The Plot - Summary
A cold blooded murder is on the loose in the busy streets of Mumbai haunting and preying on young woman. All his victims have one thing in common, they work for Mia Santos, the head strong feminist who is the editor of a successful magazine. Mia has a past, a very gruesome past which returns to haunt her in the form of these murders. But, who is the killer? How does he know her well guarded secret? In comes investigating office Damien. Will he crack the crime and catch the killer?
It's simple and well illustrated, but the choice of color is a bit of cliche given that the protagonist is a feminist.
It is evident that Mia's character has been crafted with utmost care to ensure that she is hardened due to her past yet has a soft humane side. Damien's character however seemed to be a hit hazy and inconsistent. He started out being a proper cop and ended up becoming an almost puppet which didn't help the plot line as such. The killer's character was perfectly justified with proper motives, but all of it felt superficial. The negative character in Mia's past seemed more convincing than that of in the present. Other supporting characters were also crafted with perfection such that they fit into the story in a very ideal manner.
The book started off really well. The writer carried out alternate point of view narration in a perfect manner alternating between that of Mia's and the killers. The suspense element was kept alive till about mid way of the book. There we no logical loopholes or inconsistencies in the plot. The editing was air tight till about three fourth of the book. The story started out to be a thriller lover's delight totally.
What could have been better
The climax could have been twisted a bit. It was way too straightforward and predictable. I felt the editing and plot as such slacked a lot after such a good beginning. May be the first half of the book raised the bar and set my expectations high that the climax paled out in comparison. Damien's relationship with Mia though seemed realistic, it kind of ended up altering Damien's character as such. He didn't seem like a tough cop at all. That part of the story could have done with more tough emotions!
Recommendation - For thriller lovers. Brownie points for originality of plot and clean writing!
To know more about the book and to buy it, visit - Amazon!
Note : I received the book in exchange for an honest review! I thank the writer for the same.
After an extended sabbatical, I'm back with a bang, devouring books like there is no tomorrow. However, it's been ages since I've written a proper review. In fact, it feels like I've long forgotten the art of critiquing a book. I intend to amend that shortly. For the next month I have about half a dozen reviews planned till now. After writing about books for 3 plus years, I've witnessed the struggles a writer endures first hand. I've also experienced happiness when a reader reads my review and discovers their next favourite book. To strike a balance of sorts, I've decided to start a feature which would connect writers with readers and in turn promote the writers books as well. This feature would be live from February 1 positively!
Given that my career is leaving me no time for other activities, I have resolved to make the best of the time I can spare. That's politely telling, you won't witness me devouring books and spinning reviews like mad. Moreover, I've decided to read more of classics and politics this year. I've started reading a brilliant book about the Israeli intelligence - Mossad. Hoping to finish it soon!
I also intend to finish off the book I started writing last year. I attacked NaNoWriMo (National November Writing Month) with gusto initially. I managed to complete 5K words before life decided to turn crazy. With my impending marriage and hectic work, I couldn't reach the target of 50K words. Now that I'm settled into a routine, I intend to find that rhythm to write.
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In 2008, Laura began blogging about books shortly after she published her first book. She started Library of Clean Reads, a book review blog, and discovered the joy of reviewing a variety of genres. Her children have joined her in this venture and they spend many happy hours reading books together. A Special Care Counselor by profession, Laura has co-led and developed programs for seniors with dementia, including Alzheimer's Disease. She has a passion for the topic of neuroscience and wellness.
Throughout the years she has met and worked with wonderful publishers, both traditional and indie, as well as publicists and authors. Best of all, she discovered the world of book bloggers--a community of special people who spend their precious time sharing their love of books and all things related to books.
Taking part in book tours has always made Laura feel more connected to authors and the publishing field. She organized her own virtual tour when her book was published and she learned several things. As an author, it exposed her to actual reader views and social media. As a book blogger and book tour organizer, it taught her the amount of work it entailed. And she loves it!
