My Favourite Shade by Rebekah Dodson

I received My Favourite Shade by Rebekah Dodson as a review copy from StoryOrigin and I am thankful to them for the same.

The blurb:

Erik
Green symbolizes so much in our lives. Go. Envy. Money. Nature. Luck.

Enter me, Erik, and ironically, I only represent one shade of green. Go. Run to the store? Yes. Stay late? Yes. Walk the neighbor’s dog? Uh, okay. It didn’t matter who asked from my mother to my boss. Everything is a green light. I wish my life is more than this daily retail rerun and TV dinner repeat, but that’s my life and it blows.

Until I meet her. Kris Shade. She’s amazing. Sexy, geeky, perfect. Is this a dream?

Kris
Alpha Males? Over them. Cheaters? Never again.

I thought I had it all when I found out my husband was cheating on me. And with his secretary, nonetheless. Running into Erik when my world was going to crap was the best thing that had happened to me in months. A shoulder to cry on, an ear to vent to, and someone to hang out when I don’t want to go “clubbing” with my friends.

A bowl of D20’s, a stack of character sheets, and zero pressure to be someone I’m not? Erik is everything I needed and never knew I wanted in life.

My take:

Some stories are not just about falling in love and living happily ever after, they are about supporting each other, about understanding each other and about being there for one another. This story belongs to this category.

The characters are realistic and flawed and so are the secondary characters, be it their friends or even their parents. I loved the relationship that Kris shares with Sam and Garrett. I loved the comfort level between Kris and Erik.

Written in a simple language, this book is a nice read which tells us that there is a lot to love than just romance.

DISCLAIMER: I received a free copy from StoryOrigin in exghange for an honest review. I have not received any monetary compensation for the same.

Cover reveal: The Maharaja’s fake fiancee by Alisha Kay

 

What happens when a free-spirited actress and an uptight Maharaja fake an engagement?

Depending on whom you ask, you either get a match made-in-heaven or a royal disaster.
When Diya Sharma’s meddlesome mother tries to throw her into the arms of a mom-approved suitor, Diya runs the other way. Right into the arms of the most scandal-averse Maharaja on earth.
His Highness Veerendra Singh can recognise a pain-in-the-ass when he sees it. Especially when it falls into his arms.
Even if said pain-in-the-ass has legs that go on for ever and lush lips that just beg to be kissed, Veer doesn’t need another scandalous actress destroying his family’s happiness. So all he wants to do is run in the opposite direction.
But, when a marriage-minded princess sets her sights on him, Veer runs back into Diya’s arms to propose a fake engagement.
When the lines between real and fake start to blur, Diya and Veer need to decide what is important? Long held prejudices or the yearnings of their heart?

Alisha Kay is a Delhi based writer, who writes romances set in India.

She doesn’t hold with the concept of damsel-in-distress, which is why her heroines are spunky women with a sharp tongue and the ability to rescue themselves. Her heroes are hot men who are woke enough to find that independence irresistible. 

A Maharaja of Her Own is Alisha’s first book.

Secret Crush by Heather Scarlett

I received Secret Crush by Heather Scarlett as a review copy from StoryOrigin and I am thankful to them for the same.

The blurb:

What happens when you finally get one night with your secret crush…except she doesn’t remember you?

Bradley Williams has crushed on Jessica Landon since high school. He can’t believe his luck when he runs into her at the neighborhood bar right before Christmas. He takes the risk to make his move and they share a memorable night. All is well until Bradley realizes Jessica has no idea who he is.

Jessica Landon is looking to rebound from a heartbreak. Meeting a sexy stranger in her neighborhood bar seems too good to be true. Until the next day, when he shows up at her family’s annual cookie swap! Turns out, the sexy stranger is none other than her childhood neighbor!

What happens when you have a one night stand with your oldest friend? Will it tear apart a friendship or be the beginning of something new?

