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Thursday, February 15, 2018

When I got a request to review author Sunil Mishra's awe-inspiring book, Transit Lounge, I didn't read the mail as it ended up in others folder unfortunately. More than 20 days would have passed. Finally, when I opened the mail by chance, I found the mail sent by Debdatta who promotes interesting books.  I was like, how did I miss this opportunity to reading this good book? I read what many readers have to say about his book on Goodreads and was very glad, it has got positive reviews. He has explored many places all over the world and indeed he is a true motivation to youngsters like me. Though I wouldn't consider myself an explorer of places (I am a homebird and can be high strung sometimes in new situations or places) but I am totally flattered for the lucky moment to interview him today. 


A small introduction 


Sunil is a software professional with over two decades of experience in the field of banking technology. Currently he is working with Infosys in India. He has earlier worked with McKinsey, Accenture and I-flex solutions. His work required extensive travelling to various parts of the world and this constituted the basis of his current book. He travelled to more than 30 countries across six continents and engaged with senior managements in different client organizations. He believes that there has been a remarkable change in perception about India over last 15 years.


Sunil is an MBA from IIM-Lucknow and holds a B.Tech from IIT(ISM), Dhanbad. He completed his schooling in Bokaro Steel City, a relatively small town in Jharkhand, India. Sunil has avid interest in writing and has actively blogged on various platforms in the area of banking technology, consulting, leadership and changing role of media in the digital world.


Isn't he a wonderful person to get to know? I proudly welcome him in my blog.

Hi, sir. How are you? Please introduce yourself to my readers.

I am doing fine, thank you.

I am software professional currently working with Infosys. As part of my work I had the opportunity to travel to different countries over last 15 years. My book Transit Lounge is a travel memoir consisting of short incidents, reflections and learnings.

I am an MBA from IIM Lucknow and a B.Tech from IIT (ISM) Dhanbad.

You completed your schooling in a small town. What was it like growing up there?

I completed my schooling in Bokaro Steel City, a relatively small town. Like all steel cities of 80s it had some of the very good schools and educational support. The life in the city was lot more comfortable and easy compared to today’s metropolis. I have very fond memories of the place.

How did you do it? I mean, you grew up in a small town but you have accomplished a lot. What inspired you/who inspired you?

Though it was a small town, it had an amazing educational environment. Some of the schools were well known to produce IIT and CBSE toppers. For anyone inclined towards academics, the environment was hugely instrumental in their success. I was fortunate to have been part of the setup.

You have travelled to more than 30 countries. Can you tell my readers what you learned from each of these countries in short (one line each)?

The entire travelling experience had been great learnings. It was almost impossible to capture that in words. However I tried summarize in last few pages of the book.
  • 1.      I learned about India more by travelling abroad
  • 2.      What we learn from media is not always the true picture
  • 3.      During last 15 years, India was really transitioning faster than many other countries
  • 4.      The Indian immigrants always had the umbilical cord intact
  • 5.      Basic core values in all the countries were more or less similar

As you have visited many countries, you know the state of each of these countries and our country, India. Can you tell us what are the good changes you would like to see in India?

My book is an Indian’s account of the international travels. I see all these travel as true learnings. There are several good things that I would like to see.

One thing, I was impressed was the cleanliness of some of the tourist places in Europe. I recall visiting one place in Zagreb called - Plitvice lake. It consists of multiple lakes surrounded by mountain and a good amount of plantation. It covers a large trekking area covering the lakes, mountains and the trees. Though it was frequented by thousands of people every day and had a long trekking path, it was immaculately clean; not even the chocolate wrappers thrown around. This is something that tourist places in India seem to improve upon, especially at the natural scenic places. This was a common observation for tourist places in other western countries as well.

You have acquired knowledge in various fields. Instead of blogging about it, you can write inspiring books and enlighten the world with your wisdom. Are you currently writing your second book?

