Book Review – Golden Age of Mysteries

A series to pay tribute to the golden age mystery authors, by attempting to provide reviews on some of their books which I highly admire. Golden age of mysteries is generally defined by that period where the mystery stories had a central, strong puzzle plot and the detective/police/amateur investigator goes through all the clues, the suspects and finally solves the mystery (murder/theft/disappearance). More often than not, the big “reveal” is in a closed setting with all the suspects around. Readers then express, “Oh, that was so clever, I did not see this coming”! Authors from UK and USA generally dominated this period.
Review 3
Book :
Case of William Smith
Author: Patricia Wentworth (UK)
Original Year of Publication : 1948
About the Author: Patricia Wentworth (born Dora Amy Elles) was a British crime fiction writer, born in Mussoorie, Uttarakhand, India (then the British Raj). Wentworth wrote a series of 32 crime novels in the classic whodunit style, featuring Miss Maud Silver, a retired governess and teacher who becomes a professional private detective, in London, England. Miss Silver works closely with Scotland Yard, especially Inspector Frank Abbott, and is fond of quoting the poet Tennyson. Source : Wikipedia
Plot: This is a story of a man who goes off to war, is injured, and loses his memory. He is called, ‘William Smith’ by everyone and eventually comes home from the concentration camp with a new talent: carving toy animals and birds for children. But actually, who was William Smith? And why were few people so horrified to see him? For many years, William had worked as a woodcarver for the local toyshop, ignorant of his true identity. So when he took his work to Evesleys Ltd, why was his life in danger?
Suspense: This is a very smooth flowing story with many interesting and strong characters. The pace of the story is fast and full of interesting plot points. The memory loss angle is handled expertly, and the reader is always curious to know the real identity of William Smith. Though it is not a major surprise as to who is behind all the attempts to kill William Smith, still Wentworth paints the story with vivid descriptions of places and events. Especially strong is her description of colors throughout the story, be it for clothes or objects. I do wish that there could have been a few more twists and turns in the storyline, in some places it was more of a straight novel than a mystery one.
Climax: At the finale of the novel, the story sort of slopes downwards with no major twists or turns. Still, I would say, this is a nice read and Wentworth manages to hold the attention of the reader by the sheer beauty of her prose and writing style, more than the actual mystery of the story.
My Rating and Recommendation: 3.5/5. Recommended for readers who like a descriptive light mystery with interesting characters. Not recommended for readers who like deep, suspenseful and classic mystery plots.
About the Reviewer :
Born and brought up in New Delhi, Abhishek Goswami did his graduation in Science from the Delhi University and later on did PGDBA in HR. He has 17 years of work experience in reputed MNC firms and is currently working in Gurgaon. He has a keen interest in reading suspense/mystery books and mythological fiction. He has won the “Top 100 Inspiring Authors” and “Swami Vivekanand Seva Youth Guild” award for his first book, “The Lonely Drummer and Other Poems”. His poems have been a part of Asian Literary Society and United by Ink anthologies and also published in newspapers like The Hans India and News Now. Available as free shipping on Amazon, Flipkart and Notionpress.com

Disclaimer: In case of any concern, Please contact the contributor of this post. Website owner is not responsible for any copyright conflict or anything related to content.

Book Review : Golden Age of Mysteries (1920-55)

A series to pay tribute to the golden age mystery authors, by attempting to provide reviews on some of their books which I highly admire. Golden age of mysteries is generally defined by that period where the mystery stories had a central, strong puzzle plot and the detective/police/amateur investigator goes through all the clues, the suspects and finally solves the mystery (murder/theft/disappearance). More often than not, the big “reveal” is in a closed setting with all the suspects around. Readers then express, “Oh, that was so clever, I did not see this coming”! Authors from UK and USA generally dominated this period.

