Spotlight: The Clockmaker (Jungle Series Book 1) by Paromita Goswami

The-Clockmaker-copy-for-web

Title: The Clockmaker (Jungle Series Book1)

Author: Paromita Goswami

Genre: Paranormal Supernatural  Indian Drama

Blurb:

Can you change destiny? What if you can?

Ashish, a passionate clockmaker is frustrated with his life – financial insecurity, his ongoing nightmares and his family, wife Lata and son Vicky, are driving him crazy.

Lata is having a tough time in life with her arch-rival, Rashmi. Vicky wants to be a biker than rather join the family legacy of the clockmaker. He also has a crush on Kavya who is more interested in supporting her family than romancing around.

Lately, Ashish starts hallucinating things. The black hooded man, who traumatizes him in the nightmares, warns him of dire consequences if he doesn’t return the timepiece that was given to Ashish by his father at his deathbed. Burdened with despair, Ashish wishes he could change his destiny and end all his miseries. By sheer chance, he discovers the power of the timepiece. Ashish was still figuring out what to do with it when an incident shatters his life completely. Without second thoughts he uses the power of the timepiece to change his destiny. But, can he really change it?

Amid the chaos of the busy by-lanes of the East Delhi unfolds a paranormal, supernatural, Indian drama that will leave you thrilled.

 The Jungle Series – Get ready to be assaulted!

Man Friday by Sundari Venkatraman

41py+QDuQuLMan Friday by Sundari Venkatraman is the author’s 39thbook and the best part is that it is free on Kindle Unlimited library. It is the story of Princess Sitara Devi.

The blurb:

It is only when Princess Sitara Devi gets married to Harischandra Gajanan does Rituraj realise he’s in love with the Gaekwad princess. Heartbroken at seventeen, he takes out his frustration by training to be a boxer.

When Destiny gives them a second chance, hope springs in Rituraj’s heart.
Rituraj takes on the role of Sitara’s bodyguard-cum-assistant, so much so that he becomes her Man Friday. But as the accountant’s son, is he good enough to become the princess’s life partner?

While Sitara, who falls in love with her Man Friday, believes she’s not good enough for him; not after living the kind of debauched life she had lived with Gajanan.
It looks like ‘Ne’er the twain shall meet’.

Read the book to find out if Sitara gets together with her Man Friday.

The story:

Rituraj Srivastava, the only child of the accountant-cum-manager of the kingdom,  was all of ten when he moved into the Baroda palace after losing both his parents in a train accident. He was given a room alongside those of Princess Sitara Devi and Prince Harshvardhan and the king and the queen became his official guardians. As the children were growing up, Sitara and Rituraj became best friends.

Rituraj realised he was in love with Sitara as she was getting married to the Yuvaraja of Indore, a man almost double her age. He was seventeen then and had joined boxing classes and become an ace boxer. And then she came back to Baroda after 22 months of marriage, at the age of eighteen, after being tortured by her husband who was now divorcing her.

And Rituraj has hope, but does Sitara love him like he does.

My take:

The first line of the blurb is an instant pick-me-up. The story moves back and forth between the past and present and I was never once confused as the author has mentioned the year as well as the place where the scenes are taking place.

I loved the story and the characters. They are realistic and I really liked Sitara’s strength and her never say die spirit. As with all her other books, characters from her other books also pop up in the story. I loved the relationship that the Gaekwad’s shared with their children. The language is simple and the story is fast paced.

A must, must read.

 

The Billionaire Next Door by Aarti V Raman

41tODyqJWALThe billionaire next door is Aarti V Raman’s latest book which I had borrowed from the Kindle Unlimited Library. It is the story of Alyssa and Gabriel De Rossi set in Greece and Australia.

The blurb:

He can’t forget her…

Australian billionaire tycoon Gabriel De Rossi lost his new wife Alyssa, the day he couldn’t choose her over his business. He’s been paying for it, ever since.
All he wants is to find the woman he lost and prove to her she is all that matters.
… And she can’t remember anything.

A horrific car accident has left free-spirited artist Alyssa Harper with no memory of the last six months.

She wants answers to her past. And to escape her stern and mysterious protector, Porterfield.
When she meets the devastatingly handsome Gabriel De Rossi she is instantly attracted to him.