I used to write personal notes of individual travels, anything that I would find interesting. As I started blogging about some of these travels, I received positive reviews from my friends and well-wishers. It is then that the idea of collating this and publishing it as a book occurred to me. I am planning to write my second book, though it is still in the nascent stage.

There are lakhs and lakhs of uneducated people in India. Can tell us your thoughts about it.

It is true that not everyone in India is as fortunate as some of us. Education is the most important development index in any society, one of the main reasons that western countries have been ahead in the past. My personal belief is that things are changing very fast in India as well and soon we will have better success on this aspect.

What is your message for my readers?

"The world is a book, and those who don't travel only read one page." – St. Augustine.

Another one on traveler versus tourist – "The traveler sees what he sees. The tourist sees what he has come to see." -  G.K. Chesterton

My attempt to write the book has been to capture the traveler’s account, I enjoyed writing it and I hope it is equally liked by the readers.

Thank you for agreeing to have this conversation. God bless all your future endeavours. 

About his book







The book is a personal account of travels to places in Africa (Nigeria, Ghana, Egypt and Mauritius), South America (Venezuela and Argentina), Asia (China, Iran, Kuwait, UAE, Singapore, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Thailand), Europe (UK, France, Italy, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Belgium, Georgia, Turkey, Croatia and Romania), USA, Australia and New Zealand.

It was interesting to observe all these diverse cultures and people from an Indian perspective. The book is a compilation of small incidents and events during such travels; it includes losing an air ticket, dealing with difficult custom officials or getting mugged in a prime location in a foreign country."

Feedback for the Book:

5 Stars “I liked how description to every country was short, crisp and to-the-point. All the points mentioned were much relevant, sometimes funny, and answered a lot of queries regarding various countries in my mind.” ~ Finix Post on Amazon

5 Stars – “This travelogue describes the culture of these different countries from an Indian perspective. The author tries comparing the lifestyle, socio-economic policies and general environment of other countries that he visits with that of India.” ~ Somya Tulshyan on Amazon

Author Sunil Mishra is on Facebook Twitter goodreads
Sunday, February 11, 2018

Hi, guys! Today I am pleased to introduce to you, author, Anuja Chandramouli.  She has published three books in the month of November(2) and December (1) 2017 . OMG, that's a great risk yet all these books have received mostly positive reviews . Not only that, she has written 6 books earlier. Writing is not new to her. 

I hope you guys love historical fiction. If you can get her books for free (ebooks), I believe you wouldn't say, "No". Three readers will get to read one of her books. What are you waiting for? Raed the book blurbs of her recent books and enter the giveaway to win one for yourself.

Book Blurb 


36568083
Padmavati is the most beautiful queen Chittor has ever had. Everyone who sees her is enthralled by her grace and goodness. When the greedy gaze of the Sultan ofDelhi, Alauddin Khalji, falls upon Chittor and its queen, Padmavati’s flawless beauty turns against her, because it inspires both love and hate in equal measure.Beset by the threat of an invasion and scheming political rivals who are envious of her immense popularity, Rani Padmavati must rise to the demands of war and fight for everything she believes in. This is the story of a remarkable woman who lived gently, loved passionately and embraced her destiny with unmatched courage.
36568077

Book Blurb

Unravel the puzzle that is the mysterious and misunderstood son of Mahadeva.

Kartikeya was born from the flames of a desperate need, an ardent desire and an utmost devastation. In him was distilled the terrible powers of Mahadeva, at its fiercest and most deadly. Although he fought many wars and slew many tyrants, his gifts to humanity have always been those of mercy, compassion and love. What makes this possible?



For Kartikeya, there have always been more questions than answers. Did he really walk away from his family over a piece of fruit? What about the women in his life—was he the ravisher he is at times accused of being, or the protector of women? Was he the violent warrior who revelled in bloodlust, or a gentle family man? What was his relationship with his more popular sibling, Ganesha?
Anuja Chandramouli weaves together myth, imagination and folklore while looking to answer these questions and recreates for modern readers the story of one of the most enigmatic gods

36574115 Book Blurb

Prithviraj Chauhan was destiny's chosen one, singled out for glory and greatness. During the course of an extraordinary life, he transcended the limits imposed on mortals and achieved Godlike luster. The conquering hero dreamed of a united land where peace prevailed over war and love over hate.