You can find Laura blogging at Library of Clean Reads and Essentially Italian. She is the owner of iRead Book Tours, Italy Book Tours, and Je Lis Blog Tours.
My love for Italian culture stemmed from reading plenty of fiction which was based in that country. This book is the epitome of my Italian fantasy. The story line is quite simple and doesn’t have much to go on so to say, but the narration and characterization is way too good.
Our protagonist Sophia succumbs to the sorrow of losing her parents. Having raised by a mother who loved the Italian culture, Sophia connects with her mother’s Italian muses and heads on a path of self-recovery. She goes to Italy to study art and connects with every important historical moment her mother had told her about when she grew up.
My want to visit that beautiful place filled with such rich history increased leaps and bounds after reading this book. The crux of the story is rather simple – a girl on a road to recovery with memories of her mother which intertwine with Italy’s rich history. The story contains major chunks of interesting history of Italy’s famous persona like actress Sophia Loren, Michelangelo, DaVinci, Garibaldi, Dante Alighieri and Casanova. Then there are the others whom I hadn’t know of – Marcello Mastroianni, Simonetta Vespucci, Eleonora De Medicim Lucrezia Borgia, Lorenzo de Medici, Filippo Brunelleschi and Giuletta Capuleti. The story itself is divided into 8 parts featuring various states of Sophia’s life featuring each of the above mentioned persona who help her out in times of trouble. It is apparent that the writer knows her history well and is familiar with even the most vivid detail of all the sights mentioned in the book. With such lush narration and vivid description, this book is dream come true for me. In fact, Sophia is such an inspiration for me to step up and work towards my dream of learning Italian and visiting the country. In spite of being so beautiful, the writer hasn’t described the real ugly face of the city. However, this can be overlooked. After all, some positivity doesn’t hurt.
The cover and the section covers deserve a special mention. While the cover it was just perfect, the short comment mentioned by another writer it spoiled it for me a bit. The section art work in black and white, with write ups, were brilliant. Given that this is an ebook, the writer had provided links for songs and other tidbits of information. I made a colossal mistake of reading this book on my kindle and couldn’t visit the links. Planning to re-read this book on my tab so that I can go check out all songs and other interesting information she has linked up.
MY SAY: One beautiful book.
About the book
Gabriel Valjan is back with another book featuring Bianca and Dante. Yet another book filled with dangerous drug dealers, corrupt agents, and scheming doctors. Having read the previous books in the series, I felt comfortable enough with the story. Though the book can be read as a standalone, I feel that it would be wise to read the entire series to understand each character well, which would eventually ensure that the reader is hooked to the story.
After the showdown in Naples, Bianca is on a time out with Dante. However, a call from an old friend leads her back to Boston. The team goes with her too. What follows is a Bianca traversing an intricate web woven with designer drugs, a talented hacker who goes by the name Magician, and of course, Bianca’s ex-employer Rendition.
Though this installment of the story is eerily similar to the other books in the series, in terms of character and plot development, there was one marked difference. This book showed the vulnerable side of all the characters in depth. That vulnerability set off the path for a different feel for the story. Bianca at one point seemed all strong and blasting off, but with Dante and Nick around she seems so vulnerable. The writer has established himself as a master story weaver. Just like his previous books, no heart pounding or smoldering hot scenes in this book. This book was like water bubbling away slowly to the boiling point and converting into steam slowly.
MY SAY: A perfect, well woven thriller.
About the book
NUMBER OF PAGES: 388
SERIES / STANDALONE: Roma Series #5
HOW I GOT THIS BOOK: Review copy from iRead Book tours in exchange for an honest review.
“I Controlled, I manoeuvred
I turned reality into illusion
I morphed good into evil
I made rules for you to follow
I scripted your destiny
I defined you”
The book begins with a chilling poem about manipulation, control and power. The narration paces back and forth between timelines and that of various characters, but all roads points to one character, Aswin Jamwal, the protagonist of the story. An honest and simple IAS officer is forced to quit his job when he is cheated by local politicians of Rajasthan for playing his role sincerely. He joins politics and eventually climbs the ladder too quickly, making a lot of enemies in the process.