But The Billionaire Next Door is hiding secrets that could destroy Alyssa when she discovers them… 

The story:

Alyssandra Harper is suffering from partial  retrograde amnesia and convalescing in Greece with only Porterfield, her butler, for company. He has kept her shielded from everything at her father’s isolated villa in Greece with no contact with the outer world with no phone or internet. Her life now is Life Before (LB) and Life After (LA), the demarcating line being her temporary loss of memory. She does not remember anything from February thirteenth when she had an exhibition till May twenty second when she woke up on a hospital bed. And she has no memory of her accident and she cannot stress much. Art is supposed to be her therapy and after fifty days at the villa she is getting bored.

Alyssa has only interacted with two people in her LA, her doctor and Porterfield
so when she sees one more person on the beach, to her he is God sent company, and he is Gabriel De Rossi. Seeing him, she has a flash of deja vu and she recognises him. All Alyssa knows about him is what she has read in papers, blogs and gossip columns, he owns infrastructure companies, construction companies, shipping and manufacturing companies and has built a formidable empire in Australia.

Gabriel’s dreams of Alyssa and her running away and  meeting with an accident haunt him and he traces her to Greece and buys the only villa next door just to see that she is ok and promises himself that he would go away the next day leaving her to the life that she deserves.

A long term committed relationship has never been a part of his life’s plan. He had never learnt to have fun because he knew what his goal, his dream and his duty were and his goal, dream and duty meshed so well. Having met Alyssa after her exhibition, Gabriel had felt that marrying her would put an end to the constant need and ache in him.  Alyssa gave up her job at the art gallery she managed so that she could travel with him and build the De Rossini Art and Curios Collection.

She is attracted to him and he wants to maintain a distance. She does not remember anything and he does not tell her. Losing her after the accident made Gabriel realise his love for her and that realisation makes him want to give up his business.

My take:

A beautiful story of loving, forgetting and loving. The characters are well developed and realistic. And the story just flows. What would happen next kept me glued to the book till I finished it.

The scenes and locales have been described in detail and I could actually picturise Greece. The descriptions of nature are such that I thought that the author was actually sitting in Corfu and writing the book.

Overall an interesting book and am hoping to read the stories of Ben and Will next.

 

Restless Hearts by Jazz Singh

51VCn47gevL.jpg Restless Hearts by Jazz Singh is one book that I picked up from the Kindle Unlimited Library because I like her style of writing.

The blurb:

Daadi’s sense of superiority and old-fashioned views have far-reaching consequences on the budding attraction between Aniket and Shivali. Just when she’s beginning to trust again, she is betrayed by him. Or is she? Will she learn the truth? Can she let herself love again?

The story:

Shivali wants a divorce from her abusive husband and her brother, Rishabh, suggests that she take help from Suketu, his best friend and lawyer. And when she reaches his office, she has to make do with Suketu’s partner, Aniket, as Suketu is stuck in traffic.

Aniket is a dedicated lawyer and helps Shivali fight the case. Slowly, their professional relationship develops into friendship and attraction but Shivali’s Daadi creates cracks in their relationship, so much so that Shivali is forced to leave the country without the support of Aniket.

My take:

The author has used the theme of romance and presented one of the biggest things that the Indian society faces: Casteism. Almost everyone, rich or poor, has been a victim of this. And the author has presented it beautifully.  The author has explored the theme of casteism but there is a lot of love in the book- sibling love, friendship, trust and also maternal love.

The characters have been developed well and the conversations between them are relatable. All the characters have important roles to play in the story. I loved the relationship between Suketu and Rishabh and also that between Aniket and Suketu. Both the mothers have been portrayed to be strong women supporting their children. I would have loved to see more of the fathers.

The language is simple and the story has been written in such a way that I finished in two sittings flat.

I loved the book and would love to read the sequel to this one in the form of Rishabh and Suketu’s stories.

 

Until Forever by M V Kasi

514DQCko2OL.jpgI picked up M V Kasi’s latest book Until Forever from the Kindle Unlimited Library. It is a beautifully written love story of Meena and Hiten.

The blurb:

“The bastard son of Kaushal has returned. And along with the royal estate, he wants to claim his half-brother’s widow…

Shunned as a child by his father’s royal family, Hiten is requested to return and inherit the well-known Kaushal estate after his half-brother’s death.