The story:

Jess Landon lives in New York and works in the fashion industry. And when she is dumped by her one year old boyfriend just five days before Christmas, she is sad and tries to bury her worries in the bar back home in Bonner.

Here she meets Bradley Williams, her neighbour and high school friend and does not recognise him and thinks that he is a lumberjack.

But the next day when he tells her who he is……

My take:

A sweet story of two neighbours who secretly crushed on each other in high school and met after seven years.

The characters are relatable and the story is simple and fast paced and can be finished in one sitting.

A nice, cosy read that leaves you warm.

Though this is the first book from the author that I read, I would love to read more from her.

DISCLAIMER: I received a free ebook from StoryOrigin in exchange for a honest review. I have not received any monetary compensation for the same.

My Difficult Love by Nivedita Vedurla

I picked up My Difficult Love by Nivedita Vedurla from the Kindle Unlimited Library.

The blurb:

Seema, a headstrong girl has a crush on her boss, who is unaware of her feelings. Then one day, she accidentally falls prey to his acts after which she decides to pull off all the strings from him.

However, she lands up in deeper troubles and bondages as priorities and affections are questioned.

Will her dream of being a successful entrepreneur and have a family of her own get fulfilled?
Or is it that the dreams of this naive kind hearted girl will never come true?

The story:

Seema Gupta was fourteen when she lost both her parents in an accident and went to live with her grandmother and Uncle’s family. At 24, she works as head of Marketing in a private company in Mumbai after completing her MBA. When she visits her family in Nanded to attend a family wedding, they ask her to quit her job and get married. She feels that arranged marriage is not for her and runs away to Mumbai.

Seema’s boss, Rohit Saxena, was brought up by his grandparents after his parents died in a car crash when he was twelve. He is very close to his elder sister and would do anything to get the custody of her children after her death.

Even if it would mean giving up his playboy ways and getting married.

My take:

A simple story which I felt had too many other stories roped in. The crux of the story is family and relationships.

Written in first person from the point of view of Seema and Rohit, and we get a glimpse of both their feelings. The understories give us a glimpse of the characters in detail. I loved the kids and their antics. The twists keep the story moving. The language is simple and easily understandable. A little bit of editing would make it more enjoyable to read.

Arjun’s Penance by Sundari Venkatraman

I received Arjun’s Penance by Sundari Venkatraman as a review copy from the author and I am thankful to her for the same.

The blurb:

Young Arjun feels betrayed and heartbroken when his girlfriend of two years dies in an accident. In the moment of agony, he does the worst thing possible…

Ten years later, Kiara walks into the office of the Mathur Group of industries, falling for its managing director, Arjun Mathur, who is a ruthless businessman nowadays, and also completely sworn off women.

While the ethical hacker gathers evidence against the ex-finance director of the company who has been swindling money bigtime, she tries to woo the MD into falling in love with her.

Will Kiara be able to persuade Arjun to break his penance?

The story:

Arjun Mathur was only eighteen when he met Jane McKenzie from Scotland at college in London and fell in love with her. And then he lost Jane tragically in an accident and was devastated, so much so that he tried to commit suicide by committing suicide. Only to be saved by his friend and supported by his step-father, Parth.

Now, ten years later, thirty year old Arjun is the Managing Director of the Mathur Group of Industries, a company set up by his father. Arjun has the reputation in the industry for his ruthless businessman and the company had come a long way since his father’s days due to Arjun’s ideas and efforts. And Arjun has sworn off women.

Kiara Bakshi, the only daughter of Chandresh and Kalpana Bakshi was seventeen, when her father was swindles off money from his bank account. And her boyfriend dumped her. Now at 27, she is one of best ethical hackers and is hired by Arjun at the behest of his friend, Mudit, to find out who has been swindling with the accounts in the company.

They are mutually attracted to each other. Would Kiara be able to woo Arjun….

My take:

A cute love story written in a simple language. The story is fast paced and even has an element of suspense thrown in. It was really interesting to meet the characters from An Autograph for Anjali and that really helped maintain the continuity in the series.