The story kicks off at an alarmingly fast pace and is laced with twists in regular intervals to keep the reader engaged. Somewhere midway amidst all the subplots which made sense eventually the pace of the story slackened only to pick up pace again towards the end. On the retrospect, it did look like the writer was in a bit of a dilemma as to how to pave way for the climax. The characterization was good in spite of common flaws. Few characters were sculpted to emote well, while the others were mere eye candy! One part of the story, where Aswin rises to immense power reminded me of our own Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi. I’m not sure if the writer intended that, but to me it seems to have been inspired by our PM’s style of administration. Also, the climax part which essentially deals with human psychology eerily reminded me of the movie Anniyan where in one character arises out of the desperation of inaction by fair means. The similarity stops just with the conflict, the resolution to the conflict has been dealt differently when compared to that movie.
MY SAY: Perfect Political Thriller.
About the Book
NUMBER OF PAGES: 224
SERIES / STANDALONE: Standalone
HOW I GOT THIS BOOK: Review copy as a part of Author’s paradise review program
“We shall overcome, we shall overcome,
We shall overcome someday;
Oh, deep in my heart, I do believe,
We shall overcome someday.”
These lines remind me of my moral sciences classes in class 5 when we sung this song with all notes out of sync. Our teacher, who tried her best to make us all sing in tone, gave up at one point eventually. Nevertheless, it was so much fun. One character in the book kept up the self-motivation by singing these very lines. Thus the nostalgia!
Amar, Akbar, Antony – our three monkeys, aka the protagonists, are honest chartered accountants. They had passed their CA exams with much difficulty and eventually had set up their own practice. They struggle to find clients. They finally see the light in the end of the tunnel in the form of auditing for three clients. Slowly, the tunnel falls apart piece by piece and they are caught in a web of money laundering and other illegal activities.
It is apparent that the writer is a chartered accountant as he has perfectly illustrated the process of setting up an off shore account and a company to launder money. The title, the narration and general writing style implies that the humor is a stronghold for this writer. However, characterization and too many sub plots marred the joyous experience of reading a humorous story. There were simply too many characters and at one point I lost track of who was want and why they were there in the book. The sub plot involving secondary characters like Suma and Ruma were given way too much importance and veered off from the central story. At the outset, it seemed like the book really didn’t have a proper plot in place. In fact, there were times when the book reminded me of the famous song Bhaag DK bose form the movie Delhi Belly – Fast moving story sans an actual story! Nonetheless, the intended plot became after the cops got involved into the chase. The detailing could have used some good edits.
MY SAY: The book is worth a read for its humorous dialog and fantastic detailing on as to how to set up an off shore account and launder money.
Reading a work of historical fiction is joyous experience provided the story and the narration is perfect. The term ‘perfect’ though varies from person to person.
Gabrielle (Gabbi) is quintessential modern women in the age where women are branded only fit for child bearing. She aspires to become a painter and strives hard for it. Fate plays the villain in her life when a rich baron chooses her over her sister as his to be wife. She is utterly devastated and devises a scheme to flee to Paris from her hometown, Laval to find her grandmother and live with her. Fate plays villain and she fails to find her grandmother. What follows is the story of young girl’s fight to freedom.
The story was quite outstanding in many aspects. First, the narration was spot on. Old age Paris – the description of sights, the fashion and the culture seemed so realistic through the writer’s eyes. It is evident that the writer has done a fair bit of research. Given that gender of the writer, it does seem easy to assume that she mustn’t have found it difficult to step into the shoes of Gabbi and elaborate her character. In contrary to popular belief, the times have changed. Women are allowed to vote and are way better off today than they were during the 1900s. Agreed we still have a long way to go, but imagining such oppression is quite a difficult task. Needless to say, the writer has executed that task with such perfection. Other primary and supporting characters were also etched out perfectly. The plot has enough twists to keep the reader engaged. Brownie points to the writer for describing Paris and its culture so vividly.
