Half Pants Full Pants – A Review

Half Pants Full Pants is an assortment of childhood memories that will take you back to the TV series classic Malgudi Days. The story is set in Shimoga, a small town in Karnataka where the Author, Anand Suspi, hails from. The little snippets of memories stitched together make a tale of innocence and the shedding of it as we grow up.

Everything from the title of the book to cover design of coins will take you back to the 70s & the 80s. The flair with which he has penned the tales is at once heady and simplistic, again taking us back to the childhood days when everything was uncomplicated and simplistic yet marvelously exciting. The narrative is laced with the Author’s native language, which makes the book believable and lovable.

The book reiterates and cements our belief (our generation growing up in the 70s and 80s) that we had the most magical childhood. Away from all the gadgets that hold kids captive between four walls, in these modern days, into the lap of nature, with friends, exploring around, building stories, making memories.

Reading the book took me back to my days when we did similar things if not the same. When we cycled around with friends, created our own little games up, when owning a TV was a luxury, having a phone was almost unheard of and once we hit our teens, we wanted to be as cool as our cousins in the city.

The last chapter emphatically brings out the message of ‘Cool Vs Fool’. How we outgrow our little towns, go to big cities and end up showing off a little bit, albeit with good intentions, only to be proven that our ways could be cool but definitely not wise. I hope that the book is read by many, its not just reliving childhood it also points out about how smart and worldly wise our parents really were.

The book is divided into two parts, Half Pants is about when the Author was a child and Full Pants is stories from his teens until his first job days. Interestingly the child part of the book is written in short chapters, short sentences, almost like he was reliving his days again. While Full Pants stories are more defined, bigger chapters, more flourish in writing and language.

It was a pleasure to read this piece of ‘back to the 70s’ era. It has an aura of the ‘Wonder Years’ with a very R.K. Narayanesque style.  Guys just go grab your copy of Half Pants Full Pants, you wont be disappointed.


Half Pants Full Pants is a sort of childhood autobiography set in Shimoga of the 70s and 80s. Given the era and milieu that he grew up in, it carries a flavor similar to that of Malgudi Days. All the characters in the book are real and most of them are still in Shimoga, of course now in their mid-40s. Quite a few are from prominent families and are now active and important members of Shimoga. The book vividly captures the real childhood adventures of this generation of people in Shimoga. It’s a glorious reminiscence as well as a tribute to this wonderful town.


Jugnu by Ruchi Singh – A Book Review


Can you love two men at the same time with the same intensity? A question that, is not to be brushed aside with a sneer. It’s a dilemma, which has plagued us from time immemorial and has kept us awake many a nights.
But yes, one of them is the forbidden love. But isn’t the forbidden fruit the more delicious of the lot? Just a thought, not be pondered much about.
In Jugnu (Firefly) too, Ashima is torn between the love of her life, her husband, Rohit and the sudden whiff of fresh air Zayd. What makes it maybe not so forbidden is the fact that she is waiting for someone in the hope that he will return some day, while the beacon of love and happiness is perhaps staring right in her eyes.
What makes her desire a taboo in the eyes of the society is that that she has given her heart away to a man who is younger that her and hails from a different a religion, a religion that is directly responsible for the absence or loss of her husband.
Without giving away the story, Jugnu is not the run of the mill love teenybopper love story. It is more than just a romance, it’s about human lives, the hopelessness of hope itself and how we manoeuvre ourselves in the face of tragedy. Ashima, on the façade is all strength and courage and bravado, who has lost herself in running the everyday affairs of the household and meeting demands of everyone around her. But she is a human being after all, who sparks up with passion and desire much the like the fireflies on a dark night.
The character, who in my opinion, stands out the most is Zayd Abbas Rizvi. Despite a troubled past he has grown as a person and has engaged himself in a more fruitful pursuit. Not many 24 year olds would be capable of what Zayd has managed to inculcate although he has been socially ostracised time and again. No matter how much he pays for his sins, it’s never enough for the society. Yet he is not embittered and is willing to give life a second chance, help people, find love and be happy. He has moments of nightmares and second thoughts, but then in his shoes who wouldn’t?
In many ways Zayd is the Jugnu in Ashima’s life. In the dark depths of misery and despair, Zayd is the firefly that lights up her world, lights up her mind to find the closure she is not ready to accept, lights up her heart with love and passion.
The other characters in the story are as believable as Ashima and Zayd. Though I feel the mothers in law have really earned a bad name in our country and perhaps around the world, hence a spiteful old lady, waiting for her son and blaming her daughter in law makes for a good yarn and more sympathy for the protagonist. But, since Jugnu did take a leap in many ways, this hackneyed mother in law character could have been better etched. .
I would have loved to see an older Ashmia with a slightly bigger son, falling in love with a man considerably younger to her – her dilemma would have been more pronounced.
Ruchi Singh, has very artfully created a setting, a location, which is not just a place but very much an intrinsic character that builds the storyline. The forebodingness, the solitude, the quiet all adds up to Ashmia’s loneliness and pain. The surroundings resonate her mood, her sorrow her entire being.
To add as a parting thought, this story would make a good Bollywood flick. Ruchi Singh start writing the screenplay.