But the self-made rich, powerful and ruthless businessman isn’t interested in the inheritance. All he wants is revenge. Closure. And his target is his half-brother’s beautiful widow, the woman he once deeply loved and worshiped before she betrayed their love.

Ten years ago, Meenakshi Mahasena broke the heart of the handsome orphan boy who grew up with her at her modest family estate. Instead of marrying him as she had promised, she married the rich, royal heir of the neighbouring estate.

And now, on the verge of losing everything, Meena must somehow stop the man she had once promised to love until forever from destroying her.

A PASSIONATE TALE OF LOVE, REVENGE & REDEMPTION.

Note: Until Forever is a full-length, standalone passionate romance novel.

The story:

Meena, Meenakshi Mahasena was eight when she had decided that she would marry Hiten, an orphan who had come to their estate and worked at their mansion.

Ever since Hiten was dropped off at the Mahasena estate at the age of eight, not once did Viren Kaushal meet or ask for him.

Meena and Hiren were practically together all the time till they turned eighteen and her parents started looking for a royal match for her. And just like that eighteen year old Meena is married off to Hiten’s half brother and Hiten is left all alone.

Now a decade later, Hiten is back with a vengeance and his target is Meena and all those whom she loves. And Meena, now a widow, wants to protect her daughters, Anjali and Rashmi.

My take:

It is a beautifully narrated story of love, passion, friendship, affection, and revenge. There is undying sibling love and also a calculated revenge. But love conquers all. Because ‘hate destroys and love creates happiness’.

The characters have been etched in detail and each character, even though minor, has a role to play in the story. The emotions of the characters have been expressed in such a way that it was very easy for me to feel them along with them. I loved the bonding between Meena and Nandini and also that between Hiten and Nandini. I had read Nandini’s story in ‘The Proposal’ before and it felt good to reconnect.

I loved the story and would love to read a detailed version of Nandini’s love story also.

 

Bougainvillea Anywhere, Everywhere by Rakhi Sunil Kumar

51Om0hakpAL._SX321_BO1,204,203,200_.jpgI picked up Bougainvillea Anywhere, Everywhere by Rakhi Sunil Kumar from the LiFi stall at the World Book Fair in Delhi in January 2019. It is a story of second chances set in Delhi.

The blurb:

Love stories like Bougainvillea need no special circumstances to blossom, no special weather to shine, and no special soil to grow. They are found at every corner of the neighborhood, each with a faint fragrance of its own and sweet emotions, which every heart wishes to cherish! Rakhi Sunil Kumar’s second fiction ‘Bougainvillea’ is one such a story of neighborhood, soft and emotional, exploring love tangled in the maze of insecurities.

The story:

Megha Pandit, aka Gungun, and Ishaan were best friends, family friends and next-door neighbours when they all lived in Delhi at Rambaug, a society of working and retired defence personnel, and then one day, Gungun’s father got transferred to Kashmir and her family left Rambaug.

In 2005, thirteen years later, Ishaan and Gungun meet again at a friend’s party. She works in a space research company at Bangalore and is in Delhi to attend her cousin’s wedding and he is just enjoying himself. Ad they part after realising what they feel for each other, but he does not confess his love for her as he thinks she is engaged to Ambar.

Then in 2015, Ishaan has come from Texas with his friend and colleague, Chitra, to   Mumbai to attend a meeting and he sees her name in the list of presenters. And at the same meeting she sees his name in the same list.

My take:

A simple story of finding love and not recognising it till the time is right. This story has been written in simple English and moves back and forth between the present and the past. It was a little difficult for me to imagine someone driving a Fiat in 2015. The characters have been developed well and are easily relatable and realistic. The conversations between the characters are relatable. Editing could have been better. The book is fast paced and can be finished in one sitting.

 

Silent Love: Hearts & Hots #3 by Ruchi Singh

51d6269ZRaL.jpgI picked up Silent Love: Hearts & Hots #3 by Ruchi Singh from the Kindle Unlimited library. It  is a romantic short story from ‘Hearts & Hots’ story collection.

The blurb:

Slated to become the next CM of his state, Arjun’s life is cruising in the right direction until she barges into his car. No matter how hard he tries, he is unable to keep her out of his thoughts. Every ambition now seems meaningless and every relationship worthless.
Will he be able to suppress the yearning and the desires she ignites in him?