Review 2
Book : Footsteps in the Dark
Author: Georgette Heyer (UK)
Original Year of Publication : 1932

About the Author: Georgette Heyer was an English historical romance and detective fiction novelist. A best-selling author, Heyer’s writing career saw her produce works from a variety of genres; in total she published 32 novels in the romance genre, 6 historical novels, 4 contemporary novels, and 12 in the detective fiction genre. Her 12 detective novels were published between 1932 and 1953. Source : Wikipedia

Plot: The Priory, a ramshackle old house, is the perfect setting for a much-needed holiday for siblings Peter, Celia, Margaret and Charles (Celia’s husband), who have inherited it from their uncle. Left empty for years as even their deceased uncle chose to live in a different house, far away from this property. Locals claims that a ghost haunts that place. But when a murder victim is discovered, the siblings begin to fear that the ghostly rumors are true and they are not alone after all! But traditionally ghosts don’t commit murder. With a killer on the loose, will they find themselves the next victims or will they uncover the truth in time? Does the key to the crime lie in the realm of the supernatural or is there an earthlier cause?

Suspense: Throughout the story, Heyer maintains a very humorous touch in her dialogs and the flow of the story is very smooth. Especially the interactions between the village locals and the main protagonists are very funny and full of wit. The list of suspects is not very large, still Heyer manages to confuse the readers as to who is the real culprit. There is an eerie feeling in some chapters and the locale is very beautifully painted by the writer’s carefully chosen words. Some scenes in the story were bit more melodramatic than normal.

Climax: At the finale of the novel, Heyer does manage to pull put a trick or two, with a few secret passages and what not in the story. Still, the climax is a good one, though I was very close to pointing out the right murderer. An entertaining read overall.

Rating and Recommendation: 3/5. Highly recommended for readers who like cozy mysteries, humorous and sarcastic dialogs in between and a slow but enjoyable read. Not recommended for readers who like fast thrillers and gadgets etc..

About the Reviewer : 
Born and brought up in New Delhi, Abhishek Goswami did his graduation in Science from the Delhi University and later on did PGDBA in HR. He has 17 years of work experience in reputed MNC firms and is currently working in Gurgaon. He has a keen interest in reading suspense/mystery books and mythological fiction. He has won 
the “Top 100 Inspiring Authors” and “Swami Vivekanand Seva Youth Guild” award for his first book, “The Lonely Drummer and Other Poems”. His poems have been a part of Asian Literary Society and United by Ink anthologies and also published in newspapers like The Hans India and News Now. Available as free shipping on AmazonFlipkart andNotionpress.com

Disclaimer: In case of any concern, Please contact the contributor of this post. Website owner is not responsible for any copyright conflict or anything related to content.

Book Review : The French Powder Mystery

Reviewed by – Abhishek Goswami

Golden Age of Mysteries (1920-55)
A series to pay tribute to the golden age mystery authors, by attempting to provide reviews on some of their books which I highly admire. Golden age of mysteries is generally defined by that period where the mystery stories had a central, strong puzzle plot and the detective/police/amateur investigator goes through all the clues, the suspects and finally solves the mystery (murder/theft/disappearance). More often than not, the big “reveal” is in a closed setting with all the suspects around. Readers then express, “Oh, that was so clever, I did not see this coming”! Authors from UK and USA generally dominated this period.
Review 1
Book : The French Powder Mystery
Author: Ellery Queen (USA)
Original Year of Publication : 1930

About the Author: Ellery Queen is a crime fiction pseudonym created in 1929 by Frederic Dannay and Manfred Bennington Lee, and later used by other authors under Dannay and Lee’s supervision. Dannay and Lee’s main fictional character, whom they also named Ellery Queen, is a mystery writer in New York City who helps his police inspector father solve baffling murders. Most of the more than thirty novels and several short story collections in which Ellery Queen appeared as a character were written by Dannay and Lee and were among the most popular American mysteries published between 1929 and 1971. Source : Wikipedia
Plot: The story centers around the French department store in New York city, where a woman is found dead, tumbling on the floor from a wooden bed whose features are being demonstrated to the customers. The case is then investigated by Inspector Richard Queen and his son Ellery. While investigating the upper story apartment of the owner, Ellery is perplexed by an odd assortment of clues, including not only bloodstains but grains of fingerprint powder and an unusual assortment of books. Also, an ashtray full of half-smoked cigarettes might be important along with how the shoes are kept. The suspects include the wealthy victim’s family and friends, some employees of the store, and possible members of a drug ring.
Suspense: Throughout the story, E.Q maintain a high level of suspense by giving the readers various clues and building a sense of apprehension and excitement, along with many red-herrings. The dialogues between the characters are sometimes quite witty and interesting. Though a few chapters do lack pace, especially when the Inspector and Ellery interview the suspects, but the pace is quickened up when newer facts emerge, especially the time tables of all the store employees and how Ellery deduces important facts by applying sound logic and reason to the case. Just before the climax, the authors put a “Challenge to the Reader”, stating that the reader should be able to solve the case now with all the given facts. But, can the reader do it? I certainly could not.
Climax: At the finale of the novel, Ellery does a detailed piece of deduction by creating a list of conditions that the murderer must meet (involving, among other things, the possession of keys). He clears all suspects except one, whose identity is revealed in the last line of the novel, bringing a satisfying and entertaining end to the story.