Loved the story. Would love to read Mudit and Krish’s stories as well.

DISCLAIMER: I received a free e-book from the author in exchange for an honest review. I have not received any monetary compensation for the same.

Ariana’s Now and Forever by Esha Pandey

I picked up Ariana’s Now and Forever by Esha Pandey from the Kindle Unlimited Library.

The blurb:

After a few seconds, he said, “Happy New Year Rainy!”

My heart stopped beating. Only he called me that. Rainy. It was surreal to hear him call me that. I wanted to hug him. But I shouted back, “Happy New Year” without turning back. I walked faster towards the safety of my cottage. I had to get away or I would beg him to make me his.

Araina is back at her cottage in Nainital after a gap of ten years to celebrate New Year’s Eve. She has carefully avoided anything that reminds her of Abhimanyu, the guy she was head over heels in love with, the guy who broke her heart, ten years back. But on her very first day, she runs into him and realizes she is still not over him.
What follows is a rollercoaster of emotions. Abhimanyu is as handsome as she remembered him to be, and he melts her insides with just a smile.

Araina is hurt and angry, but Abhimanyu is determined to seek forgiveness and make her his.

Will she give in?

Does she still love him enough?

Will there be an ‘Always and Forver?

Do Abhimanyu and Araina seize their second chance at love? Read Araina’s Always and Forever to find out.

The story:

Ariana and Abhimanyu’s fathers were friends and business partners. And the kids grew up together in Delhi and the families would visit Nainital on holidays. It was natural for Ariana and Abhimanyu to fall in love with each other and their families were very happy. But one day, everything changed.

Now, ten years later, Ariana is back in Nainital with her brother to spend New Year’s Eve, and she meets Abhimanyu, the one person because of home she has been avoiding to come to Nainital for the past ten years.

My take:

The story has been written in first person from the point of view of both Ariana and Abhimanyu. Even though the story is short, the characters have been developed well. The descriptions are detailed and the story can easily be finished in one sitting.

I would definitely love to read more about Ariana and Abhimanyu in a longer version of the book.

Head over Heels by Milan Vohra

I picked up Head over Heels by Milan Vohra from the Kindle Unlimited Library.

The blurb:

Vivan Parasher has built everything in his life up to this day. When he will finally get his revenge for his beloved Sonia’s death. Even to destroy Divyant professionally and financially is not enough. Then he meets the beautiful sister of his nemesis, a spitfire of a yoga teacher, Pari Chand. And Vivan knows what he must do. You’d think it would be a cakewalk. After all, Vivan holds all the cards. But Pari knows how to push back too. She’s more than a match for Vivan, though she’s going to have to pick her battles – if she has to help save her brother. For Vivan, there’s no scope for remorse or guilt, because he’s convinced that Pari is no different from her brother. It’s only when he slips the ring on Pari’s finger that Vivan starts to realise he may have been wrong. Will the fire of hate burn out the sparks of desire that light up every time Pari and Vivan are together?
The power keeps shifting and soon it all goes topsy-turvy. For when has the path of love or hate ever been straight?

But one thing it sure is and that is – it is fire hot at every bend and twist in the tale.
This e-book is a revised, updated and up-spiced version of the paperback edition of ‘The Love Asana’, previously published by Harlequin.

The story:

Vivan Parasher was fourteen and his sister, Sonia, twelve when their father left them. And within a year, they lost their mother. Hardworking Vivan would study and work at the same time so as to run the household. And then he got a chance to pursue further studies in the US. So leaving Sonia in a hostel, Vivan moved to the US to study. And one day, he heard that Sonia had been killed in an accident. And when he read Sonia’s diary, Vivan knew Divyant was responsible for everything, and decided to take revenge at the right time. Now, Ten years later, Vivan has made it to the Billionaires under 30 list.