Princess Samyukta loved him from afar, and when Prithviraj Chauhan claimed her for his own, defying the wrath of an implacable foe, their happiness was complete. Victorious in love and war, Prithviraj Chauhan was soon to discover that success came with a terrible price - trouble, treachery and tragedy. What happened next? Read the tale of the legendary warrior who lives on in the hearts of those who remember his unmatched valor and timeless heroism.

You can connect with the author on Goodreads Website Facebook

              
This giveaway is open to both Indian and International residents. Enter only if you have plans to read and review these books. Others please excuse.
Saturday, January 20, 2018

No. of pages : 48
Publisher : Notion Press
Published on : October 12, 2017
Book links : Amazon Goodreads
Author link : Goodreads

My review 



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I can’t tell you people how much I am mesmerised by this book. It contains only 48 pages. If you buy this book, rest assured, you will become a fan of this very talented author. Tell me why I have to give explanations, while you can just read what she has written.

1.
Surrounded by many, yet heard by none.
Felt by many yet, understood by none. I’m unheard. 
(Wow. Wow. Wow.)

2.
Life is like a novel, 
each page, a different story, 
walking through it, 
mysteries reveal, 
the trustful truth.
(Wow. Wow. Wow.)

3.
It was only she & her books,
caged in the world of knowledge 
nothing but books, books, books.
the story here motivates, 
the making of a leader.
(Wow. Wow. Wow.)

4.
One question after the other, 
one page after the other.
clock sang the appreciation, 
song of the ‘Brave’.
(Wow. Wow. Wow.)

5.
Nights, I never slept. 
days, I always dreamt.
about you, about me,
about us.
(Wow.Wow.Wow.)

6.
My gift from god.
the gift of god, 
at last my gift found, 
true friend I found.
(Wow.Wow. Wow.)

7.
You were the vision
of my visionless life,
but you are the one
far from my vision.
(Wow. Wow. Wow.)

If you are inspired by these lines, I am very sure you will like what you are going to find in this wonderful book. There are 22 poems. I have mentioned only one stanza from 7 poems. Can you imagine how nice it would be to read them all? Knowledge is power. This book is perfect. Get enlightened.

Gratitude to her for gifting me her wisdom.

Rating : 5/5


My verdict 

The author gives explanations as to what inspired her to write these poems.

Let me say one poem's inspiration.

Friends make up a great part of our life. not all shall stay with us for life long. Some come our way to show life. Some come our way to become an integral part of our life. they walk with us for life long. a friend as described above(Poem titled Friend), is a precious one.

Are you still not conviced to find out what inspired her to write other poems?
Saturday, January 06, 2018
36618517No. of pages : 165
Published on : November 22, 2017
Book links : Goodreads Amazon Website
Author links : Goodreads Website Twitter

My review

You came like hope is an intense, emotional rollercoaster ride. This is a love story of two sensitive people .I will not say you must read this book for I found this novel very rewarding to my soul but I will say if you read it you will learn something about how misfortunes can make people life hell. I dedicate this review to all those innocent souls who consider themselves as unlcuky. I got myself immersed in the characters that felt so real.

I can guarantee whoever buys this novel will never be disappointed . One will be surprised to find as if they have met such characters in real. Take Rajni for example.She is the relative of the main protagonists Adih(hero) and Peehu(heroine) who wants them to end up together.

Adih lives next to Rajni's house, she is also his only relative who doesn't believe in a tale woven by a ruthless woman unfortunately all his other relatives do. Although Peehu has heard ugly gossips about Adih's family (no matter what her mother says), this doesn't give her enough reasons to stop herself from getting close to his daughter, Mani or him.