Saved in Sri Lanka By Devika Fernando – Book Blitz

Book Blitz 
Saved In Sri Lanka 
Devika Fernando


Some people are destined to meet.

It sure feels that way when Sri Lankan tour guide Sepalika meets Daniel. The mysterious tourist from Ireland steals his way into her heart and makes her question everything her life is built upon. Instant attraction turns to love – but does he feel the same? And what about the secret she’s hiding from him?

Follow the two on their quest for a happy ending amid the beauty and wonders of the tropical island paradise of Sri Lanka.

Grab Your Copy
About Devika Fernando

 Almost as soon as Devika Fernando could write, she imagined stories and poems. After finishing her education in Germany and returning to her roots in Sri Lanka, she got a chance to turn her passion into her profession. Having lived in Germany and in Sri Lanka with her husband has made her experience the best (and the worst) of two totally different worlds – something that influences her writing. Her trademark are sweet, yet deeply emotional romance stories where the characters actually fall in love instead of merely falling in lust. She draws inspiration from everyone and everything in life. Besides being a romance novel author, she works as a self-employed German web content writer, as a translator, and as a faithful servant to all the cats, dogs, fish and birds in her home. What she loves most about being an author is the chance to create new worlds and send her protagonists on a journey full of ups and downs that will leave them changed. When she’s not writing, she’s reading or thinking about writing.

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Lemon Girl By Jyoti Arora – Spotlight

Lemon Girl 
Jyoti Arora
 The Blurb
‘It’s all your fault.’

Mere words these are.

“But words can possess a shadow invincible enough to rob even a soul of its eternity.”

In a society that finds it easier to mark sins of a victim than the culprit, Nirvi is a young girl punishing herself for the faults she did not do and avenging her hurts by defeating her own truth.

She is scared of her future, and ashamed of her past. She is failing herself, and knows it. She has had a long line of boyfriends, and hated them all. She detests the guy she is living with, runs away from the one she loves , and seduces the one who can never love her.

When Arsh first sees Nirvi, she’s a free and frank girl in whose eyes sparkle the lemony zest of life. The next time he sees her, she is a voiceless doll draped in clothes that cover her body less and shroud her soul more. And Arsh can’t rest till he finds out what made Nirvi give up her own real self.

Nirvi knows she is dragging herself on a path from which there can be no recovery. Can her spirit survive the treacherous downfall? Or is the pull of fear and push of desperation just too strong to withstand for a girl who believes she has “nowhere else to go” but down.

“When it’s time for you to fall in love, even a lemon can become the cause of it,” says Arsh.

But can love survive, when even the self love dies?

Can love survive when respect is no more?

Does true love have the power to revive a dying soul?