My Rating and Recommendation: 4/5. Highly recommended for readers who like mysteries by Agatha Christie, John Dickson Carr and Ngaio Marsh. Not recommended for readers who are more into hard-boiled crime thrillers where action and chase is paramount, leaving little to the grey cells. This book provides lot of scope for readers to figure out the clues and will be liked by those who prefer the puzzle and it’s resolution as the most important component in a mystery story.

About the Reviewer : 
Born and brought up in New Delhi, Abhishek Goswami did his graduation in Science from the Delhi University and later on did PGDBA in HR. He has 17 years of work experience in reputed MNC firms and is currently working in Gurgaon. He has a keen interest in reading suspense/mystery books and mythological fiction. He has won 
the “Top 100 Inspiring Authors” and “Swami Vivekanand Seva Youth Guild” award for his first book, “The Lonely Drummer and Other Poems”. His poems have been a part of Asian Literary Society and United by Ink anthologies and also published in newspapers like The Hans India and News Now. Available as free shipping on AmazonFlipkart andNotionpress.com

Book Review – India’s most fearless by Shiv Aroor and Rahul Singh

Book Review – India’s most fearless by Shiv Aroor and Rahul Singh

Book – India’s most fearless

Author –  Shiv Aroor and Rahul Singh

Page – 272

Format – Paperback

Language – English

Publisher – Penguin Random house India.

The Indian armed forces always stood as an epitome of courage, selflessness, patriotism and nation above all philosophy and each of the 14 heroes whose stories the authors covered in this book are a best example to this.

The book comprises of heroic real-life stories of Indian defense men from the border. Each story talks about a military operation. The spirit of dedication is seen in the operation of Lance Naik Mohan Goswami who scrambled at short notice to execute an operation. While reading the book, and the stories of the men, one will surely stop at so many points just to gather their breaths. The book quite literally leaves one breathless at many points through all the stories shared.

This book will take you in between the gun battles and make you realize what those martyred soldiers and many others go through every day. When we are even afraid of cockroaches & lizard, reading stories of these heroes who go to fierce gun battles putting their life at stakes will send chills through your spine.

The surgical strike of Sept. 2016 is not so exhaustive in this book which is obvious because of classified operation. The stories are truly inspiring and shows the leadership skills of military leaders in counter insurgency operations.

We need more storytellers like the authors to reach out towards it’s civilians and inform them that under what conditions these brave men fight for the Safety, honour and Welfare of our freedom. They are not fighting a personal war on the LOC leaving back their families and constantly performing the Act of Valour, come what may be the conditions the Tri-colour is hold high enough to let the World know that India is a “Land of Free and the Home of Braves.”

Over all, this book is easy to read and very well written with all necessary details, ‘India’s Most Fearless’ is a must read. Highly recommended. It’s a book that will make you proud long after you have read it.

Book Title – 4/5

Book Cover – 5/5

Narration – 4.5/5

Language and Grammar – 4/5

Final Rating – 4.5/5

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Book Review – Pyjamas are forgiving by Twinkle Khanna

Book – Pyjamas are forgiving

Author –  Twinkle Khanna

Page – 220

Format – Paperback

Language – English

Publisher – Juggernaut Books

Pyjamas are forgiving, the story is much more appealing than the title. The book cover tells a lot about the story of the book which is more unique and hatake. The narration of the story is liable and I thoroughly enjoyed the writing style of the Author which is gripping.

