Sunday, 14 April 2013

Book Review: A Stranger in the Mirror

A Stranger in the Mirror
Sidney Sheldon

A Stranger in the Mirror has been authored by Sidney Sheldon published by William Morrow. This book, unlike his other works, does not have a twist at the end. It is a plain story, although, told with the usual Sidney Sheldon flavor  Although there is not much of a suspense or thrill, you are still desperate to know what happens to the characters, how they are affected, what their next step is going to be and how everything is going to get tied up together in the end.

Toby Temple hailed from a humble background. He was the apple of his mother’s eye and she knew for a fact that he was going to be famous. She wasn't wrong. Toby Temple becomes a world renowned comedian. He has everything in life, money, power, wonderful contacts, and a different girl every night; what he lacks is happiness, he is lonely.

Josephine Czinski has a religious mother who holds the two of them responsible for Josephine’s father’s death. Her mother works for the Oil people and does not like Josephine mixing with their children. All Josephine wants is a lovely life like them. After a love affair with David Kenyon, one of the oil children goes downhill, she leaves the town for good. Where does she head? Hollywood, where she will be known as Jill Castle. The glamour, the promises and the lifestyle attracts her for good measure. After years of unsuccessfully trying to acquire acting jobs by the right ways, she goes for the way opted by others. Sleep with the concerned person, get an acting job and earn money. Her life takes a bad turn when she is drugged and forced to do a pornography movie. Her best kept secret.

Eventually, Toby and Jill meet. Thus begins their saga, their tumultuous life together. Toby is head over heels in love with her. Jill figures out that Toby is the only way she can get her revenge against all those big shot people in Hollywood who turned her down. What does eventually happen? Does she get her revenge? Does she remain with Toby? Does David enter the picture at all? Does Jill’s life turn out to be exactly as she had planned it? Will she ever be Josephine Czinski again?

Of course, you have to read the book to find out. I honestly loved the book. You will not be disappointed. Sidney Sheldon’s fast paced story narration makes the book “unputdownable”, if you will.

Rating: 4/5

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Book Review: Mr. Maybe by Jane Green

Mr. Maybe
Jane Green

This book is your average chic lit novel. Predictable, of course. But, readable, nevertheless. Mr. Maybe has been authored by Jane Green and published by Penguin.

Libby, a PR agent is on the lookout for a man. Since PR doesn't pay much, she wants a handsome, successful and rich guy so that she can marry him, have kids and have a happy life. Cliche of cliches? Yes. Her choice in men has been awful. Hence, she decides on a fling with her friend's friend Nick, super gorgeous and super sexy with not a penny to his name. They start hanging out together. But, the deal remains intact, no relationship, only sex. But, things take a turn when they start falling for each other. Surprise, surprise. When things start getting serious, he dumps her. She sulk, mourns, cries and finally meets Ed McMahon, one of britain's most eligible bachelors. Super rich, investment banker, who is super keen on Libby. As things progress, they get engaged. He is in love with her and she is in love with the prospect of her being a rich man's wife, not having to work and having unlimited money to spend. But, circumstances lead her to have second thought.

The feel is much like that in Can You Keep a Secret? It is fun. There are many laugh out loud moments. In my opinion, the protagonist is shallow, materialistic and ultimately wants a man who is rich and who can provide for her. Isn't that typical? I thought we were past all that sh*t! I, personally, did not connect with Libby. She is too dependent, too conservative in her thinking, too.. you get the gist!  Independence (financial or otherwise) is last on her mind. I don't like that. All in all, an average read. Yes, you do get to laugh heartily at certain junctures.

Rating: 2.5/5

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Book Review: Lone Eagle by Danielle Steel

Lone Eagle
Danielle Steel

Danielle Steel books are basically of the romance genre. They're easy to read and a no-brainer. Seriously. Lone Eagle is no different. The theme is basically the same. Boy and girl fall in love, there are heart breaks, separations and what not! Name it and you have it! All the drama prevalent in a typical Indian movie/ serial is available here, only the location and language is different!

Joe Allbright, an aviation enthusiast and Kate Jamison, a beautiful, fiesty girl meet for the first time when she is 17. There are instant sparks. But, nothing happens since both have childhood and trust issues. But, fate brings them together. Fate also brings in World War II into the picture (rather, the author does). Joe is shipped off to Europe to fight the war. Kate goes off to college and meets Andy Scott, her best friend. Although, he falls in love with her. Kate doesn't accept Andy's moves. Joe returns from war and they start a life together, only, he is not ready to get married or have children. Thus starts the emotional turmoil extending 20+ years of Kate, Joe and Andy.

One thing that I find annoying while reading Steel's books are that the sentences are often repeated in some way or the other. Again and again. That seems to be the only way she makes sure that her books are 300+ pages long! Anyway, if you are a diehard romantic, you might as well give this book a go.

Rating: 2.5/5

Book Review: An A-Hole Goes on Vacation by Andy Ostrom


An A-Hole Goes on Vacation by Andy Ostrom is one of the few non-fiction books that I have read. The Author has instilled faith in me that non-fiction need not be boring after all! If you are looking for a book that tells you where or when to take an ideal vacation; what an ideal vacation is supposed to be (ideally, you aren't supposed to refer to a book for that!), well, this book isn't for you. The book is basically more etiquette based.

If you are a self confessed A-Hole or know someone who is an A-Hole but doesn't know about it or you just have half an hour to spare, read this book (it is only 21 pages anyway!) The book does not give you information about where to take a vacation or when to take a vacation, like other travel books do. It basically gives you information on HOW and WHY you should take a vacation. We plan for days on end planning the perfect trip, yet, it may turn out to be one of the worst trips ever taken.

The author gives vacationing tips to all categories of people, be it young, middle aged, old, family, singles, etc. He puts in place perspective of what a vacation should NOT be (really, it can be anything you want it to be). He also gives invaluable tips to people who have just returned from vacation and go around “Namastay”-ing (yes, you went on vacation, we didn't, don’t add fuel to the fire!).

Travel tips apart, the author’s sarcastic way of writing is interesting and makes you laugh (or smirk with understanding). Not one to shy away from words (seriously!), the author keeps the reader occupied and blatantly speaks the truth that makes you smile and connect to instantly! All in all, it is a fun read.

Monday, 1 April 2013

Soldier For Women Campaign

Soldier For Women Campaign

There is no single one person I'd like to write about. For one, its not only the men who protect us women. My wholehearted thanks to my Dad who has and will forever be my protective shield, my Mum for all the support and confidence she instills in me, the Indian police force who make the streets safer at night, all the educated, right-minded youth who know the right from wrong and who are fearless to stand against the wrong, my girlfriends without whom I wouldn't be able to "band bajofy" all those roadside Romeos and my guy friends who make me feel safe in public places from prying eyes.

Thank you, guys! :)