Find out in the pages of this brilliantly woven, intense, heart-warming and thought-provoking saga of RISING IN LOVE

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Meet the Author

Jyoti Arora lives in Ghaziabad, India. Jyoti Arora is a Post Graduate in English Literature and Applied Psychology. Her writing achievements include two novels, three blogs, several wins in national level blog competitions, over five years of freelance writing experience, developing books for kids and abridging 24 famous English novels like Jane Eyre, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn etc.

Jyoti’s first novel, Dream’s Sake, was published in 2011 by V&S Publishers. It received great reviews and much appreciation from readers.

Books have always been Jyoti’s best friends. In fact, books so fascinated her from early childhood that she learnt reading, by herself, even before she started going to school. And she considers herself most fortunate that she is able to pursue her dream of being a novelist and work at what she loves best.

However, if books are Jyoti’s first love, and she’s still very devoted to them, the thrilling and steadily advancing world of technology also fascinates her. As a result, one of Jyoti’s blogs is a technological blog called Techn0Treats. In 2011, a post in this blog won her the title of Samsung Mobiler when Samsung made her a part of the team of twenty bloggers chosen from all over India through a blogging competition. In this team of twenty bloggers, she was the only woman and perhaps the only one who had studied literature instead of science. As a Samsung Mobiler,Jyoti is a patient of Thalassemia Major which forced her to stop going to school after class seventh. After that, she continued her studies on her own through correspondence courses. Her zest to overcome her medical problems and zeal to achieve success keeps her striving on with her endeavors to make her dreams come true.

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A Spotlight on Matches Made in Heaven By Sundari Venkatraman

Matches Made In Heaven 
Sundari Venkatraman
Sneak Peek
A collection of 13 romantic short stories based in India; a culture rich country steeped in tradition. Inspiration struck me from newspaper articles, TV shows and hearing people talk. The short stories are based on that fact that arranged marriages thrive right alongside love matches in India.
1. Groomnapped is Ameya-Surekha’s story as a light romantic take on the serious issue of groom kidnappings. 

2. Dark skin on a woman puts off men in general or so says the society. Beauty Is But Skin Deep is Nitin-Simran’s story that proves it wrong!

3. Ritu is twenty-five and wants to wait for her Prince Charming but her parents are desperate to arrange her wedding. Does she find her prince in An Arranged Match?

4. Dating Agencies are doing their best to get young people together to tie the knot. My friend Diti runs an informal one; inspiring the Red Rose Dating Agency. 

5. A guy’s complaint about his fiancée of a few years dumping him after becoming successful in her film career felt like a rant to me. Chahti Hoon Tumhe is an ode to the successful actress. 

6. Soumya actually lives life like Soul Mates but how many have the guts to? This, incidentally, is the first short story that I ever wrote.

7. Does Madeinheaven.com help bring Menka & Jeetu together with technology driven Matchmaking website? 

8. I originally wrote Rahat Mili for an anthology; Rahat means ‘relief’ and is a name too. Read the story with the word in mind and it will fall in place.  

9.  Reema’s Matchmakers brings Arjun and Prisha together at a get-together through a matchmaking network. But will they get married?

10. Nikita wants Krish for a friend and not her husband. As The Reluctant Bride she manages to have her cake and eat it too.

11. Shweta Ka Swayamvar is inspired by the practice of Swayamwar in ancient India of choosing a husband, from among a list of suitors, by a girl of marriageable age. 

12. Pappa’s Girl is about daughters of Industrialists taking over fathers’ businesses.  

13.  Mythology romances intrigue me; Love Match For Velan is my take on Lord Murugan falling in love with his consort Valli. 