This story is about Anusha who went to Ayurvedic Spa in Kerala for her treatment. She is going through the best days in spa, till one person came and joined her in that spa. It is none other than her Ex-husband who has affected her the most. What will be the effect on Anusha and her treatment in presence of her husband? Will she continue there or run from there over night or she will decide to fight with the situation.

The story revolves around Meditation, Yoga and healing which is written in humorous way. It has a touch points of friendship, love, emotions and drama. Language of the book is simple and very well understandable.

With every chapter, the story continues growing extraordinary. The dramatization keeps the reader engaged. Peak of the story is incredibly unique and the grasping story will keep you bound till the end. I felt that story was getting little stretched in the middle but it picked up very well at the end and during the climax.

Over all, it’s a great read with unique plot, interesting characters and humorous punch lines.

Book Title – 4/5

Book Cover – 3.5/5

Narration – 4.5/5

Language and Grammar – 4/5

Final Rating – 4/5

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Book Review – Love bi the way

Book – Love bi the way

Author –  Bhaavna Arora

Page – 239

Format – Paperback

Language – English

Publisher – Penguin Random House India

This is something that I have never read before. This should not be listed under romance in future rather under revolutionary book. The book cover is extremely alluring and bold. In the event, that you are somebody who purchase a book seeing it’s cover, you may end in purchasing this one as well.

Story revolves around the romantic lives of Rihana and Zara. It broke the stereotypes. The book holds something different, bold and unique than the other books falling under similar category. Topic is powerful and Story is gripping.

Rihana, a painter who paints love and the main love she looks for in genuine is the one made in bed. Rihana appears to be carefree and always looking for sex.

Zara, a business women set to clear her way in the male prevailing world and be independent. Zara seems sweet and adorable.

The title is snappy and also discussing the dialect than it is clear and a few lines are exceptionally catchy. The plot comprises of numerous emotions which includes Love, Friendship, Domestic violence and LGBT love. Each and every detail of the characters, their life styles, relationship with others were penned down beautifully.

The story keeps running at a quick pace, so much that it’s easy to lose track yet hard to put down. However, i found it little dragged somewhere in the middle. The language used is extremely easy to grasp & relate to. What I accept is the feature of this book is the writer’s endeavor to expound on subjects which are viewed as taboos in our society, she depicts the situation of the LGBT people group great and likewise some social disasters as well. This book is most likely an honorable endeavor to convey such subjects to standard.

I appreciate the manner in which the author has moved toward the troublesome subject of homosexuality and I should state, the adoration the 2 ladies share is equivalent stirring for a straight lady. She demonstrates that fascination is of the spirit.

Kudos to the author for writing such a bold concept and a strong idea.

It’s highly recommended if you want to read different other than typical love story

Book Title – 4/5

Book Cover – 4.5/5

Narration – 4/5

Language and Grammar – 4.5/5

Final Rating – 4/5

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Book Review – ‘The Ineligible Millionaire’. Author – Tarun Varshney

Book Review Written by Puneet Ghai

Book – The Ineligible Millionaire

Author – Tarun VarshneyP

Format – Paperback

Language – English

Publisher – Invincible Publishers

I ordered ” The Ineligible Millionaire ” book on my friend’s recommendation. When I sat down to read, was able to finish it in one go! From 1st chapter only it grabs the attention.

It’s a 5-starrer book, let’s figure it out why?

1. Toil – Any first Book needs a great toil from the Author as well as the publisher, so any book which goes on the anvil and is finally published, deserves the first Star.

2. Presentation – A Book which on the very first instance catches your eye with its cover, back and a quick go through. Thus, the second Star.

3. Engrossing – Keeps you absorbed, you live inside the plot. It relates to any person and (s)he will definitely feel inside the Book’s plot. Will keep your mind occupied and your heart engaged throughout. Thus, this Book earns the 3rd Star.

4. Versatile – The Book presents a versatile character from a Fiction to a Self Help Motivational Book. Thus, earns the 4th Star.

