of his devotees if they are in trouble. The tales of Lord Shiva depicts the importance of spiritualism in Vedic culture and the triumph of good over evil. In the forthcoming Graphic Novels, authentic Hindu Mythology will be presented to you in inimitable Vimanika style. In each volume we will depict tales of Shiva, which reveal various aspects of Lord Shiva's complex personality.
When I have seen few posters of Vimanika comics I instantly felt that missing gap can be filled with these wonderful comics. I instantly went for Shiva - The legend of Immortals. I selected it based on cover only but the moment I opened it I felt like a precious book. It's artwork, quality of content & quality of product pages are wonderful.

The story is not new for those who have kept eyes ears open to our mythology. The first part covers the creation of universe followed by the creation of mankind. The grudge of Daksha against Shiva, union of Shiva & Sati, finally separation fo Shiva & Sati. Though the story seems less, for comics followers it is enough in one volume. And each sequence was properly drawn with required details. The only issue I found at some places that characters faces were different but not a big issue.

A perfect gift for kids & young age once. Though any age group can enjoy it.

Talking about ratings
  1. Cover -4/5
  2. Artwork - 4.5/5
  3. Content - 3.5/5
  4. Overall - 4/5
Book can be found at Amazon
Review from other readers can be found at GoodReads

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Become: The 5 Critical Conversational Practices

I rarely read self-help book especially related to personality development. If I have been to window shopping to a book-shop I might have missed this book as I ignore the whole section of self-help. I checked the cover of "Become" by Sameer Dua and thought of giving a try. And I really liked the book.

Book Blurb
Become is an invitation to you to choose a powerful 'posture' in your leadership, and life. You don't 'become' by knowing more, you 'become' by shifting your practices, and in case of leadership, by shifting and creating new conversational practices. Which is why this book is not about understanding new concepts, but about learning new practices to shift 'who you be', moment to moment. The promise of this book is to provide, in simple words, the fundamentals of the critical leadership coaching conversations to enable leaders to generate sustainable, extraordinary results.
The book is started with the importance of conversation. Believe me not just me but the most of the professionals think only about end results. If things not done then all other things are treated as arguments. Author has thrown light with the help of examples that it won’t be the case every time. In most of the situations, a proper conversation is missing between two channels. Then Sameer has explained the role of leaders. Normally people think leadership is just to lead outputs but successful leaders are those who coach his team. And then starts the crux of the book. i.e. important aspects of conversation for coaching. Author has finished with Adobe’s case study which was equally interesting.

I liked the book and the way the serious material was delivered. It reminded with me, my previous boss. I have seen similar leadership style in him.

It is a perfect gift for professionals. Talking about rating:
  1. Cover – 3.5/5
  2. Content – 4/5
  3. Concept – 4/5
  4. Overall – 4/5
Book can be found at Amazon & Flipkart
Review from other readers can be found at GoodReads

Friday, February 9, 2018

The Inheritors: Stories of Enduring Success and Innovation

I am a big fan of entrepreneur stories. I have read most of the books of Rashmi Bansal. So the moment I saw "The Inheritors: Stories of Enduring Success and Innovation" by Sonu Bhasin I jumped for it.

Book Blurb
Why did Harsh Mariwala leave his family business?
Why did the Burman family quit the day-to-day operations of Dabur?
How did the Dhingras turn a collapsing business into India's second-largest paint company?
The Inheritors offers a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at what goes on in Marico, Dabur, Keventers, Berger Paints, Select Group, Antara, Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas, Luxor and Motilal Oswal. The book focuses on culture, family politics, ego battles, business rivalries and a lot more. And then, of course, there are the inheritors themselves-some take the businesses to even greater heights while others lead them to doom.
Inheritors is the compilation of success stories about the brands/companies we hear in day-to-day life. Dabur, Berger, Motilal Oswal and 6 more big brands were covered in the book. Each of the stories started with how each of the inheritor's forefathers has established the empire. Being part of such big empire how these individuals have spent childhood or youth. What are the reasons they wanted to do something different from their established business? How they have handled the rollercoaster life of the business.

Being an MBA and a Gujarati myself I like to reach such stories as they give inspiration of thinking differently, motivation to work hard/smart and understanding of different businesses. I personally adored this book. Thanks, Writersmelon for arranging review copy.

Talking about ratings
  1. Cover - 3/5
  2. Content - 4.5/5
  3. Overall - 4.5/5
Book can be found at Amazon & Flipkart
Review from other readers can be found at GoodReads


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