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Meet the Author
Sundari Venkatraman has authored four novels and a short story anthology till now, Matches Made In Heaven (anthology) being the latest. The Malhotra Bride; Meghna; The Runaway Bridegroom; Flaming Sun Collection 1: Happily Ever Afters From India (Box Set) and Matches Made In Heaven have all been self-published on Amazon under the banner of Flaming Sun. The three novels are regularly seen on Amazon’s Top 100 Bestsellers’ Contemporary Romances list. The Box Set and Anthology are bound to catch up soon. A great fan of Mills & Boon romances over the past four decades, Sundari has always believed in ‘Happily Ever Afters’ and all her books promise happy endings. Matches Made In Heaven is a compilation of thirteen short stories – all romantic – based on many situations anyone can come upon in their day-to-day lives. The stories revolve around the different ways a couple can get to meet and tie the knot in a culture rich country like India. Those reading the stories will definitely be able to connect realising that one of the situations has definitely been a part of their lives.
 You can stalk her @ahanamukherjee

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Breach: A Cyber Thriller By Amrita Chowdhury

Breach is a nail-biting thriller by Amrita Chowdhury. After a long time I found a thriller by an Indian author that read almost like a Michael Crichton book. The story travels across the U.S. India and China and this is precisely why the web of deception becomes more real and identifiable in today’s age and time when everything is just but a click away.

Breach has many characters and goes back forth from India to America. In the beginning it felt extraneous to have so many characters but the author has tied up the characters seamlessly at the end. She is a master story teller who has done all the research required to make an exhilarating crime thriller with hackers and research scientists all tied up together to weave the up the intriguing tapestry.

The wonder cancer drug Colare is up for approval and with a few weeks to go a data mismatch is apprehended that sends the Colare team both in the US and India in a hot trail to catch the perpetrator of the breach. Unfortunately the major portion of the blame lies with the India team as all the data is stored at the India outfit much against the chagrin of the American counterparts. Dr. Uday Vir Dhingra manages to convince the American boss Adam that India would be a good alternative for off shore data storage and research. Therefore all hell breaks lose when the breach is detected at the India end.

Amidst corporate espionage and data corruption on the net, Vir gets embroiled in a personal turmoil too. Between figuring out how to solve the problem before he loses his job and making time for his American fiancé Tracey, he also finds himself inexorably falling for his earlier girl friend Ditti. Like this was not enough he also finds himself right in the middle of I teenagers and apparently ignorant slum dwellers involved in hacking.

All the characters involved are very well etched out and each have an important part to play in the bigger scheme of affairs. The narrative is so vivid that one can almost see the story unfold before you. What gets in the way is too much technicality and jargon. That the author has researched well is evident but she could have been more judicious about detailing every bit into the narrative. It would have made story more tight and crisp. The other gripe I have is how Tracey is almost booted out of Vir’s life. At the end of the day, she did take the trouble to travel all the way to India and also check out places where she could possibly fit in and work whereas Ditti actually walked out of his life early on and drifted back in for no apparent rhyme or reason. This bit seemed very contrived.

On the whole a well written thriller and I would recommend it to book lovers to give this book a try and I promise it will not disappoint you.




Breach by Amrita Chowdhury

 The Blurb

How secure are your secrets in the virtual world?  Weeks before pharma-giant Acel is ready to file a global patent application for cancer wonder-drug Colare, its offshore data centre in Mumbai is hacked. The charismatic, young leader of its Indian business, Dr Udai Vir Dhingra, finds himself being blamed for negligence and breach of security. Battling market pressures, media scrutiny, livid American bosses and crumbling relationships, Vir must find the perpetrators, or see his career – and his life – spiral downwards. But the deeper he gets dragged into the shadowy world of masked online identities and muddied digital footprints, the more Vir discovers that nothing is easy or obvious, and everything has a price. Set across Mumbai, Washington and Guangzhou, Breach is a compelling and edgy cyber thriller that explores the dark and dangerous underbelly of our increasingly virtual existence

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 Meet the Author

 Amrita Verma Chowdhury is the author of Faking It, an art crime thriller about fake modern and contemporary Indian art. She holds engineering degrees from IIT Kanpur and UC Berkeley, where she was a Jane Lewis Fellow, and an MBA from Carnegie Mellon (Tepper Business School). Her work as an engineer in Silicon Valley led to seven US patents for semi-conductor fabrication – something to show for those bad-haired days. She has done Strategy Consulting and Board Effectiveness work in the US and Australia and has spent long nights fitting five-syllable words inside two-by-two squares. She has worked in the rarefied bastions of Ivy League education bringing together ideas and people. She currently works in publishing.