5. Bollywood – Can be definitely further fine tuned into a Bollywood Movie script 😉 So, the 5th and the final Star.

Each one of us at least once in our lifetime suffer with a dissonance where our mind resonates with questions about our Future: ‘Do I have a Destiny?’, this Book will definitely touch your life.

A good read along with a fresh story, and value for money.

Amazon Link to buy the book –: Click here

Review Article by: Puneet Ghai

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A Journey to Java

Written By – Ankita Chakraborty (Author of “ Memoirs of Java: From an Indian Perspective” )

This is a non-fiction book based on my experiences on Java Island of Indonesia. So, what motivates me to write about my experiences? The answer is very simple, the immense love and care, that I had received from the people of Indonesia. I was a student of International Relation with South East Asia as my special area of interest; from there I had learned more about culture and tradition of South East Asian countries. It came as blessings when I had got selected for scholarship from the Indonesian Ministry of Culture and Education to study and explore culture of Indonesia, I also feel proud to represent India and Her culture among the other nations of the world.

I used to live in a city called Semarang and used to study in UNNES (the State University of Semarang). During my stay in Semarang, I had explored a lot of Javanese culture, cuisines and tradition. It is very interesting to note that we had shared similar cultural linkages, the Ramayana and Mahabharata connects us.Central Java consisted of many ruins of ancient temples dedicated to Shiva, Durga, Arjuna etc. Central Java is itself fascinating consisting of beautiful landscapes, volcanic mountains, stunning waterfalls along with the rich culture and mouth-watering cuisines.

My book has covered some of my experiences in Java Island, which describes the love of Indonesian people to the Indian people, mainly because of the popularity of our Bollywood movies there. One can find that in every single household, small roadside shop, our daily soaps are telecasted. They are very much interested in our culture like saree, bindi, mehendi, jewelleries, sindoor etc. They are also very curious about our food like roti or our spices. I feel lucky that I got enough time to mix with the people and receive their love. Everyone I went,people received me with warm welcome as I am from land of Shah Rukh Khan, every people can sing our Bollywood song, even the small school kids, who sometimes used to come to me to take my ‘autographs’. They make me feel like celebrity at every point of time. The most popular Bollywood song that people of Indonesia love is ‘Tum Hii Ho’ from movie Aaashiqui 2 and everyone sing with full enthusiasm and correct lyrics. The other popular Bollywood track is ‘Kuch Kuch Hota Hain’. People adore Arijit Singh’s songs too much in Indonesia.  Because of the popularity of Bollywood movies and songs there, they treat Indians like a star. My book is full of many such incidences that I had experiences during my one year stay in Indonesia.

The book covers many other incidents, cuisines, travel, lifestyles and my experiences in Indonesia. It was full of fun, with lots of adventures along with my visit to different parts of Java as guests either from ministry or from private institutions to represent my country, to explore Indonesia culture, and to get a lot of memories. One year in Indonesia, gives me lots of friends, lots of memories, push me beyond my comfort zone in trying new adventures in life and also to represent my country as well as promote goodwill between two nations.

I am grateful that I received awards at ‘The Indian Awaz’ , ‘100 inspiring authors of India’ and I wish goodwill and more connectivity between the people of India and South East Asia.

Amazon Link to buy the book –: Click here

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Book Review – “Infinity” Author – Minal Arora

Book Review Written by Kirti Dixit

Book – Infinity

Author – Minal Arora

Page – 232

Format – Paperback

Language – English

Publisher – Prabhat Prakashan

INFiNITY has touched the heart and lives of many by now. One can find some amazing feedbacks from people who have experienced healing effects of this book on social media & amazon. Many people reckon this book has changed their perspective towards life & growth for good. I have personally experienced some very deep shifts in my consciousness as I read through some topics in this book. I felt it answered some questions which I never knew I wanted to ask.

The writing style is simple & each topic is weaved in a rhythm where in a very subtle way, one starts getting connected to their higher consciousness as they understand each concept of human life from that higher perspective. The energy of the book is such that one starts to feel the flow of what she has written. Minal Arora uses examples from her client case studies to explain deep concepts like loss, grief, control, ego, surrender, rejection, hatred etc. Some examples also reveal how past life & childhood memories can impact one’s life & relationships and create unwarranted experiences. Each example is unique reflection of the spirit of life within and they are so relatable that it is hard to keep the book away once one starts reading it.