The cover art deserves a special mention. Its simply exquisite.
MY SAY: An Engaging read!
About the book
NUMBER OF PAGES: 254
To know more about the book, head to the spotlight post here!
Brenda Joyce Leahyon Tour October 17-21 with
The Art of Rebellion(YA historical) Release date: June 15, 2016 at Rebelight Publishing ISBN: 978-0994839985 252 pages Website Goodreads
Released June 15, 2016, by Rebelight Publishing, this beautifully written, lush piece drops you into tumultuous and breathtaking late 19th century Paris. Sixteen year old Gabrielle dreams of becoming an artist but her ambitious parents agree to an arranged marriage to an aging Baron. In protest, she runs away from her provincial home of Laval to Paris, the City of Light, intending to live with her grandmother and pursue her passion for art. Her bold plan disintegrates as she arrives in Paris to discover her grandmother has disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Alone in the capital, Gabrielle wonders who to trust: her new artist friends or the handsome but irritating stranger she met on the train, who just might be stalking her. Gabrielle’s pride, ambition and impulsive nature thrust her into Paris’ underbelly of betrayal and abuse. Will she find the courage to begin a new life on her own terms?
The Art of Rebellion was on the Calgary Bestselling Fiction list in August 2016
ABOUT THE AUTHORBrenda Joyce Leahy loves historical fiction and thinks she was born a century too late but can’t imagine her life without computers or cell phones. So, perhaps, she arrived in the world at just the right moment to tell this story. She grew up on a farm near Taber, Alberta but now lives with her family near the Rocky Mountains in Calgary, Alberta. After over 20 years practising law, she has returned to her first love of writing fiction. She is a member of several writing organizations, including the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) The Art of Rebellion is also profiled on the Humber School of Writers’ website Brenda is also a member of the Historical Novel Society and leads a YA/MG writers’ critique group in Calgary. Visit Brenda’s website Follow her on Facebook | on Twitter Follow Rebelight Publishing on Twitter Buy the book: Amazon | Indigo | Barnes & Noble
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A romantic thriller with the backdrop of human trafficking should really make for an interesting read. Given that I had read Adite’s previous book, I quite knew what to expect as far as the romance part of the book is concerned. As a matter of fact, Adite’s previous books certainly qualify as being the perfect Indian Mills and Boons kind of books. Piqued by the curiosity of such a writer venturing into romance, I picked up the book.
Qiara, our protagonist, works for a Non-Profit organization which works for the welfare of underprivileged girls. The chief patron of her organization is wanted for money laundering. Eventually, their office is raided for abetting the laundering as the patron disappears and one of the girls funded by them disappears too. To save her mentor and the organization Qiara is forced to travel back to Delhi to get to the bottom of this and to find him. What follows is a harrowing tale of illegal adoptions.
The writing was spot on. Given that the writer has proved her mettle as far as romance is concerned, that part of the book was absolutely perfect. The thriller part of the book, for a seasoned thriller reader would be normal and nothing out of the box. Nevertheless, the plot was well paced and kept me engaged in spite of some predictable sequences. The characterization was done perfectly with each character being depicted in a realistic manner. I do have a couple of peeve points. The first being the characterization of negative characters – there is a bunch of them varying from pure evil to mildly bad. Their characters kind of lacked that punch packing motive. The second was the climax in itself, it was perfect and had a lot of potential to be made even more thrilling, but the writer chose to tone it down which took away that slam-bam effect a typical thriller would provide.
The cover certainly could have been better illustrated.
MY SAY: Perfect romantic suspense.
About the Book
NUMBER OF PAGES: 200
SERIES / STANDALONE: Standalone
HOW I GOT THIS BOOK: Review copy from the publisher – Harlequin.
BOOK LINKS : Amazon