She lives in Mumbai with her husband Sumit, their two children Shoumik and Aishani, and an assortment of pets including a cocker spaniel, a guinea pig and two turtles. She loves travelling, baking cupcakes with her daughter and hearing from her readers.

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Wrong for the Right Reasons – Ritu Lalit

The author sent me the pdf of the book ‘Wrong for the Right Reasons’ and from the word go I was hooked onto it. It’s the story of Shyamoli Verma, divorced and saddled with two kids, who decides to face life full on, on her own terms. Ritu Lalit writes a passionate tale about the plight of a woman estranged from her husband, how not just the society but her own flesh and blood stand against her and creates obstacles on her path in every possible way.

The narrative is simple and the characters are very real. This is no flashy tale of an extraordinary woman who wants to fight the wrongs done to her. On the contrary it is a story about quite the ordinary Shyamoli, a self deprecative girl in her late twenties who is led by rather unfortunate circumstances to stand up for her children and intricately maneuver through the twists and turns that fate leaves in her way. Everyone she trusted, starting from her husband Manav, her friend Uma or even her mother Malati Malhotra; fells her down with their chicanery and duplicity. She gets support and strength from people who were not her own. The Afghan refugee, who takes shelter at her place, is a beacon of strength and rightly advices her everytime Shyamoli faces a cul de sac. Her relationship with Subodh too is a positive and authentic one. There is no teenage fling, no unreal expectation and both give each other the space and respect that is due to them.

What intrigues me most about Shyamoli’s tale is that she learns to shed her timidity and fights back because she has been betrayed by her very own; these characters have actually unlocked in her the persona she didn’t know she had. Had she not been egged by Uma and Roop, she would never have started the cosmetic company and the bakery neither would she have been able to market and present it professionally if the very same people did not try to cheat her in her own game. Had her mother not threatened to make her roofless she wouldn’t have taken the stance of going to the lawyer though it was her father who stood by her like a rock with his silent support. At the end even her brother’s reaction to her father’s will comes as not just a shock but also a learning that money and property alienates even the closest of the relationships.

The only negative to the whole drama is that it gets a tad lengthy. Since there are no great twists to the tale, the narrative at the end becomes a little tedious  and perhaps the last few chapters could have just been shortened a bit.

Nevertheless, what is interesting is, at the end its Uma who finally does the friendly deed. Will not give away the details, it might become a spoiler. Ritu Lalit again brings out the greys in human character, despite being the unfriend she turns out to be the saviour.

For The Right Reasons
Ritu Lalit
 The Blurb

Shyamoli Verma’s timing is wrong. In her late twenties, she finds that her marriage is irrevocably broken. She comes back to her parents with her pre-teen son and an infant daughter, only to find that she is unwelcome. 

Independent and brash, she decides to bring up her children and also get a divorce without any support from friends and family. 

Written with wry self deprecating humour, this is the story of a divorced woman’s quest for love and security.

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 The Story Told In Pictures 

Meet the Author

Ritu Lalit is a corporate slave turned fiction writer. A voracious reader, she is a gold medalist post graduate in English Literature who spent most of her childhood in remote areas in the northeastern parts of India, lying on grassy hillsides daydreaming and reading books.

She loves spinning tales, but no longer has her captive audience as her children grew up and flew away from the coop. Her three dogs don’t pay much attention. She began writing in the vain hope that the characters she creates will listen to her, even do her bidding.

She has five books out in the market, A Bowlful of Butterflies, HILAWI, Chakra, Chronicles of the Witch Way and Wrong, for the Right Reasons. Her fifth novel, His Father’s Mistress is coming soon.

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Canvas of Dreams , A Spotlight.