INFiNITY starts with a deep, touching conversation with the planet earth along with the introduction of creation of elements. Along with this, it also dwells into the aspect of our creation and how the Earth supports us in our growth. One can feel the intense emotions that Earth feels right after her creation and the journey through the book then slowly allows the reader to imbibe those emotions & through it the reader’s consciousness dissolves into eternal love. It allows one to recognize the eternal connection each one of us have with love & with the source or this universe. I felt this recognition itself that there is a whole universe supporting us always, is extremely empowering.

Minal Arora – Author of “Infinity”

I have yet to come across a simpler, yet, more profound understanding of consciousness. The concepts of time, creation, the mind, subconscious mind, body, disease, food, money, relationships, growth and destiny are elucidated in a way that is eye-opening. How we experience what we experience, why we experience all that we experience on the earth, how does our spirit impact our physical life here, how disease is born out of emotions, how looking into the deeper aspects of our being aligns us with our spirit and how this alignment makes us one with the divine, what is healing, how does it happen…almost everything that we are inquisitive about in these times is present in this book. 

Times are changing. We are recognizing that wellness is not only about a healthy body but also about healthy mind & balanced emotions. Infinity brings forth valuable insights to raise consciousness of those who are ready. It can serve has an inimitable tool for one to heal their mind & body and experience true wellness. Life is a challenge only when we obstruct the flow of our spirit in some way. Once we allow, the universe flows through us and all we experience is love in the very aspect that looked like a challenge.

Infinity – Book Cover Page

This knowledge is needed by everyone who feels stuck, who wants to know the mystical side of life, who wants to understand the flow of energy in our routine lives, who want to create harmonious relationships, who want to address their growth or abundance conflicts, who want to heal their body & those who want to become calmer & joyous within.

This text is a preamble to a new dimension of self & this universe which is accessible to anyone who is open & ready for complete transformation. I am not surprised that Minal Arora has won the award for 100 most inspiring authors of India by the Indian Awaz. I feel this book is a revolution and I wish it reaches each heart that is seeking love!

Amazon Link to buy the book –: Click here

Website: www.pastlifeconnection.com

Review Article by: Kirti Dixit NarangD

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Book Review – Three Thousand Stitches: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Lives

Book – Three Thousand Stitches: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Lives

Author – Mrs Sudha Murty

Page – 179

Format – Paperback

Language – English

Publisher – Penguin Random House India

I started reading this book with lots of hope and expectation and I am glad that I am not disappointed except at few places. What Sudha Murty offers in ‘Three Thousand Stitches’ is a share of her experiences and outlook towards life in a simple and honest way. After reading this I have been deeply inspired by her commitment towards whatever she has chosen to do. She writes about her personal anecdotes with her family, teachers and friends who have touched her. 

 This book is a descriptive narrative of personal experiences comprises of some beautiful chapters like “how to beat the boys”, “No Place like Home”, “Three handful of water” and many more. However, there is one chapter named “A Life Unwritten” which could have written in much better way as it looks more like a Bollywood movie plot (As author has also agreed at the end of the chapter).

Book is full of Motivational content with a lot of useful information. This book also provided an insight into the working of an efficient charitable organization.

Writing Style: The language is super easy and the narration is smooth making you finish this book in two to three sitting. I personally finished it in 3 sittings.

My perception:

Without any doubt, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this story. Thestories are so amazing, inspirational and impacting that you will findyourselves immersed in them. I can’t choose a single favorite story as all thestories are totally worth to read. From each story, you are going to learnsomething. Also, I strongly recommend to those who are beginner in English andnew reader. Simple language, easy to understand and grasp.

A very impressive collection of short stories! You must give it a try and read it once. I am sure you will not regret it.

Book Title – 4/5

Book Cover – 3.5/5

Narration – 4.5/5

Language and Grammar – 4.5/5

Final Rating – 4/5

Amazon Link to buy the book – Click here