Divyant is the owner of an advertising company and the most sought after account is that of Fitness fanatic, Vivan’s company. Little does Divyant know that Vivan is planning his downfall. And not only that, Vivan plans to hurt Divyant by way of his sister, Pari too.

Pari Chand, a yoga teacher, has had a traumatic childhood. She has a Yoga Studio in Vasant Vihar. Vivan asks Pari to marry him, only then he would help her brother stay afloat in his business and Pari out of love and obligation towards her brother, marries him, even though he is a playboy, a billionaire and seen with a different woman on his arm in his photographs, and says that he is doing so to save your only brother who stood by you when you were at your lowest.

My take:

Though previously written as The Love Asana- the first Mills and Boon to be penned by an Indian author, this book is a total refurbished one. The story not only revolves around a planned revenge, but also talks about many other things, like sibling love, loss, consent within marriage and loyalty.

The characters are realistic as are their emotions. I loved Pari’s strength and her love for her brother and also Vivan’s love for his sister.

The plot has been developed well and the story moves at a fast pace. The language is simple and the descriptions are detailed.

Surge On Like a River (English translation of the Tamil book ‘Nee Nadhi Pola Odikondiru’) by Shyamala V

Surge On Like a River

About The Book
 
Surge On Like a River is the English translation of the Tamil book titled ‘Nee Nadhi Pola Odikondiru’, originally written by Bharathy Bhaskar, a Chemical Engineer and an MBA, who is a banker by profession. She is also a popular columnist and speaker, and a household name in Tamil homes, thanks to the debates and shows she has spoken in.
 
The essays are written in a simple, engaging style, and filled with profound insights. These nuggets of wisdom primarily draw from the author’s life experiences and her empathetic observations of the people and situations around her.
 
This English translation by V. Shyamala captures the lively nature of the original, bringing it to a wider audience with the idea that the readers who do not know Tamil should not miss out on the wonderful collection.
Purchase Links
 
 
Book Excerpt
Chapter 1
 
Home sweet home pours love but just drizzles appreciation!
Saro is my friend since school days. One evening, when I ran into her at Mount Road in Chennai, deciding to prolong our happy reunion, we proceeded to the Spencer Plaza to catch up. There, we met my boss, an American.
He noticed me and said ‘Hi’. I responded in kind, and introduced my friend.
Immediately, he complimented Saro, saying, “Your dress is lovely.” She was wearing a magenta-coloured silk sari with a black border. The sole reason for this incident was that the sari was really beautiful, and Americans are usually generous with their compliments.
Even though quite some time had passed since we had met my boss, Saro was visibly uncomfortable. She was not her usual bubbly self, either.  Only after my continuous, repeated insistence and queries of “What happened, Saro?” did she reply.
“When your boss complimented me, I could not even say a simple thanks!”
“Yes. I noticed. You could have thanked him”
“The thing is, I have never been praised so I did not know how to respond…”
That night, it was a long time before I could fall asleep. Is there only ‘one’ Saro who has ‘never been praised?’ There are a thousand Saros, Kamalas , Fatimas, and Stellas amongst us, who yearn for  appreciation.
Apparently, research shows that women’s chromosomal and genetic makeup craves appreciation and acknowledgment, more than men’s genetics do. Must probably be true.
“Darling… How does my new saree look?”
“Is it new… Superb!”
Did the husband even spare a glance at the saree, or did he say so as there was no other quicker way to end the conversation… God only knows!
“There is a difference in the rasam I made today… Did you not notice?”
“Really? For me it tastes the same, as usual.”
Following a new recipe suggested by a friend, boiling tomato and garlic along with lentils, mashing them all together, mixing with the tamarind extract, boiling it evenly before adding freshly crushed cumin and black pepper, and finally tempering with mustard seeds spluttered in ghee… all this effort only to hear ‘it tastes same as usual!’
A new hairstyle from a rare visit to a beauty parlour, a tastefully drawn peacock kolam, a special adai-avial tiffin made after poring over a different recipe from a book, a newly purchased green silk-cotton saree that had attracted at first sight, a reward gotten at the office… would any of this give us complete happiness, if not layered with praise from close family members?
Could the researchers who proved that ‘women’s chromosomes expect praise and appreciation’, not have also proven that ‘men’s chromosomes limit their ability to give out praise and compliments’?
About the Author
 