Note: This is a standalone story from the previously published ‘Hearts & Hots’ collection.

The story:

Arjun Pratap Singh, the Chief Ministerial candidate of Samaj Vikas Party and the son in law of the party leader, has been on the road for past three weeks canvassing for the party. And he finds a girl who has taken refuge from people trying to hurt her, in his car. So he takes her home and asks his daima to take care of her.

And his wife comes to know of it and throws a fit.

My take:

The story, though short, conveys the emotions of the well developed characters. The language is simple and the story is fast paced.

Looking for more such stories from the author.

The Chai Shop in Singapore by Surabhi Sahu

51fvVpyGIDL._SX321_BO1,204,203,200_.jpgI picked up Surabhi Sahu’s The Chai Shop in Singapore from the LiFi stall at the World Book Fair in Delhi in January 2019. It is the story of Rekha that moves back and forth between Delhi and Singapore.

The blurb:

The Chai Shop is an endearing story of a charming young Indian girl, Rekha, born to a middle-class baniya joint family in Delhi. Blithe yet docile, Rekha, is getting ready to relocate to the U.S after an arranged marriage. But fate has other plans. Rekha gets estranged from her relatives after she falls in love with Anupam, a handsome, ambitious young man and elopes with him to Singapore after a secret marriage. Their love blossoms in this beautiful, enthralling land.

The story:

Twenty four year old Rekha Agarwal, the elder child in an ordinary, respectable Baniya family in Delhi, is subject to criticism and bad behaviour at the hands of her grandmother and aunt, though her parents treat her well. Jassi, Jasvinder is her neighbour and chief alibi. As a second year student of Business Economics, she meets Anupam Garg, an alumnus of their institute and even lands up a job in his firm in Singapore. But because of her family circumstances, is unable to commit to joining the job because her family wants her to marry a rich divorcee who lives in the US. And Anupam suggests a way out. He asks her to marry him and move to Singapore.

In Singapore, life is a bed of roses, until….

Then Rekha decides to stand up for herself and with the help of Mukta, her husband Sameer- one of the key financiers, Vasanthi and Kumar, an entrepreneur who acts as a part-time accountant, she opens a tea shop in Singapore.

My take:

The cover is an instant pick-me up.

The book has been written in first person from the point of view of Rekha. The narration is such that I felt that I was with Rekha seeing everything. The characters have been created in great detail and are realistic. I loved the way the author has described relationships between the characters, be it Mukta and Rekha, Rekha and her mother or even Vasanthi and Rekha.

The descriptions are detailed and it was easy to picturise many of the scenes and places. The author seems to have a detailed knowledge of astrology.

Though the story moves back and forth between the past and the present and between Singapore and Delhi, I never felt confused. There are many back stories in the book that come out, but still they do not change the main story of the book. The only thing this book requires is better editing, which would make the book better, the story is beautiful, and this needs to come out better.

 

Snakes in the Meadows by Ayaz Kohli

41wFjzmlAVL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_.jpgI received the book Snakes in the Meadows by Ayaz Kohli as a review copy from the publisher Rupa Publications and am thankful to them for the same.

The blurb:

Jammu and Kashmir, 1987. In the hilly village of Pathri Aali, where legends appear true, Aslam and Ashwar, two young lovers, dream of marriage and of good things of life. But that is not to be. Unable to cope, Aslam leaves Pathri Aali forever. Years later, as men migrate to Saudi Arabia for employment, Pathri Aali is populated mostly by women and children. Soon they realize the mujahedeen, who guise themselves as their liberators, are the worst perpetrators, and misery seems inescapable. Ashwar refuses to be cowed down by this reign of terror and is determined not to let it devastate the once-peaceful village. The only one she can bank on is Aslam—and she calls out to him across the distance of time and space, to return and live up to the legends of their village. Snakes in the meadows is a saga of the onset of militancy, and the suffering and the resilience of Pir Panjal—the ‘and’ of Jammu and Kashmir.

My take:

The author has portrayed the story of Kashmir before and during militancy and talked about what the people of the beautiful state have gone through. He has also talked about militancy and how it all came about. But between all that there is a love story of Aslam and Ashwar, a love story in which Aslam cannot come to terms with a lot of things that are happening in life and runs away to Mumbai. There is also the story of people moving to Saudi Arabia to earn money for their families.