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Krishnaa’s Fate

Krishnaa, she was called, the dark beauty. Those lovely bright eyes, that shining complexion, that dazzling appearance and that sharp intellect made her the jewel in the crown. Every man coveted her and wanted to possess her which led to many a battle and finally the Great War for which she will be remembered for generations to come. Yet Krishnaa was the the most misunderstood. The Decieved and the Deciever in Love.

She sighed as she reminisced her life on earth. She could have had it all but she had nothing. Life was one big, long  mockery. Had it not been for Krishna’s friendship, she would have morphed into quite a loony. But then she hoped that the earthlings would have learnt a lesson from her life. But was it possible to learn a lesson in love?

Love was still a mystery and will remain so. Why is it that the one you yearn for spurns you and the one who yearns for you is spurned by you? Well she was never spurned, no, not exactly spurned, her beauty and persona were too powerful to be spurned by any man yet there was a hole, an emptiness in her heart. For the love of lord, she had five husbands! One might argue, but love, where was love?

Bhima, yes, Bhima loved her, truly, really loved her, the only one of the five husbands ready to fight for her honor, her dignity, but she was not the man of her dreams. She was not seeking out Bhima, he was just her stooge, someone she could manipulate whenever she wanted. She was far more cerebral for Bhima. She decived him falsifying love and he fell for it every single time. That Fool!

Arjun was the one she was married to. Arjun, the dream of every maiden. She had heard so much about him. A handsome prince and an archer par excellence. She was the only match for him, and he for her. In her swayamvar, he was the only archer who could achieve the feat laid out for the Princes. True, she was in awe of him. But what about him? Was he smitten by her beauty by her royal parentage by her knowledge and education? Was it not upto him to have said ‘No I don’t want to share my wife with my brothers.’ Yet in a heartbeat he was ready to do so, like she was just another possession that can be divided amongst the brothers. Could he not hear her heart break into million pieces? As is rightly said the morning shows day, this too was but the start of a million heartbreaks and cruel twists of fate that awaited her.

Yudhishtir, was so high and mighty and honest yet he did not stand up for the wrong done that day. He did not say that Arjun’s wife is only for him, not for all the brothers. Why? Because he wanted to devour her and it could be done only under the garb of marriage! That was a wicked strategy, a clever plan and after that without batting an eyelid he put her up as a pawn at stake in the game of dice, a game he was no match with the Kauravas. She scoffed in derison at the thought of it.

Panchali, the only daughter of the great King of Panchal, where did destiny bring you? How low did you have to stoop? A tear trickled down her eyes. No one bothered to find out what she desired, what she wanted. She was just thrown from one brother to another like a piece of ornament. Yet she did her duty as a faithful wife, followed them wherever life took her.

And then there was Karna, the true prince in her mind, her heart never ceased to skip a beat everytime she saw him. Karna the sutaputra. She didn’t care whose son he was but the world knows not about it. The world knows not about her dilemma. Her true love, whom she spurned, to protect her brother and her father, and their kingdom. Spurned him so that Arjun could prove his skill as the mightiest archer in the country.

The thought filled her with remorse and a bit of anger at the same time. She spat! She failed her heart for the greater good that she was forced to believe. Yet there was no greater good, in the end everything came to naught. She did what the society wanted her to do, what a princess should do. What good was it?

Her heart had cried for Karna everyday and everynight. He detested her for callin him Sutaputra but Krishna knew that she didnt mean to say so. She meant to garland him that day.

She softly whispered into the breeze hoping that her message would be carried all the way down to Earth, “Women follow your hear. Life will not always be easy, fate tests us all the time. Do what your heart wants not what the onlooker thinks is the right thing to do.”