 
Bharathi Baskar is a Tamil Orator who is popular for her humorous debate talk shows called Pattimandram.com, telecasted on Sun TV. She is also an anchor for the daily talk show called Vaanga Peasalam at 7.15 a.m from Monday to Wednesday on Sun TV. Bharathi Baskar is also a Senior Vice President at Citi Bank, Chenna
About the Translator
 
 
V.Shyamala
is a cost accountant, a homemaker, and a writer. She loves to weave stories and
is on a continuous quest to seek new and creative ways to teach children. When
not writing, reading, or thinking up stories, Shyamala mentors CIMA students,
strives to workout, loves tweaking South Indian heritage recipes, 
and translates Tamil words to English. She is also a member
of AWIC (Association of Writers and Illustrators for Children) and volunteers at
a local library twice a week.



Catch with Up V.Shyamala on Social Media
 

The Right Kind of Wrong: A Passionate angst ridden romantic thriller by Shilpa Suraj

I received The Right Kind of Wrong: A Passionate angst ridden romantic thriller by Shilpa Suraj as a review copy from the author and BookR3vi3ws and am thankful to them for the same.

The blurb:

He’s dangerous, damaged and doomed but he’s hers…

With no name, no medical history, multiple gunshot wounds and enough security to rival the Prime Minister’s, Dr Aria Dubey’s new patient is something more than she asked for. And everything she might just need.

Intelligence Officer Karan Bhatnagar has only vengeance on his mind. Nothing will stop him from seeking justice for his murdered parents.

Not even almost losing his own life. And certainly not the doctor who healed but couldn’t save him. The woman he can’t afford to fall for. And the killer’s next target.
There’s only one thing left to do…find the killer and end him before he ends them. Will Karan and Aria risk everything for a love that is all kinds of wrong? And yet, is the right kind of wrong.

The story:

Dr Aria Dubey, the older daughter of a filmstar, is the odd one out in her family, having chosen a non-glamourous profession as against her sister, Alia, who is a fashion designer. She is a surgeon who lives and works in Delhi. She has recently broken off with her boyfriend and loves her house, her job and her me-time.

Special Agent Karan Bhatnagar was six when he lost his parents in a car crash and the Bhatnagars adopted him. And then he loses them as a collateral damage because of his high profile cases. And he is scared to love.

Aria is on duty in the casualty of her hospital when a person reddened with bullets is brought in by six huge oddly menacing men and is ordered by them to make sure that he lives. She does not know the identity of the patient and names him ‘X’ and she is surprised to see his security detail. And much to her shock, she is assigned as the doctor to the case and told that he is important and it is her duty to ensure that he is alive.

And to make matters worse, ‘X’ disappears one day and she is grilled by the cops. And if that was not all, she is dragged into the chase when there is an attempt on her life in her own house.

My take:

Having read beautiful romances by the author, this one came as a surprise, but nevertheless, she has done a wonderful job with this one too.

The characters are realistic and strong, and have a sense of humour. I loved how Aria assigns a name for ‘X’. They have been described in detail and their back stories help us understand their actions and fears. I wanted to see more of Aria’s relationship with her mother, but I really loved the friendship Karan shared. The descriptions are detailed and many scenes could be visualised easily.

The story is a mixture of so many things, suspense, murders, safe houses, politicians, film stars, hired killers, body guards, friendship, and love. The book is so addictive, and it was very difficult for me to keep the book down once I started it, because I really wanted to know what happened next.

DISCLAIMER: I received a free e-book from the author and BookR3vi3ws in exchange for an honest review. I have not received any monetary compensation for the same.