Written in a simple language, this tale is soul stirring and touches somewhere deep.

I loved the book and am looking forward to more books from the author.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of the book from the publisher in return for my honest review. I have NOT received any monetary compensation for the same.

 

 

About that Summer by Sudha Nair

51CNVsB9uuL.jpgI received the book About that Summer by Sudha Nair as a review copy from the author and am thankful to her for the same.it is the third book in the Menon Women series, but can be read as a standalone too. This story is also set in Bangalore.

The blurb:

A sweet and spicy summer story sure to put a smile on your face…

Meet Ria – All of 20, a mature, strong, independent young woman. Neha’s daughter, now all grown up from the little girl in pigtails, we met in The Wedding Tamasha & Priyamvada and Co. She’s looking forward to an uneventful, lazy summer back home from college – but will her wish come true?

Sid is recovering from a nasty break-up. He wants to get away from all the negativity back home, and decides a family vacation is just what he needs. Or is it?

Then, of course, there’s Neha – Ria’s mother. A widow, an entrepreneur, a teacher, and a mother, among other things, this gutsy fireball of an achiever is confident and ready to take on a whole lot more. Will the universe continue to conspire to keep her and Prithvi apart?

Summer sparks fly! Romance is in the air…

But will the drama of the jealous ex-lover, the scheming starlet, the backstabber, the resentful childhood friend, be too much for our quirky, yet very close-knit Menon family?

Will Ria find the storybook romance she’s been missing all of her life?

Will Sid be able to overcome the ghosts of his past, and claim the girl of his dreams?

>>>Read this fun, breezy, and light tale to find out – with lots of happy glimpses into the lives of characters from the prequels and the further unfolding of lives of the Menon sisters, Shweta and Neha.

The story:

Ria had lost her father to a massive cardiac arrest when she was thirteen. She now lives with her mother, Neha and is very close to her grandparents and her aunt, Shweta. Not to mention Prithvi, their neighbour whom she loves like she used to love her father. Prithvi had gifted her Pompom, a dog, for her thirteenth birthday and Pom is a family member too. She is studying in college at Pune and looks forward to spending her summer vacations with her mother and Prithvi.

But that is not to be. Neha has invited guests over just the day after Ria came home for summer vacations and Prithvi is busy getting his home in Kerala renovated. Neha’s guests are her school friend, Sushma, of whom Ria had never heard of and her daughter Tanya, a model who had enrolled for one of Neha’s acting workshop.

Sushma and Tanya arrive and Sidharth, Sid, Sushma’s son, accompanies them to Bangalore as he has to appear for an interview. And Ria takes an instant dislike to Tanya, because she does not like Pom and also to Sid because he looks too sure of himself.

Ria enjoys reading and watching movies as solitary activities and is happier keeping to herself. She has only one friend in college, Alisha and the girls have done their third year internship with a design firm prepare a report for their submission.

Sid works for a marketing research company in Mumbai and wants a job change. His ex-girlfriend Gayatri Gopalakrishnan, Gigi, Tanya’s best friend’s sister, left him six months ago but now wants to come back. And he does not want to go back.

Sid’s sensitive and friendly nature brings Sid and Ria close and Ria starts falling I love with him, but Tanya’s interferes with everything that concerns Sid and tells Ria that it is nothing but a holiday fling for Sid.

And then…….

My take:

I loved the story and the way it has been narrated. There are two love stories in one. The characters have been developed in detail and I could actually relate to them. I loved the part when Ria would compare certain acts to the books she had read. Most of the characters had roles to play in the story be it the jealous ex-girlfriend or the other members of the Menon family. the relationships between the characters have been described beautifully, I actually loved how Ria and Prithvi got along so well with each other. The scenes have been described in detail and the conversations between the characters have been described in detail and I actually loved them. My favourite part of the book was when Ria is sitting on the stairs and crying and Sid is telling her stories.
I could go on and on, but then this would spoil the book for you.

Overall, a well written book. The language is simple and the story is fast paced and enjoyable.
Which Menon girl is next……

Disclaimer: I received a free e-copy of the book from the author in return for my honest review. I have NOT received any monetary compensation for the same.