Meet the Author

Jaya Siva Murty is a business writer and social media manager from Visakhapatnam, India. Fascinated with the written word since the age of ten, she would file away her poems and short stories in a secret diary, till some were finally published by ‘Times of India’ and ‘Savvy’. She has written for the Economic Times and now provides India-relevant stories for a Hong Kong based magazine. When she’s not designing content for websites, or writing technical blogs and articles for clients worldwide, she spins yarns with unusual twists and turns through her works of fiction.Jaya holds a business management degree and has taken creativity lessons at Stanford University. ‘Canvas of Dreams’ is her debut foray into novella writing.
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Hidden Passion by Summerita Rhayne


Love, passion, desire, power, politics, royalty are all blended in one to take the reader back in time with the Khamboj princess, Rukmani and the Royal Emperor Devesh. Summerita’s writing is vibrant and lucid and the reader can almost see the tale unfold before their eyes.

Rukmani is the youngest of the Khamboj princess and she has given her heart to the rugged royal King Devesh, against the will of her father the King of Khamboj and her brothers the Princes of Khamboj. Though a delicate and dainty princess her will is insurmountable. As we read on we find that her character has manifold layers.

When King Devesh invites her family to visit him she gets her way into going on a spear hunt and she is more than willing to show that she desires him and take that impulsive leap. When her parents disapprove of her choice of bridegroom she is not scared to brave the weather, the forest and the unknown to run for help to her lover who is also the protector of her kingdom. When spurned she is unabashedly ready to become his courtesan, when the consequences are laid before her she shows her naivete towards politics and when asked to follow she is ready for any adventure. Yet she knows her mind, she is decidedly clear that she will follow her heart and is ready for any calamity that befalls her. A girl so sure of herself would also probably know what she is good with if she had to lead another life yet the question baffles her and she is despondent at this point because in her mind she is good at nothing.

She is a bag full of paradox and yet an endearing character which is why Devesh the ruler of all the neighboring kingdoms is inexorably in love with her but holds himself back because he is capable of comprehending what such a step might encompass and how this would endanger his entire empire. Devesh is quite the opposite of Rukmani in many ways. He has had no protected childhood, a leader of his clan, a war hero, ruggedly handsome completely opposite of exquisitely beautiful and graceful Rukmani.

Though the story is fast paced nevertheless Summerita sketches every detail about the apparels, the surroundings, the hunt, the palace, without losing the rhythm of it all. She keeps the reader engaged with her tale of passion, and the books makes for a good and fast read.




Matches made in Heaven – Sundari Venkatraman

matters of heart

Sundari Venkatraman has the gift of story telling especially in the Romance genre. She established herself firmly in this genre with Meghna and the Runaway Groom, and now she is out with an anthology of love stories. All you readers who like to read romantic novels can have a peek into her assortment of racey and pacey stories.

Sundari has always emphasized that she writes for pure entertainment and true to her words her stories are simple, unpretentious and a breather to the weary mind. Though the stories are simple tales of love and romance she also brings to fore the social issues in some of the them like,

Groomnapped – The social evil of dowry forces the two lovers to take an unconventional path to be together.

Beauty is Skin Deep – Sundari again explored the age old , in my opinion, a vice of the colour of skin being the only measure of beauty. We forget that a beautiful heart is worth more than complexion and physical attraction and good looks.

Soul Mates – This story cuts across age and time and underscores the fact that love is not dependant on a person’s country, colour, race and creed.

Sundari also has a few stories that are quite steamy as well like

An Arranged Marriage – The protagonist is unsure of getting married to someone she doesn’t know but caves into the family pressure. On her way home a chance encounter with a stranger turns her life around.

Chahti Hoon Tumhe – A story of love, success, glamour and deceit very well woven that ends in a positive note.

Papa’s Girl – An industrialist’s daughter, after being duped in love a few times finally finds her match.

Amidst the assortment of stories my personal favourite is

Rahat Mili – An interesting story about rebirth. Two souls meet up again to be with each other. Reminded me of the Rumi saying about how the universe conspires to make two souls meet.

Also what makes the anthology complete is the mythological love story Love Match for Velan. As a Bengali, I have never heard of stories revolving around Karthikeya hence this particular one made for pleasant reading.