Handsome men with a sick daughter and a very ugly past is sure to drive anybody frown. It happens, isn't it?Sorry, Peehu is not one of them.. Circumstances force her to pretend like her dead sister who was a perfect daughter whereas she was a failure. She fools everyone, including her parents.

We don't know what fate has in store for each of us. Any minute our story can turn for the good or the bad. Life is full of surprises. Peehu is mistaken for a tutor by Mani while she passes by her house. As the tutor who agreed to teach Mani changed her plans at the last minute, due to her sweet pestering, Peehu agrees to help her with the Math test. When Adih comes home, he scolds his daughter for letting a stranger inside their house but soon when he learns Peehu is none other his distant relative, he cools down.

Adih's beautiful family was ruined by an evil, rich woman who married his brother to take revenge on him for rejecting her. Will he let his guard down and allow Peehu melt his heart and prove she is not like Pooja? Yes, he does in the climax but God, I must say I felt irritated and frustrated how he kept on pushing Peehu until the end and doesn't really confess his feelings even when she was being polite and asked him lovingly that Uday, his twin, Pakhi's lover proposed to her and what he wants her to say to him.

The author has done justice to his character. She is absolutely right about the fact that people who don't have anybody to lean on to break into happy tears even at the slightest gesture of smile by a stranger, in this case Peehu for whom he has deep feelings but acts like he doesn't really care about her even a tidbit. Well played. I felt saddend by it and at the same time wanted to slap him and coerce him to kiss Peehu and tell her how much he wants her in their life. Uday was always a jerk and will be a jerk. Men like him want only perfect girls and Peehu knows it too. She looks like Pakhi. That's all.

Well, in a country like India where most women learn about their husbands only after marriage, this is definitely not a shocker. Isn't it? Peehu's parents are right. They are also like any other parents putting their faith blindly on a gossip and telling their girls not to talk to some people based on what they heard. It's completely natural.

Coming to Pooja's character, deep down we all know such girls who will do anything for their physical pleasures and happiness and spoil another person's life. But how can such souls live happily without feeling guilty at all with no shame?This is a mystery to me. When Adih told Peehu, Pooja wants what you want, I felt a sharp pain in my heart.

You may be unlucky now but if you make it to the end, it accounts for victory, am I right?You my be sick like Mani or accused falsely for something you did not do or insulted and criticized repeatedly but what matters is you are truly desired by someone who will do anything to make you smile just like Adih, Mani, Peehu and of course Rajni didi.

Life is hard for Adih and Peehu even after four years has passed and they now have a daughter named Prisha as a symbol of their love as Mani has medical issues but they are the luckiest people on earth. Do you know why?because they are the humblest and noblest people even when others say otherwise. The author has captured my heart. Will I be reading this book again?You bet I do.

This is a realistic story but the twin sisters plot alone didn't click with me yet I admire the author for making it work. She has written this novel really too well. Thanks to her for giving me a free copy.

My rating : 5/5
Tuesday, December 12, 2017
No. of pages : 30
Publisher : Global wicca
Pubished on : June 18th 2015
Book links : Goodreads  Amazon
Author links : Goodreads Twitter Wesbite Amazon

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My review 

The Goddess speaks- Unlimited healing for everyone and everything energized my soul. I urge everyone buy this small book because of its wonderful content. We all desire a world where there is mutual harmony. Is it not? It is highly possible when you read the book you are taken to a world of endless good.  The lines that I liked more are as follows.

Whatever be the past, all is forgiven, all is healed, absolutely, deeply and unconditionally, forever and ever.

No longer do I desire to be superior to anyone, at a physical, social, economic, intellectual or spiritual level.

My love does not allow me to ever hurt, harm or possess anyone.

My cauldron of prosperity forever generates unlimited amount of goodness for all.

Rating : 5/5

Verdict : Author Swati Prakash has profound knowledge and infinite talent. I am glad she used this for greater good.